Megan Buja of Rockford, Ill., has been selected to receive the 2012 Alberta E. Crowe Star of Tomorrow Award. The award is presented annually by the United States Bowling Congress to a female high school senior or college student who has excelled in the sport of bowling as well as off the lanes.
"Being selected as the Alberta E. Crowe Star of Tomorrow winner is definitely an honor," Buja said. "Former winners of this award have gone on to become important figures in the world of competitive bowling, and it is incredible to receive the same award that these women received."
Buja is a sophomore at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, where she is majoring in Human Ecology - Dietetics. She plans to become a physician's assistant or attend medical school.
A two-time member of the Dexter/USBC High School All-American Team, she was a four-year member of the Jefferson High School bowling team and was captain her last two years. She helped her team win the state title in 2008 and had a 300 game as Jefferson was the state runner-up in 2010, her senior year. Off the lanes, she was class valedictorian, editor of the school yearbook, class secretary and student council member.
Sue Williams, coach of the Jefferson High School program, has known Buja since she started competing in the area's middle school program.
"At age of 12, she showed the determination to be the best she could be, not only on the bowling lanes, but also academically and socially," Williams said in her recommendation. "I have come to appreciate her many fine qualities, and I have watched her grow as a bowler and a person."
Buja already has enjoyed success on the collegiate level as a member of the UMES team that captured the USBC Intercollegiate Team Championships and NCAA Women's Bowling national titles in 2011. She also qualified for the USBC Intercollegiate Singles Championships. She made the Dean's List in fall 2010 and spring 2011 and was a National Collegiate Bowling Coaches Association Academic All-American.
Her community volunteer activities include serving as a middle school and junior league bowling coach, working as a lane monitor for Special Olympics, church mission trips and participating in the Relay For Life.
Named in honor of the seven-term president of the Women's International Bowling Congress, the Alberta E. Crowe Star of Tomorrow Award is presented to a female USBC member who exhibits star qualities such as distinguished bowling performances on the state and national levels, academic achievement and extracurricular and community involvement.
For being named the Alberta E. Crowe Star of Tomorrow, Buja receives a $6,000 scholarship that will be presented at the 2012 USBC Convention in Arlington in April. Photo courtesy of UMES Media Relations
ALBERTA E. CROWE STAR OF TOMORROW AWARD WINNERS
Year, winner, hometown
1961 Betty Kuczynski, Cicero, Ill.
1962 Joy Abel, Lansing, Ill.
1963 Judy Soutar, Leawood, Kan.
1964 Ann Bosworth, Belleville, Ill.
1965 Karen Linton, El Paso, Texas
1966 Betty Jo Crow, Fairway, Kan.
1967 Mildred Ignizio, Rochester, N.Y.
1968 Pamela Carver, Phoenix, Ariz.
1969 Janice Sue Reichley, Dallas
1970 Cheryl Robinson, Destrehan, La.
1971 Rosalyn Raab, San Antonio, Texas
1972 Karen Gustafson, Sunland, Calif.
1973 Leslie Ferris, Arlington, Va.
1974 Pam Dusek, Ontario, Calif.
1975 Donna Adamek, Apple Valley, Calif.
1976 Regina Loveall, Amarillo, Texas
1977 Kathy Kirst, San Antonio, Texas
1978 Nikki Gianulias, Vallejo, Calif.
1979 Audrey Gable, Whitehall, Pa.
1980 Tish Johnson, Panorama City, Calif.
1981 Shelley Johnson, Toledo, Ohio
1982 Vicki Parker, Pelham, N.H.
1983 Laura Dulisse, Blauvelt, N.Y.
1984 Kristine Gross, Citrus Heights, Calif.
1985 Becky Kregling, Stratford, Conn.
1986 Lori Benge, Wichita, Kan.
1987 Dionne Lee, Modesto, Calif.
1988 Lynda Norry, Concord, Calif.
1989 Stefanie Marek, Wilmington, Del.
1990 Kelly Everding, Arvada, Colo.
1991 Laura Ross, Mahwah, N.J.
1992 Kari Murph, Dayton, Ohio
1993 Elizabeth Johnson, Niagara Falls, N.Y.
1994 Pamela Inloes, Modesto, Calif.
1995 Kassy Hyman, Dyer, Ind.
1996 Michelle Ewald, St. Claire Shores, Mich.
1997 Kimberly Claus, Mesquite, Texas
1998 Diandra Hyman, Dyer, Ind.
1999 Amy Rocco, Phoenix
2000 Robin Crawford, Hendersonville, Tenn.
2001 Melissa Bellinder, Fullerton, Calif.
2002 Anita Manns, Austin, Texas
2003 Lindsey Coulles, Centerville, Ohio
2004 Amanda Burgoyne, Newport, Minn.
2005 Cassandra Leuthold, Blackhawk, S.D.
2006 Josie Earnest, Vandalia, Ill.
2007 Joi Bell, Pflugerville, Texas
2008 Brittni Hamilton, Webster, N.Y.
2009 Ricki Williams, Wichita, Kan.
2010 Heather D'Errico, Rochester, N.Y.
2011 Nicole Mosesso, Centerville, Ohio
2012 Megan Buja of Rockford, Ill.