By SCOTT MCKIE B.P.
ONE FEATHER STAFF
Tony Wolfe, a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians from the Yellowhill Community, has been selected to serve on the Special Olympics North Carolina (SONC) Athlete Council. Terms on the Council are two years, and he will help provide insight and input on issues affecting athletes statewide.
“A person doesn’t know until they try,” Wolfe said stating that he was shocked he was selected. “It’s a big accomplishment. I’ll be representing the whole state. It’s exciting to get voted in for that. I’ve got confidence built up in me that there’s a lot of stuff we can do.”
Wolfe, a long-time member of the Qualla Boundary Special Olympics team, has been a global messenger for some years helping to spread the word about the Special Olympics program.
His father, the late Beloved Man Jerry Wolfe, was a big supporter of his. Tony Wolfe stated, “He helped me a lot and supported me in my endeavors. My dad gave me a lot of inspiration when he was alive.”
Keith L. Fishburne, SONC president and chief executive officer, said, “We are very honored that Tony has agreed to serve on the Special Olympics North Carolina Athlete Council. He is serving a two-year term of 2019 and 2020. Tony completed the Special Olympics Global Messenger training, making him a spokesman for SONC, in 2003.”
He confirmed that Wolfe is the first Native American in the state to serve on the Athlete Council. “His many years as a Special Olympics athlete are also impressive as he provides terrific feedback on how Special Olympics can be better.”
Fishburne further noted, “The Athlete Council is made up of up to 25 active SONC athletes from across the state. These athletes meet quarterly to provide input to the president/CEO of Special Olympics North Carolina on issues important to the Special Olympics movement. The mission of Special Olympics is to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.”