Mandy Marie Stoll
Admired for her generous and energetic spirit, Mandy Marie Stoll accomplished a great deal in her twenty years. A graduate of St. Stephen’s Episcopal School in Bradenton, where she excelled both academically and athletically. She was a member of the National Honor Society, editor of the Yearbook, and a member of the Student Council. She was also a top player on her high school tennis team and was undefeated in all of her high school matches, earning six varsity letters.
Mandy continued her notable playing career at Stetson University in Deland while on a full scholarship. She was named the Lady Hatters Most Valuable Player and team captain in her sophomore year. As the #1 women’s tennis player, she set a school record of twenty consecutive victories. Mandy touched many young people with her loving and friendly personality. One of her professors wrote, “I could see Mandy emerging from girlhood into this dynamic young woman, taking her good mind and great athletic ability in applying both to their maximum. I was so proud of her, for she was the role model we look for to encourage others to use their talents to grow.” Dick Vitale, noted college basketball analyst, whose daughters were Mandy’s friends, stated “Mandy was a very sweet girl, she oozed class and special smile of hers left you feeling special to be in her company.”
Although Mandy’s life was tragically taken in April of 1988, when she was just 20 years old, her memory and spirit continue to live in all whose lives she touched. Mandy was the daughter of Tom, FIAAA Past President (1981-82), as well as long time FIAAA Historian, and Mary Stoll of Bradenton. As per Mandy’s wishes, three patients have a renewed hold on life as a result of organ transplants from Mandy.
At their September 24-25, 1988 Board of Directors Meeting, the FIAAA renamed the FIAAA Scholar/Athlete Award the “Mandy Stoll Scholar/Athlete Award” in honor of Mandy and her parents.
MANDY STOLL SCHOLAR/ATHLETE AWARD
In the early 1980’s the FIAAA Higher Education Committee began discussions of adding an “Academic Award” at the annual conference. In 1985-86, earnest discussions evolved into the creation of a selection process and in 1986-87 the FIAAA Scholar/Athlete Award was awarded for the first time at the FIAAA Annual State Conference. One female and one male were chosen, with Jacqueline Eisenhower from Armwood High School and Patrick Neel from Tarpon Springs High School as the first recipients. They each were presented with a plaque by their FIAAA District Director at their respective schools. In 1987-88 the FIAAA Higher Education Committee recommended that in addition to a plaque, the winners would also receive a monetary award and the runner-ups would receive a certificate. The Higher Education Committee was charged by the board to contact the NCAA to inquire about the permissibility of such a monetary award. Subsequently, each year since 1988, the recipients have received a monetary award and a plaque. Since its implementation, the number of recipients has changed over the years, starting with two in 1987, to four in 1990, to six in 1998, to twelve in 2004, to eight in 2009 and to ten in 2014. In all cases there were an equal number of female and male recipients, and since 1990, the division of recipients has been based on FHSAA classifications of schools, with one or two, and sometimes at-large, recipients per classification. Since 1988, the FIAAA has dispersed $142,000.00 in scholarship money to deserving scholar athletes.
The FIAAA is honored to sponsor and select the FIAAA Mandy Stoll Scholar/Athletes deserving students throughout the state each year. Nomination forms are made available to each FIAAA District Director, as well as on this website, prior to the Annual State Conference. Each District Director submits completed nomination forms to the Chairperson of the Higher Education Committee. The Higher Education Committee then review the nominees and select the winners. The announcement of the winners and the presentation of the checks and plaques takes place during the awards banquet at the Annual State Conference. Currently a total of ten recipients, two females and two males in each of four categories based on the FHSAA basketball classifications lA-2A-3A, 4A-5A, 6A and 7A, as well as one female and one male at-large nominees are honored with a $500.00 cash scholarship and a plaque.
Mandy Stoll Silent Auction
Just as the development of the scholar athlete program, the means by which the association raised the funds to cover the expenses, has changed over the years. Prior to 1995, the FIAAA relied on donations from members, schools, association funds, FHSAA and corporate contributions, to cover the costs of the program. During the 1994-95 FIAAA administrative year and under the direction of then FIAAA District 3 Director Ronnie Youngblood, the FIAAA conducted a silent auction at the Annual State Conference to raise funds to offset the cost of the Mandy Stoll Scholar/Athlete Award. The 1995 Mandy Stoll Silent Auction raised $1171.00. The program was so successful that the Mandy Stoll Silent Auction has become a highlight of the Annual State Conference. With the development of the FIAAA Corporate Sponsorship program, the Mandy Stoll Scholar/Athlete program has been able to sustain itself with funds raised through the Mandy Stoll Silent Auction, while continuing to accept contributions from members, schools and association funds through the Corporate Sponsorship program. The FIAAA Board of Directors, early on, authorized the keeping of a separate Mandy Stoll Account and in 2020-21 FIAAA Board of Directors authorized that the association maintain at least $10,000.00 at all times in the Mandy Stoll Account.