Meridian Star


March 29, 2014

2 locals named State Games’ athletes of the year

      Enterprise resident Braden Ivey and Meridian resident Faye Stokes were honored at the State Capitol as the 2013 State Games of Mississippi AT&T Athletes of the Year.

    The two were introduced to the Mississippi Senate and House of Representatives where a resolution was passed in their honor. Gov. Phil Bryant and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves also recognized Ivey and Stokes for their achievements as the AT&T Athlete’s of the year. 

    Faye has been competing in the State Games for 14 years as an archer and she has 24 gold medals and two bronze medals to show off for her efforts. Not only is she a competitor, but she also volunteers her time to assist with the competition.

    Ivey became the 2007 Mississippi State Champion in his age group for the Mississippi Karate Association. He continues to defend his title and has renewed it every year, becoming a six-time “13 and Under Grand Champion.”

    On the Senate floor, Mississippi senators applauded the athletes’ performances during the 2013 State Games of Mississippi. Senator Videt Carmichael of Meridian and Senator Terry Burton of Newton, presented the Senate resolution to Ivey and Stokes.   

    The Mississippi House of Representatives, led by Representative Greg Snowden, local delegates and each Athlete of the Year’s area Representatives, recognized the two athletes for their outstanding achievements in organized athletics. The State Games of Mississippi was also acclaimed as a showcase for Mississippi’s amateur athletes, providing an avenue for camaraderie, positive personal development and achievement through athletic competition.  

    “It means so much to our organization to have the support of our Legislature,” said Krilecia Gianakos, Marketing and Development director of the State Games of Mississippi.

    Based on the national program, the State Games of Mississippi established the annual AT&T Athlete of the Year Award in an effort to recognize Mississippi amateur athletes. Coaches, officials, athletes, volunteers and spectators have the opportunity to nominate athletes from each sport for the award. One male and one female athlete are selected for each sport, and the overall AT&T Athletes of the Year are chosen from those nominees.

    As AT&T Athletes of the Year, Christie and Dallas will be the official torch runners in the State Games of Mississippi Opening Ceremonies and will work with State Games of Mississippi throughout the year to promote amateur athletics for all Mississippians.   

    “AT&T is proud to be the sponsor of this elite award,” said C.D. Smith, Regional Manager of AT&T. “We are very appreciative of the importance that our Governor, Lt. Governor and Legislature place on these athletes and the State Games of Mississippi event.”

    Entering its twenty-third year, the State Games of Mississippi is a statewide amateur sports fest patterned after the Olympics. Approximately, 6,000 athletes of all ages and abilities participate in the State Games. The event kicks off with an Olympic-style Opening Ceremonies, Friday, June 20th in Downtown Meridian Athletes participating will compete throughout the month of June with 40 events in twenty communities around the state.

    For more information on the Games, call 1-800-482-0205 or visit the State Games of Mississippi website at

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