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Ada honored in Little League Congress

THE 27th Little League International Congress honored NMI Little League District Administrator James Ada for 20 years of his dedication to the youth sports program.

Attended by nearly 1,500 representatives of Little League Baseball and Softball from around the world, the Little League International Congress held at New Orleans Convention Center from Jan. 19 to 22 also enshrined MLB commissioner, Rob Manfred.

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NMI Little League District Administrator James Ada stands at the entrance of New Orleans Convention Center during a break in the Little League International Congress.  Contributed photoNMI Little League District Administrator James Ada stands at the entrance of New Orleans Convention Center during a break in the Little League International Congress. Contributed photo

A native of Rome, Manfred became the 56th person enshrined in the Little League Baseball’s Hall of Excellence.

Ada is among the 50 district administrators all over the world who received recognition awards for serving in the youth sports program for 20 years and longer.

He is the only one in the Little League Asia-Pacific region who was given a 20-year volunteer award. He and ASPAC regional administrator B.H. Chow are the only ones left in the program after their former fellow administrators had either passed away or retired.

There were many DAs in other regions who received awards for their dedicated service to the program. Fourteen others in different regions were honored for being in the program for 20 years; 10 DAs for 25 years, 15 DAs for 35 years and two for for being in the program for 50 years.

One of the DAs who received a longtime award was Hawaii’s Mary Siachi who has been DA there for 50 years now.

Ada said he has known her since 2001.

Ada and the other long-time DAs were honored at the District Volunteer Recognition Breakfast where they were joined by joined with ESPN’s Kyle Peterson and Jessica Mendoza for a discussion on their experience and insight.

“First of all I want to extend my personal appreciation to those people who worked with me since I became DA in 1996. I appreciate their volunteered time and patience. This 2018 season will be my 21st year serving in the program,” said Ada who had been involved in Saipan Little League in various roles for the last 30 years.

He also encouraged them to continue their voluntarism in the program that NMI baseball community has been keeping for 46 years now.

Throughout the course of the four-day Congress, DAs and Assistant DAs gathered for discussions on future rule changes, outline standards for exceptional leadership and volunteer service, and the selection of two regional representatives to the Little League International Board of Directors.