2014 Maeb Bayers Memorial Trophy Awarded
October 19, 2013
by Sally O’Sullivan Bair
NSSDC vice president Joe Fessler, of Chisago, MN, has been awarded the 2013 Maeb Bayers Memorial Trophy. “It is an honor,” he stated.
Fessler comes to NSSDC as a skijorer originally and with a kennel of Siberians, but he has also handled for distance mushers Blake and Jen Frekking. This lad travels at 90 miles an hour. He not only holds down a busy job as computer technologist but also has developed a hands-on program for working with groups of Girl Scouts, “Experience Sled Dogs.” He comes to us with a BS degree from the University of Minnesota in Computer Science and has been a help to NSSDC in developing its online presence. He has put efforts into getting the St. Paul Winter Carnival Race off the ground only to be thwarted by a lack of snow… and, unfortunately, a lack of personnel.
Fessler further expanded on the honor of receiving this award: “Not only does the award serve as an affirmation that my efforts have been serving the interests of the club and its members, but I also feel privileged to be included among the impressive list of past recipients. If there is one thing all of those individuals have in common it is their ability to motivate and inspire others to get excited about making our sport and our community stronger. Accepting this award only serves to strengthen my resolve to be such an inspiration for the North Star Club and its members.”
The Maeb Bayers Memorial Trophy is presented annually to a NSSDC member who has made outstanding contributions to the Club and to the sport. Bayers was an active NSSDC member in its infancy and contributed to its growth and development as well as to the careers of several Midwest mushers of the time. She was known for her knowledge of dogs/mushing, her kindness, willingness to help, and her good sense. She died in January, 1977, of a brain tumor.
The Maeb Bayers Memorial Trophy was donated to NSSDC by Marti and Dick Mackey, formerly of Bemidji, Minnesota, who were close friends of Maeb’s. The trophy was first awarded in 1981 to Bob Jones of Cannon Falls, Minnesota.