- March 14, 2016- Back in January we briefly introduced the USSSA Hall of Fame Class of 2016. Every month leading up to November we will feature a different member of the 2016 Hall of Fame Class. For the month of March we are featuring Assistant Executive Director Don DeDonatis III. DeDonatis will be inducted into the USSSA Hall of Fame this November as a member of the male player category.
The formal Hall of Fame induction ceremony will take place during the 49th
Annual USSSA National Convention on November 18, 2016. USSSA will be hosting the 2016 Annual Meeting in Fort Myers, FL off the coast at Sanibel Harbour Marriot Resort.
Can you tell me a little bit about your life growing up?
I grew up in Sterling Heights, Michigan and played football, basketball, and baseball through high school. I played baseball in college at Eastern Michigan University and was drafted by The Detroit Tigers after my junior year. I started playing softball when I was 22 years old after my baseball days were over and am still fortunate enough to be playing at a higher level 18 years later!
How did you get involved with USSSA?
I grew up with USSSA being a big part of my life ever since I could remember. Both of my parents played USSSA softball and my dad started being a director in Michigan when I was very young. I have never known life without USSSA and have met so many lifelong friends and even my wife through USSSA. It will be something I hope to pass on to my kids what a great organization this is. Hopefully they will embrace it and it will have as positive of an impact as it has on my life.
What is your biggest contribution to USSSA? What is your role at USSSA?
I feel like USSSA has contributed to my life more than I could ever give back and contribute to it. I work as The Assistant Executive Director for USSSA and enjoy every minute of it. I will continue to work hard and try and better USSSA in any area that I can. I am proud to be a big part of what is going on in this organization and excited about what the future will bring.
How does it feel to be part of the USSSA Hall of Fame Class of 2016? What are your thoughts on being inducted?
I am very grateful and honored to be going into The USSSA Hall of Fame in 2016. I am humbled to be in a group of the best of the best in the long history of USSSA. I have watched many great players and people go in before me and I am very excited to join such an elite fraternity. It is the ultimate honor in our sport and I am blessed to have great teammates, coaches, and sponsors to be surrounded by in my career.
Who would you like to thank?
I would like to thank my parents for all the support they have given me over the years in all facets of my life. They have been there every step of the way with me since I was 5 years old playing T Ball. I could not ask for better parents and am beyond blessed to have them be such a big part of my life. I would like to thank all my teammates, managers, and sponsors for allowing me to play a game that I love and give me a platform to have the opportunity to succeed. I would like to thank my wife for allowing me to put in the hard work and travel all over the country 6 months a year to do what I love. She has been amazing and I am very fortunate to have the support system from her.
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USSSA is headquartered in Osceola County, Florida. USSSA is the world’s largest multi-sport athletic organization. Founded in 1968, USSSA has grown to over 3.7 million participants, competing in 13 nationally sanctioned sports including Baseball, Fastpitch, Slow Pitch, Karate, Basketball, Soccer and more! For more information on USSSA and to register your team visit USSSA.com
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