Daemen College women’s basketball player Natalie Galus has been named one of 20 semifinalists for the prestigious Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup awarded by the Athletes for a Better World (ABW) organization.
Named for legendary University of California-Los Angeles basketball coach John Wooden, the award aims to recognize a student-athlete who best exemplifies character, teamwork and citizenship – the attributes that ABW deems central to transforming individuals, sport, and society.
On the court, Galus has been a steady contributor for Daemen since arriving in fall 2013. The 5-foot-11 senior forward has appeared in 93 games over the last four seasons, while making 86 starts and producing 9.4 points and 6.3 rebounds per game. She ranks fifth all-time in blocked shots (173) for the Wildcats, and ninth in three-point field goals made (124) and attempted (382). She was also named a team captain prior to the 2016-17 season.
Off the court, Galus is an active member of the campus community. She serves as a women’s basketball team representative on the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, and has played an integral role in the team’s involvement with Team IMPACT, a non-profit organization that pairs children with life-threatening and chronic illnesses with collegiate athletic teams.
She has also volunteered for various local organizations, including People, Inc., the Skating Association for the Blind and Handicapped, Gliding Stars, and Challenger Basketball, and served as a volunteer intern at the Family Justice Center of Western New York.
“Natalie has many good qualities, but her motivation for social justice and acceptance of advocacy for others is most compelling,” wrote Bridget Niland, director of athletics, in her letter of recommendation to the Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup Committee. “Natalie quietly lives the principles of the Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup. Her day-to-day actions and interactions exhibit excellence both on and off the court. She is a role model as a student, athlete and person.”