Willowbrook senior named as recipient of Chicago Bears’ Girls Flag Football Changemaker Scholarship

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On Feb. 19, Willowbrook senior Emma Anderlik was named as a recipient of the Chicago Bears’ Girls Flag Football Changemaker Scholarship. She was recognized during the National Football Foundation Awards Ceremony at Halas Hall in Lake Forest.

This was the first year the award has been presented, and Anderlik was one of three honorees. The catalyst for the award was the Bears' 2023 Inspire Change Changemaker Award that was given to Juliana Zavala for her partnership with the Bears on girls flag football. Zavala was awarded $10,000 to give to a cause of her choice. Together with the Bears, she decided to create the Changemaker Scholarship. The Bears added another $5,000, so three student-athletes could be named.

Zavala and Gustavo Silva, Manager of Youth & High School Football with the Bears, selected three outstanding young ladies based on their experiences and background working with girls flag football since it started in 2021. 

“We were really looking for girls who have outstanding character, leadership and passion for the game, as well as a true desire to play at the next level,” Silva said. “Anderlik stood out to us, not just because of her outstanding play, but also because of her kindness, humility and coachability.”