Teachable Community Lessons From a Scottsdale-to-Boston Dynasty

By Recker McDowell —

Sports is known for its dynasties. The New York Yankees, New England Patriots, Boston Celtics, and UCONN women’s basketball all come to mind.

In Scottsdale, there has also been a family sports dynasty when it comes to soccer. And that dynasty also shows the lesson of investing in our community and our young people.

The Struckman family’s success at soccer at Chaparral High School also provides some valuable lessons as we navigate COVID-19 and approach the August 4th primary and November elections.

Isabella Struckman was recently named the Gatorade Arizona Girls Soccer Player of the Year. She helped lead the Chaparral Firebirds girls’ soccer team to another 6A state championship. Struckman, who graduated with a 4.95 GPA, is headed to MIT (the Massachusetts Institute of Technology) where her sister Sophia now plays and her sister Olivia was also a standout at the prestigious engineering and technology school.

Olivia, Sophia, and Isabella Struckman helped lead Chaparral and their Arizona club teams to state championships and prominence. They have taken their dynasty from Arizona to Boston.

The family were also strong supporters of last year’s successful Scottsdale bond questions investing in key infrastructure (including youth sports fields and facilities) as well as a Scottsdale Unified School District Override that also invested in technology and programs.

Margarita Struckman, the girls’ mother, and Sophia Struckman penned a column last year in favor of the bonds

“My daughters were born and raised in Arizona, and they’ve succeeded at the highest levels thanks to adequate funding for schools and our city early in their lives. I don’t worry about them. I worry about the next generation of girls who will come behind them,” Margartia Struckman wrote in the Scottsdale Independent column.

Struckman said soccer helped pave her daughters’ way to MIT.

The full column can be seen here.

The Scottsdale bonds passed overwhelmingly and were the first major bond program passed by city voters in 19 years. It was an effort that cut across party lines and ideologies on Scottsdale’s growth.

The upcoming elections (at all levels) also show the need for vision and investments in our future and the ability to work together for common goals. Common community goals are critical right now as we navigate COVID-19.

They are essential to how and when we reopen schools and the economy. They are essential to how we foster economic development, save small businesses, and create jobs after the U.S. economy saw a historic 32.9 percent GDP decline in the second quarter. They are essential how we protect public health, especially seniors and those most vulnerable to COVID.

The Struckman family shows the importance of investing in our future. They also show a better path than what we too often see on social media and from political candidates and campaigns.