Senior point guard is just the third NCAA Division III athlete to win the award.
Loras College senior point guard Brittney Cato
(Chicago, Ill.) and head women’s basketball coach Justin Heinzen
learned that Cato is the 2013 recipient of the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association’s (WBCA) Charles T. Stoner Law Award. The award, now bestowed on the 13th
winner, is in the amount of $1,000. It is awarded annually to one senior female college basketball player who intends to pursue a career in law.
Cato, who is also a three-time member of the All-Iowa Conference Academic Team, plans to continue her education and is filling out applications for a handful of schools. She took the LSAT in December and was happy with her results. As a Chicago native, she’s leaning toward something in or near the Windy City.
“Coach Heinzen told me about the opportunity and helped me get the resume and other documents together,” Cato said. “There was some time between the nomination and the announcement, so it took me a while for it to register when Coach (Heinzen) told me. It was kind of a shock.”
Her involvement both on and off campus has been significant. Cato is a resident assistant (RA), serves in a social networking role on the Diversity Committee, is director of academic alliance for the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and vice president of the Black Student Union. Her internships have taken her to the Cook County State Attorney’s Office and Intersport. She has volunteered at more than a half-dozen organizations in Dubuque – including with Special Olympics.
When the English Literature and Spanish major was asked about what portion of the law she’ll be diving into, she cited a few possibilities.
“I would like to do sports and entertainment law or patent law, maybe intellectual properties – clients and their contracts,” Cato said. “My majors have really helped me in writing and forming an argument and showing evidence to back it up. Classes that aren’t in my major still have a critical thinking component – and that has helped a lot, especially in my preparation for the LSAT,” Cato points out.
Loras has locked up a spot in the 2013 Iowa Conference basketball tournament.
“Basketball has really helped keep me organized,” Cato says. “It keeps me focused. It is a big time commitment and can be hard, but I’ve benefited from it over the last four years.”
As this year's recipient, Cato will be in New Orleans in early April for the WBCA Awards Luncheon at the organization's annual convention to accept her award. New Orleans, La., is the site of this year's NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Championship and the 2013 WBCA Convention.