2019 Friend of NYSOMA – Wayne Otte

This award was established by the NYSOMA Board of Directors to honor the service of individuals, who through personal action demonstrate, in an extraordinary way, those social values affirmed to the goals of New York State Odyssey of the Mind. The inscription on the plaque reads: “In recognition and appreciation of unique talents and creative energies offered on behalf of NYSOMA.”

NYSOMA is pleased to present this year’s award to Wayne Otte!

Wayne first became involved in Odyssey in the early days of the program as a coach for his children’s teams in 1982. He continued in that role for ten years before taking on a regional Problem Captain role for the vehicle problem in 1992.

In 1997 he joined the NYSOMA board of directors. He has served many roles with NYSOMA beyond just being a board member including Assistant State Director, Treasurer, Finance Committee Chair, Sponsorship Committee Chair, Scholarship Committee Chair, and many others.

Wayne is always there when we need a helping hand with just about anything. He has woodworked countless intricate items to support NYSOMA at times, whether they be for a problem competition, or for the creativity booth that heads to World Finals each year.

As our NYS Problem Captain for the Problem 1 (vehicle), he not only provides our annual head judge training in January each year, but inserts himself into the earliest competitions and then holds conference calls with head judges around the state in an effort to obtain the highest level of judging and consistency possible across all regions. He truly loves the program and wants to be sure that teams from New York will get a competition experience that will fully prepare them for what they would experience at the World competition level.

After 21 years on the NYSOMA board, Wayne decided to step down at the end of the 2017–2018 program year. But his valued involvement in the program still continues and we very much appreciate his help on everything he does for Odyssey