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Thune Selects Nagys for 2014 Angels in Adoption Award

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., announced Wednesday his selection of Scott and Jamie Nagy and their family of Brookings for the 2014 Angels in Adoption Award presented by the Congressional Coalition on Adoption, of which Thune is a member.

Scott, the head coach of the South Dakota State University men's basketball team, and Jamie adopted their daughter Naika from Haiti in 2006 when she was 2 ½ years old. Naika's adoption prompted Jamie's collaboration with another adoptive family to create an adoption networking group in Brookings. Their adoption experience also inspired Scott's involvement in Samaritan's Feet, an organization that provides shoes to orphans and impoverished children in developing countries.

"Scott and Jamie's story demonstrates how adoptive parents and families can foster patience, grace, and understanding to open their hearts and homes to a child in need," Thune said. "Their desire to help others understand and overcome the effect of overwhelming change on both the child and the family speaks to their strength of character and makes me proud to honor them as Angels in Adoption. I commend their efforts to assist other families navigate the adoption process and raise awareness for the needs of children around the world."

Scott and Jamie were married 14 years and had four biological children, Nick, 12; Tyler, 11; T.J., 6; and Natalie, 3; when they brought Naika into their family. Thune's office worked with the Nagy family to coordinate the adoption in 2006.

In 2009, Scott was one of the first coaches in the country to coach barefoot at a basketball game to help raise awareness for Samaritan's Feet. Scott, who serves as head coach of the South Dakota State University Men's Basketball team, cites his interest in helping Naika's home country as his source of inspiration for participating in the program. In 2013, Scott took the South Dakota State Men's Basketball team to Haiti to distribute shoes.

The Nagys, along with Angels in Adoption recipients from around the country, will be invited to an awards banquet in September in Washington, D.C.