"Nothing is too much trouble and everything is done in his own time for no reward. He is an inspiration, a great friend and a great Evertonian."
The words of Phil Howard, just one of the many people who each week stand among the masses, cheer on the Blues, live every moment of every game and owe it largely to Ken Sweeney, Everton's 2013 Fan of the Year.
The chairperson of the Mid-Cheshire Supporters' Club, Ken, 45, has been running the organisation for 17 years, shipping people to and from his hometown of Winsford to games not only at Goodison Park but all across the country and beyond.
A keen fundraiser, he has also been a staunch supporter of Everton in the Community and the Everton Former Players' Foundation, recently organising and taking part in a bike ride which saw a a team of cyclists travel back from a game at Sunderland in aid of the two charities.
Raising over £22,000, it was just one example of the unwavering dedication and selfless approach that caught the eye of our judging panel and saw Ken pick up his special prize at Thursday's annual End of Season awards dinner.
"This award is not just for me – it’s for every Evertonian,” said the overwhelmed winner. “Whether supporters go to one game a season or every fixture, home and away, Everton is one big family.”
A long-time Season Ticket holder and proactive member of the Supporters' Club Forum, Ken has served as a valuable soundboard for the Club as a voice of the fans.
His enduring commitment to his Mid-Cheshire branch has also seen him bring thousands of people through the Goodison gates.
This season, however, Ken gave up his regular seat for home matches to instead assist a member of his group who became wheelchair-bound after a serious road accident.
"Running the Supporters' Club involves organising everyone's tickets for every match home and away and takes a massive amount of time and effort and a huge phone bill!" said Nick Thomas, one of those to nominate our winner.
"Ken has yet again not missed any game home and away all season, driving a full minibus to most of the away games himself. Forsaking his own seat to be with one of our members so he can attend the games in the wheelchair section of the stadium is just typical of Ken. The work he does, and in his own time, he’s fantastic.”
Laura McGrath, another to put him forward via the evertonfc.com nomination page, agreed.
"Week in and week out Kenny organises the Supporters' Club and ensures that all fans have everything they need to go to the match," she said. "Everyone who travels has a fantastic time home and away due to his hard work and dedication but all this hard work he puts in for the love of his team and nothing more.
“He does a fantastic job promoting the Club's profile in the local area and has recently finished the bike ride too. He definitely deserves to be Fan of the Year."
Fan of the Year was sponsored by Chang.