An inspiring night at the New York Athletic club as the AAU awarded the 80th Annual Sullivan Award to paralympic athlete Amy Palmiero-Winters. She was selected the winner from 6 finalists who were picked from a larger group of 14 athletes via a poll with USA Today.
Her story is truly inspiring. She runs 100+ mile races, ulta marathons, in under-24 hours and often wins even against able bodied men and women! She lost her leg at age 21, but has turned her life into a focus of helping children who’ve lost limbs, competing as a top athlete in one of the most grueling sports of endurance and working full-time as a mother of 2! Wow!
All of the six finalists each had truly remarkable sporting and off the field achievements and I felt honored to have hosted the evening. The other 5 finalists, Zak Boggs, Megan Hodge, Angela Bizzari, Clint Moore and Lisa Halmin have reached incredible heights: Olympians, NCAA champions, world champions and record holders amongst the 5 of them.
Olympic Champion and friend Sarah Hughes did a great job talking to the athletes about what it means to be a UAA Sullivan Nominee and it was truly a pleasure to spend the day with the athletes, their families and the great folks at the AAU and NYAC. Congrats to all of them!
I’m very excited to have been selected as the master of ceremony for this years 80th annual AAU Sullivan Awards honoring our country’s most outstanding amateur athletes. Past award winners have included, Tim Tebow, Sarah Hughes, Paul Hamm and Michael Phelps.
This years finalists are Clint Moore, Amy Pamiero-Winters, Megan Hodge, Erin Hamlin, Angela Blizzari and Zak Boggs. The top 14 nominees were selected from submissions to the AAU Sullivan Committee. Then America voted for their favorite athlete online at USA Today combined with ballots from National Governing Bodies’, Members of the Media and D1 Sports Information Directors. (Athlete Bios for 2009 Finalists: http://aausullivan.com/nominate.html)
The winner will be announced on April 14th at the ceremony taking place at the New York Athletic Club. The event will include an autograph session with the athletes from 5:30-6:30pm, buffet and beverages from 6pm-7pm and then the award ceremony starting at 7:15pm with Olympic Figure Skating Champion Sarah Hughes presenting the winner with their award.
You can purchase tickets at: http://aausullivan.com/dinnerreg.html
The AAU Sullivan Awards
Known as the ” Oscar” of sports awards, and older than The Heisman, the AAU Sullivan Award honors the outstanding amateur athlete in the United States. It has been presented annually by the AAU since 1930 as a salute to founder and past president of the Amateur Athletic Union.