ST. LOUIS – April 26, 2013 – The National Association of Sports Commissions (NASC) selected the St. Louis Sports Commission as its 2013 Member of the Year.  The NASC made the announcement yesterday at its annual Sports Event Symposium in Louisville, KY.

  Having previously won the award in 2002 and 2005, the St. Louis Sports Commission joins the Richmond (Va.) Sports Backers as the only three-time recipients of the honor.

The Sports Commission of the Year award recognizes the NASC member that has the most outstanding impact on its local community through sporting events, community events and economic impact.  A panel of association members reviewed all nominations.  The NASC includes nearly 600 organizations that represent more than 350 cities.  It is the sports event industry’s leading networking organization.

“We are honored to be recognized by the NASC,” said Sports Commission Chair Dave Peacock.  “This award is a testament to the hard work by many to position St. Louis as an outstanding sports event destination, and it’s a credit to the outstanding support the Sports Commission receives from our community, particularly our members and volunteers.  Personally, I’m honored and proud to work with people of such a high caliber and character as we have in the St. Louis Sports Commission.  It’s their dedication and passion that brings so much to St. Louis.”

The St. Louis Sports Commission is a privately-funded nonprofit organization.  It strives to use the power of sports to enhance the region’s quality of life and generate economic and social benefit for St. Louis.  The organization focuses on attracting, creating and producing high-profile national and international sporting events, as well as implementing projects and programs that deliver great value to the area.

“The St. Louis Sports Commission is seen by our industry as a model for the impact sports commissions can have on their communities,” said Don Schumacher, executive director of the NASC.  “The organization’s approach, breadth of work and overall commitment to its community are much admired by its peers.”

The NASC recognized the St. Louis Sports Commission for several noteworthy achievements in 2012, including:

  • Producing overwhelmingly successful, record-setting events such as the NCAA Wrestling Championships and the USA Gymnastics Visa Championships.
  • Partnering with Saint Louis University to host the NCAA Men’s Basketball Midwest Regional.
  • Leading a statewide legislative effort to create a public funding component for work done by sports commissions in Missouri.
  • Organizing the inaugural Freedom 4 Miler & Family Fun Run, a new annual Fourth of July race that adds an important health and fitness element to Fair Saint Louis.
  • Securing the 2014 NCAA Men’s Basketball 2nd/3rd Rounds in collaboration with the Missouri Valley Conference.
  • Submitting bids for the U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials and the SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament.  (The Swimming Trials site selection will be announced tomorrow; a decision on the SEC Tournament is expected soon.)
  • Launching an ambitious project to celebrate and further St. Louis’ Olympic legacy.
  • Serving more than 50,000 children and tens of thousands of coaches and parents through its innovative Sportsmanship Initiative.  The effort, which informs and inspires those involved in youth sports, creates positive environments for kids to play sports so they remain active and lead healthier, happier lives.
  • Hosting the annual National Sportsmanship Awards, a one-of-a-kind event celebrating extraordinary sportsmanship.  In November, the Sports Commission renamed the event “The Musial Awards” in honor of Stan the Man.
  • Creating the National Sportsmanship Foundation, a national movement based in St. Louis that aims to change the way society views and values sportsmanship.

“Looking back at 2012, the qualities I am most proud of about our organization are its versatility, focus and impact,” said Sports Commission President Frank Viverito.  “I believe that sports commissions should not be just facilitators, or event creators, or even event producers.  They should also be innovators, nurturers and, most importantly, leaders.  And I believe that our accomplishments over the past year attain all of those results.”

Viverito added, “We are grateful to our board of directors, members, partners and volunteers.  The NASC recognition and the organization’s success are ultimately the result of a wonderful team effort.”