Reutter Announced as 2011 Sullivan Award Finalist
Lake Buena Vista, Fla. – (March 15, 2012) – The Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) today announced that six finalists - including Olympian Katherine Reutter
(Champaign, Ill) - have been named for the 2011 James E. Sullivan Award, which honors the nation's outstanding amateur athlete. The Sullivan Award has been presented annually since 1930, and is based on character, leadership and sportsmanship. Notable recipients of the AAU Sullivan Award include: Mark Spitz, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Florence Joyner, Peyton Manning, Michael Phelps, J.J. Redick, Tim Tebow, and Shawn Johnson.
“I am extremely proud of the 2011 slate of nominees for the highest honor the AAU bestows—The AAU James E. Sullivan Award,” said Louis Stout, President of the AAU. “These young women and men are the best and the brightest among the hundreds of thousands of amateur athletes who are pursuing their dreams. Not just on the court, the field, the ice, the water or in the gym, these outstanding athletes demonstrate character and leadership in their communities as well. I look forward to meeting them all next week and congratulating them on their achievements.”
The finalists were selected from personal nominations following a review by the AAU Sullivan Award Executive Committee. The winner has been determined through voting by select members of the media, previous winners and AAU staff. The public was also allowed input through nationwide polling on the USA Today website. The winner will be honored at an awards ceremony on Tuesday, March 20th at the prestigious New York Athletic Club.
Finalists for the 2011 James E. Sullivan Award from the AAU:
USA Track & Field
Hometown: Tucson, Arizona
Jillian Camarena-Williams set an American record and won a bronze medal at the 2011 World Championships, which was the first-ever medal by an American woman shot putter at any world championship. Outside of track and field, she has coached athletes in the Special Olympics and helped build homes with Habitat for Humanity.
Hometown: Paris, France (resides in California)
Named the 2011 Pac-12 Conference Player of the Year, Alex Jupiter is the first Southern Cal player in school history to earn the AVCA National Player of the Year award.
US Rowing, Temple University
Hometown: Ringoes, New Jersey
Jason Read is an Olympic Gold Medalist and has been rowing for the United States since 1995. Read is a rowing coach, volunteer firefighter and an EMT, and was recognized for his 9/11 rescue work at Ground Zero.
Hometown: Champaign, Illinois
Katherine Reutter won 13 medals during the 2010-11 World Cup season, and was the 1,500-meter world champion in 2011. The first American woman to win an individual and overall World Cup title, Reutter also won silver and bronze medals at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. She visits schools to promote short track speedskating and encourages kids to get involved and be more active. Reutter has also volunteered her time with Habitat for Humanity.
Hometown: Alexandria, Virginia
Army linebacker Andrew Rodriguez carries a 4.14 GPA as a mechanical engineering major, and is ranked third academically in a class of 1,052 cadets. He has made the dean's list five times and has six terms with a GPA of 4.0 or higher, earning the coveted Campbell Award for academic achievement. Despite missing the 2010 season due to an injury, Rodriguez returned in 2011 as a captain and had 140 tackles in 23 games.
Hometown: DeWitt, Michigan
In 2011, Jordyn Wieber won the women's all-around at the World Championships and led the USA to a team gold medal. She also won the all-around at the 2011 American Cup and Visa Championships. In her community, Wieber volunteers at her church and at a local hospital, and participates in various community fundraisers.
About the AAU
The Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) is one of the largest, non-profit, volunteer, sports organizations in the United States. A multi-sport organization, the AAU is dedicated exclusively to the promotion and development of amateur sports and physical fitness programs. The AAU was founded in 1888 to establish standards and uniformity in amateur sport. During its early years, the AAU served as a leader in international sports representing the U.S. in the international sports federations. The AAU worked closely with the Olympic movement to prepare athletes for the Olympic games. After the Amateur Sports Act of 1978, the AAU has focused its efforts into providing sports programs for all participants of all ages beginning at the grass roots level. The philosophy of "Sports for All, Forever," is shared by over 500,000 participants and over 50,000 volunteers. The AAU is divided into 56 distinct Districts. These Districts annually sanction more than 34 sports programs, 250 national championships, and over 30,000 age division events.