Welcome to the 48th Annual All Sports Association Banquet; we are so glad you are here! Every year the All Sports Association seeks to identify and honor the finest athletes from Northwest Florida. Our award winners are elite students, athletes, and competitors from our area. I hope you will join us in congratulating them all.
The All Sports Association is made up of dues-paying volunteers who contribute their time and talents toward our primary mission of supporting local, youth-oriented, non-profit organizations with an emphasis on sports-related programs. There is no paid staff and all funds beyond expenses are used to further this mission. Through this banquet and other fundraising events, we help support numerous organizations. The four primary beneficiaries of All Sports Association events and activities are:
Boys and Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast Special Olympics Florida — Okaloosa County Fellowship of Christian Athletes in Okaloosa and Walton County Eleanor J. Johnson Youth Center in Fort Walton Beach We encourage you to visit our website at www.allsportsassociation.org to learn more about us and what we do.
In addition to the local awards presented tonight at our 48th Annual Awards Banquet, we will also present the Wuerffel Trophy, “College Football’s Premier Award for Community Service,” to Trevor Knight of Texas A&M University, who was selected this year as the college player best exemplifying excellence in athletics, academics and community service.
Previous winners include Ty Darlington from the University of Oklahoma, Matt Barkley from Southern Cal, Barrett Jones from Alabama, Sam Acho from Texas, Tim Tebow from Florida, Deterrian Shackelford from Ole Miss and Gabe Ikard from Oklahoma.
All Sports Association’s key awards presented this evening are our Hall of Fame Inductees and the Colonel Al Byrne Award, the club’s most prestigious local award which recognizes an individual who has made sustained and outstanding contributions to youth athletics in our area.
One of the more moving events surrounding our Annual Awards Banquet is this morning’s Buck Smith Fellowship of Christian Athletes Prayer Breakfast, where nearly 1,500 area high school athletes in FCA gathered to participate in this non-denominational breakfast event. In addition to a number of personal testimonies from their peers, attendees witnessed the presentation of the annual Taylor Haugen Trophy to Milton High School’s Josiah Pool. This award is presented in memory of Taylor Haugen, a local young man who tragically lost his life on the football field, and recognizes a high school athlete who best exemplifies the combination of in-classroom and on-the-field accomplishments with a “Don’t quit—Never give up” attitude.
I am honored to have been entrusted with leading this organization this year. Sure, I was able to call some plays; but our members do the work and our past presidents certainly coach us up. Teamwork, commitment, and truly caring about kids in our community make All Sports Association a great place to serve our community. I would be remiss if I didn’t thank all of our sponsors that year after year make this possible. And of course, my family. Time is our most valuable possession and they gave up some of theirs this year. Thank you.
Now sit back, enjoy the banquet and join me in honoring these spectacular athletes from our little slice of paradise.
All Sports Association