CANTON, Ohio, Sept. 14, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- The U.S. Army and the Pro Football Hall of Fame announced today the fifth year of their partnership for the national U.S. Army – Pro Football Hall of Fame Award for Excellence. The program is currently accepting nominations and is open to all sophomore, junior and senior high school student-athletes in the United States.
The Award for Excellence program will recognize 25 outstanding high school student-athletes who will be chosen as finalists based on their excellence in academics, athletics and community service.
"These student-athletes, like our Soldiers, understand the importance of leadership and teamwork, and they use key skills like adaptability, versatility and innovation to achieve in any environment, be it in the classroom, on the playing field or in the local community," said Mark Davis, deputy assistant secretary of the Army for marketing. "The U.S. Army is proud to partner with the Pro Football Hall of Fame on this program, which recognizes and celebrates student-athletes and their well-rounded commitment to excellence."
"The Award for Excellence program celebrates the achievements of extraordinary high school-aged individuals who will shape the future of our country," said David Baker, the Pro Football Hall of Fame's president. "The Pro Football Hall of Fame appreciates the U.S. Army's support and commitment in shining the light on the values shared by these great young people and our Gold Jackets."
This spring, each finalist will be honored by Army soldiers and a Pro Football Hall of Famer during an event at his or her high school. The finalist will be presented a plaque, and the Hall of Famer will discuss the importance of excellence and what it has meant during his illustrious career.
Next August, all 25 finalists will convene in Canton, Ohio, for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week. The finalists will be honored throughout the festivities, and the 2017 Award for Excellence winner will be selected during a luncheon with Hall of Famers on Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017. He or she will receive a $2,500 grant from the Pro Football Hall of Fame and will also be recognized during the NFL/Hall of Fame Game, the NFL's preseason opener.
"The Pro Football Hall of Fame is honored to renew our partnership with the U.S. Army for the fifth consecutive year," said George Veras, executive vice president, chief revenue officer and executive producer for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. "This year we have expanded to 25 Finalists and it is a testament to the shared values of the Hall and the U.S. Army."
The following "Gold Jackets" (living Hall of Famers) have participated in past Award for Excellence ceremonies across the country: Michael Irvin, Jerome Bettis, Joe DeLamielleure, Marshall Faulk, Darrell Green, Bob Griese, Mike Haynes, Floyd Little, Anthony Muñoz, Barry Sanders, Art Shell, Lynn Swann and Rod Woodson.
Also, as part of the U.S. Army and Pro Football Hall of Fame partnership, Hall of Famers Derrick Brooks and Kevin Greene will serve as honorary coaches on the sidelines of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, played at the San Antonio Alamodome on Saturday, Jan. 7, 2017.
More information on the Award for Excellence program, including an application for interested student-athletes, can be found at goarmy.com/AAB or profootballhof.com/award-for-excellence. The deadline to submit nominations is December 30, 2016.
ABOUT THE PRO FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME
Located in Canton, Ohio, the birthplace of the National Football League, the Pro Football Hall of Fame is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit institution with a Mission to Honor the Heroes of the Game, Preserve its History, Promote its Values, & Celebrate Excellence EVERYWHERE.
Hundreds of thousands of fans from across the globe travel to Canton annually to experience the exciting museum that chronicles America's most popular sport. Millions more are reached through the Hall of Fame's 100-plus special events held annually outside Canton and through the multiple nationally broadcast programs focused on the selection of the newest Class of Enshrinees. Now in its fourth year of traveling, Gridiron Glory: The Best of the Pro Football Hall of Fame is a large-scale traveling exhibition that presents a panoramic view of pro football's story and includes hundreds of artifacts from the Hall's expansive collection. Gridiron Glory is currently showcased at the Minnesota History Center Museum in Minneapolis/St. Paul. It will be exhibited at University Museum at Texas Southern University in Houston from January 30-March 30, 2017 and then for three-month stays at various museums and cultural institutions through 2019. Enshrinees from the Class of 2016 along with numerous other Hall of Fame members will receive the spectacular Hall of Fame Ring of Excellence by Kay® Jewelers during ceremonies held in NFL stadiums during the 2016 NFL regular season. The Hometown Hall of Famer™ program presented by Ford honors Hall of Fame heroes with a program and permanent plaque to honor the Hall of Famer's hometown support. Now in its 4th year, the US Army-Pro Football Hall of Fame Award for Excellence honors 25 high school students nationally for excellence in community service, academics and athletics. Construction on HOF Village, a $500 million development project, is under way in Canton to transform the Hall of Fame's campus.
ARMY MARKETING AND RESEARCH GROUP
The Army Marketing and Research Group (AMRG) is the U.S. Army's national marketing, marketing research and analysis and accessions analysis organization. The AMRG develops innovative and effective ways to: connect with the American public and make the Army more accessible and understood; increase awareness of both the benefits and value of Army service; and motivate the most qualified candidates to choose the Army as their service of first choice.
Chief of Staff & Vice President of Communications, Pro Football Hall of Fame
Account Director, McCann Worldgroup
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SOURCE U.S. Army