Giant Steps Awards Banquet and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

October 26, 2016
Rosen Plaza, Orlando, FL
Reception: 5:00PM - 6:30PM
Awards Ceremony: 6:30PM - 9:00PM

Banquet Registration

The National Consortium for Academics and Sports hosts its Annual Giant Steps Awards Banquet and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony each fall in Orlando.

This inspiring event honors winners of the National STUDENT-Athlete Day Giant Steps Awards, chosen annually in conjunction with the celebration of National STUDENT-Athlete Day every April 6. The incredible student-athletes honored have truly made a difference in the world through their involvement in sport. They motivate others with their positive examples, overcome obstacles while continuing to reach their goals, breakdown barriers, create paths for those who will come behind them, and create opportunities for youth through sport and leadership.

Giant Steps Award Winners are chosen in the categories of Coach, Courageous Male and Female Student-Athletes, Civic Leaders, Community Organizations, Heroes Among Us, and Barrier Breakers.

A Message From Dr. Lapchick

In light of the events going on around the nation and the world, I am convinced that our world of sports has a special role to play in uniting communities.  I  think the upcoming Giant Steps Awards Banquet and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony scheduled to take place Wednesday, October 26th in Orlando will be part of the healing process in Orlando.

 That evening, the City of Orlando will be inducted into the NCAS Hall of Fame instead of a prominent figure from the world of sport for how it handled the shooting tragedy at Pulse Nightclub. Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and Barbara Poma, owner of Pulse will be in attendance that evening to accept on behalf of the City.

 Billy Bean, Jason Collins and Rick Welts will be among those individuals who will be leading the induction as well as Lonnie Ali who will present as a Muslim. A recent Orlando poll showed a 20 percent spike in negative feeling towards Muslims. No one better symbolized that Islam is a religion of peace than Lonnie and Muhammad.  Billy, Jason and Rick are all historic figures in the LGBT movement.

 Also receiving an award that evening is Chris Singleton. He is the son of Sharonda Singleton, who lost her life along with eight other victims in the tragic hate crime shooting at the Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston. Christopher became a hero when he began speaking out the day after the shooting with a message that “Love is always Stronger than hate. Love the way my mom would and the hate won’t be anywhere close to where the hate is.”

 In light of the tension between law enforcement and communities we are fortunate to be able to honor Officer Bobby White of Gainesville. Through his position Officer White began creating a relationship with African-American youth and police through basketball.

 This evening will be very powerful and meaningful to the entire Orlando community and beyond as we work together to bring about positive social change and end hate crimes. Our 2016 Barrier Breaker honoree Taylor Urruela is an American hero who lost his leg in Iraq and has dedicated his life to helping fellow veterans. As co-founder of VetSports, a national non-profit, Taylor is helping veterans achieve better physical, mental, and emotional health through sports, physical activity and community involvement.

2016 Award WinnersView Giant Steps Award WinnersBanquet Registration

Previous Hall of Fame Inductees

NCAS Hall of Fame Inductees are individuals who throughout their lifetime have used sport to help make positive changes in society. They have utilized their name and stature to reach sport to bring people together and help make the world a better place.

Hall of Fame Inductees

The 2016 Giant Steps Awards Banquet and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony are scheduled to take place Wednesday, October 26, 2016 at the Rosen Plaza. For more information contact Suzi Katz at skatz@ucf.edu.