And The Winner Is

Last week Special Olympics New Mexico announced the recipients of our 2014 Distinguished Service Awards.  We presented awards to three of the winners at the Opening Ceremonies of our State Poly Hockey Championships.  Having recently watched the Oscars, here are my thoughts about receiving an award in front of an audience – it’s not easy, especially if you are handed a
microphone. IMG_6546

I know what I heard from Hollywood’s best, and I know what I heard from a few of Special Olympics New Mexico’s best, and no offense to anyone, but I also know who I liked hearing from the best and why.

Upon receiving our Outstanding Local Program Award, one of the Team Santa Fe local coordinators said something like this: “The very reason we work so hard to improve our program can be seen on the faces of the athletes standing behind us.  We get to see those smiles all the time, and it is because of them that doing more is our privilege.”

Our Special Olympics Distinguished Service Award winners are grateful and humble.  Their words are never “prepared” but unfiltered and straight from the heart.  Without exception they make it known to their audience that the award has little to do with them and everything to do with the Special Olympics athletes who inspire them.  I have found our Distinguished Service Award winners to be as authentic as our athletes – and that would be the very reason they have a lasting influence on all of us.

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