2021 AAASP ASPIRE Awards

The American Association of Adapted Sports Programs (AAASP) ASPIRE Awards (Adapted Sports Programs in Recreation and Education) honor individuals and organizations who have made significant contributions in contributing to the physical, social, and intellectual well-being of children and adolescents with physical disabilities and impairments through the power of athletics.

Winners are chosen through an application process. Nominations will be accepted from April 1 – June 1, 2021.  The nominees will be announced in August, 2021. This year's ASPIRE Awards banquet will be held Sunday, October 24, 2021 – location to be announced shortly. All nominees will be recognized and the winners will be announced during the awards banquet.

An ASPIRE award recognizes the significant contributions of individuals and organizations that have been central to the mission of making adapted sports programming available to children with physical disabilities. Through these programs, student athletes with physical disabilities across the state reap the physical, social, emotional and academic benefits of competitive athletics resulting in personal and social empowerment.

The ASPIRE award was established to recognize those who support and advocate on behalf of adapted sports. The award showcases those who stand as role models; individuals, companies and organizations that have taken a proactive and innovative path in support of competitive sports programs for student athletes with physical disabilities.

2021 ASPIRE Award Nominations are currently open for the following categories:
  • Advocacy Award
    • Individual or organization - Presented to an individual who has demonstrated exceptional efforts toward the needs and rights of individuals with disabilities.
  • Education-based Award
    • Group, Team or OrganizationSchool or School District Program. Presented to those groups who have demonstrated excellence and/or outstanding achievement in establishing, expanding or sustaining adapted sports programming in their school community.
  • Community-based Award
    • Group, Team or Organization (Recreation Department, YMCA, Club program, or other) - Presented to those groups who have demonstrated excellence and/or outstanding achievement in establishing, expanding or sustaining adapted sports programming in their community.
  • Media Award
    • News Organization or Individual - Presented to an individual or news organization that provides conscientious coverage and visibility to AAASP’s sports leagues (should be active working media – Radio, TV, Newspaper, magazine, film writers, producers, online bloggers, anchors, etc.)
  • Gail Hendricks Volunteerism Award
    • Individual - Presented to an individual or organization that has demonstrated exceptional efforts in support of AAASP’s sports league.
  • Outstanding Male Athlete of the Year Award
    • Individual - Presented to a male athlete that has demonstrated exceptional efforts and leadership qualities in the AAASP’s sports league.
  • Outstanding Female Athlete of the Year Award
    • Individual - Presented to a female athlete that has demonstrated exceptional efforts and leadership qualities in the AAASP’s sports league.
  • High School Senior Athlete Award
    • Individual - Presented to a Senior in High School that has demonstrated exceptional efforts and leadership qualities in the AAASP’s sports league.
  • Coach of the Year Award
    • Individual
  • Leslie Sweatman Official of the Year Award
    • Individual

2021 ASPIRE Award Nomination Form

Please fill out a submission form for each unique nomination. Call Tommie Storms at (404) 294-0070 with any questions or for more info on the nomination process.

The ASPIRE Awards Hall of Fame:

Winners of the 2019 AAASP ASPIRE Awards:

  • Atlanta Public SchoolsSchool-Based Program Award, Atlanta, GA
  • Ben HarbinFounder’s Award
  • Beth McLaughlinAdvocacy Award, Houston County, GA
  • Christy JonesAdvocacy Award, Houston County, GA
  • Delton SchoatesAdvocacy Award, DeKalb County, GA
  • Dr. Mark ScottAdvocacy Award, Houston County, GA
  • Dr. Ralph SwearnginFounder’s Award
  • Dr. James R. HinesFounder’s Award
  • Ellen WilliamsFounder’s Award
  • Gil TyreeMedia Award, Voice America
  • Jesse CochranOutstanding Male Athlete Award, Meriwether County, GA 
  • Leslie SweatmanFounder’s Award
  • Cibola High SchoolSchool-Based Program Award, Albuquerque, NM
  • O’lando HicksOutstanding Male Athlete Award, Houston County, GA 
  • Oglebay Institute’s School of Dance, Community-Based Program Award, Wheeling, WV
  • Ricardo ApplewhiteThe Gail Hendricks Volunteerism Award, Clayton County, GA
  • Samantha ReddOutstanding Female Athlete Award , Clayton County, GA
  • Samuel MillikenOutstanding Senior Athlete Award, Gwinnett County, GA
  • Dr. Zabrina CannadyAdvocacy Award, Houston County, GA
  • Robyn Hootselle, Service Award, Atlanta, GA