The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) has selected Varsity Spirit as the 2015 recipient of the American Tradition Award. The NFHS is the national leadership organization for high school sports and performing arts activities, and presents the American Tradition Award to an individual, organization or company that has supported high school activities on a national level. Varsity Spirit executives accepted the award July 1st during the NFHS' Summer Meeting in New Orleans.
This selective award is not given every year Varsity Spirit is only the eighth recipient in 30 years, following companies such as T-Mobile, Kodak and the Walt Disney Company. Varsity Spirit has been an NFHS partner since 2003, with both organizations collaborating closely on coaches' education and writing safety rules and guidelines.
“Varsity Spirit is incredibly proud to be honored with the National Federation of State High School Associations' American Tradition Award,” said Varsity Brands CEO Jeff Webb. “Varsity Spirit is committed to supporting youth athletics and activities across the country and to the health and well-being of the young people who participate in these activities.”
The partnership was founded on the common belief that cheerleading, dance team and other school spirit activities contribute in a significant way to the positive school climate in education-based sports. Varsity Spirit is dedicated to partnering with educators to promote school spirit and participation in cheerleading, dance and other activities, which contributes to student leadership in America's schools. Varsity Spirit and the NFHS have also been partners in efforts to minimize the risk of injury to all cheer and dance participants, and collaborate on the annual NFHS Spirit Rules Book to ensure that competition rules promote the safest practices.
“Varsity Spirit has been a dedicated partner to the National Federation of State High School Associations for more than 10 years. During this time they have positively impacted countless student athletes across the country, and I can't think of a better recipient for the 2015 American Tradition Award,” said Bob Gardner, NFHS executive director. “This award really celebrates Varsity Spirit's focus on promoting school spirit, academic achievement, good citizenship and healthy lifestyle.”
Recently, Varsity Spirit has also worked with NFHS member associations to promote STUNT, a new sport for schools and states that assists in meeting Title IX requirements. Varsity Spirit also assists state associations in managing state and regional competitions, and provides training for judges who evaluate and score competitions.
Founded in 1974, Varsity Spirit has become an innovative global leader comprised of top spirit brands and organizations. Varsity Spirit is a leader in uniforms, and more than 350,000 cheerleaders and dancers attend Varsity Spirit educational camps and clinics per year. Varsity Spirit's National Cheer and Dance Championships, many of which are held at the Walk Disney World Resorts, have been televised on ESPN Networks for more than 25 years. Leading the way in cheerleading safety, Varsity Spirit has been an avid supporter of the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators since 1987. Based in Memphis, Tenn., the organization employs 5,000 nationwide.