New York, October 16, 2012-New York Road Runners will honor the Rudin Family with the Abebe Bikila Award for their outstanding commitment and contributions to the sport of distance running. The presentation of the award will take place on October 31 at the finish line of the ING New York City Marathon in Central Park. Mary Wittenberg, president and CEO of New York Road Runners and marathon race director of the ING New York City Marathon, will present the award to Jack Rudin at a ceremony where city and race officials will begin to paint the blue line that traces the race route through the five boroughs of New York.
In 1976, brothers Lewis and Jack Rudin honored their late father, Samuel Rudin – an avid long distance runner and a member of the Pastime Athletic Club in the Bronx – by becoming a sponsor of the New York City Marathon. For 36 years, the Rudin family has presented the winning athletes of the race with the Samuel Rudin Trophy.
“It is impossible to think of the ING New York City Marathon without mentioning the Rudin family,” said Wittenberg. “Their steadfast, decades-long support of this tremendous race and NYRR, have helped advance the race to be one of NYC’s most treasured traditions and furthered NYRR’s efforts to help all New Yorkers Run for Life.”
Jack Rudin, chairman of Rudin Management, Inc., stated, “On behalf of the entire Rudin family, we are honored to receive the Abebe Bikila Award. We have been very proud to be a part of the New York City Marathon since 1976 when my brother Lewis and I were first approached by Manhattan Borough President Percy Sutton and Fred Lebow to sponsor the one-time five borough race honoring the bicentennial. It was such a success that the five-borough race became an annual event and is now the pre-eminent race in the world. There is no greater day in New York City than Marathon Sunday.”
The Abebe Bikila Award, named for the legendary 1960 and 1964 Olympic marathon champion from Ethiopia, has been presented annually by New York Road Runners since 1978 to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the sport of distance running, both on and off the field of competition. Past recipients include Grete Waitz, Fred Lebow, Bill Rodgers, Allan Steinfeld, Paul Tergat, and last year’s winner, Gérman Silva.
New York Road Runners was founded in 1958 when a small group of passionate runners vowed to bring running to the people. Over the past 54 years, NYRR has grown from a local running club to the world’s premier community running organization. NYRR’s mission is to empower everyone, of all ages and abilities-beginners and competitive athletes, the young and the elderly, adult professionals and underserved schoolchildren-to improve their health and well-being through the power of running and fitness.
NYRR’s races, community events, instruction and training resources, and youth programs give hundreds of thousands of people each year the motivation, know-how, and opportunity to start running and keep running for life. NYRR’s premier event, the famed ING New York City Marathon, attracts the world’s top pro runners and committed amateurs alike while also raising millions of dollars annually for charity and driving economic impact for the City. But NYRR is equally committed to the runners of tomorrow, passionately providing youth fitness programs that educate and inspire more than 100,000 kids in underserved communities in New York City, all 50 states, and around the world.
Headquartered in New York City, NYRR implements a unique nonprofit model that teams contributed and earned income to make all its efforts possible. To learn more, please visit www.nyrr.org