ORLANDO, Florida (Oct. 31, 2016) — Brevard County resident and 1st Vice President of the Amateur Athletic Union, Rusty Buchanan, will be recognized as a Central Florida Humanitarian on Nov. 3 at a gala event in Melbourne.
Buchanan, who runs numerous AAU events each year, has had a massive impact on the lives of hundreds of thousands of children and adults through his sports events in Brevard County. One of the most prolific producers of youth sports tournaments, camps, clinics and festivals in America, Buchanan has hosted events on Space Coast throughout his entire 36-year career was inducted into the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame in 2014.
“We have had an incredible run in Brevard thanks in large part to the people the community, who have enabled us to make the Space Coast a global destination for a wide variety of sports events,” Buchanan said.
Those events have brought hundreds of millions of dollars into the Brevard County economy, but his contributions as a humanitarian have been far greater.
“Rusty is truly an integral part of the fabric of the Amateur Athletic Union,” said Dr. Roger J. Goudy, AAU President/CEO. “His contributions to the youth athletes of Central Florida are too numerous to count. The positive impact he has made in the United States and beyond speaks to a tremendous commitment and dedication to the continued development of amateur sports.”
Prior to the 2012 London Olympic games the United States Department of State and the U.S. Embassy in Kabul Afghanistan put in place a plan to reach out to the children of war torn Afghanistan and attempt to find common ground for peace through sport. General Allen, the commander of the ISAF troops and his chief of staff Admiral Hal Pittman along with our Ambassador to Afghanistan and General Aghbar the Chairman of the Afghan Olympic Committee developed a plan.
In 2013, Buchanan was elected 1st Vice President of the AAU and was one of eight Americans who traveled to Afghanistan on a U.S. Goodwill Tour to assist the Afghan government establish sports programs for the embattled country.
“Kids are kids around the world,” Buchanan said. “They want to play, they want to be a part of something, they want to compete and they want to win. Kids in Afghanistan are no exception.”
Sports has long been medium of unity and a breeding ground for humanitarianism. The Central Florida Humanitarian Awards were created seven years ago by Space Coast Daily to recognize outstanding individuals and organizations that dedicate their time, talent or treasure to help people in need locally and around the world.
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