Richard Lapchick, a champion for human rights, pioneer for racial equality and eminent scholar at the UCF, will be honored by ESPN with one of its signature ESPY Awards.
Lapchick will receive the Stuart Scott ENSPIRE Award named in honor of the late ESPN commentator Stuart Scott. The award celebrates “individuals that have taken risks and used an innovative approach to helping the disadvantaged through the power of sports.” His award will be featured in the ESPYS Preview Show on Tuesday, July 11, and Lapchick also will attend the main ESPY Awards show Wednesday, July 12, in Los Angeles.
The honor is part of the ninth annual Sports Humanitarian Awards, which celebrates the impact of athletes, teams and sports industry professionals who are using sports to make a difference in their communities and throughout the world.
The award is just one of a long string of honors for Lapchick, who 22 years ago founded the DeVos sport business management program and The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport (TIDES) at UCF. He stepped down as leader of the DeVos program two years ago and continues to lead TIDES.
In 1976, Lapchick created the American Coordinating Committee for Equality in Sport in alliance with the anti-Apartheid movement. In 1985, he founded The Institute for Sport and Social Justice to use the power and appeal of sport to positively impact society. In 2022, The Institute facilitated nearly 200 training sessions for more than 5,000 students-athletes, coaches and administrators.
Under Lapchick’s leadership, TIDES publishes the Racial and Gender Report Card, an annual analysis of racial and gender hiring practices for all major sports leagues and the sports media.
SportBusiness International has named UCF’s DeVos sport business management program as one of the top 10 graduate level degree sport business programs in the world. The program has been recognized as one of the top five in America by the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, ESPN The Magazine and Forbes Magazine.
In 2021, Lapchick was named the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian of the Year by the Muhammad Ali Center; he and Ali were close friends for nearly four decades before Ali died in 2016.