In 2019, USA Volleyball joined First Point Volleyball Foundation in presenting the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association a $1 million grant to initiate men's volleyball as a conference sport. (L-R): USA Volleyball CEO Jamie Davis, U.S. Men's National Team Head Coach John Speraw, SIAC Commissioner Gregory Moore and First Point Volleyball Foundation CEO S. Wade Garard.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Oct. 5, 2020) – The U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC) has announced that USA Volleyball will be presented with the 2020 DEI Choice Award at the USOPC Assembly on Thursday, Oct. 8. USAV won the award based on its 2019 grant of $400,000 to Historically Black Colleges and Universities to help launch Division I and II men’s volleyball programs.
The DEI Choice Award recognizes a National Governing Body (NGB) or high-performance management organization (HPMO) for best practices in advancing diversity, equity and inclusion, as determined by a vote of NGB and HPMO peers.
"On behalf of my colleagues at USA Volleyball, I want to thank the USOPC and my fellow NGBs for recognizing our organization as the winner of the 2020 DEI Choice Award,” said USAV President and CEO Jamie Davis. “Diversity, Equity & Inclusion plays an important role for us at USA Volleyball and therefore to be recognized by our peers in this area is truly humbling. We hope that this grant will not only create new collegiate programming but will also provide a path for more young Black men to play club volleyball and eventually represent Team USA one day."
The $400,000 USAV grant was part of a $1 million grant that USAV and the First Point Volleyball Foundation made to the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association (SIAC) in September 2019.
Central State University (Wilberforce, Ohio), Benedict College (Columbia, S.C.), Fort Valley State University (Fort Valley, Ga.), Kentucky State University (Frankfort, Ky.), Morehouse College (Atlanta) and Paine College (Augusta, Ga.) will all sponsor NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball and will debut in the spring of 2022. A six-team conference tournament also will take place at a date and site to be determined.
The DEI Choice Award will be presented as part of a virtual inspirational evening on Oct. 8. Ahmed Fareed of NBC Sports will host and several other awards will also be presented.