NASSH Award for Sport History and Social Justice

The NASSH Award for Sport History and Social Justice is awarded to an individual or organization for leadership and sustained engagement at the intersection of sport history and social justice. 


Lonnie G. Bunch III, Smithsonian Institution

Bruce Kidd, University of Toronto

Billie Jean King, Women’s Sport Foundation

Richard E. Lapchick, University of Central Florida

Grand Chief J. Wilton Littlechild, Commission on First Nations and Métis Peoples and Justice Reform

Gertrud Pfister, University of Copenhagen

Eli A. Wolff, Power of Sport Lab, University of Connecticut

Honor Addresses

Christine O’Bonsawin is delivering the John R. Betts Honor Address. O’Bonsawin took her Ph.D. from The University of Western Ontario and is currently an associate professor at the University of Victoria. A prolific scholar, she has published many articles and book chapters and given a plethora of research presentations dealing primarily with Olympic and Indigenous sport history. The title of her Betts Address is: “The Landscape of a Dream and of Dreaming: Olympic Ceremonies, (Un) Truths, and Indigenous Futurisms.”

Gary Osmond is delivering the Maxwell L. Howell and Reet Howell International Honor Address. Osmond took his Ph.D. from the University of Queensland and is currently an associate professor at the same institution. An extraordinarily productive scholar, he has published many articles, book chapters, and books on such topics as Indigenous sport history, digital history, visual representation, and material culture. The title of his Howell and Howell Address is: “Too Deadly-Tracking Sport Histories with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities.”

Danielle Peers is delivering the Seward C. Staley Honor Address. Peers took her Ph.D. from the University of Alberta and is currently an associate professor at the same institution. Possessing an extensive publication list, she has disseminated her research through articles and book chapters via an interconnection among critical disability studies, adapted physical activity, and sport sociology. The title of her Staley Address is: “From Eugenics to Paralympics: Empowering Trajectory or Supremacist Technology.”

NASSH Sport History and Social Justice Award

Kevin Blackistone, a graduate of Northwestern University, is a sports journalist who is currently the Shirley Povich Chair of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at the University of Maryland. A former reporter for The Boston Reporter and The Dallas Morning News, Blackistone is a frequent guest co-host on the Sports Reporters on Washington, DC’s ESPN 980, occasional panelist for ESPN’s Around the Horn, and a sports columnist for the Washington Post.

Christine Brennan, a graduate of Northwestern University, is an author and a sports columnist for USA Today and a commentator for CNN, ABC News, NPR, and PBS NewsHour. A former reporter for the Miami Herald and Washington Post, Brennan has written seven books, including the best-selling Inside Edge: A Revealing Journey into the Secret World of Figure Skating. She has the distinction, among many other honors, of being the first president of the Association for Women in Sports Media.

Damion Thomas, who took his Ph.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles, is the museum curator of sports for the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. A former professor at both the University of Illinois and University of Maryland, Thomas has an extensive list of publications dealing primarily with the interconnection among race, sport and American culture. His most notable publication is Globetrotting: African American Athletes and Cold War Politics.

Dave Zirin, a graduate of Macalester College, is the sports editor for The Nation and writes the well-known blog Edge of Sports. He has also been a guest on ESPN’s Outside the Lines and Democracy Now and has authored many notable books. Among those publications are What’s MyName Fool? Sports and Resistance in the United StatesWelcome to the Terrordome: The PainPolitics, and Promise of Sports, and A People’s History of Sports in the United States. Zirin very recently wrote and narrated the highly acclaimed film Behind the Shield: The Power and Politicsof the NFL.