Park City, UT, Oct. 30, 2000--Former Olympic medalist and world champion skier Billy Kidd of Steamboat Springs, Colo., has been named the Intermountain regional finalist for the Texaco Star Award for more than two decades of volunteerism with Special Olympics International. Kidd will be presented with a $2,500 check for the charity of his choice during the Utah Ski & Snowboard Ball, on November 3rd at the Grand Summit at the Canyons in Park City.
The Texaco Star Award honors community contributions by U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team alumni. Five regional finalists - from the Midwest, Intermountain, Rocky Mountains, East and West Coast - have been selected. A $2,500 check will be presented to the charity of their choice during the respective regional Ski and Snowboard Ball.
A $10,000 check will be presented November 6 in the name of the national winner to his or her favorite charity during the New York Ski & Snowboard Ball in Manhattan. The first Texaco Star Award winner was Jimmie Heuga, the 1964 Olympic medal winner who - after finding he had multiple sclerosis - founded the Jimmie Heuga Center in Vail, Colo., which promotes a "can do" philosophy and encourages people with MS to lead healthy, active lives. This year's and last year's regional finalists are eligible for the $10,000 check. (Coincidentally, Kidd won the 1964 Olympic silver medal in slalom and Heuga, his best friend andteammate, won the bronze medal, making them the first two U.S. men to win an Olympic alpine ski medal.)
"Billy was an obvious regional choice for the Texaco Star Award, based on his decades of volunteering with SpecialOlympics," said Polly Rua, senior manager of sponsorships for Texaco. "This award symbolizes Texaco's commitmentto recognize our responsibility to the communities around the world in which we do business, and Billy exemplifies thatsame commitment."
Kidd grew up in Stowe, Vt., and was a mainstay of the U.S. Ski Team throughout the Sixties. In 1970, Kidd won thegold medal in the combined at the World Championships and turned professional, winning the world pro title a short timelater. He's been Steamboat resort's director of skiing for 30 years.
"To be honored in the same program that honored Jimmie is a great pleasure," said Kidd, who has designated SpecialOlympics to be the recipient of the $2,500 given in his name. "I 'discovered' Special Olympics in 1977. I'm particularlyproud of the way Steamboat families welcome athletes into their homes and support the program, which encouragesand empowers these special people. I'm accepting the honor on behalf of the thousands of other volunteers who havehelped Special Olympics impact the lives of people around the world."
The annual Utah Ski & Snowboard Team Ball, which will be held at The Grand Summit at The Canyons in Park City, isone of the premier fundraising events for the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team Foundation.