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AUSA Marshall Medal awarded to Coach Mike Krzyzewski

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Coach Michael W. Krzyzewski, legendary head basketball coach at Duke University and a long-time supporter of our men and women in uniform and their families, will receive the 2014 George Catlett Marshall Medal, the highest award presented by the Association of the United States Army.

Awarded annually to an individual who has exhibited selfless service to the United States of America, the medal will be presented to Krzyzewski by the Association’s Council of Trustees.

He will be recognized for his contributions to the United States of America as a strong supporter of national defense and those men and women who have served, or are now serving, to protect our freedom and liberty.

"His service exemplifies his unique and patriotic commitment to the highest American ideals," an AUSA official said.

The award presentation will take place Oct.15 at the George Catlett Marshall Memorial Dinner, the final event of the Association’s three-day Annual Meeting and Exposition at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington.

"As an exceptional patriot, Mike Krzyzewski is not only an American icon familiar to the nation while pacing on the sidelines during a Blue Devils basketball game, but he is also an extraordinary mentor to our nation’s youth – both military and civilian.

"He is acclaimed for successfully molding character, mentoring our young men and women, and developing leadership through his example and athletic programs," AUSA President Gen. Gordon R. Sullivan, USA, Ret., said.

Sullivan also noted, "Mike Krzyzewski, an Army veteran, has also distinguished himself as an unwavering and exceptional supporter of our armed forces and the families of those who serve by unselfishly donating his time and energies to ensure that those who are deployed and those at home station are cared for and have the quality of life they deserve."

A Chicago, Ill., native, Krzyzewski graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1969 as captain of the basketball team and was commissioned a second lieutenant of field artillery.

During his military career, he served at Fort Carson, Colo., the Republic of South Korea, and at the United States Military Academy Preparatory School.

Leaving the Army in 1974 as a captain, he joined Bobby Knight’s coaching staff at the University of Indiana, and, in 1975, he returned to West Point as the head basketball coach.

In 1980, Krzyzewski became the head coach at Duke University where he led the "Blue Devils" to four NCAA championships, 11 final fours, 12 Atlantic Coast Conference titles and 13 ACC tournament championships.

On Jan. 25, 2014, "Coach K" won his 900th game with the Duke Blue Devils, becoming the second head coach in NCAA history to win 900 games while coaching one program.

Recognizing his exceptional leadership skill and mentoring abilities, he was the assistant coach of America’s men’s basketball teams at the 1984 and 1992 Summer Olympics, bringing home two gold medals, and the head coach in 2008 and 2012, where he again brought home the gold medal in both competitions.

Throughout his distinguished career as an unwavering supporter of the men and women who serve in the military and their families, Krzyzewski provided over $10,000 in Christmas gifts to soldiers deployed to Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

He is also a staunch and active supporter of the Hoops for Troops program.

Launched in 2006, Hoops for Troops is a basketball program that provides support for U.S. military personnel and their families through events and activities in a partnership with the Department of Defense.

Recent activities include basketball clinics for military children, training events, special appearances by athletes at military events, access to USA basketball exhibition games and active participation in Let’s Move – an initiative to resolve and conquer childhood obesity.

Maintaining his close relationship with West Point, he chaired the academy’s Study of Leadership in the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership to develop those principles necessary to enrich leader development in the Army.

Since 2007, West Point has awarded the Mike Krzyzewski Teaching Character through Sport Awards to cadets and coaches who exemplify their commitment to the development of noble character through athletic participation and leadership.

In 2005, he was awarded the prestigious Distinguished Graduate Award from the Military Academy not only for his coaching record, but also for his "increasing national awareness of the principles of ‘Duty, Honor, Country.’"

The United States Basketball Writers Association honored Krzyzewski in 2012 by presenting him with the Wayman Tisdale Humanitarian Award for having a positive impact on society.