National Football Foundation

News Detail

National Football Foundation Honored by the 1A Faculty Athletics Representatives
1A FAR formal resolution recognizes the National Football Foundation, Steve Hatchell and Matthew Sign for their efforts and commitment to higher education.
Published: 9/19/2016 11:00:00 AM
(Pictured: 1A FAR recognized the National Football Foundation, President & CEO Steve Hatchell (left) and COO Matthew Sign (right) for their leadership and support of outstanding student-athletes and NCAA faculty athletics representatives across the country. Brian Shannon, the president of 1A FAR and a law professor and the FAR at Texas Tech University, presented them with their awards at the annual 1A FAR meeting Sept. 18.)

IRVING, Texas (Sept. 19, 2016)
– The National Football Foundation (NFF), its President & Chief Executive Officer Steven J. Hatchell, and Chief Operating Officer Matthew Sign have been recognized by the 1A Faculty Athletics Representatives (1A FAR) for their leadership and support of outstanding student-athletes and NCAA faculty athletics representatives across the country.

The NFF, through the work and leadership of Hatchell and Sign, has engaged in a number of initiatives to support the connection between academics and athletics on college campuses nationwide. Recognizing these efforts, the 1A FAR adopted a formal resolution, declaring “the National Football Foundation, Steven J. Hatchell, and Matthew Sign as once, current, future and always: FRIENDS OF FAR.” The formal approval of the resolution took place during the 1A FAR annual meeting, which convened Sept. 18 at the Hilton DFW Lakes in Grapevine, Texas.

“We are excited to have the opportunity to recognize the National Football Foundation and its programs, which celebrate outstanding football scholar-athletes and the hard work of faculty athletics representatives,” said Brian Shannon, the president of 1A FAR, who is a law professor and the FAR at Texas Tech University. “The National Football Foundation, through the leadership and vision of Steve Hatchell and Matthew Sign, have partnered with Fidelity Investments not only to recognize the work of the FARs at an array of campuses each year, but to support academic services on campuses for student-athletes and to award significant post-graduate scholarships to outstanding football student-athletes. These programs emphasize that success as a student-athlete is about more than just athletic accomplishments on the field. Participating in college athletics provides the opportunity for a top-flight education at our nation’s finest institutions of higher education and facilitates the development of unparalleled leadership skills.”

One of the NFF’s programs is the NFF Faculty Salutes, a program undertaken in partnership with Fidelity Investments, which annually honors the contributions of the faculty athletics representatives from each of the schools with a recipient of an NFF National Scholar-Athlete Award. The salutes, which were launched in 2011, have recognized 76 FARs to-date, and Fidelity has provided $380,000 in donations ($5,000 per honoree) for the academic support services for all student-athletes at each school.

“This recognition by 1A FAR is an incredible honor for the National Football Foundation,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “We created the NFF Faculty Salutes in 2011 with our partner Fidelity Investments because we wanted to highlight the critical role our nation’s faculty athletics representatives play in ensuring a strong connection between the academic and athletic experiences of student-athletes across the country. 1A FAR and its members are vital to the success of future generations, and we are pleased to continue working with them to shine a light on an incredibly hard-working group of people."

Kirby Hocutt
, the Chair of the Selection Committee for the College Football Playoff and Athletic Director at Texas Tech University, added, “The National Football Foundation does so much to promote the lifelong lessons taught by the great game of football, and to celebrate the young men who play the game. The 1A FAR recognition of Steve and Matt is very deserving. I too, thank them for their tireless efforts to ensure and promote the future of amateur football.”

1A FAR is an organization of the Faculty Athletics Representatives (FARs) at the 130 institutions and 10 conferences comprising NCAA Division I’s Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), formerly known as Division IA. The mission of 1A FAR is to advocate for effective interaction and balance between an institution’s academic mission and its intercollegiate athletics program. In recent years, 1A FAR has developed a strong and special relationship with the NFF in large part through the NFF Faculty Salutes, presented by Fidelity Investments.

The 1A FAR Resolution also noted that the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards, a program first established in 1959, is our nation’s first initiative to honor scholar-athletes with post-graduate scholarships for their combined athletic, academic, and leadership achievements; and that the NFF, through sponsorship by Fidelity Investments, has awarded more than $10.9 million to 816 individuals since its inception, and provides more than $300,000 each year in post-graduate scholarships.

“We have long appreciated the National Football Foundation’s annual efforts to recognize and celebrate both athletic and academic success,” said Shannon. “Since 2011, we have been extremely grateful that the NFF has annually teamed up with Fidelity to recognize the work of the FARs. Steve Hatchell and Matthew Sign are outstanding leaders, and they have worked closely with the FARs to recognize outstanding student-athletes and the campus FARs who work tirelessly to support our student-athletes across the nation’s campuses on a day-to-day basis.”

RESOLUTION of the 1A FACULTY ATHLETICS REPRESENTATIVES (1A FAR)
in Annual Meeting Convened, September 18, 2016

Whereas:

            The National Football Foundation (NFF) in 1959 established the nation’s first initiative to honor scholar-athletes with generous post-graduate scholarships for their combined athletic, academic, and leadership abilities, and

            In 2011 the NFF teamed with Fidelity Investments, which became the first official sponsor of the program – to enhance a program that now provides approximately $300,000 annually in scholarship awards, and has supported the award of over $10.9 million to 816 student-athletes, and

As part of its collaboration with Fidelity Investments, the NFF began its Faculty Salutes Initiative in 2011 to recognize the contributions of the Faculty Athletics Representatives at each of the institutions with a winning NFF National Scholar-Athlete, and

As part of this initiative, the NFF presents each of the recognized Faculty Athletics Representatives with a plaque and a check for $5,000 from Fidelity Investments, which is used to support the academic support services for student-athletes at each institution, and

The NFF Faculty Salutes effort has recognized 76 FARs since the program’s inception, and Fidelity Investments has provided a total of $380,000 in donations to date, and     

Steven J. Hatchell, President & Chief Executive Officer, and Matthew Sign, Chief Operating Officer have designed, shaped, implemented, and enhanced these outstanding programs in regular coordination with the 1A FAR Board of Directors;

Therefore, In recognition of all the aforesaid, be it resolved:

That 1A FAR, representing the Faculty Athletics Representatives at the 130 institutions of higher education and 10 conferences comprising the Football Bowl Subdivision of NCAA Division I, express deep and sincere appreciation to the National Football Foundation, Steven J. Hatchell, and Matthew Sign for their exceptional efforts to recognize both outstanding scholar-athletes and the contributions of Faculty Athletics Representatives, and

To declare the National Football Foundation, Steven J. Hatchell, and Matthew Sign as once, current, future, and always FRIENDS OF FAR

FootballMatters.org


Created by the National Football Foundation, FootballMatters.org is the home for storytelling that promotes the power of amateur football.

corporate partners