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The NFF Chicago Metro Chapter Awards Ceremony will be in Westchester (2 Westbrook Corporate Center, 1st floor). Thanks to a dollar-for-dollar match by the Chicago Bears and Bears Care, $24,000 in college scholarships will be provided. Details are provided below.
- Monday, February 18, 2013 (i.e., President's Day) from 3:30-6pm 2 Westbrook Corporate Center in Westchester. Jeff Joniak (the play-by-play Voice of the Chicago Bears) is the Master of Ceremonies.
- College scholarships will be provided to three Chicago area high school seniors that excel on the football field, in the classroom and in the community. Scholarship recipients are nominated by their high school football coach each November. Since 2006, $104,000 in college scholarships have been provided. The 2013 NFF Scholar-Athlete Award recipients are Nick Colangelo (Lincoln-Way East High School), Connor O'Brien (Lemont High School) and Zach Strittmatter (Batavia High School).
- The Chicago Bears Community Champion Awards will be presented to three high school senior football players that have demonstrated excellence in their community and volunteer endeavors. The Award recipients are Alex Baratta (John Hersey High School), Mark Gorogianis (Montini Catholic High School) and Jack Petrando (St. Francis High School).
- Former Illinois Wesleyan University wide receiver Chris Bisaillon will be honored for his 2012 induction into the College Football Hall of Fame. He will be introduced by Lincoln-Way East Head Coach Rob Zvonar. Bisaillon and Zvonar were co-captain's on the 1992 team that finished 10-1 and ranked in the top 10 in Division III.
- The Distinguished American Award will be presented to Illinois Supreme Court Justice Bob Thomas. Thomas kicked for the Chicago Bears for 10 of his 12 NFL seasons. At the University of Notre Dame, he was an Academic All-American and he kicked the game-winning field goal for the Irish to win the 1973 National Championship with a 24-23 win over Alabama in the Sugar Bowl.
- Previous recipients of the Outstanding Contribution to Amateur Football Award are planning to attend including Big Ten Conference Commissioner Jim Delany (2012), BCS National Championship Game and Big Ten Referee Bill LeMonnier (2011) and Frankfort Youth Football League Co-Founder and American Youth Football Hall of Famer Carl Allegretti (2010).
- The NFF Mental Toughness Award will be presented to the three local finalists for the NFF's William V. Campbell Trophy, often known as the Academic Heisman Trophy. The 2013 recipients are Nabal Jefferson (Northern Illinois University DT, introduced by NIU Athletic Director Jeff Compher), Patrick Ward (Northwestern University OT, introduced by NU Head Coach Pat Fitzgerald) and Shane Zackery (Saint Xavier University WR, introduced by SXU Head Coach Mike Feminis).
- Deloitte-Tax Chairman & CEO Carl Allegretti will introduce fellow former college football player (Northwestern's Aaron Nagel) to share his advice with the other student-athletes about the keys to success after college graduation.
- Fred Mitchell will present the 2012 Fred Mitchell Award to Fordham place-kicker Patrick Murray. This Award is presented to the top FCS, Division II, Division III, NAIA or NJCAA place-kicker (750+ eligible kickers) based on performance on the football field and in the community.
- Former NFL/college football players will attend. Among prior year attendees were Chicago Bears President/CEO Ted Phillips, Green Bay Packers President Mark Murphy, Chicago Bears Head Coach Lovie Smith, Heisman Trophy winners Gary Beban (UCLA) and John Lattner (Notre Dame), Northwestern Head Coach Pat Fitzgerald, North Carolina State Head Coach Dave Doeren, Illinois Head Coach Tim Beckman, Minnesota Head Coach Jerry Kill, Illinois State Head Coach Brock Spack, Saint Xavier Head Coach Mike Feminis, retired Purdue Head Coach Joe Tiller, College Football Hall of Famers (Jim Covert, Steve McMichael, Tom Beck, Chris Zorich, Chris Bisaillon, Leroy Keyes, Pat Fitzgerald), Pro Football Hall of Famers (Marv Levy, Richard Dent, Dave Casper, Ted Hendricks), John Mackey Award winner Tim Stratton, Kyle Orton, Jarrett Payton, Dave Revsine, Howard Griffith, Tom Zbikowski, Glen Kozlowski, Brian Baschnagel, Desmond Clark, Bobby Douglass, Gary Fencik, Bob Thomas, Dan Jiggetts, Emery Moorehead and more.
- The cost includes a 1 year NFF Membership valued at $40 for each attendee. Attendees that are already NFF Members will have their current membership extended by 1 year. Proceeds are used to provide college scholarships at this event, with a match provided by a generous contribution from Bears Care.
- Space is limited to 100 people on a first-to-register basis.
- Only registered attendees can attend the Awards Ceremony. There are no paper tickets to this event.
- Business casual attire. Soft drinks and bottled water will be provided.