The Los Angeles Sports Council has named world-record long distance swimmer Diana Nyad and Los Angeles Sparks star Candace Parker as the 2013 Sportswomen of the Year. Nyad and Parker will be honored individually during the 9th Annual LA Sports Awards, which will be held on Wednesday, March 5 at the Beverly Hilton.
In September 2013, at the age of 64, Nyad, a resident of Southern California, became the first person to swim the treacherous waters from Cuba to Florida without a protective shark cage, covering a distance of 110 miles. The historic swim took 53 hours, and caught the attention of the entire nation and world.
Last year, Parker was named the WNBA’s Most Valuable Player, averaging nearly 18 points per game and guiding the Sparks to a 24-10 regular-season record, second best in the league. She was also crowned MVP of the league’s All-Star Game.
The LA Sports Awards are presented annually by the Sports Council to celebrate the greatest moments of the year in sports in the Los Angeles/Orange County area. The ceremony also will feature the presentation of the Sportsman, Coach, and Sports Executive of the Year Awards. This year’s event will be emceed by popular stand-up comic Bill Engvall.
The star-studded awards dinner and gala will be televised on Prime Ticket on Friday, March 14 at 9:30 pm PDT (with multiple airings to follow). The show will include special appearances by many of the athletes, coaches and others whose achievements helped make 2013 such a memorable sports year.
The LA Sports Awards is a fundraiser for the non-profit Los Angeles Sports Council, which will utilize the event’s proceeds to further its mission of promoting economic development through sports in the greater Los Angeles area.
Previous Sportswoman of the Year honorees are: Kerri Walsh Jennings and Misty May-Treanor, beach volleyball (2012); Carmelita Jeter, track (2011); Megan Langenfeld, UCLA softball (2010); Allyson Felix, track (2009); Candace Parker, Sparks (2008); Allyson Felix, track (2007); Lisa Leslie, Sparks (2006); and Misty May and Kerri Walsh, beach volleyball (2005).
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