Avera Supports American Heart Association Through Annual Paul "Bear" Bryant Awards

January 14, 2016

The 30th Annual Paul “Bear” Bryant Awards event was held on Wednesday evening at the Hilton Americas – Houston. Esteemed coaches and sports figures mingled with guests during a reception before a seated dinner, which culminated in the presentation of both the Paul “Bear” Bryant Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Paul “Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year Award.

AVERA Companies was a sponsor for the event, which benefits the American Heart and American Stroke Associations. Lance Odom, partner at Avera, was a member of this year’s Executive Leadership Committee.

Coach Mack Brown, longtime head football coach at the University of Texas at Austin, was honored at the event, receiving the 2015 Paul “Bear” Bryant Lifetime Achievement Award, which highlights the outstanding achievements and extraordinary contributions which have reflected honor and sportsmanship to the game of football throughout the coach’s career.

The 2015 Paul “Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year Award finalists were Larry Fedora of the University of North Carolina, Kirk Ferentz of the University of Iowa, Tom Herman of the University of Houston, Ken Niumatalolo of the United States Naval Academy, Nick Saban of the University of Alabama, David Shaw of Stanford University, and Dabo Swinney of Clemson University.

Coach Dabo Swinney of Clemson University was the recipient of the 2015 Paul “Bear” Bryant Coach of the Year award.

The College Football Coach of the Year Award began in 1957 and was renamed for Coach Bryant in 1986, following his death by a heart attack in 1983. It has since benefitted the American Heart and American Stroke Associations. The award honors excellence in college football coaching, both on and off the field.