Junior diver Shelby Cullinan was announced as one of 10 recipients of the 2012 Big 12 Spring Chick-Fil-A Community of Champions award.
“I am honored and think this is an awesome award,” said Cullinan. “I never thought I would be up for an award like this. I like doing community service and will do it as long as I can.”
To qualify for the award, student-athletes must excel in academics, community service and leadership/sportsmanship.
A member of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), Cullinan helped arrange and attended several community service events throughout the Austin community in 2011-12 including the Marbridge Foundation, Longhorn Halloween, Dell Children’s Hospital and Marathon Kids.
She worked with the Marbridge Foundation, an organization providing residential care, education and training for adults with various cognitive challenges. Another event she participated in was Longhorn Halloween, a fun and safe Halloween program where student-athletes spend time with local Austin children playing games, distributing candy, and helping with other activities.
At the Dell Children’s Hospital Cullinan visited and played with kids who have serious illnesses. The Marathon Kids event is a free, innovative celebratory school and community-based fitness program. This program also strives to develop a love and power of muscular, nutritional, and psychological well-being in its children.
“It is really important for us as student-athletes to be active in the community because little kids look up to us,” said Cullinan. “We want to represent the community well, not just Texas, and giving back to the community shows kids what we are all about and will hopefully help them develop those qualities.”
Earlier this week at the Texas Academic Awards Presentation, Cullinan was also honored with the Dorothy L. Smith Community Service Award.
Cullinan was joined by Baylor’s Whitney Canion (Softball), Iowa State’s Kristin Paulson (Women’s Golf), Kansas’ Rebecca Neville (Women’s Track & Field), Kansas State’s Matt Giller (Baseball), Missouri’s Tim Opfer (Men’s Track & Field), Oklahoma’s Sherine Wells (Women’s Track & Field), Oklahoma State’s Chelsea Garcia (Softball), Texas A&M’s Ross Stripling (Baseball) and Texas Tech’s Meredith Heath (Softball).
Texas will be awarded $4,500 from Chick-fil-A as a result of Cullinan's activities within the community.