David Uran (Crown Point)
Crown Point Mayor David Uran has displayed a commitment to making the city a destination for sporting events. Through the development of venues like the 95-acre Crown Point Sportsplex, the Legacy baseball fields and the $4.1 million Sparta Dome, as well as the city’s investment in improving youth ballfields, Crown
Point has boosted sports tourism revenue. In 2016, the Sportsplex helped attract roughly 750,000 people to Crown Point, and those visitors contributed about $1.4 million to the city’s coffers. Crown Point has also benefited from the addition of sports tourism events such as the Game Day USA baseball tournament and the National Softball Association Class A World Series.
Mike Mushett (Fort Wayne)
Chief executive officer at Turnstone Center for Children and Adults with Disabilities in Fort Wayne, Mike Mushett has devoted over 35 years to improving the quality of life for people with disabilities. He has been a national leader in the development of adaptive recreation and Paralympic sport programs through his time as director of Paralympic Sport Outreach and Development for the United States Olympic Committee.
Bill and Todd Hensley (Fort Wayne)
Along with his father Bill, Todd Hensley helped create Gym Rats Basketball, a for-profit youth basketball organization. Founded in 1992 in Fort Wayne, Gym Rats has provided an organized structure for youths to compete in basketball at all levels of skill. In addition to events hosted at Spiece Fieldhouse in Fort Wayne, Gym Rats Basketball has franchisees operating tournaments, camps and leagues under the Gym Rats brand in Texas, Michigan, Iowa, Illinois, Ohio, Kansas, Missouri, Oregon, Arkansas, Tennessee, Alabama and Kentucky.
LaVern Gibson, Greg Gibson, John McNichols, Dave Patterson (Terre Haute)
All five men have been instrumental in the creation and continued operation of the fabled LaVern Gibson Championship Cross Country Course in Terre Haute. In the early 1990s, LaVern Gibson, a Terre Haute resident and businessman, owned 240 acres of land in town and had a vision to create the country’s first national-caliber championship cross-country course. Assisted by his son Max and his grandson Greg, along with John McNichols, a longtime track and field and cross-country coach at Indiana State University, they oversaw the construction and development of the course. The course annually attracts tens of thousands of visitors to the town and provides an ongoing positive economic impact upon the greater Terre Haute region. Dave Patterson, executive director of the Terre Haute Convention and Visitors Bureau, has been instrumental in the success of the course as he oversees all financial and maintenance operations at the course as well as solicitation and management of the meets it hosts.