ST. LOUIS -- Missouri Valley Conference Commissioner Doug Elgin announced today that long-time Missouri State University sports publicist Mark Stillwell has been selected as the 2008 recipient of the Paul Morrison Award. The Morrison Award is presented to honor those individuals who have made significant contributions to their respective league-member institutions, the Missouri Valley Conference or collegiate athletics, in general.
The presentation of the award will take place during the Rawlings Coach of the Year Luncheon in the Landmark Ballroom at the Renaissance Grand & Suites on Thursday, March 6, that begins at 11:30 a.m.
“The Paul Morrison Award provides the unique opportunity to recognize individuals who operate under the radar,” said Commissioner Elgin, who is in his 20th year with The Valley. “Of course, the work and service provided by Mark Stillwell to not only Missouri State University but the Missouri Valley Conference as well shine like a beacon for all to see.”
The league began presenting the award in 1997, when Drake University historian and consultant Paul Morrison became the first recipient. The Conference re-named the award in his honor this past fall.
Since that first year, Dr. Lee Bevilacqua of Creighton (1998), Glen McCullough of Bradley (1999), John Sanders of the MVC staff (2004) and Roland Banks of Wichita State (2006) have been so honored.
The current MSU assistant director of athletics for public relations/sports information director, Stillwell is retiring at the end of the calendar year after more than 36 years at Missouri State. Along the way, he has witnessed the athletics program evolve from Division II to Division I with membership in 10 different leagues, including the Missouri Valley Conference. Missouri State has played host to conference or NCAA competition in more than a dozen different sports in Stillwell’s time at the school.
Over the years, he has received some 60 national awards for publications and writing from the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) and Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), including four Best in the Nation awards.
In addition to his MSU service, Stillwell was a Lieutenant in the Navy when he joined the Missouri State staff. He was promoted to Lieutenant Commander in 1977, to Commander in 1981 and to Captain in 1988. He retired as a Captain in 1991 with 28 years of Navy service. He saw active duty from 1967 to 1970 in the Pacific, Vietnam and Korea.
A 1967 graduate of Drury University, Captain Stillwell is married to the former Tina Chasteen, also of Springfield.
Tickets to the Rawlings Coach of the Year Luncheon are $50 per person. For information on how to attend the event, please contact the Missouri Valley Conference office at 314/421-0339.
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