When a sports legend leaves the playing field after filling the record books with one superhuman accomplishment after another, the highest honor that can be bestowed by his peers is to retire his number. That number is never assigned to another player because comparison could tend to lessen the legends and heritage of the player and the team. An aura of “the best” heightens a strong heritage. Past wearers of those numbers become permanent champions and legends. It is the right thing to do.
As BMW MOA was growing from an organization with little or no staff or resources, two awards were established to recognize those who volunteered considerable hours and personal expenses to organize and maintain the organization. The Meritorious and Distinguished Service Awards were used to respectfully recognize the outstanding contributions and sacrifices of those individuals. They are our champions, legends, and our heritage.
Since those early times, BMW MOA has grown into a formidable organization. The guidance, organization, and governance principles laid down by the efforts of those individuals have become the foundation for our future. Because of this, the BMW MOA Board of Directors has retired these two awards as a sign of permanent respect for our legends. Their accomplishments and dedication cannot, and should not, be compared to the challenges that are being faced by today’s BMW MOA champions. Times and circumstances are different now. Those two awards have been replaced with a single Exemplary Service Award as our highest honor.
|Recipients of the BMW MOA Distinguished Service Award have been:
Edwin T. Culberson
Jean Rihl Dowds
Ken “Mac” McHugh
Cliff & Betty Smith
|Recipients of the BMW MOA Meritorious Service Award have been:
Stan & Carol Kain
Orlando “Oak” Okleshen
The only thing we have that is as important as our motorcycles to the BMW MOA family is each other. The individuals who stand out from the crowd have earned our thanks, and our respect.