The 29th annual Ring 8 Holiday Event and Awards Ceremony was held Sunday afternoon (12:30-5:30 p.m. ET), December 13 at Russo’s On The Bay in Howard Beach, New York.
Randy Gordon served as the event’s Master of Ceremonies.
Ring 8 has announced its 2015 award winners (see complete list below), including undefeated No. 1 world welterweight contender Sadam “World Kid” Ali (Fighter of the Year), former New York State Athletic Commission chairperson Melvina Lathan (Woman of the Decade), Heather Hardy (Female Fighter of the Year), “Ireland’s” John Duddy (Uncrowned Champion), Andre Rozier (Trainer of the Year) and Joe DeGuardia (Promoter of the Year).
“Our members look forward to this event every year,” Ring 8 president Bob Duffy said. “We have another great group of outstanding award winners. Committed celebrity guests include former world champions Mark Breland, Luis Collazo, Iran Barkley and Vito Antuofermo, as well Sean Monahan, Bobby Cassidy, Harold Lederman and Frankie Galarza. We truly appreciate them lending their support as Ring 8 proudly continues its record for lending a helping hand to those in the boxing community who are less fortunate. Each year our Holiday Event and Awards Ceremony celebrates our great sport of boxing, insuring much-needed funding is raised so we may continue our mission for our needy brothers and sisters in boxing. We will never waver from their corners.”
Lathan is one of the most respected officials in the boxing industry. She judged 83 world title fights before becoming NYSAC chairperson in 2008 through this past year. Admired for her innovative thinking and support of boxers’ safety, she became the first female African-American commissioner head in boxing.
Ali (22-0, 13 KOs), fighting out of Brooklyn, is knocking on the door of a world title shot. The talented welterweight is ranked among the top 11 in all four major sanctioning bodies: WBO #1, IBF #3, WBA #8 and WBC #11.
Brooklyn’s 33-year-old Hardy (3 KOs) is the reigning WBC International super bantamweight champion. Another fighter on the verge of a world title shot, she sports a 3-0 record so far this year.
Duddy (29-2, 18 KOs), who lives in Queens, was one of the most colorful and popular fighter in recent New York City boxing history. The powerful middleweight rose to No. 2 in the world and sold-out The Theater at Madison Square Garden on two occasions.
Rozier, who is also the exclusive designer of Havoc brand boxing material, is recognized as one of the best trainers in the business. Some of his present fighters include Ali, world middleweight champion Daniel Jacobs, and Gary Stark Jr., plus 2012 U.S. Olympian and rising light heavyweight star Marcus Browne.
DeGuardia, founder and CEO of Star Boxing, has promoted countless world champions, including Antonio Tarver, and world championship events. His top fighters today include Chris Algieri and Demetrius Andrade.
2015 RING 8 Award Winners
RING 8’s WOMAN OF THE DECADE: Hon. Melvina Lathan
Ring 8’s Fighter of The Year Award : Timothy Bradley
RING 8’s NYS FIGHTER OF THE YEAR AWARD: Sadam Ali
RING 8’s NYS FEMALE FIGHTER OF THE YEAR: Heather Hardy
RING 8’s UNCROWNED CHAMPION AWARD: John Duddy
RING 8’s CO-CUTMAN OF THE YEAR AWARD: George Mitchell & Mike Rella
RING 8’s BOARD MEMBER OF THE YEAR: Billy Strigaro
RING 8’s TRAINER OF THE YEAR AWARD: Andre Rozier
RING 8’s COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD: Kevin Collins & Gerard Wilson
RING 8’s PROMOTER OF THE YEAR: Joe DeGuardia
RING 8’s SPONSOR OF THE YEAR: George O Neill
RING 8’s OFFICIAL OF THE YEAR: Carlos Ortiz Jr.
RING 8’s AMATUER OFFICIAL OF THE YEAR: Christina Vila
RING 8’s LONG AND MERITORIOUS SERVICE AWARD: Jack Hirsch
RING 8’s PROFILES OF COURAGE AWARD: Paddy Dolan
RING 8’s PROSPECTS OF THE YEAR: Wesley Ferrer & Danny Gonzales
RING 8’s RING ANNOUNCER OF THE YEAR: David Diamante
RING 8’s PATRIOTISM AWARD: Cpl. Ron McNair Jr.
Keith M.Sullivan, Esq, Received a Special Presentation for his Pro-Bono Work for RING 8 & NYSBHOF .