2009 Award Recipient
Peter Westbrook is the founder and executive director of the Peter Westbrook Foundation. He is a six-time member of the U.S. Olympic Team and the winner of the bronze medal in the 1984 Olympics. He holds an unbelievable thirteen individual national championship titles and was a finalist at the 1989 World Championships.
Peter's career as a competitor spanned almost three decades, throughout which he dominated sabre fencing in the United States and Europe. His international reputation as a highly skilled athlete and phenomenal competitor is unparalleled.
Peter's fencing accomplishments alone qualify him as one of the outstanding sports figures of our time, but his achievements off the fencing strip truly set him apart as one of the great athletes/statesmen of the modern era. While most athletes of Peter's stature seek to capitalize financially on their fame and recognition, Peter has chosen to devote himself to the goal of empowering young people through the sport of fencing.
Growing up in the projects of Newark, NJ Peter experienced first hand the incredible hardships faced by young people in the urban centers. Through fencing, Peter was able to escape the all too common and devastating circumstances of his inner-city environment. Fencing gave him a chance and it is with a profound sense of gratitude that he has dedicated himself to extending that same opportunity to the inner-city youth of today.
Peter's dedication to young people has been well recognized by a wide variety of social organizations including the United States Olympic Committee, The Japanese American Society and The Women Sports Foundation. He also serves as a board member of the Arthur Ashe Foundation and the United States Olympic Committee.
In addition Peter's recent autobiography "Harnessing Anger" written with Tej Harzarika, has received critical acclaim and numerous awards from the American Library Association Including "Best Books For Young Adults For 1999."
Peter is also a highly sought after motivational and inspirational speaker. He has numerous high profile speaking engagements to his credit, most notably two appearances before the United States Senate as a panel expert on Youth Sport Development.