When it comes to shooting, few in the world have the firepower possessed by Mr. Olegario Vazquez Rana. From competitor to administrator, the Mexican entrepreneur has been a fixture in the sport for six decades now.
As such, he will be honored with a 2015 Distinguished Service Award (DSA) by the United States Sports Academy.
The DSA is given annually to those individuals who have made outstanding contributions to national or international sport through education, research or service. The DSA is separate from the Academy’s Awards of Sport and each recipient also receives the coveted Order of the Eagle Exemplar for their achievements. Each nominee must possess an extensive background in sport, which means that the individual must have had significant dealings in instruction, research or service in sport for more than 10 years.
Re-elected in March as President of the International Shooting Sport Federation, a post he has held since 1980, Rana celebrated the start of his ninth consecutive term by hosting the shotgun World Cup in Acapulco, an event that drew 300 athletes from 54 countries. That position is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of his leadership roles in sport. Also included are stints as Vice President of the Mexican Sports Confederation (1983-1992), permanent member of the Mexican National Olympic Committee (since 1969), President of the Shooting Confederation of the Americas (since 1979), member of the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (since 1987) and President of the Mexican Shooting Federation (1975-1992) before being named Lifelong Honorary President.
In addition, he has been a member of the following commissions: Olympic Solidarity 1988-1998), Enquiry for the Games of the XXVII Olympiad in 2000 (1993), Marketing (since 1994) and “IOC 2002” (1999).
As a competitor, Rana began his shooting career in 1956 and joined the Olympic sport in 1960. He was a member of Mexico’s National team at all Olympic Games from 1964 through 1976, and all World Championships from 1966 through 1979, he is the Mexican record-holder in many shooting disciplines and set world records in the air rifle in 1973 and 1975, the latter time being when he bested his own previous mark.
In terms of accolades, he is not lacking, either. He has received such honors as the Mexican National Sport Award, the Gold Medal of the German Shooting Federation, the Medal of Merit from the Swedish Shooting Federation, the Blue Cross of the International Shooting Union, the Gold Medal to Merit in Sports, the Grand Cross of Civil Merit, and an Olympic Order from the International Olympic Committee, and in 2000 was named by the National Sports Commission one of the Mexican Athletes of the XX Century.
Rana studied business administration in college and holds honorary doctorates from LaSalle University in Mexico and the University of Kyungnam in Korea. He is the president and founder of Grupo Empresarial Angeles, which is a holding company that employs 28,000 and includes health services, finance and media groups. He also has been quite active on the altruistic front, serving as, among other things, President of the Trust of the National Cancer Institute, President of the Mexican Red Cross, Adviser to the National Immigration Institute of the Ministry of the Interior, and being a Benefactor of the Papalote Children’s Museum.
The United States Sports Academy is an independent, non-profit, accredited, special mission Sports University created to serve the nation and world with programs in instruction, research, and service. The role of the Academy is to prepare men and women for careers in the profession of sports. For more information about the Academy visit www.ussa.edu.