Because of his significant contributions to the growth of baseball and softball and his efforts to get both sports into the Olympics, World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) President Riccardo Fraccari has been named as the recipient of the United States Sports Academy’s 2019 Eagle Award.
The Eagle Award is presented annually to a world leader in sport to recognize that individual’s contributions in promoting international harmony, peace, and goodwill through the effective use of sport. The recipient of this award must have tempered strength with keen judgment in using authority wisely as a means of bringing nations together through sport for the betterment of mankind. It is the Academy’s highest international honor. Fraccari will receive the Eagle Award at the Academy’s graduation ceremony on Thursday, 11 June 2020 on the institution’s campus in Daphne, Ala.
Fraccari is a world sport administrator, holding various high ranking positions, and is the current president of the WBSC. Fraccari’s leadership was instrumental in influencing the International Olympic Committee to reinstate baseball and softball into the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. He has served in seven Olympic Games as a baseball official.
Fraccari also led negotiations between the WBSC and Major League Baseball for a multi-year, multi-million dollar agreement for the ongoing operation and sanctioning of the World Baseball Classic tournament. Fraccari is serving various roles such as Secretary General of the Association of IOC Recognized International Sport Federations (ARISF) and is currently member of the Italian National Olympic Committee board. He was also elected to the Global Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF) Council.
Serving in sports leadership since 1985, Fraccari has earned the Gold Star of Merit from the President of the Italian Olympic Committee, the Knight of Merit of the Italian Republic, and induction into the Hall of Fame of the Italian Baseball Softball Federation.
The Eagle Award is part of the Academy’s Awards of Sport, which each year honor a wide range of accomplishments in sport and serve as “A Tribute to the Artist and the Athlete,” in conjunction with the Academy’s American Sport Art Museum and Archives (ASAMA). The awards recognize these men and women through the Sport Artist of the Year, Honorary Doctorates, Medallion Series, Distinguished Service Awards, Outstanding Athletes, and Alumni of the Year awards.