BYU football star Steve Young received the 30th annual Distinguished Utahn Award from the Salt Lake Chapter of the BYU Management Society on Thursday, May 25.
Hundreds of Young’s friends, family and coworkers came to the Little America Hotel ballroom in Salt Lake City to support Young as he received this award. Utah Governor Spencer Cox, Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve and Elder Robert C. Gay from the Presidency of the Seventy were in attendance representing BYU and the state of Utah as they honored Young.
The BYU Management Society, founded in 1977 by Merrill J. Bateman, is a “worldwide network of business professionals with a shared vision growing moral and ethical leadership and a common code of business conduct and integrity.”
Young was chosen to receive the award by a panel of volunteers who examined his achievements and actions, including his admittance to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2005, his founding of multiple businesses in Utah, being a Celebrity Ambassador with Children’s Miracle Network for almost 40 years and publishing multiple books.
Honoring Steve Young
Before the event started, VIP guests were invited to mingle outside the ballroom, reconnecting with friends and meeting new colleagues. A three-course meal was provided for the guests, culminating in an hour-long program honoring Young. Singer Libby Lloyd performed a remix of Katy Perry’s “Firework,” and both Lloyd and Haley Wawro performed the song “For Good” from the musical “Wicked.”
Over the past 30 years, the Distinguished Utahn Award was presented to business, civic and community leaders and organizations for their outstanding contributions to the state of Utah.
Elder Gay and Barbara Young, Steve Young’s wife, spoke about Steve Young’s character and personality both on and off the football field. Both grew to appreciate and love Steve Young as their relationship with him deepened professionally and personally.
Elder Gay named the key figures that supported Steve Young during his life, including his parents, wife and children.
Steve Young “sees people not as problems or burdens, but he sees them as people to be loved,” Elder Gay said.
Barbara Young spoke about his personal life with his family, drawing laughter from the crowd as she shared anecdotes about her husband’s character.
“I am so grateful to all of you who came out to celebrate this incredible honor for this incredible man,” Barbara Young said.
Steve Young thanked his parents for the way they raised him and the example they set for him to follow. After sharing stories about his football career and his family, he concluded his remarks.
“It’s a full circle moment for me, because you are my people, and I’m your people,” Steven Young said.
He received a standing ovation from the crowd.
The Salt Lake Chapter of the BYUMS provides scholarships for qualifying high school students to attend Utah colleges, as well as colleges connected with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Four of the 28 high school students who received scholarships from the Salt Lake Chapter of the BYUMS were invited to receive them from Young himself.
Eighteen-year-old Broc Carrigan will be attending BYU after serving a mission for the Church in the Argentina, Rosario mission. While still in high school, he attended concurrent enrollment programs and graduated with an associate’s degree from Weber State University. Carrigan said it was humbling for him to receive the scholarship.
“I’m just really excited,” Carrigan said. “I applied and didn’t think it would be me.”
Eighteen-year-old Cameryn Coffey will be attending the University of Utah in the fall, pursuing a degree in criminology before applying to law school. Adopted from Ethiopia as a child, she said she wants to give back to others around her in any way possible. When she first received the invitation to the event, she said she was shocked, but ultimately excited to be able to go.
“I didn’t even know there would be an event to go to,” Coffey said.
She plans to join the organization after she graduates, with a desire to “help others achieve their goals.”
Eighteen-year-old Ivy More will attend BYU in the fall, majoring in biology. She is considering applying to serve a mission, but said she was “still thinking about it.” She almost missed the invitation to come to the event, as the scholarship email went to her junk mail instead of her regular email.
“I’m excited for the scholarship,” Moore said. “I’m grateful that I got it, and I’m grateful for all the people who helped me get to where I am now.”
Eighteen-year-old Paige Nelson will also attend BYU in the fall. Her brother is currently on the swim team at BYU, which partially influenced her decision to come to the school. After she attends for a semester, she plans on applying to serve a mission.
“I’m excited,” Nelson said. “This is a really cool opportunity. I’ve never experienced something like this before.”