NFID and Outland Trophy Partner for Public Awareness Campaign to Help #FightFlu

Bethesda, MD (July 22, 2019)—The National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID) and the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) will again partner to present the 2019 Outland Trophy as part of a continued public awareness campaign focused on the importance of influenza (flu) prevention during the 2019-2020 flu season. Selected by FWAA, the trophy is awarded annually to the top interior lineman in college football.

The announcement was made by Marla Dalton, CAE, NFID executive director and CEO, and Steve Richardson, FWAA executive director. “The partnership with the Outland Trophy offers NFID a timely opportunity to promote the importance of flu prevention and reminds college football fans all across the US that annual flu vaccination is recommended for all individuals age 6 months and older,” said Dalton. “With millions of college football fans congregating at stadiums and tailgate parties every weekend, it is critical for everyone to be vaccinated to protect themselves and each other.”

Flu is a highly contagious and sometimes life-threatening disease that affects between 5-20 percent of the US population annually and accounts for between 140,000-960,000 hospitalizations and 12,000-79,000 deaths in the US each year. Getting vaccinated annually against flu is the most effective way to prevent influenza. As part of the public awareness campaign, the Outland Trophy presented by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases will use the hashtag #FightFlu and will encourage fans to take three steps to #FightFlu: get an annual flu vaccine, practice healthy habits, and take flu antiviral drugs if prescribed.

Former University of Pittsburgh All-American Mark May, the 1980 Outland Trophy winner and two-time Super Bowl Champion as a member of the Washington Redskins, will serve as the Outland Trophy #FightFlu ambassador. One of 41 Outland Trophy winners who have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame, May will be inducted into the University of Pittsburgh Hall of Fame on September 20th, the week before he receives his flu vaccine at an NFID media event in Washington, D.C. to kick off flu season. Additionally, May will make media appearances on behalf of the public awareness campaign and will share reminders for people to get their annual flu vaccines to help #FightFlu on social media.

The 2019 Outland Trophy presented by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases will be presented during ESPN’s The Home Depot College Football Awards on December 12 from the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta, GA. The official presentation to the winner will be made at the NFID OutlandTrophyAwards Dinner in Omaha, NE on January 15, 2020. “The FWAA is delighted to once again partner with NFID for this Outland Trophy sponsorship. NFID is an influential thought leader promoting important public health messages around disease prevention and treatment. Using one of college football’s oldest and most revered awards to help promote flu prevention is a winning play on any field as far as the FWAA is concerned,” said Richardson.

The Outland Trophy, now in its 74th year, is the third-oldest major college football award. Created in 1946 when Dr. John Outland presented the FWAA with a financial contribution to initiate the award, the Outland Trophy has been given to the best interior lineman in college football ever since.

About the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases

Founded in 1973, the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID) is a non-profit501(c)(3)organization dedicated to educating the public and healthcare professionals about the burden, causes, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of infectious diseases across the lifespan. Visit nfid.org for more information.

About the Football Writers Association of America

Founded in 1941, the non-profit Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) consists of more than 1,300 members, including journalists, broadcasters, publicists and key executives in all areas of college football. Led by current President Matt Fortuna of The Athletic, longtime Executive Director Steve Richardson, and a board of veteran journalists, the association continues to grow and work to help college football prosper at all levels. Visit footballwriters.com for more information about the FWAA and its award programs.

Contact: Diana Olson, 301-656-0003 x140

Twitter: @NFIDVaccines, @OutandTrophy, @TheFWAA, @Mark_May, #FightFlu