Note: This is the third of four major FSU Athletics Awards that will be presented between now and Friday for the 2018-19 campaign. The final award, the Dean Davenport Bulldog of the Year Award, will be announced Friday.
Big Rapids, Mich. - Ferris State University Athletics photographer and friend Kevin McDermott has been honored as the 2018-19 recipient of the prestigious "Pete Peterson Bulldog Pride Award" for his invaluable contributions to FSU Athletics.
A Ferris State alum, McDermott has served as one of the Bulldogs' team photographers on a volunteer basis since 2011 and has captured thousands of images of FSU student-athletes and teams in action over his years of service to the university.
He becomes the 31st recipient of the Pete Peterson Bulldog Pride Award, which is presented annually to an individual who has demonstrated loyalty and unselfish support of Bulldog Athletics.
"Kevin McDermott is very deserving of receiving this award and has played a big role for Ferris State Athletics and our student-athletes," said FSU Athletics Director Perk Weisenburger. "Along with being an outstanding photographer who has captured and documented much of our recent success, Kevin is also a true Bulldog and strong supporter of the university.
"There have been some outstanding individuals who have received the Pete Peterson Bulldog Pride Award in the past and it's a pleasure to add his name to this list," he added. "He's very deserving of receiving this recognition for his efforts over the years."
A native of the Philadelphia area, McDermott graduated from Ferris State in 1979 with his bachelor of science degree in marketing. He has been practicing photography for more than 30 years and began working with Bulldog Athletics in 2011 when head football coach Tony Annese arrived at FSU.
Since his first experience shooting on the Bulldog sidelines during Annese's first victory at Saint Francis (Ill.) that fall, he's shot 90 consecutive Bulldog Football contests, making it to every home and road game in that stretch, including most recently the 2018 NCAA Division II National Championship game last fall.
Along with shooting Bulldog Football, McDermott has also branched out and has shot countless other FSU contests and events over the past nine years such as FSU hockey, men's basketball, women's basketball, softball, volleyball and soccer among others. He captured the images for the Bulldogs when the men's basketball team won the 2018 NCAA Division II National Championship and has photographed numerous postseason contests across many sports. Along with being a photographer, he's also been a member of the FSU Gridiron Club and has been a donor and supporter to Bulldog Athletics. In each of the last two years alone, he's photographed nearly 75 games per year.
Kevin and his wife, Bonnie, who joins him at a majority of the Bulldogs' contests, reside in the Chicago area, but can often be found either in Big Rapids or wherever the Bulldogs are playing throughout the year.
"We've been blessed to have so many great volunteers in a variety of roles over the years and Kevin is right at the top of the list," said FSU Assistant Athletic Director Rob Bentley. "He's a true friend of the university who has devoted so much of his time and his own resources to capture our student-athletes and teams. His work and efforts make it possible for us to feature his photography throughout the year on our website, social media, in the hallways and so many other places where we can highlight our success. We're appreciative of his work and thankful he and Bonnie are such a big part of the Bulldog family."
The Pete Peterson Bulldog Pride Award is named in honor of former Ferris State Athletics Director and Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Commissioner Pete Peterson (1964-79). McDermott joins a long list of former colleagues and friends who have earned the prestigious distinction.
The award, which was founded in the 1981-82 season, was reinstated following the 2002-03 athletics season after a seven-year absence. Coaches and athletics department staff nominate individuals to be considered which are selected from alumni, community members, university faculty or staff, and fans. A committee from the administration staff of intercollegiate athletics determined the award recipient.
"We're honored to be able to present these year-end awards and extremely pleased as an athletic department to be able to honor our outstanding student-athletes and people with awards named after individuals who have played such a big part in the history and tradition of Bulldog Athletics," said Weisenburger.
Pete Peterson Bulldog Pride Award Recipients:
2018-19 - Kevin McDermott (Photographer, Supporter, Friend)
2017-18 - Dave Lucey (Head Athletic Trainer, Supporter, Friend)
2016-17 - Terry Nerbonne (Faculty Athletics Representative, Supporter, Friend)
2015-16 - Ben Mumah (Athletics Equipment Manager, Coach, Supporter, Friend)
2014-15 - Bob Buckingham (Community & Financial Supporter, Rebounders Club member, Fan)
2013-14 - Linda Burnes (Community & Financial Supporter, Longtime "SuperFan")
2012-13 - Kevin Courtney (Blueline Club President, Community Supporter)
2011-12 - Matt Pinter (PGM Program Coordinator)
2010-11 - Sandy Gholston (Journalist, Bulldog Athletics Blog writer)
2009-10 - Tom Kirinovic (Athletics Director, Associate AD, Assistant AD, Ice Arena Manager, Athletics Business Manager)
2008-09 - Bob Horan III (Local Businessman, Financial Supporter, Fan, Gridron Club, Rebounders Club & Blueline Club Member)
2007-08 - Stanley Gustafson (Statistician, Hockey Season Ticket Holder, Fan)
2006-07 – Mike Wissink (Team Chaplain, Team Building Coordinator)
2005-06 – Paul Quick (Ticket Manager, Business Operations)
2004-05 – Sueann Walz (Local Businesswoman, Financial Supporter, Fan, Blueline Club Member)
2003-04 – Paul Davis (Ticket Manager)
2002-03 – Dick Hawkins (Dean, Blueline Club Member)
1995-96 – Rich Currie (Local Businessman, Bulldog Club Member, Bulldog Football's "Number One Fan")
1994-95 – Lyn Hanson (Bus Driver, Fan)
1993-94 – Judd Folske (Baseball Head Coach, Assistant to Athletics Director)
1992-93 – Dean Davenport (Athletics Director, Administrator, Coach)
1991-92 – Rachel Snyder (Associate Professor, National Anthem Singer, Athletic Advisory Committee Member & Chair)
1990-91 – Bill Scheible (Alumni Director, Bulldog Club Member, Athletics Business Manager, Assistant to Athletics Director, Ewigleben Ice Arena Manager)
1989-90 – Tom Cook (CCHA Institutional Representative, Dean of Gerholdz Institute for Lifelong Learning, Administrative Consultant)
1988-89 – Carma Burcham (Assistant Registrar For Athletic Eligibility, Bulldog Club, Blue Line Club, Fastbreak Club)
1987-88 – John Allshouse (Athletics Associates Board Member and President, Fund raising event organizer)
1986-87 – Bob Leach (Alumni Affairs Director, Assistant Vice President For Alumni and Development, Head Football Coach, Development Officer)
1985-86 – Tom Walsh (Dean, Official Timekeeper, Athletic Associates Member)
1984-85 – Bill Buckingham (Public Address Announcer, Associate Vice President For Student Services)
1982-83 – Tim Pendell (Sports Information Director)
1981-82 – Dr. Frederick Birkham (Health Center Director)