The award is the USSA’s highest honor for volunteerism and Lamb was recognized for his three decades of service to the sport.
Olympic champion Hannah Kearney of Norwich, Vt. was honored with the Beck International award as the top USSA athlete for the season and cross-country skier Kikkan Randall of Anchorage won the Buddy Werner Award for leadership and sportsmanship.
Lamb, a 1972 Olympian and Lake Placid native, has had a major impact on the sport of nordic combined. His vision for building the sport in America and his international leadership played a key role in the success of the U.S. Nordic Combined Ski Team over the past decade, during which the U.S. has won 10 World Championship and Olympic medals.
Lamb grew up as an athlete, then went on to a long career in coaching and has been an advocate of youth sport for decades. With a vision for the future, he helped bring Norwegian athletes and coaches to Lake Placid to inspire local athletes, like future Olympic champion Billy Demong of Vermontville.
In 1991, Lamb was named to the International Ski Federation Nordic Combined Committee, serving for 15 years including a term as vice chairman. His work in the FIS not only helped the USA but was a key component in the modernization of the sport. He is a past recipient of the USSA’s Bud and Mary Little Award for his work within the FIS.
“Joe Lamb typifies the spirit of Olympism that fuels the passion in our volunteers,” said USSA President and CEO Bill Marolt. “His contribution over decades has made a really tangible difference in nordic combined as a sport and had a direct impact on the medals won by U.S. athletes in the last 10 years.”
Kearney came off her Olympic title season to dominate her sport, winning both the overall and moguls titles in the season-long International Ski Federation World Cup. Along the way, she won a record nine World Cups, including all seven individual moguls competitions. She also won two medals at the FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships at Deer Valley Resort.
“These awards mean a lot to me,” Kearney said. “The support of the USSA, including the volunteers and staff, have allowed me to have a great career and the most successful season of my life this past year.”
Randall finished third in the World Cup cross country sprint standings, an American women’s record, after winning two events. She was recognized for her leadership in helping pioneer Fast and Female, an on-snow program to motivate young girls to cross country ski and live an active lifestyle. She was also involved with other athletes in raising support for Japanese relief efforts.
Olympic gold medalist Billy Demong, left, congratulates Joe Lamb of Lake Placid after Lamb received the Julius Blegen award at the USSA Chairman’s Awards Dinner on Friday, May 20 in Park City, Utah.