Sports and fitness industry leaders gathered on Capitol Hill recently to present Congressman Jack Kingston (R-GA) with the "Champion of Health and Fitness Award.'
Sponsored by the Sports and Fitness Industry Association, the honor recognizes Kingston for his personal commitment to an active lifestyle as well as his efforts to promote a more active and healthier lifestyle.
On hand to present the award was famed University of Georgia running back Herschel Walker with whom Kingston plays in the biannual Congressional Football Game for charity. The game raises funds for the children of fallen police officers.
"Jack Kingston understands the importance of a healthy, active lifestyle," said Herschel Walker who served as Honorary Chairman of the National Health Through Fitness Day. "His participation in sports and regular work in the gym is testament to his commitment to health."
Kingston downplayed his physical prowess.
"There is no question I am at the top of the age pool and the bottom of the talent," Kingston said. "The highlight of my athletic life has been substituting for Herschel on a few plays."
Beyond their charity work on the field, Kingston and Walker have collaborated to promote healthy living. Kingston previously served as Chairman of the Agriculture Appropriations Committee which oversees nutrition funding. He was recently appointed Chairman of the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Committee which directs funding for health and education programs among others.
"In Congress, Jack is a leader on improving health through increased physical activity," Walker said. "We need more officials in Washington like him if we are going to turn around the obesity trend to improve health and reduce our medical spending."
Kingston believes tackling obesity is best served by making active living part of our culture.
"We have to have team sports and exercise as part of the equation when tackling obesity," said Kingston. "It has been an honor to work with folks like Herschel, John Booty, Ken Harvey, and the Sporting and Fitness Industry Association to promote healthy living."
In addition to the Congressional Football Game, Kingston participates in the annual Congressional Baseball Game which raises money for literacy promotion. While in Washington he commutes to and from work on a bicycle.