Coyotes President and CEO Ahron Cohen received the Torch of Liberty Award from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) on Friday morning at the Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia.
Established to recognize individuals who have exhibited extraordinary humanitarianism and whose everyday actions exemplify the principles of opportunity, anti-discrimination, equal rights, community involvement and fairness for all, the Torch of Liberty Award is the ADL's highest honor.
"I'm incredibly humbled and honored to receive this award," Cohen said following the ceremony. "Everything that ADL stands for in terms of inclusivity and fighting against hate, for them to recognize the work we've done with the Coyotes, to engage with the community while taking a stand against hatred and a stand for things that we believe in, the fight for good, it's just a profound honor and I'm deeply blessed to be a part of this."
Previous Torch of Liberty Award winners include Jerry Colangelo, David Bodney, ASU President Michael Crow, Arizona Diamondbacks CEO Derrick Hall, and the late Senator John McCain.
"I'm thankful to ADL for their selection, but it's really a team effort though," he added. "Whether they know it or not, everybody involved with our team in the Coyotes front office and the hockey players and staff has played a role in making this happen."
"It's clearly evident through Ahron's actions and his words today that he is so deserving of this award," said Carlos Galindo-Elvira, ADL Arizona regional director. "We absolutely applaud him for his service and his dedication to continually fighting for an inclusive community."
Cohen's vision for the organization relies on a set of core values that embrace an interconnectivity with the Arizona community that reaches far beyond the ice surface.
"It's not just about winning hockey games and selling tickets, it's really about being a part of this community," Cohen said. "Sports is very powerful because it has the ability to unite everyone. Everything that I've tried to do under my leadership with the Coyotes is to bring people together, to create new fans. Our goal is for every single person in Arizona to be a part of our team, to be a part of our pack."
Photo Credit: Janelle Etzel - Arizona Coyotes