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January 09, 2024

Principal® announces new presenting sponsorship of the John R. Wooden Award

Principal Financial Group® and the Los Angeles Athletic Club today announced a new presenting sponsorship of the John R. Wooden Award.  The sponsorship reflects the dedication of Principal® to celebrate expertise, excellence, and equality in sports.  

The Wooden Award offers a unique opportunity to pair the shared values of Coach Wooden and Principal to support the women, men and coaches who are shaping today’s game. 

“Principal sponsorship of the Wooden Award is bigger than a financial commitment,” said Beth Wood, Principal executive vice president and chief marketing officer. “Support for this prestigious award reinforces the core values which have always been part of what Principal believes while, at the same time, celebrates the commitment and expertise demonstrated by these talented athletes and coaches.”

Principal will be recognized as the official presenting sponsor of the John R. Wooden Award for both women’s and men’s categories and the Legends of Coaching Award.

“The Los Angeles Athletic Club is truly excited to welcome Principal® as our esteemed presenting sponsor.” said Sam Lagana, Chairman of the John R. Wooden Award program. “With a legacy spanning over 140 years, Principal embodies a values-driven ethos. The Principal mission seamlessly aligns with the ideals upheld by the Wooden Award. Our recognition of exceptional young women, men, and coaches in collegiate basketball mirrors the dedication of Principal to acknowledge individuals committed to personal growth within both athletic and academic realms. We eagerly anticipate honoring the outstanding players and coaches within collegiate basketball alongside Principal and celebrating the inherent goodness present within the sport."

Beginning in 2020, Principal took steps to increase its impact on gender equality in sports—investing behind its mission to help everyone build a brighter future. Through its media support, Principal is an active endorser of NCAA Women’s and Men’s sports, helping amateur athletes forge a path toward a bright and secure financial future. 

To further amplify the Wooden Award and uplift athletes, Principal is collaborating with ESPN via Disney Advertising to showcase the top women’s and men’s college basketball players through several player features starting in January with the Top 25. Top finalists will be revealed during various ESPN studio shows, and the women's and men's winners will be announced live on SportsCenter the day after each NCAA National Championship.

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