COLORADO SPRINGS, CO — The National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) is proud to announce the recipients of the organization’s 2023 Annual Awards. These distinctive awards honor professionals around the world for outstanding achievement in their field. Each individual was nominated by the NSCA community and will be formally recognized at the 2023 NSCA National Conference in Las Vegas, NV, this July 12-15.
The Personal Trainer of the Year Award recognizes an NSCA-Certified Personal Trainer® (NSCA-CPT®) or Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist® (CSCS®) for exemplary service to the advancement of the personal training industry. Earning recognition in 2023 is Rocky Snyder, CSCS, NSCA-CPT.
Rocky Snyder is a nationally recognized expert in human movement with 30 years of professional experience and knowledge. He is the author of several books on strength & conditioning and the host of the Zelos Podcast. Rocky has trained thousands of clients ranging from grandparents to professional athletes and Olympic champions. Aside from owning and operating his training studio in Santa Cruz, California, Rocky travels far and wide providing educational workshops to personal trainers, manual therapists, chiropractors, and physical therapists. He offers his services as a part-time consultant to professional sports teams in the NFL, NBA, NHL, MLS, and MLB. He continues to present for IDEA, NSCA, FIBO USA, and Perform Better. He lives and surfs with his wife and two children in Santa Cruz, California.
The High School Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year Award is given to a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) who has demonstrated excellence in the field of high school strength and conditioning. Accepting this achievement in 2023 is Andrew Caldwell, CSCS, RSCC*D.
Andrew Caldwell has over 20 years of experience as a strength coach. He currently serves as the Director of Athletic Development at Spartanburg High School, where he coordinates training for each sport while giving oversight to the implementation of the Long-Term Athletic Development program at both district middle schools. Coach Caldwell also serves on the South Carolina Advisor Board and South Carolina High School Strength Coaches Association (SCHSSCA) Board of Directors. Over the years, Coach Caldwell has differentiated his training time to develop athletes beyond the physical by developing a character education program and implementing book studies. He believes coaching is both an art and a science and strives to optimize both through collaboration with other subject areas to bridge the perceived gap between strength training, science, technology, engineering, and math. Coach Caldwell has a PhD in Organizational Leadership from Columbia International University, a Master’s degree in Exercise Physiology and Human Performance from East Tennessee State University, and a Bachelor’s degree in Health Education with a minor in Sports Management from Gardner-Webb University, where he wrestled. He is also a native of South Carolina and passionate about advancing the profession both in his home state and nationally. Coach Caldwell is married to Reisha Caldwell, who is a teacher at Pine Street Elementary School in Spartanburg, and they have three children, Owen, Lainey, and Gray.
The Educator of the Year Award is presented to an educator who has made noteworthy contributions to education and clinical application of strength training and conditioning. Receiving this in honor in 2023 is John McMahon, PhD, CSCS,*D.
Dr. John McMahon is a Reader (Associate Professor) in Sport and Exercise Biomechanics at the University of Salford, where he leads the Sport and Exercise Research Group, the Sport Science program’s Strength and Conditioning (S&C) pathway, and the S&C module. The module also forms part of Salford’s Master’s degree in S&C, which is endorsed by the NSCA’s Education Recognition Program. John has been a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist with the NSCA since 2010. He has co-authored multiple peer-reviewed journal articles and conference presentations with many postgraduate and undergraduate students. John has co-edited two S&C textbooks and co-authored multiple chapters in four other S&C textbooks. John received an NSCA Foundation Doctoral Research Grant whilst undertaking his PhD in 2012, with the resulting research earning him the Outstanding Podium Abstract Presentation Award at the 2014 NSCA National Conference. In 2018, one of his PhD students also received an NSCA Foundation Doctoral Research Grant to support their research. Since 2018, John has been an invited speaker at several major S&C, Sport Science, and Sport Biomechanics international conferences, primarily to present his research on force plate testing sport. He has also produced educational videos on force plates for NSCA TV. John is currently an NSCA Foundation Grant Committee Member, having served as a Grant Reviewer for the Foundation in the previous three years.
The Nutritional Research Achievement Award is given annually to recognize a nutritionist for their breakthroughs and contributions in field of nutritional research for athletes. Taking on this title in 2023 is David Church, PhD, CSCS,*D.
Dr. David Church is a physiologist and muscle biologist with over 50 peer-reviewed publications and multiple invited talks at regional, national, and international conferences. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science and Biochemistry from DePauw University, where he also played varsity football and baseball. Following this, he was an athletic performance intern at Baylor University, where he also studied exercise and nutritional biochemistry. He obtained his PhD from the University of Central Florida with a focus on how to enhance human performance through exercise and nutrition. Dr. Church completed his post-doctoral training in the use of stable isotope tracer methodology to measure human metabolism. His primary research focus is ameliorating catabolic and pathological conditions. He currently is an Assistant Professor at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and serves as the Assistant Director for the Center for Translational Research in Aging & Longevity. He is passionate about human performance and is involved in research investigating metabolism and the regulation of muscle. Additionally, he is active in various organizations such as the National Strength and Conditioning Association, the International Society of Sports Nutrition, the American College of Sports Medicine, and the American Physiological Society.
The Sports Medicine/Rehabilitation Specialist Award is given to a sports medicine professional who is a current Member of the NSCA and whose work and contributions have significantly impacted the field of sports medicine or rehabilitation for athletes. Securing this status in 2023 is Scot Morrison, PT, DPT, OCS, CSCS.
Scot Morrison is a board-certified physical therapist with a strong career in sports medicine/science. Scot currently works as a contract Sports Med Provider within the US Special Operations Command POTFF program. He also consults for a variety of teams and individuals through his company PhysioPraxis. Previous roles include a similar position within AFSOC, Director of Sports Medicine for the MLS Professional Referee Organization, and running a sports medicine practice in Portland, OR. In addition, he is also in his second term as the Chair of the AASPT Sports Performance Enhancement SIG and is pursuing his PhD under Franco Impellizzeri through the University of Verona.
The Terry J. Housh Outstanding Young Investigator Award is given in recognition of a researcher who has been in the field for seven years or less. Accepting this accolade in 2023 is Brandon Roberts, PhD, CSCS,*D, TSAC-F.
Dr. Brandon Roberts is a Captain serving in the U.S. Army as a Research Physiologist in the Military Performance Division at the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine. His mission is to optimize Warfighter health and performance through medical research. CPT Roberts has a BS in Microbiology, MS in Human Performance, and PhD in Muscle Biology, all from the University of Florida. He also completed an NIH postdoctoral fellowship in Exercise Medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He uses a combination of cell culture, rodent models, and human clinical trials to study how muscle adapts to exercise, drugs, and injury.
Recipients of the William J. Kraemer Outstanding Sport Scientist Award are recognized for exemplary contributions and breakthroughs in the field of applied exercise and sport science. Acquiring this accomplishment in 2023 is Margaret Jones, PhD, CSCS,*D, FACSM, FNSCA.
Margaret T. Jones is a Professor of Sport, Recreation, and Tourism Management at George Mason University, where she also serves as the Director of the Patriot Performance Laboratory in the Frank Pettrone Center for Sports Performance and a Beck Foundation Faculty Fellow. An active member of the NSCA since 1995, Dr. Jones received the NSCA Educator of the Year Award in 2008 and Fellow of the NSCA (FNSCA) in 2012. In 2016, she was the recipient of the NSCA’s Senior Investigator Grant in support of her work with cluster resistive exercise in resistance-trained women athletes. Currently, she serves as a Senior Associate Editor for the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research and an Associate Editor-in-Chief for the Strength and Conditioning Journal. In 2022, she received the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research Editorial Excellence Award. Dr. Jones’ translational research in sport science focuses upon improving sport performance and athlete health, specifically through athlete load monitoring, assessment of athletic fitness, and athlete dietary habits and nutrition practices. She has authored many publications in peer-reviewed academic journals and has presented consistently at regional, national, and international conferences.
The Strength and Conditioning Journal (SCJ) Editorial Excellence Award is presented to an individual in recognition of their exemplary service to the review and editorial process of the SCJ. Receiving this honor in 2023 is Jeremy Carter, CSCS.
In 2010, Captain Jeremy Carter became a member of the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) while earning his Certified Strength and Conditioning Certification the same year. In 2015, Captain Carter became a reviewer for the NSCA’s Strength and Conditioning Journal. He has published work in numerous journals and presented research for the NSCA at state, regional, and national conferences while also being a speaker for the NSCA at state and regional conferences. In 2015, he was commissioned into the United States Marine Corps and currently serves as a Special Operations Officer in Marine Corps Special Operations Command. He has a Bachelor’s from Louisiana Tech University in Kinesiology, a Master's from Louisiana Tech University in Exercise Science, a Master's from Texas A&M University in Exercise Physiology, and a Master's from American Military University in Military Studies.
The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research (JSCR) Editorial Excellence Award is presented to members of the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research Editorial Board in recognition of their service to the association. Earning this title in 2023 are Ryan McGrath, PhD, and Timothy Suchomel, PhD, CSCS,*D, RSCC.
Dr. Ryan McGrath is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health, Nutrition, and Exercise Sciences at North Dakota State University. He also holds faculty appointments at the Fargo VA Healthcare System, the University of North Dakota, and the University of South Australia. Dr. McGrath completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Michigan and earned a PhD from the University of Idaho, MS from the University of North Dakota, and BA from the University of Jamestown. Much of Dr. McGrath’s research is devoted to successful aging for health and human performance.
Dr. Tim Suchomel is an Associate Professor of Exercise Science and the Program Director for the Sport Physiology and Performance Coaching graduate program at Carroll University. In addition to his teaching, Tim is the Director of the Carroll University Sport Performance Institute and works as a human performance coach with several teams. Tim has served the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) in a variety of roles, including working as the Wisconsin State Director from 2017-2023, where he was named the 2019 NSCA State/Provincial Director of the Year. He currently serves as a Research Committee member, Chair of the Sport Science and Performance Technology Special Interest Group, and a Senior Associate Editor and Associate Editor for the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research and Strength and Conditioning Journal, respectively. He has published one book, ten book chapters, and over 100 peer-reviewed journal articles on topics that include weightlifting movements and their derivatives, strength and power development, and athlete monitoring. In 2022, he was named the Terry J. Housh Outstanding Young Investigator of the Year. Tim is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist with Distinction (CSCS,*D) and Registered Strength and Conditioning Coach (RSCC) through the NSCA.
The State/Provincial Director of the Year Award is given to a state or provincial director who has accumulated the most points during the year from April 1 to March 31, using the Evaluation Criteria format. Accepting this award in 2023 is Joni Boyd, PhD, CSCS,*D, NSCA-CPT,*D.
Joni Boyd is a Professor of Exercise Science and the Advisor to the Coaching Minor at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC. She served as the National Strength & Conditioning Association State Director for South Carolina from 2018-2023 and currently serves as a member of the Educator Special Interest Group and CSCS Exam Prep Live lead facilitator. Joni has multiple certifications and credentials within the exercise science and nutrition fields, and she is an author, educator, and presenter. Currently, she serves as the Lead Director of Bingocize-SC, a grant-funded mission to improve the health and quality of life of South Carolina’s most vulnerable population. Most importantly, she is wife to a football coach and mom to four mini athletes, authors, performers, and scientists. Joni is most happy when she is spending time with her family, especially when they are on the beach or at football games.
The NSCA invites you to join us in celebrating their achievements at the 2023 NSCA National Conference in Las Vegas, NV, and online on July 12-15. Register now at nsca.com/NSCACon.
For more information about the NSCA’s esteemed awards, visit nsca.com/membership/awards.
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Download a PDF version of the 2023 Annual Awards press release.