The LaBrant Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Sport of Canoeing was established at the 1980 USCA Annual Meeting as a joint project of the USCA and the Lafayette (IN) Canoe Club.
Nominations for the Award are solicited from both the canoeing public and the industry, nationally and internationally. Originally the selection panel was made up of the USCA Executive Committee and two designees of the Lafayette Canoe Club (until its dissolution in 1989, when the USCA assumed complete administration of the Award). The USCA Executive Director has the responsibility to solicit for and accept nominations. (The exact procedure is available from the Executive Director.) The Executive Committee selects the winner. The award is made at a USCA Annual Meeting. (This is not to conflict with a Mike Fremont Conservation Award presentation.)
Recipients of the Award have been:
Ralph Frese, on January 9, 1983.
Nantahala Outdoor Center, January 14, 1984.
DuPont Kevlar Fibers Division, January 10, 1991.
Judy Harrison (Canoe America Associates), January 11 ,1992.
Kevin Coyle, President of American Rivers, January 9, 1993.
Eugene Jensen, canoe designer and builder, January 9, 1999.
Verlen Kruger, awarded posthumously on January 13, 2007 for his lifetime of achievements as a long distance paddler, canoe designer and builder, and author - and for his positive impact on paddlers of all levels. Jenny Kruger, his widow, accepted this award.
Mike Cichanowski, January 12, 2013. Founder of Wenonah Canoe, world's largest manufacturer of kevlar canoes