Levitetz Family Sponsors USA Wrestling’s Elite Athlete Appearance Program

October 3, 2013

USA Wrestling has received a ​$250,000 from The Levitetz Family Foundation for the sponsorship of their Elite Athlete Appearance Program for the next five years.

Each year, $50,000 will be provided for USA Wrestling to send top athletes and coaches to make appearances in local communities in support of wrestling.

“The foundation is happy to be affiliated with USA Wrestling and proud of what we are doing with the Elite Athlete Appearance Program,” said Jeff Levitetz, president of The Levitetz Family Foundation. “Wrestling had a big impact on my life and how I was able to develop as a person. It is our way of giving back to the sport which has given me so much.”

The donation will greatly enhance USA Wrestling’s existing Athlete Appearance Program, which has already placed 45 athlete appearances in 25 different states with at least 12,000 athletes attending the clinics or tournament appearances. USA Wrestling will be able to set up more appearances with more athletes in additional communities because of this generous grant.

“Jeff Levitetz is a true visionary, especially when it comes to helping others. This program has a huge impact on our sport and would not be possible without Jeff and the generous support from The Levitetz Family Foundation,” said Rich Bender, USA Wrestling Executive Director.

The expansion of the program is expected to make a major impact on the growth and development of wrestling on the grassroots levels, while providing a link between the current stars of our sport and the future of wrestling.
“The athlete appearance program is important at every level of USA Wrestling. Our youth wrestlers get to meet their heroes, the elite athletes are able to give back to a system that has given them so much, and our grassroots coaches are inspired to develop World and Olympic champions. This program generates a positive return throughout the entire wrestling community and its benefits will be felt for years to come. We are very grateful that Jeff Levitetz has committed to support this program,” said Les Gutches, USA Wrestling Associate Executive Director of Programs and Strategy.

As part of the expanded program, a new High School Athlete Appearance contest has been created, which will reward a high school program that has had a positive influence in their community through the wrestling program. USA Wrestling will reward one high school program an athlete appearance in the winter and one other high school program in the spring of 2014. High School programs can go to the Athlete Appearance Program website and submit information in order to be considered. The first winner will be picked on November 1st, 2013.

The Levitetz Family Foundation has supported other important USA Wrestling projects in the past, including a program which provided needy children an opportunity to attend summer wrestling camp, as well as a project which promoted the heritage of Olympic wrestling in the United States.

“The Levitetz Family Foundation was formed about five years ago with the idea of helping childrens charities, those people in need, to help them to learn to help themselves. Currently, we donate to over 30 different causes around the nation and internationally. Recently, we were proud to give to the Paralympic Champions Fund as a gold-level sponsor. Through our association with USA Wrestling, we were referred to the U.S. Paralympic community, which allowed us to get involved and directly help paralympic athletes and their programs,” said Levitetz.