The 'National Awards to Volunteers in Irish Sports', held at the Aviva stadium celebrated the contributions of volunteers to Irish sport.
There are over 400,000 people throughout the country who voluntarily dedicate their time every year through their involvement with sports clubs and organisations. 250 volunteers were shortlisted, and Dun Laoghaire's Brian Craig was one of only eleven to receive the award from the Minister.
The national awards are an initiative of the Department of Transport, Tourism & Sport in conjunction with the Federation of Irish Sports, which represents some 68 sports in Ireland. The scheme is also supported by the Community Foundation of Ireland and the Irish Sports Council.
Attending the ceremony with Brian and his family was Irish Sailing Association (ISA) President, Niamh McCutcheon.
The award winners were selected by a committee chaired by Olympic Gold Medal Winner, Ronnie Delany, alongside representatives from the Federation of Irish Sports, Irish Sports Council, The Irish Times, RTÉ and the Department of Transport, Tourism & Sport.
Speaking at the presentation of the awards Minister Ring said. "The contribution of volunteers in supporting Irish sports people at every level, from when they first engage in sporting activity right through to developing elite athletes, should not be underestimated. Indeed, the army of volunteers who dedicate their time and commitment to each sport in Ireland assist in building strong and healthy communities, while giving everybody the opportunity to be the athletes they are."
"In presenting these awards today I wish to not only congratulate the 11 volunteers who truly deserve their honours, but I would also like to acknowledge all of the 400,000 people who help to ensure Irish sport is in such a healthy state. Quite simply sport in Ireland wouldn't function without their incredible efforts, and as a nation we would undoubtedly be worse off."