Paul Valenti to be Honored at The Bennys

May 30, 2001

Corvallis, Ore. - Former student-athlete and coach, and current Oregon State University athletic staff member Paul Valenti will receive the annual Martin Chaves Lifetime Achievement Award at the Third Annual Bennys Award ceremony June 6. The semi-formal event begins at Parker Plaza, located between Gill Coliseum and Reser Stadium, with the awards ceremony scheduled for the LaSells Stewart Center.

Valenti has spent 63 years at Oregon State as a basketball student-athlete, an assistant and head men's basketball coach, head coach of the former tennis program, head coach of the junior varsity baseball team, associate athletic director, and associate athletic director emeritus. He is still a fixture in the department, serving as the director of the summer employment program.

Valenti was a key figure in one of the greatest seasons in the athletic history of the state, when his 1966 men's basketball team shocked the nation by winning the Athletic Association of Western Universities title with a 12-2 league record and a 21-7 overall mark. The title was the only time in an 18-year span that powerful UCLA did not claim the championship.

The lifetime achievement award is named in memory of the late Martin Chaves, who also was a devoted member of the Oregon State University community. Chaves dedicated a large portion of his life to fundraising efforts for the athletic department, and was instrumental in the construction of the Valley Football Center and other facility improvements.

Oregon State University cordially invites fans of the program to be a part of this annual event. The evening begins at 5 p.m. at Parker Plaza with award winning hors d'oeuvres and cuisine presented by chefs flown in from all over the United States. The event then moves across the street to the LaSells Stewart Center where awards will be presented in various categories for the outstanding achievements in 2000-2001, beginning at 7 p.m.

Tickets are $25 ($10 for ceremony only) and include the social, awards ceremony, and a special gift. For more information or to purchase tickets contact the Beaver Athletic Scholarship Fund office at (541) 737-2370 by June 4.

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