Ron Hermansen

An Ambassador to the special sports world, Ron Hermansen has displayed his commitment to help Minnesota Special Hockey grow through his efforts to promote the game and his constant demonstration of sportsmanship, hard work and determination.

Hermansen, who has a developmental disability, had an immediate impact on Minnesota Special Hockey when he joined in the fall of 2008. He has coordinated fundraisers and traveled the state to speak at major events to help the organization gain exposure.

While team captains are not selected in the league, Hermansen has undoubtedly become the leader of his squad, the Minnesota Wildcats, both on and off the ice. He has had an impact on everyone around him through his constant encouragement for his teammates and opposing players.

A selfless player on the ice, Hermansen prides himself in making the extra pass to give his teammates an opportunity to shine. He also takes the time to work with the younger skaters in the program who are still learning the game – even if they are not on his team.

Off the ice, Hermansen has worked to recruit players for Minnesota Special Hockey. He filmed a commercial spot with Minnesota Twins manager Ron Gardenhire and sold programs during a Minnesota Wild hockey game to promote special hockey in Minnesota.

Hermansen has enjoyed playing poly hockey, basketball, softball, bowling, track and field and swimming for more than 20 years. During the summer, Hermansen serves as the sports counselor at a local camp in Minnesota where he directs more than 130 athletes.

For his commitment to special sports, Hermansen was named the 2007 Minnesota Special Olympics Athlete of the Year. He is the second special athlete to be named the USA Hockey Disabled Athlete of the Year.

A native of Coon Rapids, Minn., Hermansen lives with his wife, Shelly.