EL PASO, Texas – The Sunland Masonic Lodge No. 1344 presented the “Community Builders Award” to Sun Bowl Association Executive Director Bernie Olivas on Thursday, Nov. 8 at the El Paso International Museum of Art located at 1211 Montana Ave.
Freemasonry is the largest and oldest fraternal organization in the world. All Masons have a strong allegiance to their country, their family and their neighbors. As such, the “Community Builders Award” was created by the Grand Lodge to recognize non-masons who stand out in the community by their unparalleled volunteering of time and expertise in their community to make it a better place to live, raise families and work.
“This is a surprising and humbling award to receive,” said Olivas. “I dedicate this to all the people who help put on all our community events including the Sun Bowl staff, the Board of Directors, the Board of Advisors, the sponsors and the volunteers. Without all these people, we could not put on these events for the Borderland community.”
Olivas, a native El Pasoan, has developed a love and a passion for his work like no other. He oversees 20 different special events in El Paso, including the Hyundai Sun Bowl, the WestStar Bank Don Haskins Sun Bowl Invitational, the Sun Bowl Marathon All-America Golf Classic, the Sun Bowl Fan Fiesta and the Academy Sports + Outdoors Sun Bowl International Soccer Tournament.
The Sun Bowl Association produces the largest economic impact in El Paso for a single event in the city with the annual Sun Bowl football game. Since becoming Executive Director, Olivas has helped secure sponsorship changes for several events. He also helped secure the Hyundai Sun Bowl’s television contract extension through 2019, making the relationship between the Sun Bowl and CBS the longest in college bowl game history.
Olivas, who was a Sun Bowl volunteer for over 20 years, served as the Sun Bowl Association President in the year 2000 – the 66th president in Sun Bowl History. His involvement with the Sun Bowl began when he joined one of the team host committees, and he was named to the Sun Bowl Board of Directors in 1992. He was also named to the football selection committee, of which he is still a member.
“We selected Mr. Bernie Olivas because he has led his staff and organization for over 15 years to put on amazing events for the community, which make El Paso a great place to live and a great place for visitors,” said Bill Perry, a member of the Sunland Masonic Lodge No. 1344.
The “Community Builders Award” is an award authorized by the Grand Lodge of Texas to be given to an individual who has done an outstanding job within the local community. There have been several of these awards given to individuals within El Paso, one of which was given to Dr. Natalicio, former UTEP President.
Sunland Lodge No. 1344 was chartered by the Grand Lodge of Texas in Dec. 1954 and has continually been in existence ever since, while there are eight lodges in El Paso located throughout the city.
Sun Bowl Association
4150 Pinnacle Street
El Paso, Texas 79902