By Richard Rhinehart
Holbrook, New York, October 30, 2013 – In June 1993, Boston businessman James Benson fulfilled a promise to himself to create a non-profit organization committed to providing sporting opportunities for exceptional individuals who live with disabilities.
His vision of this organization, World T.E.A.M. Sports, began with a high school friendship in McHenry, Illinois in 1960. Through his close friendship with classmate Ricky Prine, Benson recognized the exceptional ability of all persons to excel, even those individuals with physical and developmental challenges.
With business colleague Stephen Whisnant serving as the organization’s first executive director, Benson chartered World T.E.A.M. Sports in North Carolina to imagine, create and manage exceptional sporting events worldwide that inclusively bring together disabled and able-bodied athletes. This bold vision has brought the AXA World Ride in 1995, the Vietnam Challenge in 1998, the Face of America bicycle rides beginning in 2000, the Adventure TEAM Challenge in 2007, the Coastal Team Challenge in 2009, the Sea to Shining Sea ride and the Soldiers to the Summit in 2010, and the Adventure Team Challenge – Washington DC in 2011. At each of these events, and in many more these last two decades, disabled athletes have shown exceptional abilities in sporting and outdoor events.
In the coming months and years, new challenges and events from World T.E.A.M. Sports will offer remarkable opportunities for disabled and able-bodied participants, both domestically and overseas. World T.E.A.M. Sports exists as an organization only because of the involvement of exceptional people, including our participating athletes, sponsors, volunteers, supporters, donors, board of directors, and staff members.
Celebrate World T.E.A.M. Sports‘ platinum anniversary by sharing our rich history with family, friends, colleagues and employers. Through your continued enthusiasm, participation and support, we’ll continue to change peoples’ lives through sports.
Commemorative World T.E.A.M. Sports 20th Anniversary Booklet
Richard Rhinehart serves as Director of Communications for World T.E.A.M. Sports.