3rd annual Betty Jane France humanitarian award presented

Friday night’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Awards was jam-packed with presentations but only one was a surprise — the presentation of the Third Annual Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award to Don Post of Kansas City, Mo.

The award showcases The NASCAR Foundation, which was created in 2006 with the mission to raise funds and increase volunteerism to support charitable causes throughout the nation … with special emphasis on positively impacting the lives of children.

In 2011, the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award was created. The award honors the longtime commitment to community service and charitable causes by the foundation’s founder, Betty Jane France, who presented the award to Post.

The award goes annually to a NASCAR fan who embodies those ideals.

By any measure, Post fits the mold. He was diagnosed with ALS, “Lou Gehrig’s Disease,” in 1980 and was told he had three to five years to live. Undaunted, he embarked on a 33-year mission of donating his time and talent to charities in the Kansas City area.

Post has rallied the Kansas City community through the March of Dimes. His leadership on the “Bikers for Babies” motorcycle ride has helped raise $6.8 million toward finding causes and cures for premature birth, infant mortality and neuromuscular diseases.

An online www.NASCAR.com vote to determine this year’s award winner resulted in nearly 200,000 votes being cast, a record number.

The charities supported by the finalists will each receive a 25 thousand dollar donation from The NASCAR Foundation.

Post will receive a new Chevrolet SS, courtesy of Chevrolet, and provide the March of Dimes with a $100,000 donation.