Beat the Streets posthumously honors Donald Douglas with Lifetime Achievement Award
Douglas served as a member of the Beat the Streets' Board of Directors and Leadership Council as well as PSAL Director.
From left to right: Beat the Streets Executive Director Brendan Buckley, Michael Douglas, Kristalynn Douglas, Danny Harris and PSAL Wrestling Coordinator Ken Bigley. (Photo by Justin Hoch)
Douglas' son, Michael Douglas, and daughter, Kristalynn Douglas, accepted the award on his behalf. Donald Douglas, a Brooklyn native and Bushwick High School alumnus, died of a heart attack at age 58 in February 2021.
Beat the Streets will continue to honor Douglas' legacy with its annual Donald Douglas Male Student-Athlete of the Year Award. Mitchell Barcus of Eagle Academy in the Bronx was this year's award recipient.
Douglas spent more than 35 years working for the New York City Department of Education, and PSAL Director since 2004. He also served as a member of the Beat the Streets' Board of Directors and Leadership Council.
Under Douglas' guidance, the PSAL worked in partnership with Beat the Streets to triple the number of boys high school wrestling programs from 25 in 2009 to more than 75 teams before the COVID-19 pandemic. He also helped add 27 girls teams and formed the first all-girls freestyle high school league in the United States.
"Donald’s impact on Beat the Streets was immense," Beat the Streets Executive Director Brendan Buckley said. "Under his his leadership, the number of opportunities for boys and girls grew rapidly as did he strength of the wrestling culture in New York City that we enjoy today."
Since being founded in 2005, Beat the Streets has pioneered a movement that now includes 150 individual wrestling programs, a youth league and the first girls high school league.
Beat the Streets works to develop the full human and athletic potential of the urban youth and strengthen the NYC wrestling culture. We aim to make a lifelong impact on student athletes through the lessons learned on the wrestling mat -- discipline, perseverance, self-reliance, humility and a strong work ethic.