New for 2021, the Mitchell Family Alumni of the Year Awards Presented by Makadiff Sports honours the long-time champions of the U SPORTS Athlete of the Year Program, The Honourable Lois and Doug Mitchell, and celebrates eight former varsity athletes who have become leaders in their communities, and recognizes the continued contributions by each alumnus to their alma mater. Winners will be announced virtually on Thursday, May 20.
|George lengvari jr.|
|Concordia Stingers / McGill Redbirds|
|Loyala (Concordia) Economics '63|
|McGill Law '66|
George Lengvari Jr., has left a significant impact on both the Concordia and McGill men’s basketball programs.
A high-scoring forward, he powered the 1962-63 Loyola College men’s basketball team to its first Ottawa-St. Lawrence Athletic Association (OSLAA) conference title and a berth at the inaugural Canadian Intercollegiate Athletics Union (CIAU, now known as U SPORTS) Championship. He was also captain of Loyola varsity golf squad, leading the team to its best showing ever at the 1962 OSLAA Tournament. He then played three years at McGill, serving as team captain in 1964-65.
Following graduation, Lengvari practiced International Fiscal and Transactional Law in Montreal from 1968-94. He then became Vice Chair of Weider Health and Fitness – a Los Angeles based holding company with operations in publishing, vitamins and nutrition as well as fitness equipment – from 1994 to 2009. He also served as Vice Chair of Schiff Nutrition International, a NYSE-listed company; Chair of Lengvari Capital Limited, a private equity investment company and founded an international licensing group. At one point in his career, he also worked as a sports agent representing Montreal Canadiens icon Jean Béliveau and baseball great Gary Carter.
Today, Lengvari is passionate about giving back to both of his alma maters. In 2019, Concordia and McGill initiated an annual regular season rivalry challenge in the form of the George Lengvari Cup. At Concordia, his contributions have included matching the Stingers’ inaugural Giving Tuesday campaign in 2020, arranging for new equipment for the varsity weight room, launching the school’s alumni chapter in London, England and serving on the university’s Board of Governors from 1993-2000.
“I cannot say enough about George Lengvari and what he means to the Concordia Department of Recreation and Athletics and especially the men’s basketball team. His generosity has an immense impact on the program and the type of experience we can offer our young athletes. But even more important is the buzz that is in the hallways and the gym when George comes to visit the team. It’s incredible to see how excited everyone is and how inspired they are. George has an incredible story and has enjoyed great success. I see how motivated our Stingers are by the wisdom he shares and the example he sets.”
D’Arcy Ryan - Athletic Director, Concordia
At McGill, he has donated significantly since 1966 and established three different annual Athletic Financial Awards: the George Lengvari Basketball Awards (2003) for incoming undergraduates in men’s basketball; the Jean Béliveau Awards (2017) for leadership and overall excellence by worthy student-athletes in any sport; and the Alex Kiss-Rusk Awards (2020) for incoming undergraduates in women’s basketball. In addition, at this year’s annual McGill24 fundraiser he committed to match all donations made up to $15,000. He also sits on the Board of Governors for the Martlet Foundation, which has promoted excellence in athletics and academics since 1954.
In the community, Lengvari supports the Sun Youth Organization, a local non-profit organization that helps individual and families in need with food, clothing, medical, financial, material assistance, crime prevention, social development and youth sports programs.
Lengvari has been recognized with several awards over the years including, the Humberto Santos Alumni Award of Merit (2002) – the Concordia Alumni Association’s highest honour – as well induction into the Concordia Sports Hall of Fame (2011) and the McGill men’s Basketball Wall of Honour (2013).
“George has been a long-time benefactor of university basketball in this city and we greatly appreciate his keen interest. His contributions are immeasurable, to our student-athletes and coaches, as well as to the university.”
Geoff Phillips - Director of Athletics and Recreation, McGill