Dave Lohse has been a staple with the University of North Carolina athletics department since any of the athletes who presently compete for the Tar Heels were born. Heck, he's been there since some of their parents were in kindergarten. Now Lohse, who has been in Chapel Hill since 1977, has won an achievement award from the College Sports Information Directors of America. Lohse was one of the very first people to pen his public coming-out story for Outsports in 2001.

The award is described by CoSIDA:

Now in its second year, the Achievement Award is presented annually to a university and college division member who serves as 5463an assistant or associate in an athletic media relations office, who has made outstanding contributions to the field of college sports information for at least 10 years, and who by his or her activities, has provided exceptional service and dedication to their institutions or conference office.

Congratulations Dave Lohse on this great recognition of your service. And thank you for being an openly gay man in major Division I college athletics many years before almost anyone thought it was possible to do so!

You can read Lohse's big public coming-out piece he wrote for Outsports in 2015.

And thanks to out gay national champion swimmer Tom Luchsinger, who alerted us to Lohse’s special recognition and said of him: “He’s a very special man to me and I love him very much.”