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SAN DIEGO, Calif. - Feb. 19, 2003 – The American Council on Exercise (ACE), America’s Authority on Fitness, today announced its sponsorship of the keynote address given by Pat Croce, motivational speaker and former president of the Philadelphia 76ers, at IHRSA 2003. ACE also reveals its 2003 Fitness Professionals of the Year. The 22nd Annual International Convention & Trade Show will be held in San Francisco, Feb. 26 – March 1 at the Moscone Center.

Winners of the ACE 2003 Fitness Professional of the Year Awards will be announced Saturday, March 1st. Awards will be presented for Personal Trainer of the Year, Group Fitness Instructor of the Year and Fitness Director of the Year. The ACE Fitness Professional of the Year Awards were created in 1999 to publicly recognize the significant contributions fitness professionals have made to the fitness industry. ACE honors fitness professionals who have excelled in the areas of client development, training techniques, successful marketing and revenue generation. Each winner receives a $2,500 scholarship toward continuing education in the health and fitness industry.

ACE’s sponsorship at IHRSA includes Pat Croce’s keynote address entitled, “The Entrepreneurial Spirit ... Leadership and Motivation.” Pat Croce graced the cover of Success Magazine as the first person to ascend from the training room to the boardroom of a professional sports team. It has been defined as one of the most amazing stories in sports history. His journey and success as a physical therapist and pioneer in the sports medicine field to the colorful leader responsible for the resurrection of the NBA Philadelphia 76ers to an NBA championship contender has led him to help motivate millions through speaking engagements across the country.

In addition to Pat Croce’s keynote address, ACE is sponsoring 18 educational sessions covering subjects ranging from core stabilization training to exercise for special populations to the business aspects of personal training. All club staff, management and fitness professionals in attendance will greatly benefit from the diverse array of topics covered during these highly informative sessions.

ACE will also offer its Group Fitness Instructor, Personal Trainer, Clinical Exercise Specialist and Lifestyle & Weight Management Consultant Certification Exams in conjunction with IHRSA. CECs will also be awarded for attending the educational sessions at the show.

About ACE
The American Council on Exercise (ACE) is a nonprofit organization committed to promoting active, healthy lifestyles and their positive effects on the mind, body and spirit. ACE pledges to enable all segments of society to enjoy the benefits of physical activity and to protect the public against unqualified fitness professionals and unsafe or ineffective fitness products, programs and trends. ACE accomplishes this mission by setting certification and continuing education standards for fitness instructors and through ongoing public education regarding scientifically sound health and fitness practices. For more information on ACE and its programs, call (800) 825-3636 or log onto the ACE Web site at

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About ACE

Founded in 1985, the American Council on Exercise (ACE) is a nonprofit organization committed to America's health and wellbeing. Over the past 30 years, we have become an established resource for health and fitness professionals, and the public, providing comprehensive, unbiased research and validating ourselves as the country's trusted authority on health and fitness.

Today, ACE is the largest nonprofit health and fitness certification, education and training organization in the world with more than 65,000 certified professionals who hold more than 72,000 ACE Certifications. With a long heritage in certification, education, training and public outreach, we are among the most respected organizations in the industry and a resource the public has come to trust for health and fitness education.