Daemen College Head Men’s Basketball Coach Mike MacDonald will receive the Jim Satalin Inspiration Award for his extraordinary contributions to the Coaches vs. Cancer program, Daemen College and the American Cancer Society, Inc. have announced. He will be the second recipient of the award when it is presented at the Coaches vs. Cancer 716 Golf Classic on Aug. 26 at Harvest Hill Golf Course.
“Everyone we speak to mentions the class he has and how he always does things the right way,” said JoAnna Jacob, executive director of the American Cancer Society for Upstate New York. “He would be very surprised to hear how many local coaches that support us do it because they participated in an event with Mike or because Mike told them about the importance of the cause. The American Cancer Society and Coaches vs. Cancer could not be happier to present this award to him.”
Named after the former St. Bonaventure University coach who was instrumental in the creation and expansion of the Coaches vs. Cancer program, the Jim Satalin Inspiration Award is given annually to an outstanding, sports-minded individual from the Western New York community who has assisted the American Cancer Society in their mission to save and celebrate lives and lead the fight for a world without cancer. Satalin, who remains a member of the prestigious Coaches vs. Cancer national council, was the inaugural award recipient in 2019.
A fixture in the college basketball coaching fraternity, MacDonald has been roaming sidelines, mentoring players and giving the occasional earful to referees for the last 32 years in WNY. During previous stints at Canisius College and Medaille College, and now at Daemen, MacDonald’s advocacy for the Coaches vs. Cancer program has been consistent. He and his staff have annually participated in Coaches vs. Cancer Suits and Sneakers Week, a nationwide event that unites basketball coaches in the fight against cancer. He previously served as honorary chair of the Coaches vs. Cancer Gala, and his efforts have contributed to more than $125 million to date raised by the Coaches vs. Cancer program.
“Mike has been a Coaches vs. Cancer ally in Western New York for many years,” said Joe LaVare, community development manager for the American Cancer Society’s Northeast Region. “Since his time at Canisius, his dedication and active engagement has remained strong. Mike is never afraid to help with new initiatives and connect us to his friends both around the area and within the industry.”
A five-time Coach of the Year recipient from various conferences, MacDonald’s head coaching tenure spans 23 years, more than 650 games, and nearly 400 wins. Now entering his seventh season at Daemen, MacDonald has guided the Wildcats to national and regional prominence, winning more games than all but one NCAA Division II team in New York State, while also capturing an East Coast Conference regular season championship and two NCAA tournament berths. He holds the rare distinction of winning 100+ games as a head coach at the Division I, II, and III levels.