He is known as the “Ice Cream Man” for the delicious treats he has delievered for many years to the students at the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and the Blind in Talladega, Alabama. After Friday night, you can call Robert Weaver the first person to win the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award. Weaver, who is in no relation to me, received the most votes among four finalists during a nationwide fan vote on NASCAR.com and the mobile voting site developed by Sprint.
“I am extremely honored and humbled to have been selected the inaugural recipient of the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award and thank NASCAR, The NASCAR Foundation and the France family for making this possible,” said Weaver. “I have often said that I don’t hit home runs; I just do little things. It is the little things that matter so much in people’s lives. As I look back over my own life, working with the children of Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind has been part of my calling – it is why I was put on this earth. I encourage everyone to find something they are passionate about and commit to making a difference – you’re never too young or old to start.”
For those that don’t know, NASCAR’s Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award recognized the charitable and volunteer efforts of selfless NASCAR fans, which is exemplified by Weaver’s work.
Weaver has been volunteering with the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind Foundation for more than 50 years. In addition to his monthly charitable endeavors, he dedicates 30 hours a week to helping children in the organization. His many contributions range from creating intramural basketball teams and bowling programs to teaching students how to ride tricycles. Weave is also a very passionate NASCAR fan, who once was able to pair his hobby and his volunteer work with Darrell Waltrip, who would host the AIDB’s annual fundraiser in 1986.
Betty Jane France, the mother of NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brance France, created the “Speediatrics” concept, a pediatric unit with a racing-theme decor at both the Halifax Health Medical Center in Daytona Beach, Florida and the Homestead Hospital in Homestead, Florida.
As the winner of the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award, Weaver received an expense-paid trip to the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion’s Week in Las Vegas, a 2012 Ford Explorer from Ford, and $100,000 from the NASCAR Foundation for the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind Foundation.