The Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Educational Foundation announced a new partnership with A. O. Smith to present the 2018 Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award®. The award is presented annually to the top senior or fourth-year junior quarterback set to graduate with their class by the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Educational Foundation.

“We are proud and honored to have A. O. Smith presenting our award,” commented John Unitas Jr., president of the Johnny Unitas Educational Foundation. “We look forward to welcoming their entire organization, including their customers, to be part of a foundation that is so near to my heart. Over the years, we’ve been fortunate to work with several long-term partners and A. O. Smith is really a perfect fit for what we’re trying to achieve collectively. The A. O. Smith partnership will enable us to take the Golden Arm Award to new heights, offer greater opportunities for our scholarship winners, and help ensure that the Johnny U legacy carries on.”

Company officials said the partnership with the Golden Arm Award offers A. O. Smith the platform to promote the importance of their core values, such as innovation, leadership, teamwork, integrity, and character.

“A. O. Smith has a legacy of innovation and performance in the water heating and water treatment industries, much like Johnny Unitas did on the football field," said Jeff Storie, A. O. Smith’s director of marketing. "Both of these iconic names have been around for decades and share many of each other’s values. For A. O. Smith, partnering with the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Educational Foundation and the Golden Arm Award makes perfect sense. We’re excited to tie our own efforts to further education in our trade with the foundation’s efforts to help further the education of youths interested in football around the country.”

As part of the partnership, the award will be rebranded as the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award® presented by A. O. Smith. The hashtag #InnovationLeaders will be visible on all foundation and Golden Arm Award advertising, marketing, social media, website, and public relations materials. Branded content and advertising will promote the award along with A. O. Smith’s products and services.