After claiming 22 percent of more than 500,000 online votes, Brian Sheets, a firefighter from Orlando, FL who founded a mustache-based charity, was named the American Mustache Institute’s “Robert Goulet Memorial Mustached American of the Year” for 2010.
Sheets outdistanced a strong group of well-deserving candidates including North Dakota Governor and U.S. Senator-elect John Hoeven, Minnesota Twins pitcher Carl Pavano, Washington Post columnist Gene Weingarten, documentarian and frequent McDonald’s customer Morgan Spurlock, and former professional basketball player and current Sacramento (Calif.) Mayor Kevin Johnson.
The award was announced in St. Louis at the American Mustache Institute’s annual ‘Stache Bash charity benefit which was held at Mike Shannon’s Outfield before a raucous crowd of Mustached Americans and other lesser clean-shaven attendees. The event raised money for cancers affecting men through Movember, an international charity that encourages men to grow mustaches.
The ruggedly handsome Sheets, upon being handed the Goulet Award plaque and a dapper $3 crown in recognition of winning the honor, was overwhelmed.
“Winning is a great honor for me, as well as for all the firemen who have served under the influence of the mustache,” a humbled Sheets said with tears in his eyes. “A man without a mustache — is he really a man? I believe not, considering the command presence and extraordinary power that comes with one. And this great honor tells me my beliefs are taking me in the right direction.”
A firefighter, emergency medical technician (EMT), and EMT instructor for the Central Florida Fire Academy in Kissimmee, in 2010 Sheets founded Firemen with Mustaches, which builds awareness about firefighter fatalities and seeks to raise funds for the families of fallen colleagues.
In nominating him, one of Sheets’ EMT students wrote: “Most people teach for a paycheck and don’t care about much more than the extra money. Instructor Sheets is different. He stood with us and motivated us and instilled in us information and morals that would have been left by the wayside by anyone else.”
Presented by Ace Tool in 2010, the Goulet Award is not a “best mutache” contest but instead recognizes the person who best-represents or contributes to the Mustached American community during the prior year, and is named in honor of the late and legendary performer Robert Goulet, whose voice, trademark mustache, sense of humor, and black leather jackets represented a quadruple-threat of talent the American Mustache Institute is proud to salute.