For Immediate Release:

May 1, 2012




UFC Lightweight Champion Frankie Edgar and STRIKEFORCE® Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey Present Award and Check

Wednesday, May 2, 2012 at 6:30 p.m. ET at Italian Academy

Las Vegas, NV — The Ultimate Fighting Championship®will recognize the Urban Assembly Bronx Academy of Letters for its accomplishments with an “Octagon of Excellence™” award, which includes a $5,000 grant to the Foundation for Letters, a 501c3 organization that supports literacy education. The check presentation with UFC®lightweight champion Frankie Edgar and STRIKEFORCE® women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey will take place during the 10th Annual Benefit for the Urban Assembly Bronx Academy of Letters on Wednesday, May 2 at 6:30 p.m. at the Italian Academy (1161 Amsterdam Avenue). The grant will assist the academy with the purchase of jiu-jitsu equipment.

The “Octagon of Excellence™” award was created by the UFC to recognize individuals or groups that have excelled in their chosen sport, profession or school. The Urban Assembly Bronx Academy of Letters serves 570 students in the South Bronx – a neighborhood in which schools are chronically underserved. Over eighty percent of the school’s students live at or below the poverty level. The academy’s exceptional faculty, combined with money raised by the Foundation for Letters and donated to enhance the school’s programs, has resulted in nearly percent of students graduating and ninety percent of graduates going on to study at a four-year college or university.

The benefit, sponsored by the Foundation for Letters, honors literary agent and founding board member Kimberly Witherspoon, and seeks to raise money to support a variety of programs at the Bronx Academy of Letters, including writers in residence, arts and music instruction, after school and summer programs and college preparation. Other special guests expected to be in attendance at the event include mixed martial arts enthusiast and famed chefs Anthony Bourdain and Marcus Samuelsson. The evening will also include a chef’s tasting prepared by some of New York’s top culinary talents. More information about the benefit is available at

UFC®on FOX: DIAZ vs. MILLER will be available live on the FOX network at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT, with preliminary action being shown on FUEL TV beginning at 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT. In addition to the previously mentioned matchup, the four-fight main card will also feature a welterweight bout between Josh Koscheck and Johny Hendricks, middleweight matchup between Rousimar Palhares and Alan Belcher, as well as a heavyweight clash between Pat Barry and Lavar Johnson.

WHO: Frankie Edgar, UFC lightweight champion, Ronda Rousey, STRIKEFORCE women’s bantamweight champion

WHAT: UFC Octagon of Excellence™ award and check presentation to Urban Assembly Bronx Academy of Letters

WHEN: Wednesday, May 2, 2012 at 6:30 p.m. 6:30 p.m. – 10th Annual Benefit begins, 7:30 p.m. – UFC check presentation

WHERE: Italian Academy at Columbia University 1161 Amsterdam Avenue (just south of 118th Street), New York, NY 10027

HOW: Media Members, To RSVP, please email Shauna Wilson at  Guests, please visit: or email Mike Jackson at  For more information or current fight news, visit www.ufc.comAll bouts live and subject to change.

About the Urban Assembly Bronx Academy of Letters:The Urban Assembly Bronx Academy of Letters was founded in 2003 on the belief that students who can express themselves clearly in writing can do better in any path they choose in life. Its rigorous, college-preparatory academic program spans grades six through twelve, and serves 570 students in the South Bronx – a neighborhood in which schools are chronically underserved. Over 80% of UABAL students live at or below the poverty level. Thanks to the school’s exceptional faculty and opportunities provided by funds raised at events such as this benefit, 83% of students graduate (as opposed to the 65% city average), and 90% of the graduates go on to study at a four-year college or university.

About the Foundation for Letters: The Foundation for Letters promotes improved college access through engagement with writing by providing a range of literary-focused academic and enrichment programs. We also provide assistance to urban schools in the development of their own external support organizations, which build networks of donors, volunteers and partners that support literacy-focused education at their schools.

About Ultimate Fighting Championship®

Universally recognized for its action-packed, can’t-miss events that have sold out some of the biggest arenas and stadiums across the globe, the UFC® is the world’s premier mixed martial arts organization. Owned and operated by Zuffa, LLC, headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada, and with offices in London, England, Toronto, Canada and Beijing, China, UFC®produces more than 30 live events annually and is the largest Pay-Per-View event provider in the world.

In 2011, the UFC burst into the mainstream with a landmark seven-year broadcast agreement with FOX Sports Media Group. The agreement includes four live events broadcast on the FOX network annually, with additional fight cards and thousands of hours of programming broadcast on FOX properties FX and FUEL TV. This includes the longest-running sports reality show on television, The Ultimate Fighter®, which now air on FX in an exciting new live format.

In addition to its reach on FOX, UFC programming is broadcast in over 150 countries and territories, to nearly one billion homes worldwide, in 20 different languages. UFC content is also distributed commercially in the United States to bars and restaurants through Joe Hand Promotions. The UFC also connects with tens of millions of fans through its website,, as well as social media sites Facebook and Twitter. UFC President Dana White is considered one of the most accessible and followed executives in sports, with over two million followers on Twitter.

Ancillary UFC businesses include best-selling DVDs, an internationally distributed magazine, the best-selling UFC Undisputed® video game franchise distributed by THQ, UFC GYM®, UFC Fight Club affinity program, UFC Fan Expo®festivals, branded apparel, trading cards, and action figures.


Press Contacts: Shauna Wilson, UFC 702-851-2477