NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Vanderbilt’s Kaira Brown has been announced as one of four finalists for the 2023 Arthur Ashe Jr. Female Athlete of the Year award, and she and Jayna Choi were named individual sport winners as well. Brown was the recipient of the track and field/cross country award, and Choi was selected for women’s golf.
The organization—which for more than 25 years has recognized outstanding young minority men and women who have distinguished themselves in their academic and athletic pursuits—will reveal the 2023 Male and Female Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars of the Year before April 27. In addition to their athletic ability, students named Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars must maintain at least a 3.5 cumulative grade-point average, be at least a sophomore academically and be active on their campuses or in their communities.
Brown earned second-team Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar honors in 2021 and has twice been recognized as an All-Academic selection by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. The Somerset, New Jersey, resident is a two-time member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll and was also on the league’s First-Year Academic Honor Roll as a freshman.
She was part of the Commodores’ 4×400-meter relay that earned second-team All-SEC honors at the indoor championship meet in February after helping the group qualify for the NCAA East Regional Preliminary Round each of the last two seasons, including advancing to the NCAA championships a year ago. In addition to helping a pair of Vandy relays to school indoor records, Brown ranks among the top 10 on the school’s all-time performer list in the indoor and the outdoor 400 meters.
A senior from Collierville, Tennessee, Choi was a first-team Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar as a sophomore and is a three-time Women’s Golf Coaches Association All-America Scholar. She was a member of the First-Year SEC Academic Honor Roll after her freshman season and was on the league’s [SJG2] Academic Honor Roll the next year. She was selected to the SEC Community Service Team in 2022.
On the course, Choi posted her first career top-10 finish last spring with a 4-under-par 212 54-hole total to help the Commodores win the NCAA Franklin Regional and advance to the NCAA Women’s Golf Championship. Her career-low 18-hole score came at The Ally at Old Waverly her sophomore season, when she carded a 69 in the opening round of the tournament.