Deford has been elected to the Hall of Fame of the National Association of Sportscasters and Sportswriters and has been voted U.S. Sportswriter of The Year six times. GQ has called him "the world's greatest sportswriter" The American Journalism Review has called him the finest.
For his work at NBC, Deford won an Emmy; he won a George Foster Peabody Award for his 1999 HBO documentary Dare to Compete. But Deford has not simply written for the screen; ESPN presented a television biography of Deford's life and work, "You Write Better than You Play" (2005).
Deford is also an activist for cystic fibrosis education and awareness. He served as chairman of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation for 17 years, after his daughter was diagnosed with, and died of, cystic fibrosis. One of his books, Alex: The Life of a Child (1997), recounts her life.
Frank Defords visit to CMC is jointly sponsored by the Gould Center for Humanistic Studies and the Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum.