KSDK – David Stine has won many awards in his 42 years on earth, from recognition for Jersey County Round Robin Showmanship to being recognized by St. Louis magazine as one of the region's top 10 green entrepreneurs to graduating Summa Cum Laude from Penn State.
But there is one honor that surpasses them all (aside from his marriage and the birth of his children):the coveted Robert Goulet Memorial Mustached American of the Year award for 2013.
"I'm not exactly sure who nominated me for Mustached American of the Year, but somehow I got on the list," Stine, who owns a woodworking company in Dow, Ill., said.
The award comes from the tongue-in-cheek American Mustache Institute, which says the Goulet Award "recognizes the person who best-represents or contributes to the Mustached American community during the prior year."
The award is named after 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," according to the organization's website.
Stine and co-winner D. Bruce Hanes beat out fellow nominees Geraldo Rivera, Edmonton Oilers forward Mike Brown, anchorman Ron Burgundy and David Henneberry – the man who helped find Boston bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev -- for the honor.
"My co-winner, Bruce Hanes…that guy is a superstar," Stine said. "He's a register of wills and marriage licenses in his district, and he took it upon himself to allow same-sex couples to get marriage licenses – I think that embodies the mustached-American lifestyle."
Both Hanes and Stine received 24 percent of the nearly 1.5 million votes cast.
Stine says he has been growing a mustache on-and-off since puberty, with varying degrees of success.
"There have been times where I'm afflicted with bare upper-lip disorder," he said. "I have a 'David Beckham/Brad Pitt' scruff at the very minimum, but usually it's sort of a handlebar, goatee type of deal."
When Stine isn't grooming his manly beard to perfection, he can be found building his award-winning tables and wooden furniture from sustainably harvested trees on his family's 1,000 acres of land near St. Louis.
In doing so, he says he tries to embody the mustached American lifestyle.
"It's a lifestyle that comes with being unapologetic about being masculine in every way," he said. "It's about going out in the world, living your life full-throated, full-throttle all the time, be it by enjoying a juicy steak or cocktail, or just trying to do your best at your business, the mustached American lifestyle is about just excelling at whatever you do."
One of his primary facial-hair inspirations was his father, who he calls a "shining beacon of hope for America throughout the years."
And as for his own award-winning mustache, it doesn't take nearly as much work as it may seem.
"The great thing about a mustache is that you can do nothing like I do, and it just appears, very manly," he said. "You can coif it, you can wax it, you can trim it every day, but the great thing about being a man is that it just shows up if you do nothing.
"….My poor, bare-faced brethren, I feel their struggle, and I wear my mustache proudly in reverence to the people who can't," he said.
He keeps his Mustached American of the Year award (which bears the likeness of Robert Goulet) in his trophy room, and says that the defining aspect of the honor is that it's very low-key.
"Once you become a mustached American, you continue to lead the dynamic mustached American lifestyle," he said. "You just try to lead by example. That's all that I want to do."
You can read more about Stine and his business here: http://stinewoodworking.com/