ROYAL OAK, Mich. -

A pitmaster from Lockhart's BBQ in Royal Oak has won the national title of "BBQ Person of the Year."

Steve "Bubba" Coddington was picked from thousands of votes.

The contest is put on by Grilling With Rich.

This year’s nominated individuals includes several a nationally recognized Pitmasters including Tuffy Stone, winner of the 2013 American Royal Invitational and the Jack Daniels BBQ World Championship, Chris Lily, World Champion Pitmaster for Big Bob Gibson and Mark Lambert, World Champion Pitmaster and 2013 Memphis in May Grand Champion. Nominees are considered in recognition of their quality BBQ styles, participation in the BBQ community and ability to be great ambassadors for BBQ in the U.S.

“I am honored to even be considered for this award let alone to make the final cut. Some of these guys have helped shape me as a Pitmaster and guided me along on this journey. I am looking forward

to being an ambassador to BBQ and hope to bring more recognition to BBQ in Michigan," Coddington said.

He has always been extremely active in the national BBQ community and has always promoted traditional BBQ in Michigan. He is an dedicated family man that is well known for taking time to answer questions and offer advice on how to BBQ and smoke meat, aid in charity events with Operation BBQ Relief and help with local BBQ competitions.

Drew Ciora, owner of Lockhart’s BBQ, said, “We have always been dedicated to making BBQ the traditional way with a great Pitmaster. We want to show Michigan what great, wood-fired smoked BBQ is all about. We are thrilled that the BBQ community around the U.S. is taking notice of Bubba and his contributions to this amazing style of food!”

Coddington was attending the National BBQ Association Conference and Trade Show in San Marcos, TX over the March 8 weekend when the announcement was made.