The Minister was joined at the launch by John Treacy, CEO of the Irish Sports Council, Olympic gold medallist Ronnie Delany, Fiona Coghlan, captain of the Irish Women's rugby team, soccer stars Stephanie Roche and Keith Fahey and Irish Olympic boxer Darren O'Neill.
Minister Michael Ring TD said: "The work of volunteers is the foundation on which sport in Ireland is built - without volunteers there would be no sport in Ireland."
The first awards were presented in 2007 and are designed to recognise the contribution, commitment and dedication of the 500,000 volunteers who give so generously of their time to sport every year. Sport remains the single biggest driver of voluntary activity in Ireland.
Ten winners will be selected to receive an award from the nominations received. An overall or lifetime award to honour a volunteer, who has consistently given of their time for a sport, a team, or an event over many years, will also be awarded.
Full details of the scheme and how to enter can be found online at www.volunteersinsport.com.
Previous winners include Liam Sheedy, who managed Tipperary to All-Ireland SHC success in 2010, Oliver O'Neill, youth coach and father of Olympic boxer Darren O'Neill and Dublin City Marathon organiser Jim Aughney.
The deadline for nominations for the 2014 Volunteers in Irish Sport Awards is 12 noon, Friday, April 25. The awards will be presented to the winners at a ceremony in the Aviva Stadium in early autumn.