In 2008, the National Federation of State High School Associations began its “National High School Spirit of Sport Award” program.
This prestigious award seeks to recognize individuals who exemplify the ideals of the positive spirit of sport that represent the core mission of education-based athletics. The award may be given in recognition of a specific act or for an activity of longer duration.
It could be awarded to an individual (or group) that:
- has demonstrated exemplary sportsmanship and/or citizenship in playing the game as it should be played;
- has exceeded normal expectations in assisting others within the school or community; or
- has overcome adversity or a challenging circumstance.
Each year, it is conferred to eight section winners as well as one national winner. The recipient must be an individual or team from a high school that is a member of an NFHS-member athletic or activity association.
The recipient could be a coach, athletic administrator, administrator, trainer, contest official, student-athlete or any others associated with the school or the school’s athletic program, or an individual(s) associated with the school's performing arts program.
In 2008, the national award recipients were Megan Bomgaars, a cheerleader with Down syndrome from Colorado, and her cheerleading coach, Tammy Dufford. Megan and Tammy were recognized at the 2008 Summer Meeting Luncheon in Washington, D.C. The 2009 award was conferred to Dakota Dana of Afton, Wyoming, who was recognized at the 2009 Summer Meeting Luncheon in Chicago. The 2010 award recipient was Tori Clark of Roselle, Illinois. She received her award at the 2010 Summer Meeting Luncheon in San Diego. The 2011 award recipients were the New Kensington (Pennsylvania) Valley High School softball team and umpire Bill Dithrich. They were conferred their awards at the 2011 Summer Meeting Opening General Session in Philadelphia. In 2012, Jacob Goldberg of Fort Lauderdale, Florida was presented the award at the 2012 Summer Meeting Opening General Session in Nashville, Tennessee. The 2013 award recipients were Salyersville (Kentucky) Magoffin County High School and Russellville (Kentucky) Logan County High School. They received their awards at the 2013 Summer Meeting Opening General Session in Denver, Colorado.
If you have any questions regarding the nomination process or anything relating to the award, contact Spirit of Sport Award program administrator John Gillis of the NFHS at firstname.lastname@example.org.
2014: California Water Polo Player Selected as National Recipient of NFHS National High School Spirit of Sport Award - Section Winners
2013: Two Kentucky High Schools Selected as National Recipients of NFHS National High School Spirit of Sport Award - Video of 2013 Winner - Video of Section Winners
2012: Florida Athlete Selected as National Recipient of NFHS National High School Spirit of Sport Award
2011: Pennsylvania Softball Team and Umpire Selected as National Recipients of NFHS National High School Spirit of Sport Award
2010: Illinois Volleyball Player Selected as National Recipient of NFHS National High School Spirit of Sport Award
2009: Wyoming Wrestler Selected as National Recipient of NFHS National High School Spirit of Sport Award
2008: Colorado Coach, Cheerleader Selected for NFHS National High School Spirit of Sport Award
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