Annual award given by the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) to the "outstanding amateur athlete in the United States, (and) is based on qualities of leadership, character, sportsmanship and the ideals of amateurism." (description taken from press release on AAU site)

The award is named after a founder and past president of the AAU. A person can only win the award once, so it's not really an "athlete of the year" award, per se.

Below's a list of the annual winners. Some are world-famous and well-known, most are not.

1930 Bobby Jones, golf
1931 Barney Berlinger, track
1932 Jim Bausch, track
1933 Glenn Cunningham, track
1934 Bill Bonthron, track
1935 Lawson Little, golf
1936 Glenn Morris, track
1937 Don Budge, tennis
1938 Don Lash, track
1939 Joe Burk, rowing
1940 Greg Rice, track
1941 Leslie MacMitchell, track
1942 Cornelius Warmerdam, track
1943 Gilbert Dodds, track
1944 Ann Curtis, swimming
1945 Doc Blanchard, football
1946 Arnold Tucker, football
1947 John B. Kelly, Jr., rowing
1948 Bob Mathias, track
1949 Dick Button, skating
1950 Fred Wilt, track
1951 Bob Richards, track
1952 Horace Ashenfelter, track
1953 Sammy Lee, diving
1954 Mal Whitfield, track
1955 Harrison Dillard, track
1956 Pat McCormick, diving
1957 Bobby Morrow, track
1958 Glenn Davis, track
1959 Parry O'Brien, track
1960 Rafer Johnson, track
1961 Wilma Rudolph, track
1962 Jim Beatty, track
1963 John Pennel, track
1964 Don Schollander, swimming
1965 Bill Bradley, basketball
1966 Jim Ryun, track
1967 Randy Matson, track
1968 Debbie Meyer, swimming
1969 Bill Toomey, track
1970 John Kinsella, swimming
1971 Mark Spitz, swimming
1972 Frank Shorter, track
1973 Bill Walton, basketball
1974 Rich Wohlhuter, track
1975 Tim Shaw, swimming
1976 Bruce Jenner, track
1977 John Naber, swimming
1978 Tracy Caulkins, swimming
1979 Kurt Thomas, gymnastics
1980 Eric Heiden, speed skating
1981 Carl Lewis, track
1982 Mary Decker, track
1983 Edwin Moses, track
1984 Greg Louganis, diving
1985 Joan B. Samuelson, track
1986 Jackie Joyner-Kersee, track
1987 Jim Abbott, baseball
1988 Florence Griffith Joyner, track
1989 Janet Evans, swimming
1990 John Smith, wrestling
1991 Mike Powell, track
1992 Bonnie Blair, speed skating
1993 Charlie Ward, football
1994 Dan Jansen, speed skating
1995 Bruce Baumgartner, wrestling
1996 Michael Johnson, track
1997 Peyton Manning, football
1998 Chamique Holdsclaw, basketball
1999 Coco and Kelly Miller, basketball
2000 Rulon Gardner, wrestling

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