Jacob Goldberg, a senior at Pine Crest (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
, truly is one of a kind.
With a resume' second to none, Goldberg was selected Wednesday as the 2012 national winner of the National High School Spirit of Sport Award by the National Federation of State High School Associations. The award recognizes student-athletes for their athletic spirit as well as academic accomplishment.
Goldberg's list of accomplishments is overwhelming, and especially so considering he is legally blind and has Tourette's syndrome.
"This is a young man whose vocabulary does not include the words, ‘I can't," Pine Crest Associate Athletic Director Jim Foster said in the NFHS release. "Instead, he simply finds a way to persevere without complaint. He has constantly used his misfortunes as a platform to selflessly help others."
Goldberg maintains a 4.56 grade-point average and has been dual-rolled at Florida Atlantic University since 2009. He is involved with several school clubs and has won numerous academic awards, including the Florida Lions Club International Award.
Also, as a varsity letterwinner in cross country, he helped Pine Crest to a district title and a regional runner-up finish. Goldberg also is a distance runner in track, and he has competed in nine half-marathons and four triathlons.
In addition, Goldberg volunteers at an Alzheimer's Day Care center and co-founded a charity in 2007 with his sister, Rachael. The "Together We See" foundation has raised more than $45,000 since its inception to help provide summer camp opportunities for blind and disabled youth.
Goldberg also organized a 5K fundraiser just over a week ago that raised an additional $20,000 for the foundation. Of note, he did all the organizing and secured the sponsors for the event by himself.
Goldberg will be honored with a presentation at the school on March 5, and he will be recognized at the NFHS Summer Meeting in Nashville, Tenn., on July 8.
The NFHS also recognized eight sectional winners of the spirit award. Nominations for the award are made by NFHS member associations. The winners are selected by a committed comprised of state association staff.
Section 1: James Burgoyne, Darien (Conn.)
Section 2: Grace Firestone, Tower Hill (Wilmington, Del.)
Section 3: Goldberg
Section 4: Alysia Bennett, Sullivan (Ind.)
Section 5: Josh Ripley, Andover (Minn.)
Section 6: Bastrop (Texas)
Section 7: Jessica Yasin, Kern Valley (Lake Isabella, Calif.)
Section 8: Michael Lamb, Big Horn (Wyo.)