Meet 2020's Award Winners

Read more winner's profiles here

Stephanie Simmons - Topsail High School

Coaches: Coach Rogers, Dorn & Fran @ Topsail

"I am constantly in awe of the maturity that Stephanie shows in her role as a captain of the Topsail Cross Country team. On a daily basis, she exceeds the expectations we, as coaches, have for our captains. Stephanie is the kind of person who gives one hundred percent of her attention when conversing and it is by far the trait that makes her the leader she is. Stephanie is capable of making every member of our team feel like the most important runner, no matter how fast or slow he or she happens to be. It is amazing to see, before and after practice, when her best friends that are also seniors are talking amongst themselves, Stephanie is more often than not counseling the freshman runners or just asking how their day was. Stephanie’s personable and positive attitude has permeated our team’s culture and she will be sorely missed in the coming seasons. Ms. Simmons also shows a dedication and drive rarely seen. From academics to volunteer work, to her leadership in many clubs, Stephanie gives every pursuit her all.Coach Dorn

"I am so grateful and honored to be the female recipient of the Wilmington Roadrunners Scholarship for 2020. The generosity of Wilmington Road Runners in providing this scholarship will greatly help me and my family with the costs of attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where I hope to become an environmental attorney. Thank you to my coaches - Coach Rogers, Coach Dorn, and Coach Fran - for showing me that running means more than pushing through days when you feel as if your muscles are being stretched like cold taffy. Also, thank you to my family for being my biggest supporters, and my teammates, who are happier for others than they are for themselves. The mental strength, true happiness for others, and faith in yourself that this sport has taught me has become a way of life, which I know will guide my future endeavors. Wilmington Roadrunners continues to spread and encourage this positivity for all ages throughout the NC coastal area. However, one of the most important lessons running has taught me is that being a leader is not about being the best or the fastest, but how you portray yourself in a manner which encourages others to be kind and encouraging."  Stephanie

Abel Zukerman - New Hanover High School

Coach: Coach Zinner @ NHHS


When I took over as head coach, Abel approached me and stated that he wanted to take on an expanded leadership role on the team. I appointed him as one of the senior captains, which in retrospect was one of the best decisions that could have made for the team.  He is natural leader; the type of person who leads by example both on and off the playing fields. Abel held his teammates accountable by holding himself accountable on a daily basis, especially when it came to staying diligent with the unsexy fundamentals of running such as strength, core, and stretching, that are vital to the sport. The team took numerous over night trips, and I could always count on Abel to be responsible for the welfare of his teammates in unfamiliar towns, hotels, restaurants, and cross country courses. All of which he did during the season while maintaining an active participation in the New Hanover’s marching band, Lyceum program, and National Honor Society Club. This young man, and exceptional student-athlete, embodies the qualities that the WRRC Scholarship seeks to promote." Coach Zinner

"I am really grateful to the Wilmington Roadrunners Club for this opportunity. Running has been my most significant and enduring passion in life, and I am honored to be recognized with this award by people who share my appreciation for the sport. I developed many of my greatest friendships through running, as I have come to know my own teammates and coaches, as well as other members of the running community, many of whom I have known since middle school, as a second family. Running has also enabled me to get where I am today by building confidence, competitiveness, and leadership skills useful in other areas of life. I hope to continue running for as long as I am able. I am excited to be attending the honors college at UNC Chapel Hill in the fall, and this scholarship will help with tuition and allow me to focus more on rigorous academics. I hope to pursue a career in law, possibly environmental, and this award will help me on that path. Thank you to Coaches Greg Zinner, Josh Adams, Justin Fischetti, Colin Hackman, and the coaches at Without Limits for all their guidance and support in inspiring me to become a passionate and competitive runner. Thank you to my family, who have always been helpful and supportive in athletics, academics, and everything else. Finally, I would like to thank the Wilmington Roadrunners Club for their thoughtfulness and generosity in providing this award and for all they do to support our running community." Abel

Winners Gallery 2016-2020

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Stephanie Simmons-Topsail High. Girls Winner 2020
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