The Taylor Haugen Trophy

An Award of Prestige and Honor

Maddie Hiers

2018 Trophy Winner

Maddie Hiers

Maddie Hiers of South Walton High School was named 2018 Taylor Haugen Trophy Winner this February in conjunction with the All Sports Association. Maddie, a member of South Walton’s Volleyball and Tennis teams excelled in the foundations 5 pillars of excellence: Faith, Community Service, Leadership, Academics, and Athletics. With an inspiring story of perseverance and faith, Maddie shared her unique high school experience in front of a room full of her peers at this year’s FCA breakfast, hosted at Northwest Florida State College.

Maddie’s story differs from many individuals due to her family’s medical troubles that were laid before her. As a sophomore, Maddie’s mother was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Unsure of the road ahead of her, Maddie supported, comforted, and prayed for her family through this life altering challenge. As time went on, through numerous treatments and appointments, Maddie began to witness her mom turn to The Lord more than ever before. Reaching remission, Maddie’s family thanked God for making it through the diagnosis of her mother.

Almost a year later, as a junior, Maddie’s father was diagnosed with stage 3 lung cancer. After their first cancer battle as a family, Maddie began to throw herself into her faith – believing that these cancer diagnosis were all a part of God’s masterful plan. With a new perspective of God’s love, Maddie has implanted his word, fullness, and unwavering love into every aspect of life. Maddie served as the team captain for her Volleyball team, involved in FCA, traveled on several mission trips through her church, excelled in academics reaching a 4.1 GPA, and spent countless hours practicing her athleticism all while sharing tremendous encouragement for her teammates. After her high school success, Maddie hopes to attend Florida State University and major in Human Development and Family Science with a miner in Psychology.

Receiving the 9th Taylor Haugen Trophy, Maddie illuminates exactly what it means to “Don’t Quit… Never Give Up”.

Watch Maddies Speech

Need a little Motivation? Listen as this year’s Trophy Winner, Maddie, tells her story at the FCA All Sports Breakfast on Friday morning. It’s a powerful reminder – Don’t Quit, Never Give Up!

Previous Trophy Winners

Tyler Russell

The All Sports Association congratulates the 2017 Taylor Haugen Trophy winner – Josiah Pool! Josiah is the first Santa Rosa county trophy winner, and attends Milton High School. Maintaining a 4.0 (unweighted) GPA and ranking 2nd out of 374 students in his class, Josiah finds the time to excel in many other aspects of life. Playing 4 sports in high school – baseball, basketball, tennis and golf; acting as officers in 3 extra-curricular clubs – Mu Alpha Theta Math Honor Society, Beta Club, and the National Honor Society; while being an active member in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, his 2017 Class Board and tutoring his fellow classmates in all subjects, Josiah has proven to be a very well-rounded young man in high school.

While Josiah had a passion for football, during his freshman year, he suffered a severe concussion, challenging him to accept a different plan God had for him. Moving on to baseball, golf and basketball, Josiah always had a positive outlook on his sports career as he strived for greatness in all he did. Trying out for the varsity baseball team, Josiah pushed for excellence working out and practicing with the team as much as he could before try-outs. Being involved in so many over-lapping sports, he was consumed completely.

Try outs came, and he was still doubtful of making the team. Trying his hardest, Josiah in the end did not make the varsity team, but instead of hanging his head he moved on to the next sport – Tennis. This was his first time playing tennis and after practicing with the team for weeks, Josiah earned his spot and ended up competing in the schools district games. His perseverance and trust in God allowed him to gain a new love for a different sport and overcome his set-backs.

Serving as team captain and a leader in sports, Josiah won the FCA award for basketball as a junior. Not only does he shine in athletics but also in academics. He is the recipient of the Sunshine State Scholar Award and the North Florida HOBY Leadership Award and will graduate as Milton’s Salutatorian. He has passed multiple AP tests and is currently in dual-enrollment math classes with Pensacola State College.

Another important part of Josiah’s life is that of his Christian faith. Actively involved with his church through small groups and bible studies, he also serves his savior, Jesus Christ, through community service activities. With 179 documented hours, Josiah has lead and participated in many acts of community service. These include “humbling experiences” working in homeless shelters, Relay for Life events, mission trips to New Orleans, and many other activities pushing Josiah to become the selfless person he strives to be.

College plans are undecided at this time as he looks at all scholarship offers while planning to major in biomedical engineering.
Josiah is one of seven siblings and is son to Joe and Maria Pool of Milton, Florida.

Tyler Russell

The All Sports Association congratulates Tyler Russell of Niceville High School for being named the 2016 winner of the Taylor Haugen Trophy. Tyler is the first Niceville High School student to be honored with this prestigious award. Walking the halls of Taylor’s school and playing football on the same field, adds to the overwhelming honor that has been given to Tyler. There are pictures of Taylor in the fieldhouse along with his motto “Don’t Quit – Never Give Up” that Tyler has seen daily as a football player. To be the first Niceville High School student to receive this award is a humbling experience.

This year, 13 nominees were considered based on the character traits of the trophy’s name sake, Taylor Haugen, who passed away on Aug 30, 2008 of abdominal injuries suffered during a football game while playing wide receiver for Niceville High School. Those traits are Academics, Athletics, Community Service, Leadership and Christian Faith. Additionally, each nominee must write an essay that speaks to their perseverance in keeping with Taylor’s motto of ‘Don’t Quit … Never Give Up.’

The Trophy is sponsored through the All Sports Association who have 4 permanent voters on the committee. Additionally, the Taylor Haugen Foundation has 5 permanent voters and all past trophy winners also get a vote. The surprise and confidential announcement will took place at the Freeport HS media center. The actual awarding of the 26 inch 32lb trophy will take place at the All Sports Association’s annual FCA breakfast in February.
This year’s winner is unique in that Mary Kate Myrick is the younger sister of past trophy winner Collin Myrick who won the same award in 2012. Mary Kate is pictured with Brian and Kathy Haugen and her brother, Collin.

Tyler has maintained a 4.54 GPA while lettering in football and baseball during his high school experience. Dedicating his time to academics and sports, he is a participating member of National Honor Society, Key Club, and FCA. He is currently ranked 14th out of 444 students. As a freshman, he placed fourth at the 58th Annual State Science and Engineering Fair after winning first place at Niceville High School and Regionals. He has been awarded the AP Scholar with Honor Award, and the Annie T. Mitchell Academic Honors Award each year. He received the AAA award for football as a junior, and his senior year he received the FCA Legacy Challenger Award, was named to the Northwest Florida Daily News All Area Football Team, and he was voted team captain by his football teammates, six out of thirteen games.

Tyler excels on and off the field as a leader and a scholar athlete. He loves playing quarterback and pitcher where he can “control” the game. As a sophomore, Tyler was a member of the varsity football team that played in the State Championship game. As a junior, Tyler had the unfortunate situation of having two senior quarterbacks ahead of him in the program which limited his playing time. Entering his junior baseball season, he had a minor leg injury which prohibited him from playing the first six weeks of the ten week season. He overcame these setbacks his junior year, and as a senior he assumed he would be the starting quarterback. For whatever reason, God had other plans and as you can imagine, disappointment set in. He continued to work hard at practice and felt that he should have been the starter. Midway through his senior season, the other quarterback was injured and Tyler stepped in and became the leader he had waited so long to become. He took full advantage of his opportunity and ended up leading his team to the Elite 8 in the playoffs. He kept his composure and had the perseverance to keep working hard each and every day. His faith in God, positive attitude, and determination to never give up, regardless of the situation, has remained the driving force behind his success.
Serving his community through clubs and organizations in school is another important part of Tyler’s life. He really enjoys working with younger children and gives back to the community through his involvement with youth sports camps for football and baseball. He values discipline, integrity and an overall commitment to excellence. His inspiration comes from the Word of God as he lives each day to represent Christ to others. Praying for his teammates before a big game or privately, has let others know where his heart is. His faith in God has helped him become the person he is today. Tyler hopes to continue the legacy that Taylor has left at Niceville High School.

College plans are still undecided. Tyler has numerous academic opportunities and is currently trying to decide if he will continue to play football or baseball in college. He plans to major in business for his undergraduate degree and then attend law school.
Tyler is the son of Ronnie and Kim Russell and has two siblings, Cole and Callie. The family resides in Niceville.

On Friday, January 9 at Freeport High School, Mary Kate Myrick was announced as this years’ Taylor Haugen Trophy winner. She is the 7th person to win this coveted award. HS seniors are nominated from their school, one nominee per school, in the three County (Okaloosa, Santa Rosa and Walton) area.

This year, 13 nominees were considered based on the character traits of the trophy’s name sake, Taylor Haugen, who passed away on Aug 30, 2008 of abdominal injuries suffered during a football game while playing wide receiver for Niceville High School. Those traits are Academics, Athletics, Community Service, Leadership and Christian Faith. Additionally, each nominee must write an essay that speaks to their perseverance in keeping with Taylor’s motto of ‘Don’t Quit … Never Give Up.’

The Trophy is sponsored through the All Sports Association who have 4 permanent voters on the committee. Additionally, the Taylor Haugen Foundation has 5 permanent voters and all past trophy winners also get a vote. The surprise and confidential announcement will took place at the Freeport HS media center. The actual awarding of the 26 inch 32lb trophy will take place at the All Sports Association’s annual FCA breakfast in February.

This year’s winner is unique in that Mary Kate Myrick is the younger sister of past trophy winner Collin Myrick who won the same award in 2012. Mary Kate is pictured with Brian and Kathy Haugen and her brother, Collin.

Senior Charlie Shackelford of Fort Walton Beach High School has been named the 2014 winner of the prestigious Taylor Haugen Trophy, an award presented each year by the Taylor Haugen Foundation in conjunction with the All Sports Association. The award will be presented to Charlie on February 7th at the Buck Smith Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) Prayer Breakfast based on his unwavering commitment to his Christian faith, athletics, community service, academics, and leadership. More than 1,000 area middle/high school student attend this moving event each year.

Charlie is a stand-out runner for the Vikings and serves as the team captain for this year’s Viking Cross Country and Track-and-Field teams. A varsity member of the Cross Country team all four years, Charlie helped lead the Vikings to four County-, four District-, and two Region-championships, and was instrumental in leading the Vikings to their fastest ever State Championship finishes: 2nd his junior year and 3rd his senior year.

Academically, Charlie carries a 4.0 (4.6477 weighted) GPA, ranking him 3rd in his class with more than 400 students. With 11 AP classes on his resume, he has earned an AP Scholar with Distinction Award and has received the Anne T. Mitchell Academic Honors Award and Viking Scholar Award all four years. Charlie is a positive role model and has been instrumental in local programs that benefit underprivileged children, such as the Boys and Girls Club, where he has played, mentored, and tutored elementary school kids. He serves as a leader in his church’s youth group and has assisted with vacation bible school. He has also given his time to the middle school cross country and track kids. In addition, he has held the position of Treasurer in the Science National Honor Society, Beta Club, and FCA.

One of his biggest disappointments in running came on his quest to excel at the State Championship this past fall. Prior to the start of this season, Charlie’s training regimen—in the grueling hot Florida summer—exceeded more than 60 miles per week. After setting his personal record (PR) of 16:00 the previous year, he competed fiercely all season and placed 2nd and 3rd in the District and Region. He began his long-awaited State Championship race too fast start, his body gave way, and he finished 24th—a devastating letdown after the tremendous hard work and exhausting hours invested for this race. The next day, at a time when runners begin their customary winter break, Charlie re-affirmed his belief to never give up. He began working harder physically, mentally, and spiritually—training only with his family and God at his side—for his last two opportunities to compete as a senior.

At the Florida Athletic Coaches Association (FACA) Senior All-Star race in Tallahassee, Charlie battled the state-title winner from St. Thomas Aquinas and, with God’s grace, finished a close second at 15:44, his best time ever. Following the race, Charlie’s hard work was justified: “Over the summer, you put in so much work, so much sacrifice, then to see it pay off…that’s why you run, to better yourself.” A week later, he entered the crowded field at the FootLocker South Regional in Charlotte. There, Charlie ran his final and greatest race of his high school career with a new PR of 15:43, a Fort Walton Beach High School record! His faith in God and his will to continuously improve despite setbacks demonstrate the “Don’t Quit—Never Give Up” attitude that personifies the Taylor Haugen Trophy and are common traits of every trophy winner preceding him.

Charlie believes Olympic runner Eric Liddell perfectly sums up how he feels about his sport: “I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run, I feel his pleasure.” Charlie adds: “When I run, sweat, push, and strive to be the best runner He created me to be, I feel God’s radiant smile.”

His fall plans are still under consideration. He has been recruited to run for Wake Forest University and the University of Florida, and is waiting on the University of Virginia and the University of Georgia. Charlie is the son of Fletcher and Gayle Shackelford and has two younger brothers, Grason and Wesley.

The All Sports Association applauds Haley Wagner for earning the 2013 Taylor Haugen Trophy, a prestigious award presented each year by the Taylor Haugen Foundation in conjunction with the All Sports Association. The award was based on Haley’s outstanding commitment to Christian faith, athletics, community service, academics, and leadership and was presented this morning at the All Sports Association’s Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) Breakfast in front of more than 1,000 students representing the FCA groups at our area middle/high schools. Haley is an accomplished senior excelling and serving as team captain in varsity volleyball and basketball at Baker School.

On the court, Haley is an effective middle blocker and steady force for the Gator volleyball team. This season, her competitive team captured the Regional Championship and made the FHSAA State Final Four Tournament. She has also developed into the floor leader as the starting point guard for the Gator basketball squad. As the Gators’ assist leader her last two seasons, this consummate team player enters her senior year aiming to continue feeding her teammates the ball and surpass her 104 assists for this District Championship-winning group. As her opponents might attest, she has an uncanny ability to “see the floor” and clearly knows the importance of putting the success of her team ahead of personal goals. She received the basketball team’s “Floor General” award during the school’s awards ceremony last spring.

Academically, Haley is ranked #1 in her class with a 4.56 weighted/4.0 unweighted GPA. She serves as the President of the BETA Honor Society, President of Mu Alpha Theta, Chair of the Gifted and Talented Program, and Treasurer of the Student Government Association. In addition to being a 2011 Florida Scholars Award winner, the Anne T. Mitchell Academic Award and the Baker School High Honors Award have been awarded to Haley each of the last three years. She is projected to graduate with 43 dual-enrolled college credit hours and plans to attend the University of West Florida to study nursing.

Haley was named the school’s 2012 winner of the Wendy’s Heisman Trophy for her excellence in school, sports, and community service. Her contributions in the community include more than 300 community service hours. She freely gives of her time as a youth basketball/volleyball coach and values her opportunity to work with kids. Because God has shown her that participation with the children is an important part of His will for her life, she also enjoys serving at her church as a Vacation Bible School teacher, a children’s camp counselor, a children’s choir teacher assistant, a children’s church worship leader, and a nursery infant caregiver.

All of Haley’s recent accomplishments have been achieved despite the onset of a significant obstacle: at age 11, Haley was diagnosed with Monogenic Diabetes, a rare form found in less than 5% of all diabetes occurrences in young people. Management of this illness requires a difficult and round-the-clock commitment to balancing diet, exercise, and rest—a challenge compounded with high-level athletics. Through her faith in God, she constantly overcomes the fatigue and mental stresses associated with her illness and other day-to-day adversities. Though it would be easy to quit, she hears God’s message loud and clear: “Through Me, you will.”

Haley often recalls Matthew 6:33: “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.” According to Haley, “God’s plan for my life is so much bigger and better than anything I could dream up and achieve on my own. On my own, giving up would have been so easy. But through His strength, I have been able to persevere to fulfill God’s plan for my life.” We congratulate Haley for her service, her perseverance, and her faith.

Haley is the daughter of Brian and Lori Wagner, the younger sister of Logan Wagner, and older sister of Emma Wagner. The family resides in Baker.

FREEPORT – It was a couple of weeks ago that Brian Haugen, serving as a fill-in speaker on behalf of the Taylor Haugen Foundation at the Freeport Kiwanis meeting, first encountered Collin Myrick. Myrick, a senior at Freeport High School who was recently selected as a national finalist for the 2011 Wendy’s High School Heisman Award, was sitting in the audience.

The previous night, Haugen first learned of Myrick while reading over a pile applications for this year’s Taylor Haugen Trophy, an award given annually to a local senior student-athlete that best demonstrates a balance of academics, athleticism, leadership, community service and faith, qualities that personified Taylor Haugen, Brian’s son, who was 15 years old when he died on Aug. 30, 2008 from complications that arose from a hit he suffered the previous night during the Niceville football team’s Kickoff Classic at Fort Walton Beach.
Myrick’s application was in that pile.

“I could not believe it,” Haugen recalled. “I got a chance to meet the guy whose application I had just read for the first time the night before. I believe there’s such thing as a God thing and that was one of them.” On Friday, inside a packed Freeport High School auditorium, their paths crossed once more, this time by design. Haugen, his wife Kathy, and past winners Caise Vickery and Garrett Teal presented Myrick with the 2012 Taylor Haugen Trophy.

“It’s really such an honor to receive something of this magnitude,” a still shocked Myrick said. “There’s a lot of great things happening in my life lately and I believe that’s a sign God is working in my life.”

Myrick becomes the fourth recipient of the award, which was first handed out in Feb. of 2008. Vickery, a former multiple-sport standout at Fort Walton Beach, received that inaugural award. On Friday, he helped present this year’s trophy after manning the first-ever committee made up of past winners to hold face-to-face interviews with finalists for this year’s award.
“In past years we’ve just looked at applications and its’ been hard to find that ‘oomph’ factor in a piece of paper,” Vickery said.
They found just that in Myrick.

Myrick will graduate first in his class with a weighted GPA of 4.4 and has been involved with the Key Club, National Honor Society, Student Government, Student Body as well as a member of the Freeport football, basketball and baseball teams. Myrick has also logged over 600 hours of community service.
“We liked him on paper … after the interview, he just blew us away,” Teal, last year’s winner, said. “It’s more than picking an award winner, it’s like adding a member to the family.”

Brian Haugen called Myrick’s body of work – both on the field and off – exceptional. “Collin just jumped out to us right off the bat, not just because of the (Wendy’s High School) Heisman, but because of the depth of his character and experience,” Haugen said. “It was just shocking.

“All the things the kid has done, in just a short amount of time, I don’t know if most of us could get those accomplishments in a lifetime.”

Shannon Lee Donahue is a Senior at Rocky Bayou Christian School with a 3.89 GPA where she serves as Student Body President. She has been a member of the varsity soccer team for 5 years, playing goalie and winning a district championship each of those years. She has been awarded the most valuable player and named on the All Area teams several times. She has also played varsity volleyball for 4 years, receiving the Coaches award and also named on the All Area 2nd team. Other recognition includes the Outstanding Christian Character Award, FCA Go the Distance Award, and Homecoming Queen.

She is very active in her church, Rocky Bayou Baptist Church, serving on several mission trips to Nashville, Lakeshore MS, and Mission Arlington in Texas as well as volunteering in the nursery. She also spent a summer at Camp Redcloud in Colorado, a Christian camp, as a teen volunteer. She has a great love for the Lord and is a diligent student of His Word.

Her plans are to pursue a career in Medicine and continue a life of service. Shannon is considering universities in Alabama and Florida. The daughter of Dr. Patrick and Robin Donahue, she is the youngest of five children. Siblings are Laura Gleason, Luke, Rachel and Ben, all graduates of RBCS.

Caise graduated Summa Cum Laude from Fort Walton Beach High School in June 2009 with a 4.7 GPA. While there, he played on the varsity Soccer team, ran Cross Country and Track, and enjoyed Ultimate Frisbee. Caise served as the President of the FWBHS Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and he was actively involved in his church youth group and community service projects.

Caise is attending the University of Florida where he is majoring in Biochemistry and minoring in Spanish. Caise is an avid Gator fan, and an active participant in the Navigators (an interdenominational, nonprofit organization dedicated to helping people navigate spiritually, to know Jesus Christ and to make Him known as they look to Him and His Word to chart their lives).

When not in the classroom, Caise spends his time playing Ultimate Frisbee and participating in a Men’s Bible Study group.
After finishing his undergraduate degree at UF, Caise plans to attend Dental School and complete a specialty in Orthodontics. Caise has a passion for serving in the poor neighborhoods of Mexico’s Nuevo Laredo Colonia, and he returns as often as possible to spread God’s Word and minister to the orphans there.

Caise is the son of Caise and Linda Vickery and the brother of Amanda Vickery.
Caise Vickery – 2009 Taylor Haugen Trophy Winner.


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