Governor's Fitness Awards


The unifying quality all GFA winners possess is the unwavering ability to keep their eye on the prize in order to obtain the end goal. From Veteran of the Year to Champion for Health, all of these health advocates and champions are made of determination.


View this year's award winners


View photos from the Governor's Fitness Award Gala


View photos from the Legislative Reception


Click on an award below to see this year's finalists.


John Dingell Outstanding Public Official Award

This public official has a personal passion for health of Michiganders and has dedicated their professional life to advocating for public health while working to inspire their community through outreach and policy efforts.

Lifetime Achievement Award

The Lifetime Achievement Award, named after its first recipient Vern Seefeldt, recognizes those rare individuals who, over a lifetime, have made landmark contributions to the health of Michigan residents.

Veteran of the Year Award

The Governor’s Fitness Award Veteran of the Year award honors a Michigan veteran who has served their country and has either overcome obstacles to lead a healthier life or now serves their community by acting as a catalyst for healthy living and inspires behavior change.

Charles T. Kuntzleman Accepting the Challenge Award

This honoree continues to pursue a healthy and balanced life despite setbacks and extraordinary challenges, and serves as a role model for others. By demonstrating that fitness is a journey which can be undertaken by anyone, this award recipient teaches others that the only thing standing in the way of their dreams is themselves.

Conquering Obesity Award

Individuals recognized in this category have made a decision to lead a healthier life in order to overcome a health issue. They have dedicated themselves to finding balance in physical activity and nutrition in their daily lives. They also encourage others to make intentional changes and adjustments to improve their health, and continue to honor their own commitment on a daily basis.

Director's Champion for Health Award

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Director’s Champion for Health acts to ignite and support positive community change, specifically encouraging physical activity and healthy eating across the lifespan. This Champion works to develop programs, processes, messaging, and infrastructure in their community and demonstrates how they have impacted the lives and health outcomes in Michigan’s most vulnerable populations.

Active Community Award

Imagine a community where people can walk or bike to work, school or run errands. Families play together in parks and greenspaces. Neighbors wave to neighbors with a sense of connectedness and community pride. The Active Community Award is given to a community that creates this kind of vibrant, healthy environment.

Extraordinary Event/Organization Award

Individuals are often interested in different forms of physical activity, but don’t know where to start. Community physical fitness events create opportunities for Michiganders of all ages and skill levels to try different forms of activity in a safe and welcoming environment. The winning event offers residents the opportunity to develop their physical fitness skills and understanding of health. The Extraordinary Event or Organization honoree should be an innovative, safe and fun physical activity events or programs with no barriers for participation. This event or program should create a positive environment for athletes and inspire others to pursue a physically active life.

Healthy Workplace Award

Every year, Michigan worksites large and small take that extra step, spend the extra dollar, develop that innovative concept which helps create a healthier workplace - and helps make their employees healthy, fit, and more productive. To honor that commitment, the Governor's Council on Physical Fitness, Health and Sports and the Michigan Fitness Foundation bestow the Healthy Workplace Award on organizations with outstanding programs that help to create best practices for organizations throughout Michigan to replicate.