Which Utahn most shaped the news in 2013, leaving an indelible mark on our state?
Salt Lake Tribune editors are debating that question as we select our 17th annual Utahn of the Year.
Past Utahns of the Year
2012 » Mormons Building Bridges
2011 » Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank
2010 » Kidnapping survivor Elizabeth Smart, her mother, Lois, and her sister, Mary Katherine
2009 » Kidnapping survivor Elizabeth Smart
2008 » Utah entrepreneur and philanthropist Larry H. Miller
2007 » First responders to tragedies including the Trolley Square shooting rampage and the Crandall Canyon Mine disaster
2006 » Latino leaders Jorge Fierro, Andrew Valdez, Ruby Chacon and Alma Armendariz
2005 » Pamela Atkinson, advocate for the poor
2004 » Utahns killed in Iraq and Afghanistan
2003 » Gov. Olene Walker
2002 » LDS Church President Gordon B. Hinckley
2001 » 2002 Winter Games organizer Mitt Romney
2000 » Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson
1999 » The letter that sparked the Olympic bribery scandal
1998 » Mary Ann Kingston, who suffered a brutal beating after escaping plural marriage
1997 » NBA MVP Karl Malone
Above all else, the person we choose will have been a newsmaker — for good or bad.
Journalists are widely said to be those who craft the first rough draft of history. Each December when we choose the Utahn of the Year, our goal is to identify which person in today’s news reports is most likely to make it into history’s final draft.
Our Utahn of the Year most often is an individual or a group recognized for motivating others, inspiring hope or contributing in a way that altered Utah’s course.
You’ll see numerous such individuals on the list below, which we ask you to peruse so you can weigh in.
You’ll also see Utahns who made headlines for notorious or controversial actions.
Do any of them merit consideration as Utahn of the Year? Help us decide.
Select your choice for Utahn of the Year by completing this poll by Dec. 14. If you disagree with all of the 17 candidates we offer, you may recommend a candidate of your own.
We value your opinion and will factor it in as we make our selection, which we’ll announce on Christmas Day.
In alphabetical order, candidates on our list are:
Geralyn Dreyfous » The Oscar-winning producer this year founded Gamechanger Films aimed at funding film projects by women filmmakers. She also earned the International Documentary Association’s Amicus Award, whose only other recipients in the past 29 years have been entertainment lawyer Michael Donaldson, Discovery Channel founder John Hendricks and director Steven Spielberg.
Dan Farr » He founded Salt Lake City’s inaugural Comic Con, which drew huge crowds in September. Attendance surpassed that of all the 600-plus other licensed events nationwide except for those in San Diego and New York City.
Sim Gill » A review by the Salt Lake County district attorney led to the dissolution of West Valley City’s Neighborhood Narcotics Unit and the dismissal of more than 100 cases. Gill also surprised many when he determined two West Valley officers erred when they fatally shot Danielle Willard on Nov. 2, 2012.
Sarah Hendrickson » The reigning world champion ski jumper aspires to be one of the first Olympic gold medalists ever in ski jumping at the 2014 Sochi Games if she recovers from a knee injury soon enough to compete.
Hero beavers » The six beavers are credited with mitigating the environmental impact of a March diesel spill at Willard Bay State Park. Dams they created slowed the spill from reaching Willard Bay reservoir.
Jeremy Johnson » The indicted businessman’s allegation that now former Utah Attorney General John Swallow helped broker what Johnson believed was a bribe to make a federal probe against him disappear sparked multiple investigations into alleged wrongdoing by Swallow.
Jason Kreis » The Real Salt Lake coach led Salt Lake City’s Major League Soccer team to its second MLS Cup on Dec. 7.
Becky Lockhart » The Utah House speaker initiated a bipartisan House investigative committee to explore allegations against Swallow with an eye toward recommending possible changes to Utah law to prevent similar scandals.Next Page >
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