Hall of Famer Karl Malone was the first, way back in 1997, for his MVP play on the basketball court.
Former Brigham Young University student Madi Barney was the latest for her pre-#MeToo fight against campus sexual assaults.
But who will be the next … Utahn of the Year?
You can weigh in on that question before The Salt Lake Tribune’s editors make their pick for 2017.
Here’s a list of possible contenders. Cast your vote or supply some nominees of your own. And, remember, the award is a recognition of a newsmaker’s influence or impact — for good or ill — and not necessarily a reward for honorable deeds done.
Jim Bennett and Richard Davis • The two Utahns — one a former Republican, the other an ex-Democrat and both disillusioned with the increasingly partisan divide — helped form a new political force: the United Utah Party. It’s still in its infancy, but Bennett did collect nearly 10 percent of the vote in the year’s special congressional election.
Dine Bikeyah • This tribal organization planted the seeds for a Bears Ears National Monument, a fight that now finds itself locked in a legal battle pitting the powers of competing presidents.
Jan Chamberlin • Even before Donald Trump was sworn in, she raised her voice against the newly elected president by refusing to use her voice. A singer in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, she resigned from the world-renowned group rather than perform at his Inauguration Day events.
Nathan Chen • His biggest moment may come early in 2018 if he spins, jumps and salchows his way to Olympic gold in men’s figure skating. But his rise on the national stage already shows the payoff — in personal terms — of Utah’s investment in winter sports way back before it hosted the 2002 Games.
Spencer Cox • The state’s small-town lieutenant governor took on big challenges during the year, especially as the governor’s point person in Utah’s stepped-up battle against homelessness.
John Curtis • Provo’s mayor fended off his Republican rivals and trounced his general election foes to become Utah’s newest congressman, replacing Rep. Jason Chaffetz.
Dreamers • Donald Trump ended President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, putting hundreds of thousands of “Dreamers” at risk of deportation — unless Congress acts — to lands that truly are foreign to them.
Christine Durham • The respected Utah Supreme Court justice retired after a trailblazing career that left a legal legacy unparalleled in state history.
Rudy Gobert • With superstar Gordon Hayward’s exit, the 7-foot, shot-blocking Frenchman towers over not only the rest of the Utah Jazz roster but also the state’s sports landscape as its most visible pro athlete (though rookie Donovan Mitchell is certainly on the rise).
Orrin Hatch • The “will he or won’t he” question loomed large as Utah’s elder statesman repeatedly stopped just short of saying certainly, definitely, unequivocally he would run for an eighth term. But the senior senator loomed even larger on Capitol Hill as he steered a major tax overhaul through the Senate and persuaded the president to come to Utah and shrink two national monuments.
Greg Hughes and Ben McAdams • The Utah House speaker and Salt Lake County mayor (who even went undercover) broke out of the pack to head up an all-hands, bipartisan fight against homelessness and lawlessness in Salt Lake City’s Rio Grande District. Will their call to action succeed? The answer is … on hold.
Ryan McKnight • Mormonism’s Julian Assange peeled back the veil a bit on the inner workings of Utah’s most powerful institution: the LDS Church. Perhaps the biggest revelation from his MormonLeaks website was a peek at how much LDS apostles are paid.
Peter Metcalf • The founder of gear maker Black Diamond was the Utah face to the recreation industry’s backlash against the state’s public lands positions — a duel that, in the end, prompted the Outdoor Retailer trade shows to bolt from the Beehive State and take their convention riches with them.
#MeToo • Never before has a two-word hashtag set off such a cascading torrent of revelations about the extent of sexual assault and harassment, sending ripples through Hollywood and Washington, corporate boardrooms and school classrooms while setting off debates in the grandest halls of power and the humblest living rooms of the powerless.
Gail Miller • Utah’s richest person has become a driving force for social good, striving to erase poverty, reduce homelessness, educate young people, advance scientific discovery and more. Oh, and her family completed a major upgrade to the arena housing the state’s most popular professional sports franchise: the Utah Jazz.
Mike Noel • For years, the southern Utah legislator has been the state’s tenacious anchor in the tug of war over public lands. This year, he has a real victory to hang a cowboy hat on after President Donald Trump downsized two national monuments.
Savannah • The brave 13-year-old from Eagle Mountain became an internet sensation after coming out as a lesbian while bearing her testimony during a Mormon sacrament meeting. She drew big cheers at Orem’s LoveLoud concert that raised funds for LGBTQ groups.
Dieter F. Uchtdorf • Mormonism’s “Pope Francis” is consistently the voice that members and nonmembers alike look forward to hearing — whether in conference sermons or civic gatherings.
Alex Wubbels • The University of Utah nurse made international headlines after her wrongful arrest for, essentially, doing her job and upholding her occupational oath. And she did so throughout the subsequent fallout with resolve, grace and dignity.