Aaron Feis, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas assistant coach and security monitor who died a hero during the school’s 2018 mass shooting, has been posthumously nominated for perhaps the most prestigious award in high school coaching.
Feis is the Dolphins’ nominee for the Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year Award, given annually to a man or woman who best exhibits character, integrity, leadership, dedication to the community, commitment to player health and safety and on-field success, according to the NFL.
“We are honored to celebrate the 32 Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year nominees, as each embodies the integrity, commitment and character of Coach Shula,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said. “High school football coaches not only serve as leaders, but as role models dedicated to shaping the lives of young high school players on and off the field.”
Feis died while shielding students from gunfire during the rampage that killed 17 at Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland last Valentine’s Day. Feis, through his surviving family, has been since honored in many ways; his daughter and sister announced the Dolphins’ Day 3 draft picks last April.
The Feis family presumably will be invited to Orlando with the other nominees later this month for the NFL Pro Bowl, where a senior from the Douglas football team will get to participate in a skills competition. The NFL will announce the winner during the Pro Bowl broadcast on Jan. 27.
Of those 32 nominees, two finalists will receive $15,000 from the NFL Foundation, two-thirds of which is intended for the school’s athletic department. Those finalists will also be invited to the Super Bowl in Atlanta. The winner will also be invited to walk the red carpet at the NFL Honors, the league’s year-end award show.
The winner is selected by an 11-person panel that includes Shula, ex-Dolphins quarterback Chad Pennington and former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice.