Abebe Bikila

Bikila Awards Inc., a tribute to the legendary long-distance runner Abebe Bikila of Ethiopia, stands as an inspiration for athletes worldwide. In 1960, amid historical challenges, Bikila ran barefoot in Rome, winning the first Olympic Gold Medal for Ethiopia, Africa and setting a record that defined his legacy. His determination, showcased in adverse conditions, became an iconic moment, moving even those who witnessed it to tears.

Bikila's subsequent victories in Tokyo and his resilience in the scorching 1964 conditions further solidified his status as a running legend. The impact he left on the Olympics is echoed by testimonials from fellow athletes, illustrating the awe and respect he garnered for his unparalleled feats.

Even in his third Olympic Marathon in 1968, though unable to finish, Bikila's selflessness shone through as he urged his fellow countryman to make history in his stead. Since then, Ethiopian long-distance runners have flourished, contributing significantly to their country's success on the global stage.

Regrettably, the remarkable Abebe Bikila, who ignited Ethiopia's dominance in long-distance running, appears somewhat forgotten within his homeland. The establishment of the Bikila Awards in 2013 serves as a noble endeavour to revive his legacy.

Bikila Awards is stablished to foster academic, professional and business excellence, promote volunteerism among persons of Ethiopian origin residing around the world and recognizes exemplary Ethiopians and friends of Ethiopia primarily through awards and recognitions. Especialy, the younger generation are encouraged to emulate Abebe’s indomitable spirit as they pursue their dreams and exceed expectations. Academic excellence awards for those pursuing post-secondary education are available every year to deserving participants.


Mission Statement

The mission of Bikila Award is to foster academic, professional and business excellence and promote volunteerism among persons of Ethiopian origin, primarily through award and recognition. Bikila Award is created mainly to empower young people to reach their highest potential and to celebrate their achievements.

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