This prestigious award is presented annually to the outstanding male and female high school senior in Wyoming, in honor of a man who gave a great deal to the youth of our state. After careful consideration of all nominated athletes, the Simpson Selection Committee selects ten finalists, five boys and five girls, and then from those finalists, they select one overall male and one female winner.

The legacy of Milward Simpson lives on through this award, named for one of Wyoming's greatest athletes.

Simpson served as the team captain for the University of Wyoming football, basketball, and baseball teams and earned varsity letters in each sport from 1917-1921. As a halfback in football, he became the first Wyoming native to earn All-America honors. He turned down a professional baseball contract to attend Harvard Law School. Simpson was inducted into the UW Hall of Fame in 1996.

As an administrator and politician, Simpson's life was devoted to the service of the people of Wyoming. As the President of the University of Wyoming Board of Trustees, he was instrumental in the hiring of UW President Duke Humphrey and Athletic Director Glenn "Red" Jacoby, both of whom are in the University Athletics Hall of Fame. Simpson served as the Governor of Wyoming from 1954-58, and later as a United States Senator, 1962-67.

Born in Jackson, Wyoming in 1897, Simpson came from one of the true pioneer Wyoming families. His grandparents moved to the state in 1865 following the Civil War.