The National Rifle Association selected 17-year-old Benjamin Zimmerer of Gainesville, Texas, as the winner of the Outstanding Achievement Youth Award for 2011. Benjamin is awarded $5,000 for having gone above and beyond all criteria not just for this award, yet in every aspect of his life. From his first experiences at age five watching his brothers at the local 4-H shooting sports club, to the community efforts put forth within his Eagle Scout project, hard work and dedication have built the framework for Zimmerer.
His shooting journey continued into the third grade when he was allowed to join the 4-H shooting sports club and learn the basics of firearm safety as well as compete in two smallbore competitions. From there on, Benjamin knew what his goals were and by the time he started high school in 2008 he began to diversify himself in the shooting sports to include air pistol, air rifle, black powder and archery.
With national shooting dreams on his mind he wanted to compete on a higher level and after much practice and determination, he set his sighted on Colorado Springs to compete in the national Junior Olympics, going to Camp Perry, Ohio to compete in the NRA National Championship Matches, and on to Nebraska competing in the National 4-H Shooting Sports Games. Through all of this he continued to actively participate in the local community and other youth organizations: FFA Club, two 4-H clubs, 4-H council, Church, Cooke County Development Council, Boy Scouts, and Keep Lindsay Beautiful.
His passions show in everything he does, whether it is the display of leadership abilities as president of his 4-H club or through is Eagle Scout project of honoring nearly 100 fallen soldiers in and around his community. Benjamin is looking forward to shooting at the collegiate level and completing his degree in the agriculture field.