Jamie Nieto, Actor and 2-time Olympic finalist to receive Pathfinder Award

Redondo Beach, CA – July 4, 2017

Jamie Nieto to receive Pathfinder Award at 4th of July 5K
Jamie Nieto, a two-time Olympic high jumper, actor, filmmaker, will be honored this year with the “Pathfinder Award” at the 24th annual Village Runner 4th of July 5K presented by UCLA Health.   Previous winners of the award include distance runner, Kayla Montgomery, who has struggled with MS and two-time NCAA Champion track coach, Bob Larsen.


Nieto, who has always forged a unique part in life, now faces his greatest challenge in continuing to forge his own path in life.  “I was demonstrating a back flip and my foot slipped on the rotation, I hit my head and was partially paralyzed,” said Nieto.  “I am on a mission to recover 100 percent. I walked 200 steps recently without a cane,” said Nieto. “The biggest struggle to get back is patience.  I hope to make a full recovery within two years,” said Nieto.


Nieto has a best of 7’8 ¼” (2.34 meters) in the high jump which ranks as one of the top jumps ever by an American.  Nieto is a 4-time National Champion, 3-time All-American, 2-time Olympian, and in 2012 was the oldest American high jumper to make the Olympic team, at 35.  Nieto has also excelled in acting, starring in Baseball’s Last Hero:  The Roberto Clemente Story.  Other film credits include The Encounter, Kontrast, Jerusalem Countdown, and Red Line.  Nieto also writes and produces including producing the upcoming web-series Blood Brothers.


“It’s an honor to be the recipient of the 2017 Pathfinder Award at the Village Runner 4th of July 5K presented by UCLA Health. I feel blessed and hope that my achievements can inspire others,” Nieto said.  Nieto’s high jumping career took him to 35 countries and also gave him the opportunity to meet former President Obama and basketball legend, Michael Jordan.   Along with coaching, the decorated Olympian is now following his passion for writing, acting, and producing films.  Nieto is from Seattle, Washington and was raised in a single parent home in Sacramento, CA.  “As a Pathfinder, I dealt with a lot of challenges as a youth, including poverty and racism,” stated Nieto, who now resides in San Diego and has spent recent years coaching.


Village Runner 4th of July 5K

Registration for the race, visit www.villagerunner.com and click on the event and registration link. Registration fees are $25 for children and $35 for adults prior to June 5th, 2017. Fees that are paid after June 5th will increase. Runners can either register online or register in stores with the printable form on the race website. Runners can drop off their forms at the store locations in Riviera Village or in Manhattan Beach during store hours: Monday-Saturday 10 am-7 pm, Sunday 11 am-6 pm.  Race information is at (310) 375-2626.



Race Info

The 4th of July 5K run and community walk will begin at 8 a.m., and kids races for those ages 12 and under will start at 9:30 a.m. The race will feature chip timing, age division awards, and cash prizes to the top three overall racers in the 5K. All kids participating in the Firecracker Dash will receive medals for running too.


Costume Contest and Race Festivities

Prior to the start of the race, there will be the Red, White, and Blue Costume Contest with prizes awarded for the best running costumes. All racers are encouraged to dress patriotically and will receive a unique 4th of July Run t-shirt. The race is expected to have 3,000 to 4,000 participants for the 5K run and community walk and will take place in Riviera Village, Redondo Beach, CA. Racers as old as 89 and as young as 4 years old participated in last year’s 4th of July 5K.

Thank you to our sponsors

The 24th Annual Village Runner 5K and Firecracker Dash is presented by UCLA Health. The Presenting Media Sponsor is TheSound 100.3FM.  The Exclusive Automotive Sponsor of the race is Rusnak South Bay Alfa Romeo.  Coast Fitness is the official health club.  Other race sponsors include the Plaza Del Amo Animal Hospital.


4th of July 5K Race Honorees

Recent honorees for the 4th of July 5K have included Lipscomb University distance runner Kayla Montgomery, Coach Dean Lofgren of El Camino College, former UCLA coach Bob Larsen, and four-time USATF Olympic team member, Martha Watson.

For more Village Runner 4th of July 5K information and entry details go to: