The 33-year-old was recognised for his work on-and-off the field, including his involvement in several Indigenous sports and community programs.
“It’s a huge honour, and something that you never think you are going to win. It’s nice to be rewarded for the contribution that I make on-and-off the footy field,” says Mr Goodes.
Goodes founded and currently co-chairs the Goodes-O'Loughlin (GO) Foundation with former professional Australian rules footballer Michael O'Loughlin.
The two men hope to be recognised for their dedication to improving Indigenous disadvantage,
“We want to have a long lasting legacy that we can look back on when we’re old men and say what a fantastic effort we’ve done helping create the next batch of Indigenous role models,” says Mr Goodes.
Goodes also told NITV News that this award is yet another positive thing to come out of his public stance against racism.
“I’ve been able to inspire others to stand up for what they believe in, [stand up for] who they are, and to stand up for others who don’t have a voice, I think that’s been the most positive thing to come out of it,” says Mr Goodes.
Adam Goodes will join the winners from other states and territories as finalists in the 2014 Australian of the Year Award, which will be announced in Canberra on the 25th of January.
He's the second Indigenous Australian in the running for the top honour, joining singer and songwriter Shellie Morris who was named the Northern Territory winner earlier this month.