Graham Cridland from Crawley has been named as this year's BBC South East Sports Unsung Hero.
The 58-year-old has coached youngsters at West Sussex Angling Academy for over 20 years, having previously been involved in rugby coaching.
He told BBC South East Today: "It's incredible really. You don't realise people are watching what you are doing.
"To realise people hold you in such high esteem that they think you deserve such an award is fantastic."
Bruce Hearn of the West Sussex Angling Academy told the BBC that Cridland plays an integral part in the running of the club.
"Without him it wouldn't function, to the point where he has even been funding it with his own money," Hearn said.
Cridland will now progress to the shortlist for the national award which will be presented at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2012 in London on 16 December.