Usain Bolt, Jamaica’s eight-time Olympic gold medalist, will receive the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Lifetime Achievement award.
Bolt, 36, is the fastest sprinter in history and retired as a 19-time global champion in August 2017.
He won the Olympic 100m and 200m titles three times in a row, in Beijing in 2008, London in 2012, and Rio in 2016.
“I’m living proof that if you work hard enough, you can achieve anything,” Bolt told BBC Sport.
“My father taught me that if you want something, you have to work hard for it. He demonstrated this to me by working hard to provide for me, my mother, and my sister, so when he told me, I believed him.
“Just stay focused and work hard.”
Bolt, widely regarded as the greatest sprinter of all time and the only athlete to win both the 100m and 200m at three consecutive Olympics, set the world record for the 100m at the 2009 World Championships in Berlin with a time of 9.58 seconds.
He also still holds the 200m world record of 19.19 seconds, which he set four days after breaking the 100m record in Berlin, the first of 11 gold medals in four World Championships.
His first world medals (silvers in the 200m and 4x100m) came in Osaka in 2007 – a championships Bolt credits with “opening his eyes” to the hard work required for him to be successful. Four years later, a false start in the 100m in Daegu reminded him to stay focused on his goals.
“Everything occurs for a reason,” he explained. “I could have won in Daegu and then faltered at the Olympics.
“It reminded me to stick to my guns. It kept me focused and motivated.”
At his final Games in Rio, the Jamaican completed an unprecedented ‘triple triple’ of Olympic gold medals, but he has since lost his 2008 4x100m title after teammate Nesta Carter tested positive for a banned substance.
Bolt chose to retire following the 2017 World Championships in London, where he won bronze in the men’s 100m.
“I feel accomplished,” Bolt said of his athletic career. In my sport, I accomplished everything I set out to do.
“It is a great feeling to know that with the determination and sacrifice that I put in I could accomplish what I wanted to. I try to inspire people by telling them that they should believe in themselves.”
Billie Jean King, Pele, Bobby Charlton, Tanni Grey-Thompson, David Beckham, Jessica Ennis-Hill, Chris Hoy, and last year’s recipient Simone Biles are previous winners of the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Lifetime Achievement award.
The BBC Sports Personality of the Year will be held on Wednesday, December 21 at MediaCityUK in Salford.