Victoria – Premier Christy Clark gave out awards to six men and six women whose athletic accomplishments were as extraordinary as their commitment to their community and future aspirations.
The Premier’s Awards for Aboriginal Youth Excellence in Sport were presented during the Gathering Our Voices conference in Victoria. Twelve recipients crossed the stage in front of 2,000 of their peers at the national youth summit, to accept the inaugural awards for outstanding achievements by Aboriginal youth athletes throughout the province.
More than 75 nominations were put forward recognizing those who excelled in performance sport, displayed strong leadership qualities, were committed to higher education, and served as community role models both on and off the field of play. The awards were developed in partnership with the Aboriginal Sport, Recreation & Physical Activity Partners Council, which is made up of the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres, First Nations Health Authority and Metis BC Nation.
To help grow the spirit of encouraging Aboriginal athletes, in subsequent years, those training and competing in performance sport will be invited to apply for regional awards. From these regional recipients, individuals will be chosen through the Provincial award process.
Premier’s Awards for Aboriginal Youth Excellence in Sport recipients
- Justina Di Stasio, 23, Freestyle Wrestling, Coquitlam
- Rachelle Nielsen, 19, Golf, Summerland
- Samantha Horth, 19, Volleyball, Surrey
- Marquesis Haintz, 13, Multi-sport (Track and Field, Soccer, Wrestling), Pitt Meadows
- Sunshine O’Donovan, 15, Air pistol and air rifle, Merritt
- Alicia George-Bailey, 20, Canoe and Kayak, Chilliwack
- Brandyn Chappell, 16, Multi-sport (Brazilian jiu-jitsu, Basketball, War Canoe, Kayak), Chilliwack
- Riley McLean, 17, Swimming, Vernon
- Brandon McReynolds, 19, Hockey, North Vancouver
- Jesse Shade, 16, Swimming, Campbell River
- Matthew Hans, 19, Lacrosse, Kamloops
- Travis Pete, 17, Multi-sport (Cross-country skiing and Swimming), Smithers