Seven Outstanding Aboriginal Athletes Receive Prestigious Award

Northwest Honours Recipients of the 2016 Premier’s Awards for Aboriginal Youth Excellence in Sport

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The 2016 Premier’s Awards for Aboriginal Youth Excellence in Sport were presented this evening to seven outstanding Aboriginal youth athletes from British Columbia’s Northwest Region. The Awards were presented by Gordon Hogg, Parliamentary Secretary for Youth Sport during a formal celebration held at the Kitsumkalum Community Centre. The Northwest is the second of the Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council’s six regions to honour Aboriginal athletes through this prestigious province-wide awards program.

The Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council, in collaboration with the Province of British Columbia, launched the regional nomination process in September 2016, receiving more than 130 nominations from across the province for Aboriginal athletes under 25 years of age who have achieved excellence in performance sport, are regarded for their leadership qualities, committed to higher education, and recognized as community role models both on and off the field of play.

A total of 47 recipients were chosen within the Partners Council’s six regions – Northeast, Northwest, Interior, Fraser, Vancouver Coastal, and Vancouver Island.

The 2016 Premier’s Awards for Aboriginal Youth Excellence in Sport – Northwest Regional Recipients

  • Brendan Eshom, age 14, Basketball, Soccer, Gitga’at/Tsimshian First Nations
  • Elijah Azak, age 16, Basketball, Soccer, Nisga’a
  • Harold Moore, age 17, Soccer, Haida Nation
  • Jadyn Johnston, age 12, Swimming, Carrier Chilcotin
  • Kleanza Cathers, age 16, Swimming, Nisga’a
  • Madison McKay, age 14, Basketball, Softball, Volleyball
  • Teysean Henry, age 13, Figure Skating, Gitxsan/Tsimshian First Nations
“The Premier’s Awards for Aboriginal Youth Excellence in Sport are a fitting recognition of the remarkable accomplishments of Aboriginal youth in B.C.’s Northwest region,” said Gordon Hogg, Parliamentary Secretary for Youth Sport to the Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. “The tremendous success of these young athletes is a testament to their tenacity and commitment to their sport. On behalf of the B.C. government, congratulations to this year’s award winners.”

“We strengthen our communities by investing in our youth,” said Corinne McKay, Northwest Region’s Alternate Lead for the Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council. “We know it’s a long, challenging and rewarding journey and we want our young people to know that we are proud of them and behind them every step of the way as they work towards achieving their goals.”

These Regional recipients automatically serve as nominees for the Provincial Awards. A total of 12 Provincial Awards (six male and six female) will be selected in January. Provincial recipients will be presented with their award at Gathering our Voices National Aboriginal Youth Conference in Kelowna March 21 – 24, 2017.

Throughout November the four remaining regions will host formal celebrations to honour their 2016 Regional Premier’s Awards recipients.

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