For many, hockey is more than a just a game we grow up watching. For some, it’s a window of opportunity to create relationships and new skills that may last a lifetime. For others, it’s a chance to give back to a community and being able to teach those skills that can be used in everyday life.
The annual GTHL Award Ceremony, recognizing players, coaches, and officials for their contributions both on and off the ice, makes its return in June 2017. The honour of receiving an award still warms the heart of past winners. Mark DeMontis, who received the GTHL Special Recognition award back in 2011, says the honour of receiving an award continues to hold a special place with him.
“It was an honour to be awarded by the program that shaped your hockey career,” said DeMontis who was diagnosed with a rare condition called Leber Hereditary Optic Neuropathy at the age of 17. Since being recognized by the GTHL, DeMontis has started the Courage Canada platform to help youth get inspired and get involved with hockey.
As much as contributing on the ice is a great feat, the awards also recognize players for their accomplishments in the classroom. Daanyal Chaudry was awarded the Gord Hughes Minor Midget AAA Scholarship last year for his high standard of play on the ice, as well as a high standard in education.
“I have always taken pride in juggling my academic commitments with my extracurriculars,” said Chaudry. “I have developed good time-management skills outside of class in order to manage. Balancing a busy schedule with hockey and school has taught me to really maximize my focus in class and seek out extra help from my teachers.”
Feeling a sense of pride in your work goes a long way, especially when it comes to Richard Brewda who was the awarded with the Herb Ebisuzaki Coaching Award last season.
“Winning the Herb Ebisuzaki Coaching Award meant more than I can tell you,” said Brewda. “I have been coaching for 14 years, and I never thought that I would be honoured with an award like that. It’s a real honour and something that I will cherish for a long time.”
Applications are now open for the 2017 GTHL Awards. Click here to apply or nominate someone.