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May 23, 2006
(Executive Council)
(Tourism, Culture and Recreation)

Premier celebrates provinceís young athletes at awards ceremony

A total of 92 athletes from across the province representing 33 sports were recognized for their athletic accomplishments today at the annual Premierís Athletic Awards ceremony in St. Johnís. Premier Danny Williams presented award winners with grants in the amounts of $500, $1,000 and $1,500 to help offset the costs associated with training. Minister of Tourism, Culture and Recreation Tom Hedderson was also on hand for the awards ceremony.

"I was so proud to meet all of these young people today, who have dedicated so much of their time to excelling in athletics," said Premier Williams. "Participating in sport is an important part of wellness and healthy living, and our government is committed to promoting active lifestyles. The recipients of the Premierís Athletic Awards have taken participation to another level. They are committed to achieving excellence in their sport, and deserve recognition and admiration for their tremendous accomplishments. Such dedication is not without financial burden, and these awards are designed to assist in that regard."

The Premierís Athletic Awards are designed to assist the provinceís elite athletes by providing financial assistance to support them while competing at the Atlantic, national and international levels. Approximately 200 athletes applied for assistance under the Premierís Athletic Awards Program this year.

"The Premierís Athletic Awards Program was created not only to honour athletic excellence but also to help offset the travel costs associated with training and competition," said Minister Hedderson. "We believe athletes should have the opportunity to train and to continue to develop and excel in their sport."

Premier Williams also announced details of the annual Team Gushue Scholarship Award, which was officially announced as a part of the Premierís Athletic Awards in February 2006.

"One of the proudest moments in our provinceís history took place earlier this year when Team Gushue competed with the best in the world and brought home Olympic Gold," added Premier Williams. "Team Gushue have demonstrated excellence in curling and have become significant role models for the young athletes of this province. They have shown us that with hard work and dedication anything is possible, and these annual scholarships will honour them and youth involved in competitive sport."

The inaugural Team Gushue Scholarship Award will be presented for the first time during the 2007 Premierís Annual Athletic Awards and will honour both academic and athletic excellence. These awards, of $5,000 each, will be presented to one male and female athlete annually who are currently attending, or planning to attend, a recognized post-secondary institution and have competed in a national or international level sporting competition in their last competitive season.

The Premierís Athletic Awards Program is open to all residents of Newfoundland and Labrador who are registered with a Provincial Sport Organization recognized by the Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation. Eligible athletes must be competing for, and continue to compete for, Newfoundland and Labrador at the Canada Games and other national and regional competitions. Athletes must be attending an educational institution on a full-time basis. While the Team Gushue Scholarship Award will be annually awarded during the Premierís Athletic Awards reception, athletes will apply through the Sport Newfoundland and Labrador Scholarship program.

Brad Gushue and his teammates, Jamie Korab, Mark Nichols, Russ Howard, Toby Macdonald and Mike Adam, made sporting history when they won the gold medal at the 2006 Winter Games in Italy.

Media contact:

Elizabeth Matthews, Office of the Premier, (709) 729-3960, 690-5500,
Susanne Hiller, Tourism, Culture and Recreation (709)-729-0928, 728-7762

Premierís Athletic Awards Program
List of Recipients




ALPINE SKIING Joel Ryan Corner Brook
Jennifer Brown Shoal Harbour
Danielle Stacey Lordís Cove
Robert Jewer St. Johnís
Grant Handrigan Marystown
BADMINTON Samantha Ralph Eastport
Sarah Aubert Trout River
Brittany Crocker Trout River
BALL HOCKEY Jake Easton Deer Lake
Matthew Thomey Harbour Grace
BASEBALL Mike Pottle St. Johnís
BASKETBALL Brittany Dalton Harbour Main
Stephen Singleton St. Josephís
Justin Halleran Trepassey
Paula Barker Deer Lake
Chad Warren Corner Brook
Robyn Kenny Corner Brook
CROSS COUNTRY SKIING Andrew Casey Corner Brook
Mitchel Samson Brig Bay
Reneť White Sandy Cove
Michael Casey Corner Brook
Kayla Gibbons Plum Point
CURLING Jessica Mouland Labrador City
CYCLING Zachery Garland St. Johnís
Tim Clarke St. Johnís
DIVING Aaron Thorne Torbay
Kate McCarthy Holyrood
EQUESTRIAN Jessica Rhinelander St. Johnís
FIGURE SKATING Joey Russell Labrador City
Natasha Osmond Marystown
Kaetlyn Osmond Marystown
Stephanie Fagan St. Johnís
Alexandra Young Corner Brook
Matthew Young Corner Brook
GOLF Brittany Cluett St. Johnís
Blair Evans St. Johnís
GYMNASTICS Lukas Stritt St. Johnís
David Lane St. Johnís
HOCKEY Peggy Wakeham Bay Roberts
Karen Quigley CBS
Sheila Kelly St. Johnís
POWERLIFTING Ryan Rowsell Corner Brook
Luke Pike CBS
ROWING Ashley Peach St. Johnís
Laura Rice Paradise
Jeff Roche Outer Cove
Ben Stokes St. Johnís
Katie Wadden St. Johnís
Brent Hickey Outer Cove
Adam Power Middle Cove
RUGBY Adam Paul St. Johnís
Ciaran Hearn CBS
Michael Holloway CBS
Jason Picco Paradise
Joannah Clift Outer Cove
SAILING Jonathan Ladha St. Philips
Rebecca Power St. Johnís
Andrť Siműes Rť St. Johnís
Daniel Inkpen St. Philips
SHOOTING Brenda Greene St. Maryís Bay
Laurie Hearn St. Maryís Bay
SOCCER Erika Lannon St. Johnís
Malorie Harris Mount Pearl
Julie Woolridge St. Johnís
Laura Breen St. Johnís
Clinton Edwards St. Lawrence
John Douglas Grand Bank
Paul Slaney St. Lawrence
SOFTBALL Stephen Mullaley Freshwater, P. Bay
Jason Hill St. Johnís
Ryan Boland St. Johnís
SWIMMING Katarina Roxon Stephenville
Eileen Robinson Harbour Grace
Laura Murray St. Johnís
Ainsley Decker St. Johnís
Kelsey Alexander St. Johnís
TAE KWON DO Deborah Doyle Paradise
Victoria Fitzgerald St. Johnís
TENNIS Kenrick Au St. Johnís
Heather Williams St. Johnís
VOLLEYBALL Sasha Wilkins Gambo
Stephanie Wells Corner Brook
Sarah Strickland Paradise
Gregory Layman St. Johnís
WEIGHTLIFTING Nick Roberts St. Johnís
WRESTLING Kerri-Ann Evely Carbonear
Wesley Saunders Carbonear
Victoria Ralph Carbonear
Kristi-Lee Leblond Stephenville
Allison Rockwood Heartís Content

2006 05 23                                      4:00 p.m.

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