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Advanced Education and Skills
April 4, 2012

The following statement was given today in the House of Assembly by the Honourable Joan Burke, Minister Responsible for the Status of Persons with Disabilities:

Provincial Wheelchair Curling Team Scores Personal Best

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to congratulate the Newfoundland and Labrador athletes who represented this province at the 2012 Canadian Wheelchair Curling Championship March 18 to 25 in Thunder Bay, Ontario.

Under the guidance of coach Leslie Ann Walsh, team members Joanne MacDonald, Felix Green, Cecilia Carroll, and Lanie Woodfine are showing what can be achieved through hard work, dedication, and determination.

With two victories in a national setting, Mr. Speaker, and without one of their key curlers, Darlene Jackman – who unfortunately was unable to attend – the team improved on their previous year’s record at the championship.

I would like to especially recognize Skip Joanne MacDonald on her outstanding performance. Ms. Macdonald received the Good Sportsmanship Award at the closing ceremonies in Thunder Bay, following a vote from all curlers. It is also worth noting that she was Canada's only female skip at the 2012 championship.

As Members of this Honourable House may know, Joanne MacDonald is also Chair of the Provincial Advisory Council for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities and has worked for over 25 years as a community advocate and promoter of equality for individuals with disabilities.

Along with being a member of the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador, an officer of the Order of Canada, and establishing national and world records for her athletic ability, she is now committed to developing a competitive wheelchair curling program in the province.

Mr. Speaker, I ask all Members of this House to join me in congratulating Team MacDonald for their performance this week, and for their ongoing accomplishments.

2012 04 04             2:20 p.m.

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