OFSAA’s Character Athlete Award celebrates the efforts of the exceptional student-athletes in Ontario who best exemplify the characteristics that OFSAA is founded on.
Nominations come to the OFSAA office detailing the exceptional character of student-athletes across Ontario, inspiring those around them with their involvement on the playing field and in the classroom, in both school and community.
Selecting just one boy and one girl recipient of the OFSAA Character Athlete Award is never easy, but the following two individuals stood out for their commitment to OFSAA’s values of leadership, equity, respect and sportsmanship.
Male Recipient: Michael Kay / Nominated by Mike Darling
Michael is a Grade 12 student at Oakridge S.S. in London, Ontario where he is a member of school sports teams year-round: volleyball, basketball, and badminton.
But it's his dedications to volunteering that elevates him above a number of exceptional student-athletes for this award. Michael has completed over 200 volunteer hours in four years through coaching both boys and girls with the Ramblers Basketball house league for grades 6, 7, and 8, refereeing under the London Board of Basketball Officials, serving as a London Leader in Training, Oakridge Ambassador, and Oakridge Peer Mentor.
"Michael has such a strong love for the game of basketball and his community that he spends countless hours in the gym ensuring that young boys are afforded the same opportunities as he was at a young age," said his nominating teacher-coach Mike Darling. "He does all of this and still earns honour roll every single year."
This isn't the first time Michael has been recognized having also won the 2014-15 Ted Early Award for best student-athlete citywide, and the SPECTRA award for Male Athlete of the Year. SPECTRA stands for Sportsmanship, Participation, Excellence, Character, Teamwork, Respect and Achievement - pretty close to OFSAA's values.
His coaches recognize the growth he's made into a mature, and vocal leader with his teams and his work with younger grades makes him a mentor and a worthy recipient of OFSAA's Character Athlete Award.
Female Recipient: Kyra Krueger / Nominated by Pauline Fidler
Kyra is a Grade 12 student at Medway High School in Arva, Ontario where she's active in her school leading programs and councils while balancing time with school work and time on the badminton, volleyball and basketball teams.
A member of the Student Athletic Association all four years, Kyra was co-president this year. She's also been involved with Youth for Social Justice, Student Council, Reach for the Top, tutored Math, French and gave fiddle lessons, the Lead Out Loud Club, Best Buddies Club, and Youth for Acceptance. There's more, but it's almost too much to name here in one space! In total Kyra's graduating with upwards of 250 volunteer hours.
"In the three seasons I coached her on the basketball team, Kyra not only shone as an outstanding player and leader, but also in terms of the way she treated those around her," said DE teacher and Medway basketball coach Erin Murphy. "I also had the pleasure of working with Kyra in her role as a peer support in my Physical Education class with D.E. students. Kyra's thoughtfulness, ability to listen and handle the challenges that arose while working with students with special needs made her one of the best peer supporters I have ever worked with."
"Kyra also took on the head organizing role for Medway's 2014 Special Olympic Team," said physical education teacher Craig Watson. "Over the course of 40 days in April and May of 2014, she planned multiple training sessions for 25 athletes, 50 other peer coaches and 10 teaching staff. She had the ability to bring out the best in each individual."
These quotes were just a couple of the many positive recommendations OFSAA received on behalf of Kyra, demonstrating a background of support from those she's worked with at Medway and in the community. For representing OFSAA's values so well she earned the title of Character Athlete. Congrats Kyra!
Congratulations to the second pair of recipients of 2014-15 OFSAA Character Athlete Award. We will announce two more winners in Fall of the 2015-16 school year.
If you wish to nominate a student-athlete, please visit our awards section online and fill out an application form.