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The Athlete of the Year Organizing Committee announces that on Wednesday June 15, 2022, an event will be held to celebrate the achievements of local athletes in both years 2020 and 2021. Covid-19 challenged the sports community, but there were plenty of sports achievements that will be recognized from the past two years.
23rd/24th Annual Athlete of the Year Program
There was a public invitation to attend this event in person. Those who didn’t book a spot to attend in person had the opportunity to view the proceedings via Zoom broadcast. A video of the celebration will be available shortly. 
Wednesday June 15, 2022
Ken Seiling Region of Waterloo Museum
10 Huron Road, Kitchener
5:30 – Doors Opened with a reception in the lobby and finger food — a mix & mingle social  
6:30 – Program in Christie Digital Theatre (reserved seating)
          2020 Nominees – introductions, profiles and responses


Mandy Bujold, Boxing — Represented Canada at the 2020 Olympic Games and finished 17th.

Mark Scheifele, Hockey — Led the Winnipeg Jets in scoring, averaging over a point per game in the regular season and playoffs, and was named to the 2020 NHL all-star team.

Alec Elliot, Swimming — Represented Canada at the 2020 Paralympic Games, placing fifth in the 200-metre medley and ninth in the 50-metre freestyle

Ryan Benesch, Lacrosse — Led the National Lacrosse League’s Halifax Thunderbirds in scoring with 18 goals and 33 assists in a shortened 12-game season

2020 Athlete of the Year Award Recipient: Shelina Zadorsky, Soccer — Captain of the Football Association Women’s Super League Tottenham Hotspur and Olympic gold medallist

David Edgar, Soccer — Team leader on the Hamilton Forge, which won the Canadian Premier League championship

Maya Zonneveld, Gymnastics — Maya, a member of Team Canada, won silver / bronze medals at the Women’s Artistic Gymnastics Elite competition and was named all-round champion. 

          Naming of the 2020 Athlete of the Year
7th inning stretch
          2021 Nominees – introductions, profiles and responses


Keith Priestman, Badminton — Won gold in the men’s doubles 60 and silver in men’s single 60 at the Badminton World Federation senior championships

Garrett Rank, Golf — Placed second at both the Porter Cup and Dogwood International amateur tournaments and ninth at the Canadian mid-amateur championship

Kelly Rudney, Long Drive — Won the women’s amateur long drive championship with a 263-yard effort. Also had drives of 283, 337 and 355 at other ALDC events

Alyssa Lagonia, Soccer — Leader on the Swiss Women’s Super League champions, Servette Chênois

Keira Hickox, Squash — Ranked as the top U15 player in 2021 after placing third at the U15 junior nationals and second at both the adult provincial and U15 Canadian junior open

Ben Flanagan, Track and Field — Canadian 10-kilometre champion after placing first in five races in 2021 in a variety of distance events

Lauryn Hovey, Volleyball — Led Canada in scoring at the 2021 Fédération internationale de volleyball Girls’ U18 world championship

Dhane Smith, Lacrosse — National Lacrosse League MVP, scored 135 points in 18 regular-season games for the Buffalo Bandits, two short of the record he set in 2016

Tyler Pasher, Soccer — A leader on the MLS Houston Dynamo, and played for Canada in the CONCACAF Gold Cup

Trinity Shadd-Ceres, Track and Field — At 14 years old, placed first in three provincial-level U20 championships

Mike Daly, Football — A defensive leader with the Grey Cup finalist Hamilton Tiger-Cats

Naming of the 2021 Athlete of the Year
8:30 – Closing Remarks, acknowledgements, appreciation, photos and adjournment
Volunteer Opportunities – our program is always seeking new volunteers to assist with the responsibilities of the various committees: – Nominations, Selection, Communications and of course the main Organizing Committee.
This year the tradition of celebrating excellence in sports by local athletes will continue as we head for the 25th annual event in 2023.

Previous notice issued in March 2021 (before the Omicon variant surfaced)