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Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council – Eight Outstanding Aboriginal Athletes Receive Prestigious Award

Vancouver, B.C. (November 17, 2016) – The 2016 Premier’s Awards for Aboriginal Youth Excellence in Sport were presented this evening to eight outstanding Aboriginal youth athletes from British Columbia’s Vancouver Coastal Region. The Awards were presented by Sam Sullivan, MLA for Vancouver-False Creek, during a formal celebration held at the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre. The Vancouver Coastal region is the fourth of the Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council’s six regions to honour Aboriginal athletes through this prestigious province-wide awards program.

The Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council, in collaboration with the Province of British Columbia, launched the regional nomination process in September 2016, receiving more than 130 nominations from across the province for Aboriginal athletes under 25 years of age who have achieved excellence in performance sport, are regarded for their leadership qualities, are committed to higher education, and are recognized as community role models both on and off the field of play.

A total of 47 recipients were chosen within the Partners Council’s six regions – Northeast, Northwest, Interior, Fraser, Vancouver Coastal, and Vancouver Island.

The 2016 Premier’s Awards for Aboriginal Youth Excellence in Sport – Vancouver Coastal Regional Recipients

  • Julia Williams, age 16, Soccer, Squamish Nation
  • Connor Adair, age 22, Australian Rules Football, Métis Nation BC
  • Lyric Atchison, age 17, Rugby, Squamish Nation
  • Connor Weyell, age 22, Rugby, Métis Nation BC
  • Rain Thomas, age 12, Soccer, Tseshaht First Nation
  • Jaiden Terry, age 13, Lacrosse, St’at’imc Nation
  • Solaine Sasakamoose, age 15, Soccer, Ahtahkakoop Cree Nation
  • Tyson Stager, age 17, Soccer, Lil’wat Nation

“The Government of B.C. takes great pride in celebrating the achievements of young Aboriginal athletes through the Premier’s Awards for Aboriginal Youth Excellence in Sport,” said Sam Sullivan, MLA for Vancouver-False Creek. “Through their hard work and dedication, the award winners from the Vancouver Coastal region have achieved remarkable success and inspired youth throughout our province to follow their dreams. Congratulations!”

“Tonight we honour not only the athletic achievements of these amazing young athletes, but also their character, spirit and leadership,” said Courtenay Gibson, Vancouver Coastal Regional Lead for the Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council. “For the first time in the Vancouver Coastal region we get to gather to honour and recognize outstanding youth leaders, chosen to receive this award because of their dedication and commitment to living a positive lifestyle while finding opportunities to give back to their communities and the sports that they love.”

These Regional recipients automatically serve as nominees for the Provincial Awards. A total of 12 Provincial Awards (six male and six female) will be selected in January. Provincial recipients will be presented with their award at Gathering our Voices National Aboriginal Youth Conference in Kelowna March 21 – 24, 2017.

Throughout November the two remaining regions will host formal celebrations to honour their 2016 Regional Premier’s Awards recipients.


About the Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council
The Partners Council is a consortium of the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres, the First Nations Health Authority, and the Métis Nation BC. As the stewards of BC’s Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Strategy, the Partners Council works with First Nations, Aboriginal communities and other sport and physical activity stakeholders to deliver community-based programs designed to promote active lifestyles and support the desire for transformative change in the health and well-being of Aboriginal communities, families and individuals across BC. For more information, please visit
Media Contact
Felicia Greekas
Manager, Premier’s Awards and Communications
(250) 388-5522 ext. 226