Sport BC Announces 54th Annual Athlete of the Year Awards

Among The Awards Presented At The Sport BC AOY Virtual Event Was The Inaugural 'Delivering On Diversity' Award, Won By British Columbia Golf

For Immediate Release – March 25, 2021 – (Vancouver, BC) 

Sport BC celebrated the 54th Annual Athlete of the Year Awards virtually on Thursday, March 25, 2021. The event was hosted by CBC’s Scott Russell recognizing the province’s best in amateur sport including athletes, coaches, teams, and officials for outstanding performances in their sport over the 2019 season.

Each finalist was nominated by their Provincial or Multi-Sport Organization, High School, College, or University. The Selection Committee, led by long-serving Chair Bernie Pascall, included a diverse group of highly experienced British Columbia sport leaders and media members.

“While our celebration was delayed, the Virtual Athlete of the Year Awards was a true celebration of sport in our province, the recipients represent an exceptional 2019 in BC sport and we would like to thank everyone for their patience in announcing our winners. We congratulate all of our finalists and the organizations they represent”, shares Sport BC’s President and CEO, Rob Newman.

“We were proud to celebrate the winners. The last year has been challenging for everyone and it confirmed the importance of Sport in our lives; I personally would like to thank our members for everything they have done over the last year.” 

“Sport BC’s Athlete of the Year Awards play an integral role in celebrating the outstanding achievements of B.C. athletes, coaches, officials and organizations,” said Minister Mark, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport.

“I was honoured to present the first Delivering on Diversity Award this year to recognize the important work being done in advancing equity, inclusion, and accessibility in sport. This award, along with all of the other awards, underscores the talent, strength and commitment of B.C.’s sport community. Congratulations to all of the nominees. Your accomplishment and contribution to sport are truly inspiring.” 

Sport BC congratulates all the Athlete of the Year Awards’ Recipients: 

Delivering on Diversity Award

British Columbia Golf

College Athlete of the Year

Rachel Beauchamp (Douglas) – Basketball   

Athlete with a Disability

Nathan Reich (Victoria) Athletics 

Male Coach of the Year

Chris MacDonald (Vancouver) - Golf 

Female Coach of the Year

Lynn Kanuka (Surrey) – Athletics 

Junior Female Athlete of the Year

Camryn Rogers (Richmond) - Athletics 

High School Male Athlete of the Year

Uyi Ologhola (Holy Cross) – Basketball, Football 

High School Female Athlete of the Year

Jasmet Nijjar (Queen Elizabeth) – Athletics 

University Athlete of the Year

Kiera Van Ryk (UBC) - Volleyball 

Team of the Year

UBC Women (Vancouver) – Volleyball 

Official of the Year

Jeff Thomson (Vancouver) - Gymnastics 

Senior Male Athlete of the Year

Scott Tupper (Vancouver) – Field Hockey 

Junior Male Athlete of the Year

Carter Woods (Cumberland) – Mountain Biking 

Master Athlete of the Year

Cathy Zeglinski (Whistler) – Mountain Biking 

Senior Female Athlete of the Year

Rachel Cliff (Vancouver) – Athletics 

An additional six awards were presented including the Best of BC, KidSport BC Community Champion, Harry Jerome Comeback, Daryl Thompson Lifetime Achievement Award and In Her Footsteps Honourees. 

KidSport Community Champion   -  Sanjeet Sadana (Richmond)

The KidSport Community Champion, supported byRitchie Bros. Auctioneers, is presented to an individual who has made a significant and meaningful contribution to KidSport. 

Harry Jerome Comeback Award   -  Stephane Tanguay

The Harry Jerome Comeback Award is presented to an individual who succeeded in their sport after suffering a significant and unique setback. 

Best of BC Senior - Athlete of the Year    -  Vasek Pospisil (Vernon) – Tennis

The Best of BC Award, supported by the Province of British Columbia, is presented to an individual or team thought to have represented British Columbia, nationally or internationally, in either a professional or amateur sport. 

Daryl Thompson Lifetime Achievement Award    -  Dianne Barker (Kamloops) - Curling

The Daryl Thompson Lifetime Achievement Award, sponsored by the BC Games Society, is presented to an individual who has contributed their time in an extraordinary way to sport over a long period of time and/or has made a major contribution to amateur sport in British Columbia. The award is named after the late Daryl Thompson an inspiring former Chair of Sport BC. 


The recipients have demonstrated their commitment to being role models and mentors of young women; they have opened doors to increase accessibility and promote opportunities for participation. They have strived, struggled, fallen, picked themselves up and continued – because they know the benefits and love what it means to be deeply involved in sport and physical activity. 

In Her Footsteps . . . Celebrating BC Women in Sport 

2019  -     Debbie Cheong (Delta) – Osteofit
2019  -     Loreen Barnett (North Vancouver) – Triathlon
2020  -     Diana Barkley (Whiterock) – Figure Skating
2020  -     Dr. Patricia Vertinsky (Vancouver) – Sport Researcher

Bobbie Steen Foundation Legacy Award 

2019  -     Emma Courtney (North Vancouver) – Outdoor Recreation
2020  -     Meghan Hebert (Whistler) – Snowboard

To see the recipients of the SportBC Presidents Awards - CLICK HERE

To watch the 54th Annual Sport BC Athlete of the Year Awards please click the link below. #SportBCAOY

About Sport BC

Sport BC believes in the power of sport and is committed to building stronger communities through positive sport experiences. Our goal is to enhance and support sport participation in British Columbia ensuring everyone has the opportunity to thrive. Through our KidSport BC, BC Amateur Sport Fund, and ProMOTION Plus along with our services Sport BC Insurance, and Payroll and Group Benefits; Sport BC supports our sixty plus member organizations. Keep up to date @SportBC

Media Contact                                                             Athlete of the Year Awards 

Allison Mailer                                                                Thursday, March 25, 2021

Sport BC, Communication Manager