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Ontario Honours Outstanding Accessibility Leaders

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Ontario Honours Outstanding Accessibility Leaders

Province Announces Recipients of 2017 David C. Onley Award

Twelve people and organizations from across Ontario have received the David C. Onley Award for Leadership in Accessibility. 

Named after Ontario's 28th Lieutenant Governor, the award recognizes people that champion accessibility, raise awareness about the benefits of inclusion, and foster positive change in their communities. Their achievements help place accessibility at the forefront of Ontario's communities and workplaces, improving the lives of people with disabilities across the province.

Her Honour the Honourable Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, presented the awards today alongside the Honourable David C. Onley. Tracy MacCharles, Minister of Government and Consumer Services and Minister Responsible for Accessibility, delivered the award citations.

The recipients include:

  • John Draper of Oshawa, who received the Role Model Award for his dedication to creating accessible and inclusive communities for people with disabilities through his program, 'Together We Rock!'
  • Kenneth J. Fredeen of Oakville, who received the Employee Engagement Award for his work as founder and chair of the Diversity Council at Deloitte LLP and commitment as President of Legal Leaders for Diversity and Inclusion. Mr. Fredeen is the General Counsel with Deloitte LLP.‎
  • Alexander German of Whitby, who received the Youth Leadership Award for his coaching expertise in the world of competitive para sports and work as a sport assistant to Boccia player Deanna McInroy.
  • Nine organizations from across Ontario that received the Champion Award for increasing accessibility in their communities.

Quick Facts

  • The David C. Onley Award for Leadership in Accessibility was created in 2014 to honour the province’s first Lieutenant Governor with a physical disability.
  • Mr. Onley served as the 28th Lieutenant Governor of Ontario and adopted accessibility as the overarching theme of his mandate.

Background Information

Additional Resources


“This year’s David C. Onley Award winners have demonstrated what it means to be a champion of accessibility with creativity and dedication. I congratulate these inspiring role models and wish them all the best as they continue working to create environments in which all can achieve their full potential.”

The Honourable Elizabeth Dowdeswell

Lieutenant Governor of Ontario

“It’s my pleasure to congratulate the worthy recipients of this year’s award. The leaders we’ve recognized today have worked tirelessly to improve opportunities for people with disabilities across the province. I applaud these dynamic accessibility ambassadors for their innovative programming and personal commitment.”

The Honourable David C. Onley

28th Lieutenant Governor of Ontario (2007-2014), Special Advisor on Accessibility

“As the Minister Responsible for Accessibility, I am proud to recognize this year’s recipients of the David C. Onley Award. The champions we’ve honoured today have gone above and beyond to help build a thriving culture of inclusion in our province. I hope all Ontarians will be inspired by their actions.”

Tracy MacCharles

Minister Responsible for Accessibility

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