Carole and I recently attended the Ontario Community Newspaper Association (OCNA) awards dinner to present the Molson Community Award in Memory of Mary Knowles for 2008.
A little background on the award:
The Molson Community Award in Memory of Mary Knowles was created by the Ontario Community Newspapers Foundation, the charitable division of OCNA which provides funding for industry and educational endeavours.
Mary Knowles was a dedicated newspaper person, and active community member who died from breast cancer in November of 1996. This award recognizes both the contributions of individuals, and the intimate connection community newspapers have with their communities.
Me (Tonia) and Mike – smile!
This year’s award went to a very deserving Mike Williscraft of the Grimsby Lincoln News and Niagara This Week, who, after meeting and reading about his community dedication, is one of my new favourite people to talk to about community relations, journalism, hockey, and yes, even old school rock.
Mike’s community roots go deep, so I’ll give you a quick bio which won’t do him justice, but is at least a great start.
Since starting the Grimsby Lincoln News more than twelve years ago, Mike Williscraft has prided himself in supporting the community both through his work at the newspaper and on his own time. Whether it’s for amateur sports, economic development, or arts and culture, Mike tries to contribute to all sectors of the community. Mike plays his part with numerous organizations – serving as a consistent supporter of both the Grimsby and Lincoln Chambers of Commerce, the Grimsby Downtown Improvement Area Board, the Peninsula Ridge Founder’s Club, and the Kinsmen Club of Grimsby. He is also a charter board member for Leadership Niagara, a highly respected volunteer development program in the region.
When Mike is not working for those organizations, he is organizing Family Skates to support the local food bank, mini-putt tournaments to raise money for the West Lincoln Memorial Hospital Foundation, and even coaching a basketball team through the Grimsby Basketball Association.
Additional coverage of the event/award:
We’re proud to play our part and support people playing their part in their communities. Congrats to Mike for the award and also for his upcoming new position as President of the Canadian Community Newspaper Association.