Nominations Open For Jeffrey Reed Courage Award

Nominations Open For 6th Annual Jeffrey Reed Courage Award

September 2, 2020 (London, ONT) — Today, announces that nominations are open for the 2021 Jeffrey Reed Courage Award.

The Jeffrey Reed Courage Award (est. October 2015) is an annual award given to a Southwestern Ontario athlete – amateur or professional – who inspires others by demonstrating courage on and off the playing field.

On July 25, 2001, Jeffrey Reed achieved what many thought was impossible. Despite living with numerous skeletal deformities since birth, and at age 39, he pitched as a rookie for the London Majors of the Intercounty Baseball League. Today, he is a skilled golfer, ambassador for golf industry members and course record holder. Reed carries his message of hope with him on the golf course with a Jeffrey Reed Courage Award-logoed golf bag, provided by Titleist Golf.

Jeffrey’s story, Diamond Dream: Jeffrey Reed’s Inspirational Story of Hope and Determination, recounts his life story, both as an athlete and as an award-winning freelance journalist. Visit .

An underdog, Jeffrey Reed beat the odds, both as an elite athlete, and as an entrepreneur in the competitive industry of journalism. Now, through the Jeffrey Reed Courage Award, countless others can share their own inspirational stories with a large audience, while at the same time being awarded for their efforts.

“This is what the Jeffrey Reed Courage Award is all about: recognizing other courageous athletes who beat the odds, and allowing them to inspire others to dream of greatness and achieve their goals,” Reed explained.

“During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Jeffrey Reed Courage Award takes on even more importance. Offering others hope during challenging times like these is of paramount importance. Just as our previous five Jeffrey Reed Courage Award winners continue to do, I am sure our 2021 winner will inspire us all.”

Preston Swan-Merrison

Lucan Irish goalie and Monseigneur-Bruyè Catholic Secondary School graduate Preston Swan-Merrison, 18, is the 5th annual Jeffrey Reed Courage Award winner for 2020, and the first male athlete to win the award. Diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 9, Preston is a former football and hockey player with the Jr. Mustangs, a Jr. Knights hockey graduate, a goaltender with the Jr. C Lucan Irish and backup with the Jr. B Chatham Maroons. He is also a Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Youth Ambassador; one of 13 teens to receive the 2015 Ontario Junior Citizen of the Year award; a member of MP for London West Kate Young’s youth council; a two-time author raising awareness of Juvenile diabetes; and a fundraiser and champion for numerous causes including diabetes, epilepsy and homelessness.

In addition to living with Type 1 diabetes, Preston has a learning disorder: Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD), which affects up to five per cent of school-aged children. These students have difficulty processing the information they hear and are usually characterized as poor listeners when, in fact, their brains interpret sounds differently than those of others.

“Diabetes has made me a stronger person,” said Preston, “and the Jeffrey Reed Courage Award is everything I believe in. I am someone who has learned from my many failures and challenges, and I have never stopped following my dreams, even when I felt like quitting was the only answer. Instead, I have been able to give back and find strength in others which, in return, has helped me in this journey we call life.”

Biographies of all of the past winners are published here. 

The Jeffrey Reed Courage Award offers five pillars as it encourages you to:
• Dream Big & Never Stop Dreaming
• Work With Mentors & Mentor Others
• Learn From Failure
• Give 100% At All Times
• Never Quit

Each June, one Southwestern Ontario athlete will be awarded the Jeffrey Reed Courage Award. presents the award and $1,000 to the annual winner at an annual banquet recognizing and celebrating his or her courage in sports and in life.


Each athlete will nominate themselves through the following process, then submit their application to: The Jeffrey Reed Courage Award at Nominations close at 12 midnight on January 31, 2021.
1. Write a 1,000-word essay on your achievements on and off the playing field, citing your challenges, how you tackled them, how you achieved your goals, and how you inspired others. Include how the remuneration attached to the award would help you in your future endeavours.
2. Submit links to news stories and/or videos chronicling your achievements (if applicable).
3. Submit at least one high-resolution photograph in your team uniform i.e. hockey, ringette, etc. or athletic gear i.e. golf, running, etc.
4. Include three references i.e. coaches, mentors, teachers – please include first and last names, e-mails and phone numbers.
5. Include with your submission your: first and last name; date of birth; full address; e-mail address; and phone number.
6. Email all of your material to

DISCLAIMER: Only the winning nominee will be contacted by By submitting your nomination, the winner grants, all of its social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and LinkedIN, and its marketing and promotions material – online, print and broadcast media – permission to use your story when promoting the Jeffrey Reed Courage Award. All other nomination material will be kept confidential and on file for future reference, if a nominee applies during subsequent years. All personal information – including essay content, home address/residence, e-mail address, phone number and date of birth – will be kept confidential and will not be used for any purpose.

Read more about our 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 Jeffrey Reed Courage Award winners here.


For more information, contact:
Jeffrey Reed

Twitter Digg Delicious Stumbleupon Technorati Facebook Email

About jeffreyreed

A leading Canadian communications professional. Corporate office established 1989. Publisher/Editor of this website and Sports journalist since 1980.

No comments yet... Be the first to leave a reply!