2019 Orienteering Ottawa  Annual Awards

Four club awards were established to recognize Orienteering Ottawa members each year. The awards were named in memory of Brian Graham, Pat de St. Croix, Colin Kirk and Pierre Brassard, past members of the orienteering community, to celebrate their unique contributions to our sport. The formation of the awards was inspired in 2016 by a donation by CH2M (now Jacobs), a company where Brian Graham worked.  This year 21 club members participated in the nomination.

Colin Kirk Memorial Award - Aspiring Junior of the Year

The Colin Kirk Award recognizes Colin’s connection to Junior Development in our club. Colin Kirk was one of Canada's orienteering pioneers. As Executive Director for over 20 years, most of them in a volunteer role, he was instrumental in the growth of the sport across the country in the 70's and 80's. Of the many aspects of orienteering that benefited from Colin’s involvement, one that stands out was his support and encouragement of junior athletes. The Colin Kirk Memorial Award honors a young Orienteering Ottawa athlete who: 

  • is 18 years old or younger during the past year
  • will have made considerable improvements in his or her performance and achievements
  • has been a positive role model for other juniors
  • has contributed to the improvement of other junior athletes.

Past recipients: 2016 Thomas Lindale; 2017 Evan Raz; 2018 Evan Gibbard


2019 Recipient: presented by Jennie Anderson

Luca Raz and Jennie AndersonThis year’s Colin Kirk Aspiring Junior Award is being presented to a club member who has an exceptionally positive attitude, enthusiasm and
passion for orienteering. But don’t be fooled by his kind and quiet demeanor. This orienteer can rip it smart through the forest and he has had some great orienteering performances. He won three gold medals at the Ontario Championships, in the middle and long he ran up an age category and in the sprint he ran up two age categories. He brought home a bronze from the COCs sprint.

It is his volunteering and involvement with the kids programs, his enthusiasm and, positive attitude that make him stand out. He is always keen to step in and help at the events, setting up or collecting flags…with a smile. He is a great ambassador of our sport and a role model to other young orienteers. We wish him an exciting orienteering journey in years to come on some great maps and big races.

This year’s Colin Kirk Aspiring Junior of the year award goes to Lucas Raz.

Pat de St. Croix Memorial Award - Volunteer of the Year 

Pat de St. Croix was an outstanding contributor to the development of the sport of orienteering in Canada. She was a fixture in the orienteering community from the very earliest days of Orienteering in Canada - the early 70s. She worked tirelessly for our sport at the club (Niagara and Ottawa) and at the national level as COF President in the 1980's. She was a volunteer who stood out among volunteers. The Pat de St. Croix Memorial Award recognizes Pat’s volunteerism by honoring an Orienteering Ottawa member who has, over the past year:

  • Contributed a significant amount of time to volunteer in local orienteering events in any capacity.
  • Made a significant impact to the Ottawa Orienteering Club or raised the profile of orienteering in the community, in other organizations or schools.
  • Shown a commitment to personal development, teamwork and supporting the development of others.
  • Demonstrated leadership in the club

Past recipients: 2016 Rob Haddow; 2017 Anita Brattland; 2018 Richard and Lorna Guttormson

2019 Recipient: presented by Richard Guttormson

 Richard Guttormson, Karen Tippett Our club is about orienteering and being in the woods, but much happens behind the scenes. This year’s recipient of the volunteer award has been working behind the scenes for many years…and has a club job that none of us would want to do 😊. The recipient’s contribution, that is to say, workload, has increased many-fold over the years especially with the introduction of growth of the training programs. The recipient has worked quietly and effectively unnoticed and unheralded by most of the club’s members. Those, though who serve on the Board or who have served know of the work done and its importance. With growth of the club and its financial activities this further increased the complexity of the job.

The recipient has not only managed the Club’s finances generally but has created and managed the budgets for the club’s many special events such as the Canadian and North-American championships. Always acting with great integrity, she skillfully guides the board of directors through employment rules, taxes and other financial matters. In addition to investing many hours being the club’s Treasurer and Board Member for at least 25 years, the recipient has frequently been a Start Chief for our OFests.

The recipient is a keen orienteer and when not balancing the spreadsheets you will find her orienteering…but not empty handed as you will surely find her with the club’s cheque book in her hand trying to find a club member or two.


For 2019, Orienteering Ottawa presents the  Volunteer of the Year award to Karen Tippett.

Pierre Brassard Memorial Award - Orienteering Spirit presented by Richard Guttormson

Pierre, a former club president, was always smiling, always full of life, always out to beat the orienteering course. He particularly loved the longer events, but he enjoyed every orienteering format. Pierre was welcoming, he was friendly, he was encouraging, he challenged himself, and he had fun. The Pierre Brassard Memorial Award recognizes Pierre’s spirit and is awarded to an Orienteering Ottawa member who has :

  • Shown the true spirit of orienteering
  • Sets him or herself high personal challenges
  • Shown a welcoming spirit to newcomers in the sport
  • Encouraged members to increase their participation, either competitively or by helping with the organizing of events.

Past recipients: 2016 Francis Kawam; 2017 Anne and Eric Teustch; 2018 Linda Connell

2019 Recipient: presented by Cherie Revells


Cherie and RandyThe Pierre Brassard Orienteering Spirit award is going to someone who has been a real ambassador in our sport for the past 20 years. Always friendly and positive, he will talk about any aspect of orienteering to anyone who will listen. If there is an extra-long course available…he runs it! If you hear a grunt in the forest…it is him! He encourages us all to push our limits whether it be with the course we run or the event we organize. He is a role model for how orienteering can be a whole family affair…but also how it can be an EXTREME sport.

This former club president and current mapping committee member has introduced many newcomers to the sport whether it be through an intro orienteering course or an MEC workshop.

His dedication shows with the work he does every year co-organizing the successful Challenge the GAT’s Rogaine.

He gives it his all on every course he runs, accepting any challenges that come his way. An aching knee, bleeding body parts, a dense thicket –nothing will quell his spirit. His passion for orienteering is contagious.

For 2019, Orienteering Ottawa presents the Pierre Brassard Memorial Award for Orienteering Spirit to Randy Kemp.

Brian Graham Memorial Award - Orienteer of the Year 

Brian Graham was an elite orienteer for many years representing Canada at international competitions in Europe and North America. He was involved in Orienteering Ottawa as an athlete, meet official, mapper, coach, and a mentor. Brian held several Canadian and North American Orienteering Championships medals and he competed in M21 categories well beyond his age, running the elite categories for as long as he was able. In the 80's and 90’s he competed in many World Orienteering Championships, with his best finish being 36th in 1993 Champs in West Point, USA.

He also was an exceptional course setter officiating many club events and setting courses for numerous B-meet, A-meets, and championships, as well as being involved in coaching clinics. Those who worked with Brian on course setting may have known that he particularly loved incorporating at least one long leg that would offer many route choices.

Brian was known as true sportsman, a role model and an inspiration.

The recipient of this award will have:

  • Been an orienteering role model and inspired others.
  • Exceptional orienteering performance and/or skills either over the course of the year or in a specific event.
  • Exhibited special qualities that set them apart from others, i.e. dedication and perseverance
  • Shown true sportsmanship
  • Helped mentor others to success
  • Inspired other athletes to reach their goals

Past recipients: 2016 Robert Graham; 2017 Emily Kemp; 2018 Stefan Bergström


2019 Recipient: presented by Andrew Cornett

Eric at the 2018 OFest RelayThe 2019 Brian Graham Memorial Award is awarded to a local orienteer who has consistently delivered outstanding performances in the men’s elite class at national and international competitions over the past decade, not to mention amazing performances in countless local meets. This orienteer has been an active member of orienteering Canada’s HPP program every year since at least 2009, and is well known for his passion, outstanding technical orienteering skills and his humility. He has represented Canada with distinction at 5 different WOCs, at least one JWOC and several WUOCs. In 2019 he brought home silver and bronze medals from the COCs in the men’s elite class, as well as 2 golds and a silver from the Ontario Champs. For the past decade this orienteer has been an excellent role model and mentor to junior HPP members and other aspiring athletes, helping them train effectively and achieve their full potential.

He makes important contributions to our club year after year - by creating new high quality maps, directing local meets, setting courses, entertaining us with eloquent tales from international competitions, and serving on the mapping committee.

While it may seem as if he has had a compass surgically implanted into his cerebral cortex, I can confirm, having spoken personally with the X-ray tech at the Civic, that this rumour is entirely untrue. In fact, this orienteer has, through his outstanding dedication, resourcefulness and perseverance, managed to overcome the distinct handicap of being colour blind in order to achieve levels of performance and success most of us can only dream of.

Please join me in congratulating Eric Kemp, recipient of the 2019 Brian Graham Memorial Award for Outstanding Orienteer.