Champions League

The Champions League is a group of business men and women who have come together to play a leadership role in promoting the inclusion of people who have a disability in the workplace.  Based on their personal experiences, Champions League members have made a commitment to promote and demonstrate to their peers, the benefits of including people who have a disability in the workforce.

When we encounter such Champions, it is important that we, in turn, recognize them for their efforts. Recognition for these individuals, who do an outstanding job of workforce inclusion, also brings recognition to the cause that we are promoting.

2016 Champions League Award Winners

Sean Callaghan

Terry Vos

 

2012 Champions League Award Winners

Bradley S. Duncan M.O.M., Chief of Police

Kevin Hewett (left) with Chief Duncan

Jamie and Scott Burton

Jamie (left) and Scott Burton of Dolphin Digital Technologies in Waterloo Ontario.

Steve Sharpe

Steve Sharpe

2011 Champions League Award Winner

Dennis Winkler

dennis winkler

Photo featuring from left to right Ann VanWaterschoot, award recipient Dennis Winkler, Justin Hess, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, The Honourable David Onley, The Honourable Mrs. Ruth Ann Onley

 

2010 Champions League Award Winners

Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley

Mike-Bradley2

The Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, The Honourable David C. Onley (left) shown here with with Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley (centre) and ODEN Executive Director Joe Dale (right)

 

Joe Hoffer

jhoff

The Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, The Honourable David C. Onley (left) shown here with with Joe Hoffer (centre) and ODEN Executive Director Joe Dale (right)

Mark Wafer

Mark-Wafer

The Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, The Honourable David C. Onley (left) shown here with with Mark Wafer, Tim Hortons Franchisee (centre) and ODEN Executive Director Joe Dale (right)

ODENConf2010-JoeDaleDuring the 2010 Champion League Award Ceremony at our “Champions for Change: Harnessing the Power of Your Community” event, the following was delivered by Ontario Disability Employment Network Executive Director, Joe Dale.

“I believe that, in our collective conscience we understand the value of having business owners and operators speak to other businesses. And that finding and working with Champions is a tremendous help to moving our agenda forward and creating positive changes in the employment situation for people who have a disability.  Business owners and operators who, through their own experiences, can demonstrate to their peers that it is not only possible but, in fact, beneficial to the bottom line, to include people who have a disability in the workforce.  This approach and these individuals will help us achieve greater outcomes for those whom we support.

When we encounter such Champions, it is important that we, in turn, recognize them for their efforts.

In creating the Champions League awards we settled on three simple, but challenging criteria.

The first criteria is, Leading by example – the employer has demonstrated a commitment to include people who have a disability in their workplace. A true champion however, goes beyond this by taking it further.

To ensure we don’t recognize people for simply doing the right thing and making their business better by including people who have a disability in the workforce we felt the need to add the two additional criteria.

The second criteria is that the employer has championed the cause through promotion to others,

and the third criteria is that they have made a commitment to continue to help move this cause forward.

Three simple but clear criteria – leading by example, promoting to others and a commitment to continue to assist us in moving this agenda forward.

Those who have worked in the delivery of employment services will quickly recognize the benefits of increasing public awareness about the issues and barriers facing people who have a disability and the incredible power of the ‘business to business’ approach. Only when businesses can demonstrate that they are stronger and equally profitable by including people who have a disability in their workforce will other businesses take notice.”