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Jack Diamond’s Legacy (1909-2001)
JACK DIAMOND was a leader in business, a devoted family man, an inspiring community citizen, and to the world of sports the father of modern-day horse racing in British Columbia. Always full of his trademark energy, Mr. Diamond had been an up-front fixture of these dinners. Space doesn’t permit us to tell the complete story of his great life, but here are some highlights.

A leading member of the city’s Jewish community, Jack was a philanthropist, and distinguished himself with several gifts to Simon Fraser University, and a donation of land to the BC Cancer Agency. He was a co-founder of Vancouver’s Variety Club and the BC Heart Foundation, a Chancellor of SFU, a Freeman of the City, and honorary Doctor of Laws, and a Companion of the Order of Canada.

This year’s honouree

It is with great pleasure that we announce the 2015 Jack Diamond Award recipient, and to honour one of Vancouver’s most beloved Vancouver Canucks, Gino Odjick.

Gino’s National Hockey League career spanned 12 seasons between 1990-2002 in which he played for the Vancouver Canucks (8 years), New York Islanders, Philadelphia Flyers, and Montreal Canadiens. Born in an Algonquin Native Reserve just outside the town of Maniwaki, Quebec, Gino played hockey from an early age, often coached by his father Joe. At age 15 he considered quitting hockey to pursue other activities, but accepted a try-out for the Hawkesbury Hawks, a Tier II junior team from Ontario. It was while in Hawkesbury that Odjick was first given the nickname “the Algonquin Assassin”, a reference to his heritage and his skills. Gino would go on to have a wildly successful career in the NHL, gaining a reputation as a force to be reckoned with. Gino retired from hockey in the early 2000’s, shortly after his final season with the Montreal Canadiens. In retirement, Gino has partnered with the Musqueam First Nation to manage the Musqueam Golf & Learning Academy, and has worked closely with Native communities. Gino is passionate about working with young people, especially to motivate them around education. He has often quoted “…education is freedom, and I am a little old Indian boy who grew up on the Reservation, if I can do it so can you.”

Gino has starred in various short films, and was recently honored in his hometown of Maniwaki by renaming the local arena after him.

During his time with the Vancouver Canucks, Gino was a fan favourite and remains in their hearts almost 12 seasons later.

Gino joins many of his fellow Canucks as past Jack Diamond Award recipients such as Trevor Linden, Pat Quinn, Stan Smyl, and Daniel and Henrik Sedin to name a few. The JCC is honored to welcome Gino into the Jack Diamond Award family and we are warmed by his acceptance of the award.


Past Recipients of the Jack Diamond Award

2014 Wally Buono General Manager, BC Lions
2013 Jake Kerr & Jeff Mooney Vancouver Canadians
2012 Daniel & Henrik Sedin Hockey superstars, Vancouver Canucks
 2011 Tom Larsheid Beloved sports broadcaster.
 2010 Moray Keith A community minded businessman who made impressive contributions to community sports, athletics and recreation across British Columbia.
 2009 Charmaine Crooks A five time Olympian & Olympic Silver Medalist. The first Canadian woman to run under two minutes over 800 meters.
 2008 Ron Toigo President of the Vancouver Giants, Director of the Delta Police Board Foundation and a fundraising member of the Vancouver Children’s Hospital
 2007 Steve Nash BC Native, Phoenix Suns Point Guard and 2 time NBA MVP
 2006 Ryan Dempster BC Native and Chicago Cubs Pitcher / Closer
 2005 Bob Ackles Former President and CEO, BC Lions
 2004 Jack Poole Former Chairman and CEO, Vancouver 2010 Olympic Bid Corporation
 2003 Stan Smyl Canucks Legend, Manitoba Moose Coach
 2002 Bob Lenarduzzi Vancouver Whitecaps, International Soccer Player & World Cup Olympic Coach
 2001 Glen Ringdal Past President of the BC Lions Football Club and VP of the Vancouver Canucks
 2000 Greg Moore CART Driver (Champion Auto Racing Team), Moslon Indy
 1999 Lui Passaglia Canadian Football Legend & Former Director of Community Relations for the BC Lions
 1998 Trevor Linden Vancouver Canucks Team Captain and NHL star
 1997 Arthur Griffiths Community Builder, Vancouver Grizzlies
 1996 Jim Robson “Voice of the Vancouver Canucks”
 1995 Pat Quinn NHL Head Coach and Defenceman