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In Her Majesty’s – and our community’s – service


Monday, January 28, 2013

John Byl awarded Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal

Dr. John Byl, Professor of Physical Education has been awarded a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, which honours significant contributions and achievements by Canadians.

Dr. Byl was nominated for an award by ParticipACTION, the national voice of physical activity and sport participation in Canada. In their release, ParticipACTION noted that Byl was awarded this honour “for his significant contribution to making physical activity a priority within his community and within Canada."

Those contributions have been made through Byl’s extensive involvement in a variety of community groups that promote fitness and sport, especially in Hamilton. In October, 2011, Byl was inducted into the City of Hamilton's Sport Hero Banner Series for his two decades of volunteer work supporting athletes and athletics in the greater Hamilton area. Prior to that, in 2007, he was inducted into the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association Hall of Fame as a builder in recognition of his work in promoting physical activity on college campuses across the province.

John has also been a key member of CIRA (Canadian Intramural Recreation Association) Ontario. He has served as its President since 2002, and he has been instrumental in developing resources to help educators across the province and Canada to encourage physical activity through games and sports. Andy Raitby, vice-president of CIRA Ontario, says that John “is a positive voice advocating for lifetime health and fitness and as a long-distance runner and cyclist, he regularly models healthy, active living.”

He is passionate about children experiencing fun, active, and inclusive activity, and he has been prolific in promoting the cause. Byl has (co)authored 20 books (6 of which have been translated into 3 languages), and over 50 articles focusing on physical activity and health. He has also led more than 300 workshops to audiences across Canada and around the world. “John consistently provides the opportunities and leadership to lead the CIRA Ontario team into new and exciting ventures and challenges on a provincial, national and international scale,” notes CIRA’s Raitby.

Dr. Byl joins Dr. David Koyzis as Redeemer faculty members who have been awarded the medal. The entire Redeemer community congratulates Dr. Byl on this honour.

John Byl

CIRA Ontario vice president Herwig Baldauf presenting John Byl the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal

Everybody Move Book Cover

One of the resources that Dr. Byl helped create through his work with CIRA. Everybody Move!: A Multimedia Package for Daily Physical Activity, Second Edition, is a teacher guide with fitness activities, music activities, and line dance descriptions, designed to get students active with limited equipment.