2019 Outstanding Contribution Award Recipient
The OIWFA is pleased to announce the 2019 recipient of the Outstanding Contribution Award. This award has been designed as the most prestigious honour the league can give; recognizing an individual’s outstanding, long-term contributions to the OIWFA and who has advocated for, and promoted the OIWFA and the sport of women’s softball over an extended number of years.
This year’s recipient is the founder of the OIWFA and Head Coach of the McMaster Marauders from 2000-2009, Doug Parry, from Hamilton, Ontario.
“When anyone in the softball community hears the words ‘university softball’ in Ontario, the name that comes to everyone’s mind is Doug Parry” said OIWFA President Matt Allen.
Doug was undoubtably the pioneer behind the formation of the OIWFA which has its roots beginning in 2000, when his McMaster Marauders played the York Lions in Durham College’s Can-Am Classic in the first ever recorded game of university softball competition in Ontario. Doug was the head coach of the Marauders from 2000-2008, capturing a sliver medal in the first official OIWFA season in 2002.
Doug also served as the association’s first convenor from 2002-2006, and was pivotal in the governance to form the OIWFA as we see it today. During Doug’s tenure as President, the league saw astronomical growth to eight teams in it’s inaugural season in 2002 to twelve teams by 2004.
“The idea of the OIWFA was planted in October, 2000 at my last game as the Head Coach of Mohawk College (OCAA) when I was approached by Danielle Galt and Bekki Vineberg (who were attending York University) with the idea of a female Ontario University Softball League. Since then, I have had the honour convening and coaching in the OIWFA and have watched the league grow from eight teams to the current thirteen. Over that time I figure approximately 1200 Ontario university female softball players have or are currently participating in the OIWFA and getting a great education at the same time. Every year I love seeing the teams, the players, their talent, their dedication and that of their coaches and the love for the game of women’s fastpitch softball at the Ontario university level that those involved exhibit. It hasn’t been easy for some of them. I hope to have many more years to enjoy the OIWFA.
Doug is a true leader, and ambassador for the sport. He is still often seen at OIWFA regular season games and is a driving force to encourage female athletes at younger ages to consider their options of staying in Canada to play softball while obtaining a university education. It is not uncommon to see Doug still engaged within the OIWFA by assisting as a games controller, scorekeeper, and simply lending a hand as needed to Executive members, or teams, especially during a busy OIWFA Championship. Doug has been synonymous with the OIWFA and maintains his appearance at the OIWFA Championships to proudly present the Doug Parry MVP Award of the gold medal game.