Selkirk Judo Club

Selkirk Judo Club Members Win Judo Manitoba Awards

On Friday, May 31, 2019 at the Judo Manitoba Awards Banquet, three members of the Selkirk Club won major awards.

Don Gifford, sensei and founder of the Selkirk Judo Club, was inducted into the Judo Manitoba Hall of Fame as a Builder. Don, who has been active in judo for around 60 years, is a third degree black belt, an NCCP certified coach and a National level referee. He started the club in the late 1960s and has trained several elite athletes during his career including Niki Adams (1996 Olympics, silver at 1999 Pan Am Games). Don has also been active in running tournaments in Selkirk and has helped with every major competition held in Manitoba over the last few decades (eg/ 1999 Pan Am Games, 2003 Western Canada Summer Games). He won the 1999 Lloyd Davies Memorial Award for outstanding volunteer contribution to youth programs in Selkirk and Judo Manitoba’s Silvio Sboto Coaching Award in 2005. “This is a very well deserved recognition of a lifetime dedicated to building judo in this province,” commented Brian Jones, one of the club’s coaches.

James Colp was awarded the Outstanding Referee Award for 2018 – 2019. James began refereeing in 2013 and has risen through the ranks to achieve his National A referee certification in October 2018. James refereed at 11 tournaments this year including local Manitoba competitions and a number of national circuit events. He is a member of the Judo Manitoba referee committee. In May 2019, he refereed at his first national championship.

Damien Ekosky was Judo Manitoba’s Male Athlete of the Year for the second year in a row. Damien was a silver medalist at the 2019 national championship. He also won a number of medals at national circuit events this season including silver (U21) and bronze (senior) in Edmonton and gold (U21) in Vancouver. Damien has worked hard to achieve these results, training a number of times each week and attending training camps this season in Edmonton, Montreal and Canmore, AB.

“James and Damien have worked hard to achieve their goals this season and it is great to see them recognized with these awards,” said Brian Jones.