Gerald McGavin Coaching Award Fund

The Gerald McGavin Coaching Award recognizes rugby coaches from British Columbia who play a significant role in shaping young athletes both on and off the field. Gerald McGavin is a former BC athlete who represented his province against world-renowned sides including the Barbarians, Australia, British Lions, and New Zealand Universities. Now a Member of both the Order of Canada and Order of BC, McGavin created the Award because of his love for the sport and to acknowledge the role rugby played in shaping his life. Past recipients include Rameses Langston, Jeff Williams, Martin Jones, Jason Young, Adam Roberts, and Tom Larisch.

This award is administered by the BCRU, click here for details on dates and the nomination process.

Gerald was an extremely talented rugby player and he acknowledges that many of his coaches were a very positive influence on him as he grew up. He started playing rugby at Shawnigan Lake School on Vancouver Island where he was coached by the famous Derek Hyde-Lay. Hyde-Lay proved to be one of the coaches who made a significant impact on Gerald’s life, both on and off the field. Gerald continued playing rugby at U.B.C. where he would earn a Bachelor of Commerce. While studying at U.B.C., Gerald won his first selection to represent the Senior Men’s Provincial Team. He would go on to play for his province on numerous occasions from 1957 to 1962 against teams like the Barbarians, Australia, Eastern Canada, the British Lions, and New Zealand Universities. He would also earn a selection to represent Canada on a tour of Britain. Unfortunately, Gerald would have to decline the selection due to the time commitment of being away with the team for three straight months.

UBC community welcomed its latest addition when the Gerald McGavin UBC Rugby Centre, located near West 16th Avenue and East Mall on the Point Grey campus, was officially opened in 2013. The $2.5 million facility has change rooms, offices, storage space, and bleacher seating for 300 spectators. It also features a clubhouse lounge for use by alumni, students, and sport groups as well as the Department of Athletics and Recreation

Outside of rugby, Gerald has been a leader in the business, professional and cultural community of Vancouver and the Province of B.C. for almost 5 decades, serving as a Director of a number of for-profit and not-for-profit organizations. Gerald and Sheahan McGavin have been very generous philanthropists, supporting the arts as well as many other cultural and health-related campaigns. Gerald was awarded an F.C.A. in 1990 in recognition of the service and honour he brought to the accounting profession. In October of 1999, Gerald was recognized for his outstanding commitment to his community and was appointed to become a Member of the Order of Canada. In 2006, Gerald was appointed to the Order of B.C., which is the highest form of recognition the Province can extend to its citizens.

Gerald’s involvement with the establishment of endowment funds for a wide variety of organizations across the Province stimulated the creation of something unique that would provide recognition of Gerald’s service to so many areas of his life. Due to his love for the sport of rugby, the Gerald McGavin Coaching Award has been created to recognize those rugby coaches who go above and beyond by reaching out to players not only as athletes but also as a positive influence on their lives outside of rugby. Rugby coaches can play a significant role in shaping the minds of young athletes both on and off the field, and the recipients of these awards will have done just that.


Prior Awardees:

2007: Tom Larisch
2008: Adam Roberts
2009: Jason Young
2010: Martin Jones
2010: Jeff Williams
2012: Rameses Langston
2014: Ken Goodland (Castaway Wanderers / BC Bears )
2014: Shane Thompson (Brentwood College / Canada Maple Leafs 7’s / BC Rugby Elite Youth 7’s).
2016: Curry Hitchborn (UBC)
2017: Pamela Hadikin of Qualicum Beach
2017:Mike Jamieson of Surrey
2023: Scott Manning (UVic)

Gerald McGavin Coaching Award Eligibility

A current coach coaching in the province of British Columbia who is:

1.       A Canadian citizen or landed immigrant
2.       Not older than 45 years old
3.       Committed to the development of the game of rugby in BC.

General Guidelines:

1.       Applications for this award will not be accepted; only nominations will be accepted.
2.       Unsuccessful nominated coaches may have nominations submitted on their behalf in future years.
3.       Successful nominees may not apply again.
4.       The award is conditional upon the recipient continuing his/her coaching career in the province of British Columbia.
5.       Nominations must be emailed, mailed, or couriered.
6.       The award recipient must agree to have his or her name and photograph publicized. He/she must be prepared to promote the award as requested.

Selection Criteria:

1.       A coach that is a good mentor and that goes above and beyond his/her role as a coach.
2.       A coach that has recognized contributions to the rugby community through coaching and other rugby-related work.