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The David C. Onley Award for Leadership in Accessibility recognizes Ontarians who have gone above and beyond in improving accessibility for people with disabilities.

The award recognizes four individuals or organizations each year for outstanding leadership and commitment in supporting awareness of accessibility and disability issues.

Recipients receive a personalized certificate and $5,000, except the Champion Award recipient who receives a personalize certificate and will be placed on the Honour Roll.

The Ontario government is pleased to support this important program to commemorate the Honourable David C. Onley’s term as Ontario's 28th Lieutenant Governor and Ontario’s first Lieutenant Governor with a physical disability.

Who is eligible?

Nominee(s) must be:

  • An Ontario-registered company, organization or individual;
  • A resident of Ontario;
  • A living person or existing institution.

Self-nominations are not accepted. Nominations are not accepted for elected federal, provincial or municipal representatives while they are in office; or for political appointees if the achievements for which they are being nominated are related to their current appointment.


Awards are given out in four categories:

Champion Award (Organization: Honour Roll)

Recognizes outstanding leadership in the integration of people with disabilities into its work force; provides barrier-free working conditions for its employees with disabilities; and is compliant with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).

Employee Engagement Award (Individual: $5,000 Award)

Recognizes an employee or volunteer who, through work initiatives, has created opportunities to break down barriers for fellow employees or volunteers with disabilities.

Role Model Award (Individual: $5,000 Award)

Recognizes outstanding support for positive change and significant contributions to the integration, independence and overall improvement of quality of life for people with disabilities. Supports actions and activities that inspire all people through personal example.

Youth Leadership Award (Individual: $5,000 Award)

Recognizes an individual, between the ages of 16-24 years, who has shown leadership and commitment to developing the potential in people with disabilities.

How do I nominate someone?

Submit by post:

  • You will not be able to save any information you type in the submission form.
  • You will be able to type information in the form then print it, or print the form first then complete it by hand.
  • Please include all mandatory documentation with the completed form prior to posting.
  1. Download the latest version of Adobe Reader Adobe Reader free from the Adobe website.
  2. Right-click here and save the blank form on your computer desktop.
  3. First open Adobe Reader, then open the form saved on your computer desktop.
  4. Fill out the form according to the instructions.
  5. Print a copy of the completed form for your records.
  6. Submit your completed form and all mandatory supporting documents by post.

When is the deadline?

The deadline is December 3 each year. If December 3 falls on a weekend or holiday, nominations are accepted the following business day.

Nominations may be submitted at any time. Eligible nominations received after the deadline will be considered for the following year.

How are recipients selected?

An independent selection committee reviews the nominations and recommends the candidates. The committee is appointed by the Minister of Economic Development, Employment and Infrastructure who is responsible for the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005.

Need more information?

Refer to the nomination form to get more details about program requirements.

Contact Us


Phone: 416-314-7526
Toll-free: 1-877-832-8622
TTY: 416-327-2391

Ontario Honours and Awards Secretariat
Ministry of Citizenship, Immigration and International Trade
400 University Avenue, 4th Floor
Toronto, ON   M7A 2R9

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