WANTED: individual for part-time work. Must be in top-notch physical condition, willing to work early mornings and late nights, and able to withstand verbal abuse and a constant questioning of your skills.
This may be a job application many would avoid. But under the tutelage of the Toronto Leaside Girls Hockey Association (TLGHA)’s long-time referee-in-chief Ian Shaw, hundreds upon hundreds of females not only accepted jobs as referees but became skillful and confident in their positions.
Ian Shaw was the founding president of the TLGHA and throughout his 25+ years as a volunteer in Leaside girls’ hockey, served as head coach, assistant coach, trainer, manager, tournament director, and referee-in-chief. A father of three daughters who were/are all hockey players and referees, Ian provided guidance not only to his own girls, but to countless others.
After Ian’s passing in 2016, the TLGHA established the Ian Shaw Memorial Scholarship to recognize a young woman who, like Ian, had exhibited passion for the game, and commitment through officiating either as a referee or timekeeper. The recipient would also be a young woman who had shown a commitment to hockey, community and education.
On May 10, 2017, the TLGHA was thrilled to award the first Ian Shaw Memorial Scholarship to Moranne Parsons.
Moranne, a Grade 12 student at Northern Secondary School, played as a Wildcat for eight years, worked as a referee for four years, and volunteered in the league’s Learn to Play program. A diligent student, Moranne has managed to obtain high marks in school while juggling her hockey, refereeing, as well as work on her school yearbook. She also plays and referees ball hockey and will spend her summer working at Just Hockey. (Sensing a theme?)
Moranne’s parents, Jeff and Miah, say the family has visited arenas far and wide across the city in Moranne’s long hockey career (as well as with her two hockey-playing younger sisters, Erin and Mireille). While the family is clearly tremendously supportive of one another, Jeff laughingly noted that Moranne’s getting her licence in January meant that he was happily freed up from practices ending at 10:30 at night!
A group of two TLGHA board members along with Ian Shaw’s wife, Pat, and daughter, Jenny Shaw, chose Moranne as the recipient of the award. “Moranne has such a positive attitude and loves the game,” commented Jenny Shaw, who has known Moranne as both a player and referee over the years. Jenny said the committee was tremendously impressed with Moranne’s commitment to the game, her contribution to her community through her volunteer work, and her skills as a referee.
Being a referee isn’t an easy task, pointed out TLGHA President Jennifer Smith. Smith, who also referees, explained that not only must referees have a thorough and sound knowledge of the game itself, but must be willing to endure criticism (to put it mildly!) from players, coaches, and those in the stands.
Moranne is not only experienced in handling the critiques emanating from the ice and the stands, but does so with confidence, patience, integrity, consistency, and conviction. These are the refereeing qualities that she has, and will continue to apply, to other areas in her life – qualities she learned under the guidance of her great teacher, Ian Shaw.