Jeff Barnes, Director of Marketing for Ontario-based Pride Marine Group, has been named the recipient of the Industry Influence Award at the 2nd Annual Ontario Wake Awards held in Toronto last week.
The Industry Influence Award recognizes an individual or organization that makes a significant contribution to the growth of wake sports in Ontario.
"Anytime you are bestowed with a lifetime achievement award you are led to reflection on what got you to present day,' said Barnes in response to receiving the award. "It's amazing to me how the sport has progressed dramatically through the past 20 years, and often on the efforts of a small group of volunteers and those industry businesses that are truly passionate about it. Passionate involvement at all levels is the key to the continued evolution of the wakeboard scene.”
Barnes received the award for several reasons including his long-time volunteer work for the Ontario Water-ski association, spearheading grassroots events from 1997 to 2004, being one of the three original founders of the X-cup event series, operating a local ski school, and working to have wakeboarding recognized as a separate entity in the towed water sports community.