Whitby paddleboarder, mental helath advocate adds to 2022 accolades


Published December 15, 2022 at 8:56 am

Whitby paddleboarder and mental health advocate Mike Shoreman has been honoured with the 2022 Marg Starzynski Mental Health Leadership Award by the Mood Disorders Society of Canada.

This award is presented to the individual whose dedicated leadership in community mental health awareness and through personal contributions to raising awareness of mental illness has had a positive impact on the mental health community.

“Mike Shoreman is not just an advocate for the mental health of Canada’s youth, he is an advocate of the mental health of Canadians,” said Cynthia Black, the Chair of Mood Disorder Society, who praised him for

Shoreman, who was diagnosed with Ramsay Hunt Syndrome in 2018, ending a career as a paddleboard instructor and forcing him to learn to walk again, made Canadian history this summer becoming the first Canadian and person with physical disabilities to cross each of the five Great Lakes, raising critical funding and awareness and sharing his own mental health journey along the way.

Black called him a “leader” in mental health promotion. “Congratulations Mike for your dedicated commitment to raising awareness and funds for mental health in Canada.”

Shoreman said he was “deeply moved and very honoured” to receive the award and thanked his support team for the Great Lakes journey, Jack.org and Eric Windeler for their help in accomplishing his goals.

“Leadership isn’t always easy, especially with mental health- something we can’t always see. This was made easier and possible because of my incredible dedicated team who all shared one vision and worked together.”

The Mood Disorders Society of Canada was launched in 2001 to provide people with mood disorders, their families and caregivers a strong, cohesive voice at the national level on issues relating to mental health and mental illness. With particular regard to depression, bipolar disorder and other associated mood disorders, the MDSC aims to improve access to treatment, inform research, shape program development and government policy to improve the quality of life for people affected by mood disorders.


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