Saturday, October 10, 2015

SIMON

According to the Oxford dictionary, Energy is "The strength and vitality required for sustained physical or mental activity".

Truer words have never been spoken about Simon Ibell's energy. Born in 1977, Simon grew up in Victoria, British Columbia on Canada's west coast. He was always active, loved sports and was very popular at school.

Simon is not just energetic, he is a force of nature.

At 4' 8" tall, Simon is one of only 40 Canadian's with Hunter Syndrome (MPS II), one of a group of six rare metabolic disorders. He has spent his life working to bring awareness to this rare disease.

His life-long close school friend and NBA star, Steve Nash and other A-level athletes from pro sports and throughout the Olympic organization have been part of his journey. A well respected advocate for sport, speaker and inspirational leader, Ibell has has never let life get in the way of his goals.

In 2003 he was named, Canadian Spirit of Sport Story of the year for riding 500 kilometres over 10 days, crossing Vancouver Island and raising $250,000 for MPS diseases.

As a past Athlete Relations & Communications manager for Right To Play, Ibell used his energy and vision to touch and inspire others internationally. Along with close friends and Olympians such as Beckie Scott and Adam Van Koeverden, Simon inspires people internationally.

Simon is the founder of the iBellieve Foundation which seeks to bring awareness to MPS and fights for a cure. Please visit www.iBelieve.com to learn more and to get involved.

SIMON FUN FACT: Even during a punishing snow storm, Simon had no difficulty gathering an esteemed group of friends together for a dinner out - proving he embodies what it is to be a force of nature.

PHOTO: SPENCER WYNN

Thursday, October 8, 2015

PAUL

In his scrubs, Dr. Paul Wong appears out of nowhere flashing a quick smile. He furtively glances about speaking rapidly and with no idle chat chat. His body is never at rest and his eyes always darting. These are characteristics that can be applied to a shark - always moving or they die. 

He is in his element at the Toronto East General Hospital. He is making a difference. This has been his home for 16 years. They are fortunate to have him.

But it wasn’t always this way. Before graduating from the University of Toronto as an orthopaedic surgeon, Wong had already graduated with a civil engineering degree as a young man. Timid by nature and uncomfortable with swearing, he was not suited for macho and rough construction sites. Soon after, and before the handover of Hong Kong, he emigrated to Toronto at age of 20 with his family. He now calls Canada home.

A family man, he wishes he could spend more time with his family. They are his pride and joy. He does manage to slow down a little for infrequent vacations. A beach here, a slope there, he is just happy to be with family no matter where they go. To his amusement, his wife loves to fish! Wong?… Not so much! But he goes along to keep her company because this time is rare.

I let him go, as I am taking up valuable time. On an average day, his fracture clinic will see 80-100 patients. Vanishing through the door with a large coffee in hand, he waves and says its been awesome!

WONG FUN FACT: Cheerfully admitting to a bit of an obsessive compulsiveness, he uses words to channel his energy. For years, if he feels down or under pressure or to cheer himself up, he will visualize a word. For a while his word of choice has been, “Awesome"! He laughs and says his staff teases him about it!

PHOTO: SPENCER WYNN

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

IMAN

To serve and protect. This could be Iman Noor's life's work. We may see her in uniform on the streets of Toronto, bringing to our community, the understanding of a wider community.


Born in Karachi, Pakistan, Iman grew up in Kuwait where her mother is from. Her family moved to Toronto in 2009 seeking a better future and opportunity. For Iman, it has been an opportunity to learn, express herself and find her goal in life.

Ask Iman about her volunteering and she lights up - even brighter! She is a dedicated volunteer at the Hope Place Of Community, a recreation facility for those with developmental challenges. Her relaxed demeanour and style is comforting and engaging, a perfect combination to nurture and help those for whom she cares.

This fall, she will realize her new path and passion. She has enrolled in college for policing. With Iman's current roll as security staff at a downtown condominium, plus her active roll as one who cares for others, she will be an asset to any police force.

IMAN FUN FACT: Contrasts are another of Iman's characteristics. Balancing her drive to become a police officer, Iman also has a passion for dance which began as a younger person in Kuwait where she learned to belly dance. After moving to Canada, she has also become an avid hip hop, dance hall and krump dancer!

PHOTO: SPENCER WYNN

Monday, October 5, 2015

DAWN

No dog. 
No pony. 
No bull. 
This statement on her advertising business website sums it all up. Creative partner and co-owner of Off To Market, a Toronto advertising and marketing agency, Dawn is a straight shooter. Pulling no punches, Dawn is as direct and clear as she is passionate and caring for others.

With a career in advertising and marketing at the big agencies, Dawn knows a thing or to about delivering a message. This is true of her other interests.

Dawn stepped out of the boardroom and into a boxing ring to put her drive and fighting spirit to work raising money for cancer research with the Fight To End Cancer. She is petite, but don't let the big blue eyes and infectious smile fool you, she is a fighter!

DAWN FUN FACT: She taught herself to quilt and to knit and loves making little knitted hedgehogs. Now that's creative, no bull!

PHOTO:SPENCER WYNN