Durham College Alumnus Wins Provincial Accessibility Award

Durham College (DC) is proud and excited to congratulate John Draper, on his receipt of the David C. Onley award for Leadership in Accessibility. This auspicious award was presented to Draper Thursday, May 25 by the Honourable Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario at Queen’s Park in Toronto, in recognition for going above and beyond to raise awareness about accessibility and nurturing a culture of inclusion across the province.

Since graduating from the Journalism program at DC in 2005 Draper has been a valued Alumni Guest Presenter and in 2007 was honoured as an Alumnus of Distinction for his efforts in promoting accessibility and inclusion for all. While a student, he wrote for The Chronicle newspaper and Reflections magazine and further honed his writing skills a student member of the Canadian Association of Journalists.

It is during his time at DC that Draper had a vision of building a socially-responsible business, that would inspire learning and champion leadership to create accessible and inclusive communities. After graduation, Draper made his vision a reality by founding Together We Rock! Diagnosed with cerebral palsy at birth, Draper uses non-verbal humour to encourage his audiences to take one step to make a difference in creating a world where everyone belongs.

“We are so pleased that John’s tireless work to promote accessibility and inclusivity is being recognized at such a high level,” said Don Lovisa, president, DC. “The groundwork laid during his time as a DC student has helped him achieve incredible things for the betterment of the greater community and we couldn’t be prouder.”

Together We Rock! focuses on integrity, excellence and accountability by partnering with corporations, communities, educators, colleges and universities, to achieve their vision of accessibility and inclusivity. They do this by awarding leadership scholarships, bursaries and financial contributions to students, schools, including DC, and organizations who are working towards inclusion and accessibility.

Again, congratulations!