CALGARY, AB -- The Calgary Flames Hockey Club has announced that forward Mikael Backlund has been named the 2014 recipient of the Ralph T. Scurfield Humanitarian Award for his contributions to the community. The award is presented each year to the Flames player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, determination and leadership on the ice, combined with dedication to community service.
Backlund will be presented the award tonight in a ceremony before puck drop against the Anaheim Ducks.
“I’m very proud, honoured and happy to get this award,” Backlund said. “I take pride in being out in the community a lot and trying to take more responsibility in the room here and on the ice too.”
Backlund was drafted by the Flames in 2007 and is currently in his fifth season with the organization. Backlund has recorded career highs with 18 goals and 20 assists for 38 points, placing him third in team scoring.
This season, Backlund has been the spokesperson for Kids Cancer Care Foundation, and donates $150.00 for every point he gets. He also attends various events, and invites groups from the organization to games and to meet with him after in the Flames locker room.
The 25-year-old is also a spokesperson for the Special Olympics, attends floor hockey games and was an athlete leader at their Breakfast of Champions event.
Backlund is also an avid supporter of the Sunshine Foundation and has donated to the organization the past two seasons. The Sunshine Foundation grants wishes for Canadian youth affected by illness.
This will be the 26th the Ralph T. Scurfield Humanitarian Award and Backlund will be the 22nd Flames player to receive the award, following Matt Stajan (2012-13), Curtis Glencross (2011-12), Cory Sarich (2010-11), Craig Conroy (2009-10), David Moss (2008-09), Dion Phaneuf (2007-08), Rhett Warrener (2005-06, 2006-07), Martin Gelinas (2003-04), Denis Gauthier (2002-03) Jarome Iginla (2000-01, 2001-02), Robin Regehr (1999-00), Ed Ward (1997-98, 1998-99), Mike Sullivan (1996-97), Gary Roberts (1995-96) Al MacInnis (1993-94), Joel Otto (1992-93), Bob Johnson (posthumously, 1991-92), Jamie Macoun (1990-91), Tim Hunter (1989-90), Lanny McDonald (1986-87, 1988-89) and Jim Peplinski (1987-88).
In February 1985, Ralph Scurfield Sr., co-owner of the Calgary Flames, was tragically lost in a heli-skiing accident. He was recognized as a leader in the Calgary business community and a builder of the University of Calgary business programs. Scurfield was a true supporter of all sports, and a believer in community involvement.