CALGARY, AB -- Each season two NHL players are awarded with the King Clancy Memorial Trophy and the NHL Foundation Player Award. The King Clancy is presented to the player that best exemplifies leadership qualities on and off the ice and has made a noteworthy contribution in his community. Mark Giordano has been nominated by his teammates as a King Clancy candidate for this past season.
The Foundation Award is designed to promote the charitable efforts of current NHL players and to reward the player that best exemplifies a commitment to the community in which he lives. Matt Stajan has earned the honour to represent the Flames as a candidate for this prestigious award.
Mark Giordano and his wife Lauren are both chairs of the Habitat for Humanity ‘5 for 5’ initiative which they began three years ago. The initiative raises funds for the construction of five homes in five different countries. Since starting this impactful project, Lauren has since begun working for Habitat for Humanity to continue efforts in raising funds locally.
Giordano has committed to donating $25,000 per season for ‘5 for 5’ with this being his third season supporting the initiative. Each season the Flames Foundation for Life matches his contributions for a total of $50,000 per season, or $150,000 since its inception.
Giordano is the face of the initiative, donating time to create awareness about the project as well. He has also assisted in a local build with his wife Lauren. Mark will also Chair a golf tournament this summer where he will direct a portion of the funds raised to Habitat for Humanity.
Giordano also makes community appearances every season at various events and through a number of community programs. He also attended the Flames literacy program, Reading…Give it a Shot! school visits and the Flames Ambassadors’ Celebrity Charity Poker Tournament this season.
Giordano was not a surprising pick by his teammates for the King Clancy nomination. He continues to mentor and push his teammates while also offering support and guidance. He is humble, level headed and reliable. He offers well thought out plans and executes them confidently.
Last season Mark Giordano was the recipient of the Calgary Flames J.R. Bud McCaig Award which recognizes a player with enduring virtues of respect, courtesy and compassion.
Matt Stajan has also been a valuable asset to the organization both on and off the ice. After arriving in Calgary, Stajan quickly aligned himself with the Alberta Children’s Hospital (ACH) taking over responsibilities of the Flames Ambassador for the hospital.
Since then, he has personally donated season tickets every season to the ACH to give patients, family members and even hospital volunteers the opportunity to watch a Flames game. He has also visited the hospital on multiple occasions with his wife Katie where both actively volunteer with Bingo nights and with their annual radio-thon. These events take place on a regular basis for families at the hospital. Stajan is a frequent visitor whose participation is often not publicized. The couple also promote and participate in the ACH’s largest fundraiser in their radio-thon spending an entire day on phones and promoting the initiative through various media interviews as a spokesperson.
In his time as an ambassador with ACH Stajan has created relationships with a number of patients that he has met, one notably; a terminally boy with cancer, who has now passed. Prior to Davis Weisner’s passing Stajan visited him on a regular basis including delivering Flames gifts to his home at Christmas time.
Stajan has also donated his time for several auction packages featured at the Candy Cane Gala, one of the ACH’s largest fundraiser of the year. The auction package welcomed a group of 20 kids and their chaperones to the Scotiabank Saddledome for an hour of ice time with Matt Stajan. The funds raised for this package were directed back to the hospital.
Along with the Children’s Hospital, Stajan has also been involved with the Ronald McDonald House. He has never missed a pumpkin carving event at Halloween time at the House and has been involved in cooking nights for the families during his time here. Stajan and his wife surprised the house on their own one evening by filling the magic room at the house with toys. The magic room is an area at the Ronald McDonald House where a child gets to pick a toy after receiving either good or bad news.
Fans have been thrilled to see Stajan elevate his level of play this season; collecting 23 points in the shortened year and top six in production with the team. The centreman has one of the highest plus-minus ratings at home in the NHL among forwards with a team leading plus 10.
Stajan is also active in assisting with various community relations events for the hockey club and the Flames Foundation for Life. Stajan’s wife Katie, also demonstrates a level of dedication to the community that parallels her husband’s. Katie is active in all of the Flames Better Halves initiatives and events. She also plans various social gatherings and welcome dinners for the other wives and girlfriends of the Flames.
Matt Stajan was the recipient of this year’s Ralph T. Scurfield Humanitarian Award. The Scurfield 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.
Flames players have previously been recognized by the NHL for their community and charitable commitments. Lanny McDonald (1887-88), Joe Nieuwendyk (1994-95) and Jarome Iginla (2003-04) have all been winners of the King Clancy Trophy while Iginla also captured the NHL Foundation Award for the 2003-04 season.