MusiCounts Inspired Minds Ambassador Award

Presented by Canadian Scholarship Trust Foundation
2019 JUNO Awards

Watch Video 2019 Recipients Linds & Stephen

Award Overview

What: The MusiCounts Inspired Minds Ambassador Award, presented by the Canadian Scholarship Trust Foundation recognizes an individual who has had an extraordinary impact on education and the charity over the course of its history.

When: MusiCounts and the Canadian Scholarship Trust Foundation are  pleased to be presenting the next MusiCounts Inspired Minds Ambassador Award at the inaugural Canadian Music Hall of Fame Ceremony in Calgary on October 27, 2019 at the National Music Centre.

2019MIMAA Group Photo

Award Details

In honour of the Award Recipients, three MusiCounts Band Aid Program instrument grants will be awarded to Canadian schools.

Each Award Recipient will also receive a solid crystal statuette based on the JUNO Award design created by Canadian glass artist, the late Shirley Elford.



2019 Recipient Schools

Smithfield Public School - Brighton, ON

St. Michael’s Elementary School - Stephenville Crossing, NL

Mezi Community School - Whati, NT

About the Award Recipient

In 2016, Linda and Stephen made an extraordinary pledge of $500,000 in matching funds to the MusiCounts Band Aid Program. Due to their long-standing history with the charity, they recognized that MusiCounts has the power to continue to change the landscape of music education for children across Canada and wanted to inspire others to be involved. To learn more about Linda and Stephen and their philanthropy, watch this video.

Television producer Linda Schuyler began her career as a school teacher making short films. Schuyler used her experiences as inspiration to create and produce the ground-breaking Canadian television series Degrassi. Among numerous other awards for her contributions to the advancement and education for young people on issues around diversity and sexual identification, Schuyler was made a Member of the Order of Canada and the Order of Ontario.

Entertainment lawyer, author, Degrassi executive producer and recently named chancellor of Trent University, Stephen Stohn, was executive producer of The JUNO Awards for nearly two decades. During that period, he also served as Director and then Chair of CARAS, The JUNO Awards and MusiCounts, where he had tremendous influence on what is now known as the MusiCounts Band Aid Program. He and other Directors were dedicated to ensuring that CARAS and The JUNO Awards provided the means for MusiCounts to thrive.

“Our giving has been very much centered around education, particularly music education. We believe that we can do our little bit to help the youth of today become better students and, in turn become better citizens,” said Stephen Stohn.

“It is very important to Stephen and me that we 100% love and believe in the causes we support, like MusiCounts,” added Linda Schuyler. “Seeing firsthand the impact instruments make on a school and community has shown how people giving can truly make a difference.”

2011JUNO Awards Statuette

Previous MusiCounts Inspired Minds Ambassador Award Recipients

Legendary music and entertainment producer, Bob Ezrin first became associated with MusiCounts in 2004 after his induction into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. In 2005, he proposed that music education should not only be supported but also celebrated, leading to the creation of the MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award. Through award sponsorship by internationally-renowned artists such as The Rolling Stones, Rush and Michael Bublé, the award program has since elevated MusiCounts' status in the industry, while bringing attention to the heroes of education. As President of the Ezrin Company, Jan Ezrin manages the company's production efforts in Canada in music and television. A true partnership, working hand in hand in business, in philanthropy, and in life, the Ezrins are also founding donors of the MusiCounts Leadership Circle.
As a member of Blue Rodeo and as a solo artist, Jim Cuddy has received some of Canada's highest honours including, The Order of Canada, inductions into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and Canada's Walk of Fame, multiple JUNO and SOCAN Awards and the Governor General's Performing Arts Award. For nearly 15 years, Cuddy has been an ongoing advocate for music education through his profound support of MusiCounts initiatives and events. In 2004, Cuddy was the driving force behind the creation of JUNO Cup, an annual charity hockey game, which to date has raised $840,000 for MusiCounts. Cuddy also served on the MusiCounts Advisory Committee for several years, helping to further the charity's mission of ensuring that youth have access to music in their school or community. He has also participated in a MusiCounts Band Aid Program celebration and been an advocate for CARAS and MusiCounts. Most recently in 2017, Blue Rodeo sponsored the MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award hosting the recipient teacher and her students at the band's recording studio, The Woodshed.

About the Canadian Scholarship Trust Foundation

"The Canadian Scholarship Trust Foundation has been dedicated to bringing higher education within reach for Canadian families for over 50 years," said Sherry MacDonald, President and CEO, Canadian Scholarship Trust Foundation. "We believe that a music education can enrich the human experience and that our true heroes lie in those who inspire young Canadians to reach their dreams.  We are excited to be presenting this Award to two such heroes alongside MusiCounts at the JUNOs this year." 

In 1960, the Canadian Scholarship Trust Foundation (CSTF) was established as a non-profit, grassroots organization with one role, the advancement of education in Canada including carrying on charitable projects in the educational field and helping families save for their child’s post-secondary education.   For over 56 years we have focused on this mission and have been key enablers through our advocacy work of programs such as the Registered Education Savings Plan program, the Canada Learning Bond, the Canada Education Savings Grant, as well as the Saskatchewan Grant for Education Savings and the BC Training and Education Savings Grant among others.  Most recently, we developed a new community program called CST Inspired Minds® Learning Project. Since 2014, CST Inspired Minds® has provided $700,000 to support innovative learning programs in Canada.