Lionel Geller Service Award of Excellence

The Award Ceremony Unveiling & Other Moments



Mamma Mia Restaurant

Geller Gala - April 26th, 2014

(Below to the Right)
Lionel Geller receiving a commemorative plaque from James Rankine on Behalf of NDG Baseball

Message Written on the Plaque:

Lionel Geller

NDG Minor Baseball thanks you for 37 years of devoted volunteer service and for reminding us that

"It's All About the Kids"

Lionel Geller Gala Photos - Courtesy of Ken Quinn - 2014



Ken Quinn, NDG Baseball's Director of Communications, unbeknownst to all, wrote a letter to Russell Copeman, Mayor to Cote-des-Neiges-NDG Borough, informing him of the long and dedicated service Lionel Geller has given to the community. During the evening Ken received a letter delivered from Mayor Copeman's office which is present below:

Ken Quinn reads letter from Mayor Russel Copeman Crowd reacts to the news of renaming Loyola-2





CBC Radio Interview - Thursday Dec 5th

Lionel Geller Photo - Courtesy of Ken Quinn - 2013


To the Executive of NDG Baseball,

It is with a deep sadness in my heart that I hereby tender my resignation from the board of NDG Baseball effective at the end of the 2013 fiscal year. (Nov 2013).

After 37 years of continuous service in one fashion or another, it is time to take my retirement and pursue other more leisurely activities.

I’d like to thank the board and the many volunteers who have helped me to do all that I did over the many years. Without them, I would not have been half as effective as I appeared.

With the help of James, Steve, Tracy, Sam, Graham, Terry and many others, I have prepared the orders for the 2014 season for uniforms and equipment. Please step up to take the many positions that need to be filled for the 2014 season, to allow NDG Baseball to continue to be the best sports organization in Canada.

I would be happy to act as a consultant to anyone seeking advice on day to day jobs that I have performed in the past.

I leave with so many great memories.   Thank you to all.


As of 2007 - Lionel Geller's 31st Year as an NDG Minor Baseball Volunteer

NDG Baseball unveiled on Championship Day, Saturday August 18th 2007, the Lionel Geller Award of Excellence.

This award, named after NDG's most cherished and respected of volunteers, will be given to those who are deemed by the NDG Baseball Board of Directors to be individuals who have made an extraordinary contribution to the league over at least five years.

Below is the speech that was given by NDG Minor Baseball President, Ken Quinn.

List of Recipients of the Lionel Geller Award of Excellence

"The Lionel Gellar Award, an incredible tribute to an incredible man. We are all so proud to have you in our midst"

Steve Glazer - President NDG Baseball (2009-2013)

Lionel Geller with Family - Saturday August 18th, 2007

Lionel Geller (far right) with Family:

(left to right):

Mathilde Rame (Daughter In-Law), Michael (Son), Doreen (wife)



Speech Made by League President

 Ken Quinn


Lionel has been a volunteer with NDG Baseball for over 30 years. He started off when his children were involved and, long after they left, he is still here. His own children are grown but Lionel takes care of hundreds of kids every summer.

Lionel Geller beside NDG Baseball President, Ken Quinn (holding trophy)

Back Row (left to Right):

Lloyd Chan (Doreen's brother), Henry Lavinskas, Harry Fainsilber (brother-in-law), Steve Glazer, Scott Lambton,

Martin Cote, Graham Nevin, Holly and Stacy (Dawson hockey kids),

Andrea Lambton, Warren Almand

 Middle Row (left to Right):

Doreen, Sarah (Lionel's granddaughter), Lionel Geller, Ken Quinn, Michael Applebaum,

Bob Ferguson, Debbie Praw

Kids - Back Row (left to right):

Ryan Antel, Kai Duenez, Joseph Raftus, Jordan Glazer, Ryan Glazer, Joseph Tilden

Kids - Front Row (left to right):

Darius Jackson, Zachary Pfefferle, Josh Clark

Lionel has performed every job and task in our League, including being President on several occasions however he is best known as the leagues Equipment Manager.

Lionel, a retired civil engineer & math professor, brings that part of him to NDG Baseball. He is matter of fact, direct, and a man with very few words. He is quietly persuasive in the board room and will never write an e-mail longer than 3 lines – ever!

If Lionel is “King” of NDG Baseball - William Hurst Chalet is his castle. Although many volunteers have held the keys to that Chalet none would dare enter without Lionel’s permission. We do believe his treasures are bobby trapped, under surveillance, and guarded. Nobody truly knows what treasures Lionel has hidden there.

Lionel runs his Chalet with the organization that only a meticulous math professor can. Every uniform is in chronological order and labeled by size, team, and colour. Every equipment bag is cleaned stacked and labeled. When the season ends you will see Lionel running from park to park at every elimination game where he makes sure to get his sacred bags full of equipment back the instant the team is eliminated.

If you need something from Lionel he will pull out from his upper right shirt pocket his sacred folded piece of scrap paper and pen and proceed to write himself a note, never to be forgotten.

But closest to Lionel’s heart is his Novice players where Lionel has coached for over 30 years every Saturday morning. “Grandpa Lionel” has seen many of his former players come to him with their children in his second generation of coaching.

The kids are what drive Lionel. Their innocent enthusiasm brings out the brightest smile from Lionel, who lives by his longstanding motto “it’s all about the kids”

During the dog days of summer when the coaches and volunteers are tired and possibly contemplating packing it in, Lionel is right there to remind us what it is all about and, with his customary inspiration, the tired and demoralized volunteers recharge their batteries and come back the next year for the kids.

Lionel is NDG Baseball’s longest and most dedicated and devoted of all volunteers and is an inspiration to us all. Ladies and gentlemen, distinguished guests, please join me in welcoming Mr. Lionel Geller to the field. 

Word from the President – Ken Quinn

Ladies and Gentlemen, on behalf of the board of directors and the membership of NDG Baseball I welcome you to Championship Day 2007 (also known as “Fun Day”).

I want to thank the two teams for their understanding during this very appropriate and necessary ceremony. I want to thank Debbie Praw, Graham Nevin, and James Rankine specifically for their work in making this presentation possible and I want to thank all our coaches and volunteers for everything they’ve done for this organization.

Yogi Berra once said "Little League baseball is a good thing 'cause it keeps the parents off the streets and it keeps the kids out of the house."

Lionel Geller has been involved with NDG Baseball longer than many of our current parents have been alive. He is benevolent, donating gloves to children from disadvantaged backgrounds. He is always encouraging the kids to persevere. It is indeed a privilege for me to be standing here today.

Ladies and gentlemen I submit to you that Lionel Geller is a good person – for over 30 years he has kept parents off the streets and kids out of the houses of NDG.


The idea of inaugurating an award to recognize long standing volunteers in NDG Baseball has been simmering on the back burner for a few years. The idea of naming an award after Lionel was brought forward by James Rankine in late August 2006. Much discussion took place – all behind Lionel’s back and let me tell you it is not easy to do anything without Lionel’s knowledge in this league. We debated whether to make an evening of it, whether to unveil the award at the Michelin Tournament, and a host of other ideas. When the dust settled the board of directors came to a decision that a new award in Lionel Geller’s name be created for individuals who have made an Outstanding Contribution to the league. It shall be awarded only when warranted, not necessarily yearly. The contribution would have to be something that has had a lasting impact to the league or for extraordinary service over many years.

Naming awards after people is usually done in memory of a deceased person or in recognition of someone who has paid a substantial amount of money toward the award. After having a forensic accountant scour our books I can safely say that neither Lionel Geller nor any member of his family has made a significant financial contribution toward this award. What I can say, and I think everyone will agree with me, is that Lionel has paid for this award in the many many hours he has dedicated to this association and in the manner in which he puts the welfare of this association above all else.

President NDG Minor Baseball

Ken Quinn




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