Rick Miller Honoured with John Toswell Memorial Award

The 2nd annual John Toswell Memorial Award for Curling will be presented by the North Bay Granite Club and the Toswell Family (David and Doris) on Saturday May 6th during the North Bay Sport Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Dinner at the Best Western.

The award is named in recognition of the late John Toswell, who through his unselfish efforts and energy gave shape and direction to the sport of Curling. Receiving this award is an esteemed honor bestowed upon those individuals whose service to the sport of Curling is measured by the highest levels of impact and achievement.

The 2017 recipient is in his fifth decade of contribution generous amounts of time and talent to our club and community, this person needs no introduction, but here’s one anyways…


“That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind”. It is popularly believed that in 1969 these iconic words were uttered to signify man’s first landing on the moon, but we know that it’s really because at this point in history Rick Miller would walk into the North Bay Granite Club as a junior curler and spend the next half century contributing immensely to the success of the sport of Curling in the City of North Bay.

Curling has always and will continue to be a significant part of Rick’s life, having met many of his best friends at the Granite Club and eventually having the privilege of sharing his passion for Curling with his family. Some of Rick’s fondest memories include coaching his sons, Jeff and Scott, for three seasons when they were juniors; and when they were older, joining them as teammates to win two Coldwell Banker Bonspiels.

Even Rick’s daughter Jill has gotten some quality Curling time in with Dad as they regularly team up for North Bay’s Summerspiel in July; an event that son Jeff initiated in 2012.

In his professional life, the owner at Miller & Urso Surveying Inc. employs a diversified team that offers surveying, planning, engineering design, and project management. Whether you’re a private owner, developer, construction company, or municipality; they’ll take you from start to finish of your development project.

These days, it’s rumored that Rick is slacking off a bit more at work, but it’s for good reason.

As Co-Chair of the Bid Committee for the 2018 Ford World Women’s Curling Championships, it was an extremely rewarding moment when North Bay was recently announced as the successful host for this prestigious event, taking place at Memorial Gardens March 17th – 25th, 2018.

While co-chairing the World Championship stands a great chance at becoming Miller’s greatest accomplishment in his Curling life, it will be added to a long list of cherished experiences including co-hosting the 2015 Canadian Mixed Curling Championship and finishing runner-up in one of North Bay’s famous Jamaica Bonspiels – respectfully so to 2-time Brier Champion and Olympic gold medalist, Russ Howard.

As star volunteers usually do, Rick has worn numerous hats over the years. He has played all roles on the men’s section executive; has sat as President of the Granite Club; chaired the club’s New Year’s Eve event for ten years; solicited sponsorship for various bonspiels over the past twenty-five years; worked bingos for five years; and acted as a Level 2 On-Ice Official at the 1988 Canadian Mixed Curling Championship in North Bay; to name a few…

And if you’re one of those people that hear “Rick Miller” and think “builder”, consider yourself fortunate that you haven’t met Rick Miller the “player”. Known for his smarts, finesse, and left-handed artfulness; the now long-time Skip has played every position with success inclusive of attaining association level junior playdowns from 1970-1974 as a front end player; qualifying for association level tankard playdowns three times in the 1980s for teams skipped by Wayne Lowe and Don Zimmerman; reaching the final of the 1985 Labatt’s Provincial Major League; competing in four senior men’s inter-regional playdowns and capturing a local Major League victory with Team Peter Minogue; winning handfuls of bonspiel events (often multiple times) in places such as Sturgeon Falls, Temiskaming, Powassan, North Bay, and elsewhere; and most recently Miller is the defending Salt and Pepper League champion having won this senior competitive league in 2016 and 2017.

Rick will receive his award at the North Bay Sports Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Dinner on May 6th at the Best Western (Lakeshore). Tickets are available from any Executive Committee member, by calling Chair Bill Jacko at 705-476-1429, or emailing Karen Cobb at [email protected]