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Finalists named for Jim Stynes Award

Port Adelaide skipper Travis Boak is one of four players named as finalists for the 2014 Jim Stynes Community Leadership Award.

Carlton vice-captain Kade Simpson, Geelong midfielder Mathew Stokes and West Coast defender Beau Waters were also selected as finalists after being nominated for the award by their respective clubs.

Boak’s work with the Childhood Cancer Association to raise awareness and funds earned him his nomination, while Simpson, an ambassador for Down Syndrome Victoria, has helped raise more than $30,000 for the organisation.

“This year’s finalists are all exceptional candidates” – AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan

As the first Aboriginal player to be in Geelong’s leadership group, Stokes was selected for his tireless work with the local and national indigenous community to promote a number of Aboriginal health initiatives.

Waters has been involved in a number of organisations over the past decade, including Cancer Council WA, where he is an ambassador, and has been the catalyst for the Eagles raising almost $1million for cancer research.

The Jim Stynes Community Leadership Award was named in honour of the former Melbourne president and Brownlow medalist who passed away in 2012, and the award will be presented to one of the four finalists at this year’s Brownlow ceremony.

AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan said the award was an enduring tribute to Jim Stynes’ standing in the game and his unwavering service and leadership throughout the community.

“This award is significant because it commemorates Jim Stynes’ vast contribution to the community, his outstanding leadership and his legacy as someone who always looked to help others,” McLachlan said.

“This year’s finalists are all exceptional candidates, as are the other nominees who have shown great initiative and leadership across the community.”

The winner will receive $20,000 from the AFL to be donated to the charity or community program of their choice.

Last year, Gold Coast ruckman Zac Smith won the award in recognition of his work as a domestic and community violence awareness ambassador, as well as his support for indigenous communities.

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