Who Is Joy SpearChief-Morris?
I am an Indigenous Black Canadian 100m hurdler and I have my sights set on competing for Team Canada at the Tokyo Olympic Games. I currently live and train in London, Ontario where I have recently completed my Master's degree in Political Science specializing in Transitional Justice and Post-Conflict Reconstruction.
I am originally from Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada where I grew up chasing around my older brother Julian, then our city's aspiring basketball player and to this day my greatest role model. Growing up, I did what ever my brother did, especially when it came to sports. However it was in track and field that I found a place of my own where I excelled beyond the rest. Once graduating high school in 2012 as a multi-sport athlete, I found myself at the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Vancouver with a track and field scholarship. It was here that I really discovered and began to develop my passion for track, first as a 100m and 200m sprinter.
In 2014, while at UBC, I made my first Canadian National Team for the North American and Caribbean Athletics U23 Championships (NACAC), where I was a part of the silver medal 4x100m relay team. After two years of many ups and downs, I decided that I was not getting the experience I desired from UBC. So, I took a leap of blind faith and transferred to Western University (The University of Western Ontario), across the country in London, Ontario, to continue training with my coach Derrick Johnston. I consider my choice to transfer to Western one of the best decisions I have ever made. At Western I excelled athletically and academically. I found a place I felt I belonged and became part of the Mustang Family. It was also at Western that I discovered a new passion in track, the sprint hurdles.
I graduated from Western University in June 2017 with a Bachelor's degree in History and First Nations Studies as well as with top honours in athletics and academics. After graduating, I took another big leap and moved to Santa Barbara, California to train as a full-time athlete to pursue the dream of becoming an Olympian. After about a year, I realized that I had not been true to the path that was right for me and made the decision to move back to London, Ontario to train with my coaches Vickie Croley and Derrick Johnston.
Now, I still dream of representing Canada at the Tokyo Olympic Games. In 2019 I had the opportunity to represent Team Canada again at the FISU World University Games, finishing 5th in the 100m hurdles. I have also embraced the other passions in my life. I recently completed my Master's degree in Political Science specializing in Transitional Justice and Post-Conflict Reconstruction. My passions in writing and research lie in Indigenous politics, land claims, and reconciliation. I hope to go on to pursue political journalism, sharing my perspective as an Indigenous and African Canadian woman, as well as share the stories of others whose voices need to be heard.
I also want to inspire Indigenous youth to chase dreams they might not have discovered yet and to know that they can achieve anything, no matter where they come from. My dream is a big one, and I know the road ahead of me is long and that it will not be easy, but I am determined to get there and to make the journey along the way worth it. This is the journey that I have set myself on. I hope you will follow along with me.
100m Hurdles - 13.23 (13.21W) 60m Hurdles - 8.19
100m - 11.68 (11.52W) 60m - 7.40
200m - 24.03 (23.97W)
5th Place FISU World University Games (2019)
2x Ontario University Athletics (OUA) Female Track Event Most Valuable Performer (MVP) (2016-2017)
3x Ontario University Athletics (OUA) Champion (60mH, 60m, 4x200m) (2016-2017)
4x All Canadian at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS)/USports Championships (2015-2017)
8x Team All-Star at the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) Championships (2015-2017)
3x Western Mustangs Women’s Track Most Valuable Performer (MVP) (2015-2017)
5x Academic All Canadian achievement (2012-2017)
2x All American at NAIA National Track and Field Championships (100m and 200m) (2014)
Western University Record Holder in the 60m, 60m Hurdles and 4x200m First Leg Split
2019 - FISU World University Games Canadian National Team Member - 5th Place 100mH
2017 - Tom Longboat National Award Winner as the Canadian Female Aboriginal Athlete of the Year
2017 - The Honorable G. Howard Ferguson Award for Western University at 309th Spring Convocation
2017 - The F.W.P. Jones Award as Top Graduating Female Athlete for Western University Athletics
2017 - Ontario University Athletics (OUA) and Canadian University Athletics (USports) Student Athlete Community Service Award
2017 - Don Wright Trophy Award Winner for Western University Track and Field
2017 - Purple Blanket Award Winner for Western University Athletics
2017 - Bronze W Award Winner for Western University Athletics
2016 - Canadian University Athletics (USPORTS) Champion in the 60m
2014 - North American and Caribbean Athletic Championships (NACAC) U23 Canadian National Team Member; silver medal 4x100m