An Everton in the Community employee has been shortlisted for the top prize at the Echo’s Pride of Merseyside Awards.
Steve Johnson, Disability Manager for Everton in the Community, has made the final cut for the ceremony's most sought after individual honour – the overall ‘Pride of Merseyside’ award.
This award goes to someone who represents Merseyside and makes a difference to the lives of others in their community.
Steve joined the Blues’ official charity in 2003 and has worked tirelessly to make the disability programme one of the most influential and iconic disability sports programmes in the world.
Having lost his leg in a football accident in 1985, Steve subsequently discovered amputee football. It was a sport still very much in its infancy back then, but it re-ignited his love for the game.
And despite suffering such a horrendous injury, Steve managed to turn his life around through the power of football and just three years later he received his first call up to the England team. He went on to achieve over 130 international caps, captaining the England team for over 20 years, winning three World Cups, and being voted ‘World Amputee Footballer of the Year’ in 1999.
After retiring as a player Steve decided to gain sports qualifications, including UEFA coaching awards, a Sports Science degree and a HND in Sports Science and Disability Studies, which have enabled him to transform the lives of other disabled people across the North West of England using the power of football.
Steve’s influence and vision for disability football now means Everton in the Community provides over 10,000 football opportunities for disabled children and adults each year and engages with more than 60 schools in the Merseyside area alone.
The Echo Pride of Merseyside Awards will take place on Thursday September 6, at a ceremony and dinner at the Hilton Hotel, Liverpool, when all the award winners will be revealed.