Awards Night Highlights Port Coquitlam Volunteers
Over 200 people gathered at the Port Coquitlam Community Recreation Complex on Friday night to celebrate Port Coquitlam’s volunteers, laugh and mingle at the City’s annual volunteer awards night.
Seven awards were handed out at the Port Coquitlam Volunteer Recognition Awards & Tribute evening, which featured entertainment from the Rock-it Men: Dueling Pianos and Kitezone Entertainment. The evening was emceed by award-winning radio host Kevin Lim.
“Volunteers selflessly give their time, talent and energy to make Port Coquitlam a better place,” Mayor Greg Moore said at the event. “This award night is our way of saying thank you and showing appreciation for all that volunteers do to help our community soar to new heights.”
A total of 45 people were nominated this year in the seven award categories, and all were invited to Friday’s celebration along with other community volunteers. Fortis BC sponsored the event for the 20th year. This year’s theme was Volunteers Help Us Soar.
“We are incredibly fortunate to have so many hard-working volunteers in Port Coquitlam,” said Cllr. Glenn Pollock, who chairs the city’s Healthy Community Committee. “Thank you to our volunteers for everything they do for our community.”
2018 Award Recipients
Awards were presented in the following categories. Photos from the event are posted at www.portcoquitlam.ca/volunteerawards.
Lifetime Volunteer – Honours individuals who have dedicated many years to improving the community of Port Coquitlam through their volunteer efforts.
Award Recipient – Beatrice Kelly
Since moving to Port Coquitlam over 23 years ago, Beatrice Kelly has been a spirited resident and an active volunteer in a many areas. She has deep ties to the City, matched by her commitment to improving the lives of women and girls.
She was a charter member of Soroptimist International of the Tri-Cities, serving as its first club president in Port Coquitlam in 1999. Under her mentorship, this service organization has grown to be the largest chapter in Canada, and has served women and girls in Port Coquitlam for almost 20 years. She has served on the board in every capacity, has chaired every committee at one time, has led major fundraisers, and has served on the regional board for Western Canada.
She’s volunteered with the Port Coquitlam Heritage Society, the Women’s Centre, Wilson Centre, Evergreen Cultural Centre, Blind Sport Association, Crossroads Hospice Society, the Kinsmen Teddy Bear Picnic and UNICEF. Even today, she plans and serves meals at a monthly meal and social program.
Arts, Heritage and Cultural Awareness – Preserves and celebrates Port Coquitlam’s past and shares our community heritage with others; promotes the arts and cultural development of our community.
Nominees – Bill Atfield, Colin Craig, Devyn Giordano, Nikki Hillman, Donna McKinnon-Heide, Ray Melville, Jas Qualitz and Terry Villeneuve
Award Recipient – Nikki Hillman
Nikki Hillman is active with the Friends of Leigh Square, has founded several local writers’ projects, helped with the kids’ banner project and recently wrote and edited a children’s book for the Port Coquitlam Heritage Society.
Caring and Safety – Enhances and promotes the community through caring actions and outstanding acts of humanitarianism; contributes towards making Port Coquitlam a safer place for residents of all ages.
Nominees – Andrew Carroll, Harriette Chang, Tessa Chiu, Roxanna Ferdowsi, Darren Galer, Anne Huntley, Bea Kelly, Jenn Lazar, Carmin Lemon, Ann Pratt, Robert Sierakowski, Phillip Stuart, Jeanette Tsai and Wendy Yates
Award Recipient – Anne Huntley
Anne Huntley is a founding member and president of the Wilson Centre Seniors Advisory Association. She dedicates more than 1000 hours each year to supporting seniors and is a longtime active Lions Club member and community volunteer.
Environmental Protection and Enhancement – Demonstrates an outstanding commitment to the promotion and preservation of Port Coquitlam’s natural environment for present and future generations.
Nominees – Sperrill Chambers, Connie Reichelsdorfer, Terry Sawchenko
Award Recipient – Terry Sawchenko
Terry Sawchenko is a longtime volunteer for the Hyde Creek Watershed Society and current hatchery manager who has dedicated countless hours over the years to numerous leadership roles as well as hands-on work.
Sports and Recreation – Enhances the quality of physical activity in Port Coquitlam; contributes to the management and/or operations of a sports or recreation activity; demonstrates outstanding dedication to Port Coquitlam’s sports and recreation community.
Nominees – Ashley Aujla, Mike Carkner, Joe Collins, Ben Felling, Rick Spencer, Neela Trotter, Josh Wahl
Award Recipient – Josh Wahl
Josh Wahl dedicates thousands of hours a year to local sports, from leadership roles to coaching number lacrosse and hockey teams at the same time. He is currently the president of PoCo Minor Lacrosse.
Youth Programs – An individual who supports Port Coquitlam’s youth through the development, provision and/or participation in youth programs and activities (excluding amateur athletics).
Nominees – Jan Borge, Kurt Chelsberg, Ron Goyette and Adam Rayburn
Award Recipient – Jan Borge
Jan Borge has been active in local scouting for over 15 years, volunteering 500 hours in the past year in leadership roles (including as the Group Commissioner), planning activities, fundraising and whatever tasks needs doing.
U21 (Youth Under 21) – Reserved for the recognition of a Port Coquitlam youth, under the age of 21, who has demonstrated a commitment to our community and has made extraordinary volunteer contributions in any of the categories above.
Nominees – Justin Bains, Monica Bassili, Karyn Cholette, Kiarra Murray, Telka Pesklevits, Ashton Ramsay, Aradia Faire Reid, Katie Salvador, Hana Yang
Award Recipient – Justin Bains
Justin Bains has volunteered 200 plus hours in the past year visiting seniors at Hawthorne Care Centre, as a wayfinding volunteer at Royal Columbian Hospital and as the youngest person to volunteer at Crossroads Hospice Society. He is also a volunteer tutor.
A special recognition was also given to Harvey Maruk for being a good neighbor by helping clear sidewalks after every snowfall to help his neighbours get around safely.
A panel of the previous recipients selected this year’s recipients in all categories except for Lifetime Volunteer, which is selected by City Council. Each recipient received an etched glass award and their names are engraved on the honour rolls displayed at City Hall.
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Pardeep Purewal, Manager
Communications & Administrative Services
City of Port Coquitlam
Photos available upon request