• Mayor’s City Builder Award – Chris Hughes

    July 17, 2013 – Mayor Jim Watson and Ward Councillor Jan Harder today presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Chris Hughes for his many years of outstanding community service and volunteerism.
    Mayor Watson highlighted Mr. Hughes’ service to Christie Lake Kids, a local charitable organization founded in 1922 that supports, challenges, nurtures, develops skills and creates opportunities for economically disadvantaged children and youth in Ottawa.

    For more than 38 years, Mr. Hughes has fostered the well-being of Ottawa’s youth and the community as a whole by donating his business and governance expertise to many community organizations, including the YM-YWCA, Youth Services Bureau, United Way Ottawa, Children’s Aid Society, Ottawa-Carleton Association for Persons with Developmental Disabilities, Ottawa-Carleton Immigrant Services, the Canadian Cancer Society, the Royal Ottawa Hospital, and Christie Lake Kids.

    Mr. Hughes is currently the President of the Board of Directors of Christie Lake Kids. He was a long-serving Board member and chair of the Youth Services Bureau. He also volunteered extensively with United Way Ottawa as a member of the Impact Council for Children and chaired the Critical Hours Task Group.

    Mr. Hughes has also found time to forge a distinguished career in senior management. He is Senior Vice-President at ITNet, a subsidiary of KPMG. Previously, he served as a senior management consultant to many federal government departments including the Privy Council Office and the Office of the Prime Minister, Transport Canada, Public Works and Government Services Canada and the Department of National Defence.


  • City Hall adds summer sizzle with free summer activities

    Ottawa – The City has officially launched its free weekly summer programming at Ottawa City Hall’s Marion Dewar Plaza– providing programs for everyone, morning, noon and night.

    The free weekly programs, running now to August 27, range from physical fitness to dance and artisan markets to music. Each day holds a different series of morning, noon-hour and evening programs – which includes YM-YWCA Tuesday morning boot camps, and Wednesday evening’s outdoor salsa lessons and dancing.

    ““Whether it is in the summer or the winter, inside or outside, we are making City Hall a real people place,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “By opening up City Hall and offering new programming, we are energizing the downtown core with exciting options for residents of all ages.”

    On Thursdays, starting tomorrow to August 11, from 7 to 11 p.m. will be a special evening that focuses on music, mind and art, called Expressions, in partnership with RBC Bluesfest Be in the Band. Youth bands and local art groups will combine their talents to raise awareness of mental health.

    “The summer programming at City Hall, as well as other programs in local parks, is a product of our community support and spirit,” said Councillor Mark Taylor, Chair of the City’s Community and Protective Services Committee. “Each program organizer is providing their services on a voluntary basis. Without their generous support, we could not provide this type of free programming and entertainment for our residents to enjoy.”

    In addition to the weekly schedule, special events are also planned such as an outdoor silent movie presentation and a roller derby weekend on July 19 and 20 – featuring the Rideau Valley Roller Girls and Capital City Derby Dolls.

    The full list and details of the summer programming events at City Hall’s Marion Dewar Plaza are available at ottawa.ca.

  • Sandra Oh receives Key to the City

    Ottawa – Mayor Jim Watson presented Ms. Sandra Oh with the City’s most prestigious award, the Key to the City, during a special ceremony this evening in recognition of her many accomplishments in the field of the performing arts on both a national and international level. Sandra Oh is likely best known for her role as Dr. Cristina Yang in the award-winning television series Grey’s Anatomy, which earned her a Golden Globe Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award and five Emmy nominations.

    “It is such an incredible honour to have Sandra Oh back in Ottawa, and to present her with the Key to the City in acknowledgement of her amazing talent and achievements”, said Mayor Jim Watson.

    Sandra Oh was born and raised in Nepean, starred in her first play The Canada Goose at the age of 10, and was extensively involved in drama courses and school productions at Sir Robert Borden High School. During a city-wide competition of the high school Improv Games, she caught the attention of the organizers and was invited to join the improv troupe Skit Row High, which created and wrote original works performed by the National Arts Centre.

    “I’m happy and excited to be back in my hometown and to be a part of such a celebratory event”, said Sandra Oh. “I’m looking forward to seeing all my friends and all those who I haven’t seen in many years and to figure out what this key to the city opens.”

    Working professionally at the age of 15 in theatre and commercials, she eventually attended the prestigious National Theatre School of Canada to study drama, where after three years, she beat out 1,000 other hopefuls for the coveted title role in the CBC television film The Diary of Evelyn Lau earning her a Gemini Award, a nomination for Best Actress, and the 1994 Cannes FIPA d’Or for Best Actress. She is also the recipient of two Best Actress Genie Awards for her leading role in Double Happiness and Last Night.

    After moving to Los Angeles in 1996, Sandra Oh has appeared in several major movies, including Under the Tuscan Sun and the Oscar-winning Sideways for Best Adapted Screenplay and in 2001 was honoured with a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame.

    The Key to the City was first presented in 1935 by His Worship Stanley Lewis to Lord Tweedsmuir, Governor General of Canada and his wife Lady Tweedsmuir. Other Key to the City recipients include author Margaret Atwood, photographer Yousuf Karsh and the Community Foundation of Ottawa.