• Mayor’s City Builder Award – Patricia Tait

    Mayor Jim Watson and Councillor Eli El-Chantiry presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Patricia Tait today in recognition of her 20 years of community activism in West Carleton, notably her volunteer work with Ottawa Riverkeeper.

    Mrs. Tait has been an active volunteer for over 20 years helping to maintain the Morris Island Conservation Area, and has been monitoring the health of the Ottawa River near Chat Falls Dam for 10 years as one of 50 River Watchers for Ottawa Riverkeeper. She took a lead role in the work to find an ecologically friendly solution for shuttling boats around the Chat Falls Dam. The boat bypass, at Mohr’s Landing next to the Quyon ferry dock, opened in July 2006. In 2009, she received the Daniel Brunton Outstanding Volunteer Award from Ottawa Riverkeeper.

    She is a community leader who helps residents on both sides of the Ottawa River to understand why protecting the river is important, and what they can do to help. She is often seen at community events in West Carleton–March wearing her Riverkeeper t-shirt, spreading her knowledge and passion for clean, healthy and sustainable waterways – always with a friendly smile.

    She’s also an enthusiastic volunteer with the West Carleton Food Bank food drive, the Arnprior and District Food Bank and the Friends of the Carp River.

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  • Mayor’s City Builder Award – Carol Burrows

    Mayor Jim Watson and Ward Councillor Peter Clark presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Carol Burrows today for her five decades of advocacy for seniors’ rights and continuing volunteer work to improve the quality of life of Ottawa’s seniors and older adults.

    Mrs. Burrows, at 78, is not spending her upper years in warmer climates and leisure pursuits. Rather, she continues to work with many Ottawa organizations that help and advocate for seniors. Her personal focus is on affordable supportive housing for seniors, particularly women and those who have the lowest incomes or are homeless.

    She started working for a better quality of life for seniors in the 1970s, when she was in her 20s. She was managing a Lighthouse program at a local school, where she arranged an evening program to help teach people how to care for their elderly parents. She also developed a pilot project that encouraged grade six students to spend at least one afternoon a week with seniors at a nearby nursing home. The pilot was a huge success and became permanent.

    The long list of organizations she has worked with, and helped steer as a director, includes:

     – Cornerstone, an emergency shelter and supportive housing facility for homeless women
    – Community Care Access Centre
    – Council on Aging of Ottawa
    – Carefor Health and Community Services
    – Champlain Local Health Integration Network
    – United Way Ottawa Seniors Affordable Supportive Housing Task Force

    Mrs. Burrows has received numerous awards and citations for her work, including the Council on Aging of Ottawa’s 2008 Margaret Griffiths Award
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  • Mayor’s City Builder Award – Bill Robinson

    Mayor Jim Watson and Councillor Marianne Wilkinson presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Bill Robinson today, recognising his devotion to improving the lives of at-risk children and youth, and new Canadians, over the past 30 years.

    Mr. Robinson’s countless hours of volunteer work with the Michelle Heights Community House, the Pinecrest Queensway Community Health Centre, the Dave Smith Treatment Facility, Volunteer Ottawa, Rotary District 7040 and the Rotary Club of Nepean-Kanata have made a difference in the lives of new immigrants and the most vulnerable young people in our community.

    His focus in much of his volunteer work has been on promoting success in school and helping to provide the building blocks to secure job experience and build successful careers.

    As a Rotarian, he has worked on many community-service initiatives that have had a direct positive impact on Ottawa residents. He is currently a board member of the Ottawa Rotary Home, a respite care home for children and adults with complex disabilities. For the Caring and Sharing Exchange, he organizes the delivery of more than 300 Christmas hampers every December.

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  • Mayor’s City Builder Award – Catherine Burns

    July 9, 2014 – Mayor Jim Watson and Councillor Katherine Hobbs presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Catherine Burns today for her outstanding contribution to culture in Ottawa through her work as a founder and builder of the traditional-song and contra dance community over the past 25 years.

    As a founder and tireless volunteer with the Old Sod Society and Ottawa Contra Dance, Catherine has been instrumental in building a vibrant community of musicians, singers, callers and dancers who enjoy affordable dances, concerts and workshops year-round.

    Aided by other volunteers, she runs approximately 50 community song-and-dance events a year for the Old Sod Society. She has recently founded a family dance series for parents and children, as well as a monthly community dance series, and provides training for volunteer local callers through the Ottawa Callers’ Collective.

    She has been a volunteer caller for contra dances at Winterlude, the Ottawa Folk Festival, the Grassroots Festival and Westfest, among other community events. She has recently expanded her calling to dances she has designed for local adults with disabilities.

    Contra dance refers to several partnered folk dances and has its origins in English, French and Irish country dance styles of the 17th century. The dance is designed and led by a caller. The music for contra dances includes Irish, Scottish and French-Canadian folk songs. The fiddle is the key instrument, but guitar, mandolin and other acoustic instruments are also used.

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  • Mayor’s City Builder Award – Mrs. Laura Dubois

    Mayor Jim Watson and Councillor Allan Hubley presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Mrs. Laura Dubois today for her outstanding contributions to the Kanata community through her support of dozens of schools, charities and other community organizations.

    Laura is the owner of Laura’s Your Independent Grocer at Hazeldean Mall. She began her grocery career at 15 as a cashier. She worked her way up to service manager, to assistant manager, to manager, then bought her own Your Independent Grocer franchise over seven years ago. She and her husband sold their Orléans home and moved with their daughter, son and four cats to Bridlewood.

    Owning a neighborhood grocery store has given her a great way to support her community. She volunteers her time and donates food to many causes including local schools, The Kanata Food Cupboard, the Scott Tokessy Memorial Ball Tournament, the Shepherds of Good Hope, the City’s annual Christmas food drive, and countless local events and fundraisers.

    She donates food, prizes, funds and space inside the store for various organizations to run fundraisers that support the Kanata community.

    She serves on the John Young School Council and will be donating the food for a new breakfast program for children in need at the school.

    She also offers a free shopping service to local seniors and others whose special needs make it difficult for them to get out and shop for groceries.

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  • Mayor’s City Builder Award – Mrs. Doreen Lebano

    Mayor Jim Watson and Councillor Jan Harder presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Mrs. Doreen Lebano today for her outstanding contributions to public health as the event founder for the Barrhaven Lions Club’s annual Mother & Daughter Gala Dinner, which raises funds for cancer patient care at the Queensway Carleton Hospital (QCH).

    Doreen is a 24-year survivor of breast cancer and an 11-year survivor of a rare blood disorder called Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (TTP).

    During the long hours of her treatments for TTP, Doreen’s daughter, Angela, would keep her company. Doreen enjoyed the quiet one-on-one time with her daughter and found it aided in her recovery. When she was healthy again, she decided to organize a fundraising event for the QCH. Her daughter suggested a mother-and-daughter gala dinner, and Doreen, a long-time member of the Barrhaven Lions, decided the Lions Club would be an excellent organization to host the gala.

    The Mother & Daughter Gala has been held every May for the past ten years. Doreen is the lead organizer and she has spent countless hours seeking sponsorships. To date, the gala event has raised over $100,000 for cancer patient care at the QCH. Recently, a patient counselling room in the Irving Greenberg Family Cancer Centre was dedicated to the Barrhaven Lions Club Mother & Daughter Gala in recognition of their support.

    Doreen also volunteers for many other community fundraising efforts by the Barrhaven Lions Club, as well as working at the Jerry Lewis Telethon for the past 12 years, and Barrhaven Fun Day on Labour Day weekend for the past 18 years. She has received two prestigious awards from Lions Club International: the Melvin Jones Fellowship Award and the Helen Keller Award.

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  • Mayor’s City Builder Award – Susan MacLatchy

    Mayor Jim Watson and Councillor Keith Egli presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Susan MacLatchy today in recognition of her outstanding contributions to public health through the founding of the Carleton Heights Curling Club’s Annual Bonspiel for Breast Cancer.

    Susan MacLatchy launched this event in 2000, raising $6,000 for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation in its first year. Along with her organizing committee, she has worked tirelessly to grow this event every year since.

    The 15th Annual Bonspiel for Breast Cancer was held on March 29, with approximately 100 women curlers from across Ottawa participating. This year’s bonspiel raised more than $40,000. In total, the Carleton Heights Curling Club Annual Bonspiel for Breast Cancer has raised approximately $400,000 for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation while helping to build awareness of breast cancer prevention and treatment in our community.

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  • Mayor’s City Builder Award – Citizens for Safe Cycling

    Mayor Jim Watson and Councillor Keith Egli presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Citizens for Safe Cycling (CfSC) today in recognition of the volunteer organization’s outstanding contributions to public safety over the past 30 years. CfSC president Mr. Hans Moor accepted the honour on behalf of the organization.

    Founded in 1984, CfSC is a voluntary association of cyclists who work with the City of Ottawa, Ottawa Police Service, Safer Roads Ottawa and other organizations concerned with road safety, advocating for better, safer, environmentally friendly cycling in the Ottawa area. CfSC is directed by a volunteer board whose members are experienced and committed cyclists, and run by a broad base of active volunteers.

    CfSC has always participated in, and contributed to, road safety initiatives in Ottawa. For example, in November 2012 and 2013, CfSC volunteers helped distribute a total of more than 350 sets of bike lights free of charge to cyclists on pathways in the city core. Its volunteers contribute many hours every year to the education of cyclists and other road users in how to safely share the road.

    Mayor Watson noted it was appropriate that CfSC received the City Builder Award during Bike to Work Month, a time when the City and its cycling partners offer many activities that emphasize cycling safety and education.

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  • Mayor’s City Builder Award – Mrs. Shelby Hayter

    Mayor Jim Watson and Councillor Jan Harder presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Mrs. Shelby Hayter today for her outstanding contributions to public health as a spokesperson, fundraiser and program founder for the Parkinson’s Society of Ottawa.

    A lifelong natural athlete, she was training for the Boston Marathon in early 2005 when she was diagnosed with early onset Parkinson’s disease. She was 40 and the mother of three children ages 11, 8 and 6. Determined not to let the disease to slow her down, she decided to continue to train and to run the Marathon with her sister Andrea. She saw a unique opportunity to become a spokesperson for people living with Parkinson’s, and to use her marathon run to raise funds for Parkinson’s research.

    After her run in Boston raised $33,000 for the Parkinson’s Research Consortium at the University of Ottawa, she approached the Parkinson’s Society of Ottawa with a plan to create a program for elementary and junior high students, called Pass the Baton. The organization enthusiastically supported her plan.

    This unique educational program teaches schoolchildren what it means to live with Parkinson’s and inspires them to create fundraising events for Parkinson’s research. To date, through Pass the Baton, Shelby has made more than 65 school visits; she has become a role model to more than 34,000 students and hundreds of staff; and she has raised over $80,000 for the Parkinson’s Research Consortium.

    She says her goal is to help find the cure so her children, now teenagers, and other children of their generation will never have to deal with Parkinson’s.

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  • Mayor’s City Builder Award to Mr. John Therien

    Mayor Jim Watson, Ward Councillor Steve Desroches and Councillor Mathieu Fleury presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Mr. John Therien for his many years of dedication to making Vanier a healthy, safe and prosperous community.

    Mr. Therien served as Chair of the Quartier Vanier BIA for eight years, where he led an engaged group of business owners through a period of unprecedented growth and change in their community. Under his leadership, the BIA helped many local charitable causes including a women’s shelter, several church projects, school projects, the Knights of Columbus and a Christmas toy drive.

    An enthusiastic promoter of Vanier as an increasingly diverse, safe and affordable community for families that is close to downtown, he told the Ottawa Business Journal in 2006 that Vanier would soon be “the next ‘in’ place to live and work.”

    He has been the owner and head instructor of Therien Jiu-Jitsu and Kickboxing for 42 years, which operates eight dojos including one on Selkirk Street in Vanier. He has introduced thousands of young people across Ottawa to the discipline and healthy physical activity of the martial arts.

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