Senate 150 Medal
The honour of presenting the Senate 150 Medals to citizens who have made a significant difference in their community was a privilege. Those I honoured are unsung heroes who were consistently committed to their community, volunteerism and professions. Some pioneered innovative social programs, others brought to light injustices and discrimination, and others enabled connections enhancing communities and the well-being of Canada’s citizens.
Winnipeg First Nations visual artist and mentor, KC Adams, has consistently addressed discrimination of Indigenous peoples in her art. Her recent series, Perception, presented on bus shelters, buses, walls, and bill boards brought the issue to the fore, and effectively and positively addressed the of depth of Winnipeg’s racism impacts.
Loyal and patient, George Ames a committed Winnipeg volunteer in St Boniface Hospital’s Pet Visiting program is regularly found in the hospital’s Atrium with his German Shepherd, Rusty. He entertains and de-stresses patients, staff and visitors, lifting spirits and bringing relief to all those who pass through the hospital entrance and corridors
Through her dedicated leadership career in philanthropy, Catherine Auld assisted funders and service organizations in reaching their community goals in health, the arts, social services and education. Encouraging individual donors and private and community foundations to support small and large not-for-profits she established critical funding partnerships for fledgling and established organizations.
Artistic Director of Art City, Winnipeg’s inner-city community art centre, Eddie Ayoub has led high quality, open, free-of-charge art programming to children, youth and adults. Involving professional artists, this neighbourhood space is safe, comfortable and supportive. Ayoub’s model of transformational children’s and youth programming encourages clients to dream, imagine, and create.
Founder and Director of Winnipeg’s Camerata Nova, Andrew Balfour, Winnipeg based Métis composer and musician, consistently goes above and beyond. Composer, director and producer of many works linking communities and cultures, traditional and contemporary, his ongoing involvement with Inuit, First Nations and Métis artists and musicians is to be commended.
Thompson Manitoba’s tireless volunteer advocate, Volker Beckman, has spearheaded many successful initiatives increasing cultural tourism to the region. Celebrating Canada’s 150th anniversary, he was the volunteer organizer of Thompson’s Aurora Festival, and over the years has worked to achieve Thompson’s designation as the Wolf Capital of Canada and the World
A legal academic, Karen Busby works tirelessly on human rights and justice, giving fair advice on myriad issues. A consummate volunteer on boards of Winnipeg’s arts and human rights groups, she has led meaningful initiatives, partnerships and programs between the Canadian Museum for Human Rights and academic and cultural organizations.
Winnipeg resident, Kenlyn Collins is the long-standing Fine Art Librarian at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. Consistently going far beyond the parameters of her job in assisting researchers, particularly students, her personal dedication of her own time has given students access to otherwise unavailable documents and materials, enabling their successes.
Co-founder of Winnipeg’s Bear Clan, James Favell is commended for his visionary leadership. Operating from Winnipeg’s North End, and providing security for Winnipeg Aboriginal community, this community voluntary patrol works in harmony with community and with traditional philosophies. Their success has led to the program being copied elsewhere.
Victoria lawyer, Robert Gill has been a stalwart for Crimestoppers regionally, nationally and internationally for many decades. Volunteering on Crimestoppers local, national and international boards he has raised the profile and success of the significant work of that organization, and has worked effectively with police forces across the country.
Winnipeg architect Peter Hargraves developed and pioneered the Red and Assiniboine River Winter Skating Trail Warming Hut Program. Its annual design competition draws local and international artists and arts and architecture students. Now celebrating its 10th anniversary, this outdoor aesthetic focal point engages thousands of skaters through Winnipeg’s long winters.
A long-time volunteer at Churchill Manitoba’s Itsanitaq Museum, Juliette Lee works primarily in the museum shop. Buying and selling Inuit arts and crafts, her sustained contribution has been essential to the museum’s self-generated funding, a key focus of the museum’s outreach and awareness, and an important outlet for Inuit artists.
Winnipeg’s veteran arts volunteer, Elaine Margolis, has dedicated her expertise for more than four decades as a volunteer and board member of the Manitoba Chamber Orchestra and the Winnipeg Art Gallery. This visionary Winnipeg Art Gallery Shop buyer focused on Manitoba and Prairie craft artists, giving voice to their excellence.
James Marland's long counselling career in British Colombia and Alberta’s prison systems and background in equestrianism led to his developing initiatives to treat PTSD. Working with the military, Marland’s Northern Alberta ranch became home to a truly successful program aimed at PTSD recovery, a program being copied internationally with him leading the training.
CYNTHIA REMPEL PATRICK
Artistic head of the Steinbach Arts Council, Cynthia Rempel Patrick has led multi-disciplinary arts programming for amateur and professional artists, children and adults, over many years. Her passionate leadership has benefitted the community in many dimensions. She has also served on, and chaired, the Mantioba Arts Council board.
Winnipeg Arts Council’s Executive Director, Carol Phillips commended for her vision, creativity and commitment, strengthening the arts in every dimension - Public Art, grants to emerging and established artists, and organizations in all disciplines. She is a former Director of the Winnipeg Art Gallery, Regina's McKenzie Art Gallery and Banff Center’s Arts Programs.
Brandon Manitoba’s Liz Roberts has been a community advocate in all her activities. Her volunteer contributions include opening doors and assisting in First Nations’ empowerment in many important realms – cultural, the impact of art on health, and in aiding First Nations’ communities in developing sustainable endeavours, including specialized food gardens.
Life-long resident of Winnipeg, Susan Scott, is a quiet, behind the scenes advocate and donor. Focused on the advancement of First Nations youth and artists, she has enabled post-secondary education for Indigenous students, summer camps for immigrant children, and successfully encouraged, supported, and mentored emerging and mid-career First Nations artists.
Micheal Spence led Churchill through the eighteen-month flooded railway crisis that cut this Gateway to the North from essential deliveries, and resulted in job losses and population decrease. Spence led the unique new ownership group, eight First Nations, local communities, the private sector and government, to purchase and repair the rail-line.
A life-long resident of Glenboro Manitoba, Agnes Witherspoon has been a tireless community volunteer and champion for many decades. Her work in the development of the Glenboro Area Community Foundation in particular has been stellar, increasing donations to enable community projects which positively affect the community as a whole.