(Calgary, AB – April 17, 2012) Volunteer Calgary announced the recipients of the 16th Annual Leadership Awards in a gala held on the evening of April 17.
The Leadership Awards, the premier volunteer recognition event in Calgary, marked the culmination of a year-round nomination period. Twelve award recipients were selected out of 99 nominations received across eight award categories, which represent the diversity of volunteers serving in various capacities and providing essential community services.
The award recipients are as follows: Ashid Kumar Bahl for the Heart of Calgary Award; Renee Fleming of the Calgary Zoo for the Leader in Volunteer Management Award; Leaders in Employee Volunteering Award: Penn West Exploration, First Calgary Financial, TELUS; Volunteer Family Award: Johnson Family - Garth, Kathryn, Connor, Teague; Leaders of Tomorrow Award: Sheliza Kassam for the Senior High Category, Michelle D’Souza for the Junior High Category, Riley Beatty for the Elementary Category; Calgary Public Library for the Leader in Volunteer Engagement Award; Priscilla Popilchak for the Volunteer in Profile Award; and finally, Catfish the Horse for the Volunteer Animal Award.
The gala was held at the Stampede Park’s BMO Centre with close to 500 guests, comprised of individuals from the non-profit sector, corporate sector, local government and volunteers, displaying the community’s strong support for volunteerism. Premier Alison Redford gave a brief address to kick off the celebration.
“I understand there are about a hundred people nominated for these awards and that is just a tremendous representation of who we are as Albertans. Thank you so much for continuing to add to the quality of life in our province,” said Premier Alison Redford.
The highlight of the evening was the presentation of the awards to the award recipients, which was preceded by short films featuring their volunteer work. The Heart of Calgary Award recipient, Ashid Kumar Bahl, had dedicated his life to helping children all over the world and left inspiring words for everyone.
“Truly life is not really about us. It's about making life happen for somebody else who is less fortunate than us. In that lies the true significance of living -- always remember that,” said Bahl in his acceptance speech.
“Everybody in this world is looking for something. Some people are looking for wealth, some people are looking for happiness, some people are even looking for god, but in the midst of helping these children, I found everything. I hope you do, too. “
The Leadership Awards also launched National Volunteer Week (NVW) celebrations in Calgary which runs from April 15 to 21. NVW is a nationwide effort held yearly to honour all volunteers across Canada.
Volunteer Calgary has played a key role in the development of volunteerism in Calgary for over 50 years. Its mission is leading, promoting, connecting and strengthening volunteerism. Through its services and programs, it enhances the ability of approximately 440 non-profit member organizations to manage volunteers and links Calgarians with unique volunteer opportunities.
To watch the videos featuring their inspiring stories, click here
To read a brief overview of the award winners, click here