By John Swartz
Michael Gordon has won the City of Orillia’s 2018 Citizen of the Year award. The choice was revealed at Monday’s regular council meeting. There was a field of 12 (two were joint nominees).
The citation from his nomination reads: “Michael has been actively involved in the Orillia community for over fifteen years. Michael is the Chair of the Community Foundation of Orillia and Area, Treasurer for the Channel Cats and he acts as treasurer on the Regent Park parent council. Michael also led fundraising efforts for St. Paul’s Centre.”
The award was previously given by the Packet & Times and last year the City, which took over the award process, broke with past practice and revealed the full list of nominees. The following are those people and their citations.
Jeremy Clark: Jeremy Clark is not only an outstanding osteopath at Synergy but he also volunteers his time preparing and serving meals at the Lighthouse. Jeremy, your efforts are truly appreciated.
Noel Cooper and Patricia Beecham-Cooper: Noel Cooper and Patricia Beecham-Cooper are both retired school teachers who dedicate themselves to numerous volunteer activities and organizations. Patricia is a driving force behind the Orillia Fine Arts Association, the organizer of pop-up art shows, hosts community political breakfasts and gives free bridge lessons. Noel is volunteer driver with Orillia Helping hands and a volunteer tutor with the Orillia Literacy Council.
Laura Dickson: Laura is a big sister with Big Brothers Big Sisters and she collects donations for the program through her restaurant, Harvey’s. Laura also sponsors a little league baseball team and an adult team. Adding to that, Laura prepares food for the Lighthouse and frequently donates food for events.
Ted Dongelmans: Ted goes above and beyond his role of Resource Office to ensure the local high schools are not only safe but he builds positive relationships with the students and teachers. Ted contributes to the community through his work but he is heavily involved with the Orillia Lakers promoting the game and the City.
Kevin Gangloff: Kevin is committed to youth in the community far beyond his role as Director of the Orillia Youth Centre. He is a mentor and positive influence who strives to provide a supporting nurturing environment while allowing his passion for local arts to shine through.
Jaimin Manaht: Jaimin is very active in the community. He organizes annual events such as the Orillia Cricket Club, the Orillia East Indian Dance Festival, the Orillia East Indian event and the Orillia Diwali Festival in 2018. He has also volunteered in the Santa Claus parade. Further, he is an executive member of the Orillia Cricket Club and he successfully organized the Red Cross Blood donor Clinic.
Sue Morris: Sue is committed to enriching the lives of others. Sue has served her community in numerous volunteer capacities including the Guardian Angels Christmas Wish Dinner, Mariposa House Hospice, Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital Foundation Golf Tournament and the Gala Committee, the Breast Friend’s Cancer Peer Group, the Canadian Cancer Association Daffodil Tea, the King’s Lacrosse Association, the Orillia Scottish Festival, the Royal Canadian Legion Poppy Campaign and the Salvation Army Christmas Kettle Campaign just to name a few.
Steve Orr: Not only has Steve been a long standing business owner in our Downtown but he is an ardent sponsor and supporter of several community events, local artisans and a champion for youth serving groups. Steve is more than a sponsor of events; he is willing to get involved and be present for the events he supported. Steve is also an avid supporter of the OSPCA.
Elvis Ouimette: Elvis enjoys spreading cheer in the community. Elvis donates clothes on a regular basis, he provides gifts to those in need and enjoys lending a helping hand to neighbours and friends.
Eleanor Tinney: Eleanor volunteers tirelessly for the Santa Claus parade and has done so for many years. Eleanor, your efforts and attitude are greatly appreciated by the community and bring joy to many.
(Image – Pexels)