Mayor Gregor Robertson and members of Vancouver City Council hosted the first ever Vancouver Awards of Excellence to honour select youth, individuals, organizations and businesses for their contributions to the city.
The Awards of Excellence is a new civic awards program developed to celebrate those who make Vancouver a greener, healthier, more diverse, accessible and prosperous city. The recipients of the awards were nominated by the public, recommended by peer review committee, and confirmed by City Council, who assessed their influence, impact and achievements.
"Vancouver is made exceptional by the inspiring people who live, work, and contribute their ideas and talents here," said Mayor Gregor Robertson. "The City of Vancouver's Awards of Excellence honour the contributions of exceptional people making Vancouver a healthier, greener, more inclusive, and more prosperous community. On behalf of my colleagues on City Council, I would like to congratulate all of tonight's honourees and thank them for their leadership in building a better Vancouver."
During the award ceremony, the Winston Churchill Secondary School Senior Boys' Basketball Team received The Mayor's Achievement Award,
which recognized the remarkable dedication and significant contributions towards improving the quality of life for the citizens of Vancouver.
Tupper Secondary student Darwin Balino received the Accessible City Award to honour his outstanding leadership to enhance accessibility, inclusion, and elimination of barriers to full participation for persons with disabilities.
Britannia student Mabel James received an award for civic contributions and her work as a youth leader with Red Fox Healthy Living Society, supervising children in after school programs and recreational activities as well as work with the Vancouver Foundation's Youth Philanthropy Council.
Diego Cardona received the Diversity and Inclusion Award, which celebrates outstanding leadership to foster inclusion across diverse communities.
Aaron Leung was given the Greenest City Leadership Award, which recognizes individuals or groups who enhance or advance the City's Greenest City Action Plan goals. Leung has played a key part in getting the Vancouver school district on track for its sustainability goals as part of the founding committee that planned the inaugural Vancouver School Board (VSB) Sustainability Conference.
Based on the success of the first conference, Leung was named chairperson of the 2014 VSB Sustainability Conference.
Finally Raymond Wu won the Healthy City for All Award, which pays tribute to outstanding leadership, by an individual or organization, in working towards creating a healthier city. Wu is a high school student at Sir Winston Churchill Secondary. His involvement in numerous school-based and community initiatives as a volunteer peer mentor have contributed towards a healthy city for all, specifically for youth and marginalized populations. He is also involved with CitizenU, Leave Out Violence, the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition Action Committee, and the McCreary Centre Society's Youth Advisory and Action Council (YAC).
For more information on the winners of the Awards of Excellence: http://vancouver.ca/awards-of-excellence
For more information on the Freedom of the City Award: http://vancouver.ca/your-government/freedom-of-the-city.aspx
For more information on the Mayor's Achievement Award: http://vancouver.ca/your-government/mayors-achievement.aspx