FCM honours dedicated municipal leaders for their outstanding work to improve their communities (07/06/2016)
"Canadians from coast to coast to coast are truly fortunate to have such dedicated and talented leaders working for them in municipal government, " said FCM President Clark Somerville. "Each year we are so pleased to honour municipal experts who are making their communities better places to live and showcasing local innovation."
FCM's Roll of Honour
The Roll of Honour was established in 1982 to pay tribute to the outstanding contribution made by municipal officials. This year's honourees exemplify the spirit of dedication and community service crucial to building strong vibrant municipalities.
Ms. Lise Burcher served the people of Guelph, Ontario as a municipal councillor from 2003 to 2014 where she was recognized by colleagues and constituents for her dedication to bringing people together to improve the community. She is noted for co-founding the citizen-driven organization "The Guelph Civic League" to motivate and engage residents while driving innovation and development. As a member of FCM's Board of Directors, Ms. Burcher served on a number of standing committees including International Relations, Increasing Women's Participation in Municipal Government, Environmental Issues and Sustainable Development, and as Director of FCM's Green Municipal Fund Council.
Mr. Don Forfar served as Mayor of St. Andrews, Manitoba for a remarkable 16 years, from 1998 to 2014. During that time, he showed an exemplary commitment to his community. From implementing flood defense systems to better protect residents and lessen the impact of spring flooding, to mentoring newly elected officials, to chairing numerous organizations, Mr. Forfar's devotion to making his home town and the province of Manitoba safer, stronger and more sustainable have left a lasting legacy for generations to come. Mr. Forfar also brought that zeal for municipal leadership to his work at FCM, where he served as Manitoba Director from 2009-2014. His hard work and resolve to show that a strong and united FCM provides a more effective voice for all municipalities led to Manitoba reaching the benchmark of 100 per cent FCM membership.
Ann MacLean Award
The Ann MacLean Award for Outstanding Service by a Woman in Municipal Politics recognizes retired municipal leaders who have shown exemplary service to their community and constituents and to mentoring women who want to run for elected office. It is named in honour of FCM Past President, Ann MacLean, who led FCM´s campaign to increase the number of women in municipal politics across Canada.
This year's recipient is Ms. Audrey Green of Renfrew, Ontario. Her 35 year municipal career began in 1972 when Ms. Green was elected as the first female councillor in Renfrew. During her career as councillor, reeve, and finally mayor, she blazed a trail for many other women who entered public life both as elected officials and staff. Her guidance and wisdom helped influence and shape an entire generation of female leaders in Renfrew and it will serve as a wonderful example for many years to come.
Green Champion Awards
The FCM Green Champions Awards are presented annually to an individual and a municipality that have demonstrated outstanding leadership and commitment to implementing sustainable development initiatives within their organization and their communities. The FCM Green Champions Awards were developed to promote and reward municipal champions, inspire municipal governments, and showcase and encourage the exchange of best practices among Canadian communities.
This year's individual honouree is the Chief Administrative Officer for Marwayne, Alberta, Joanne Horton.
Ms. Horton has shown consistent leadership and dedication to environmental and sustainability projects in Marwayne. She has helped create Marwayne's "Looking to the Future" short and long term sustainability plan and has also helped local non-profit boards track energy consumption and ensure that new buildings meet LEED Shadow standards.
As CAO, she played a central role in ensuring that sustainability was considered in almost every aspect of Marwayne's downtown revitalization project. She led the planning, open houses, funds generation, volunteer coordination and implementation, and encouraged council to examine all the environmental factors involved in such an important project, from brownfield site soil remediation to water and sewer infrastructure.
The project breathed new life into the village, and this past February won an FCM Sustainable Communities Award for best Neighbourhood Development Project.
The recipient of the 2016 municipal Green Champion Award is the Region of Waterloo, Ontario. Since establishing a long term Regional Growth Management Strategy in 2001, the region has doubled transit ridership vastly reducing GHG emissions, established a Community Environmental Fund in 2011 which to date has invested $540,000 into 80 community environmental projects, built 11 buildings to LEED silver standards and decreased annual water consumption by 5 billion litres over the past decade.
The Region of Waterloo has already surpassed its 2011 GHG emissions reduction targets and continues to serve as an example of what communities can do when they set their sights on fighting climate change.
Outstanding Contribution to FCM International Programs
FCM-International is proud to bestow its 2016 Awards for Outstanding International Volunteer Contribution to an individual and a regional municipality for their extraordinary efforts to share Canadian expertise and leadership on the international stage.
This year's individual honouree is Mr. Philip Powell, who recently retired from the City of Ottawa after 30 years of service. Mr. Powell is being honoured for his work with FCMI's Caribbean Local Economic Development (CARILED) program. His incredible wealth of experience in market management, social enterprise development, licensing and many other key areas and his ability to tailor these assets to fit the needs in the field make him an invaluable contributor to FCM's international endeavours His reputation for innovation, creativity, engagement, and leadership have also earned Philip high praise from colleagues as "one of the most competent, personable and dedicated volunteers with which we have ever had the pleasure of working."
The winner in the municipal category is the Regional Municipality (MRC) of Argenteuil, Quebec. Argenteuil's elected officials and employees have been invaluable supporters of FCMI's international development initiatives since joining the CARILED program in 2012. The MRC of Argentueil has participated in a total of 8 local economic development missions to date. Among many other contributions, they have worked with women entrepreneurs in St. Lucia and Belize and with farming cooperatives in Dominica and Trinidad as well as hosting many delegations from the Caribbean in their beautiful region.