2020 Community Recognition Award Nominees

Community Partnership Award Nominees

This Award is granted in recognition of outstanding partnership/support from a community agency or business over an extended period of years or through a significant initiative that has directly benefited OCDSB students.

Jayne GauthierJayne Gauthier, Whitehaven Kindergarten School Age Centre 

D. Roy Kennedy Public School

As the Director of Whitehaven Kindergarten School Age Centre at D. Roy Kennedy, Jayne has built a strong connection with the entire school community – from sharing resources and skills, to donating equipment to the program, to her work on the preschool reading buddies program.

Jayne sits on the Parent Council as a member at large and has previously been Chair of the Parent Council for both D. Roy Kennedy P.S. and Meadowlands P.S. This past holiday season, she used her own resources to help the staff at Elizabeth Wyn Wood Secondary Alternate Program stock their foodbank shelves with toiletries. She has also facilitated literacy kit and math game exchanges and helped to ensure that resources are circulated throughout the board. 

Jayne has offered countless workshops to ensure that the best, most current practices are foremost in the classroom and childcare centres. In her more than 39 years as an Early Childhood Educator serving the school board, Jayne has worked tirelessly to ensure that families have access to quality and affordable care.



Distinguished School Council Service Award Nominees

This Award is granted in recognition of the outstanding efforts of a school council or school council member for making a significant contribution to enhancing the learning experience of students at a school and/or system level. 

2020 Community Recognition AwardAmina El Sharif

Earl of March Secondary School

Amina has proven to be a Student Council member who goes above and beyond for her school. Her love for the student voice is evident and much appreciated by the Earl of March community. She initiated the first-ever roundtable discussion featuring the student trustees and a variety of students, enabling her to collect data and create goals. This roundtable event has now been implemented at other schools around the Board with the help of the Senate. 

After many organizations of town halls, attendances to Senate, and Student Council and Parent Council meetings, Amina continues to listen to all voices in her community and push for changes that would benefit the school community tremendously. Her hard work, passion, and dedication to her craft has spoken volumes throughout the past four years of high school. She continues to impress with her accomplishments.

Connie DavidsonConnie Davidson

Lakeview Public School

Connie has been part of Lakeview School Council for 8 years. She plays a significant behind-the-scenes role for the school. She is the IT specialist and continually updates the website, writes and sends out the newsletter, manages sales of things like popcorn and pizza, and was the creator and manager of the council’s first-ever online auction last year.

In addition to all the online help, Connie is at almost every event as a volunteer, from book fairs, to the annual Mayfair event, to off-site events such as the Ottawa 67s fundraiser. She is insightful, a team player, and incredibly supportive of the important work that Lakeview Council does. She has contributed invaluable work over her 8-year tenure on the council, and this will be her last year at Lakeview. Her contributions and positive attitude will be missed!

Rick WirthlinRick Wirthlin

Pleasant Park Public School

Rick was the Parent Council Treasurer for three years from 2015 to 2018. He also helped out with many Parent Council-led events at the school over the years, such as the Book Sale and Year End BBQ. Treasurer is not an easy position to fill, and Rick did it with dedication. 

Rick’s son is graduating this year. The Parent Council recognizes Rick's involvement with the council, school activities, and events, and appreciates the time and effort that he has put into the years he was on the Executive. It has always been a pleasure to work with him.

Julie SmithJulie Smith

Stittsville Public School

Julie has been a regular School Council volunteer who has gone above and beyond. She has a small home business producing silkscreen clothing, and for almost a decade, she has supplied spirit wear for the school. In 2018-2019, Stittsville P.S. sought out a partnership with Pinecrest P.S. as sister schools. The Stittsville P.S. Council funded the purchase of school t-shirts for the entire Pinecrest school, and Julie made 425 Pinecrest T-shirts for students.

Julie is the kind of volunteer who takes on whatever work is needed. She volunteered to organize and run the sale of food at the school Funfair. She was also a regular food program volunteer. Julie can be found volunteering at every major school event – from movie nights and dances, to Cake Walk, to Funfair – always taking on jobs like clean-up or set-up with a smile.

Julie rarely misses a School Council meeting. All the things she does truly build the school community.



Community Award Nominees

This Award is granted in recognition of outstanding efforts of a member of the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board community in developing an initiative that directly supports the well-being of our students. 

Gabrielle Fayant-Lewis and Dani LanouetteGabrielle Fayant-Lewis and Dani Lanouette

Assembly of Seven Generations

Gabrielle originates from Fishing Lake Metis Settlement, Alberta and is an award-winning woman for her work in the community. Dani is Anishinaabe from Neyaashiinigmiing Anishinaabekiing and Algonquins of Barriere Lake. She is currently in the Combined Honours in Indigenous and Canadian Studies program at Carleton University.

Assembly of Seven Generations (A7G) is an Indigenous-owned and youth-led non-profit organization focused on cultural support and empowerment programs and policies for Indigenous youth, while being led by traditional knowledge and Elder guidance. Opportunities include weekly gatherings; wellness seminars; language learning drop-in sessions; community round dances; land camp; elders and youth gatherings; seasonal land-based sharing and learning; and a Canadian Roots Exchange between Unceded Algonquin Territory (Ottawa) and Fishing Lake Metis Settlement (Alberta).

Most recently, A7G has raised funds to support youth living with food insecurity. They have also supported a youth-led and youth-authored report mapping and highlighting Indigenous youth services in Ottawa. Their commitment to Indigenous youth is outstanding and directly supports many Indigenous children and youth who attend the OCDSB.



Excellence in Equity Community Award Nominees

This Award recognizes the contribution of a parent, volunteer, business community member of organization to support the alignment and integration of equity and inclusive educational principles and practice over an extended period of years or through a significant initiative that has directly benefited OCDSB students. 

June GirvanJune Girvan

June has been a constant champion for the importance of inclusivity and justice for our newcomer and visible minority community. As June stated: "As we all do know, what society does for children today, is equipping them to do for society ‘tomorrow’."

History has not been kind to children of African descent in the system. This is recognized and clearly stated in the Board’s May 15, 2018 adoption of the UN Decade for People of African Descent. As a volunteer, June has put months of work into this major project with the OCDSB. She has been following up to assure that the Board's pledge/covenant in the May 18, 2018 adoption of the intent of the Decade continues to be honoured. 

June does this because she wants to make sure that children of African descent, who have few role models that look like them in the OCDSB, make meaningful contributions to our society. She is a strong advocate for those who have faced injustice.


Volunteer of the Year Award Nominees

This Award is granted in recognition of the substantial contribution of a parent volunteer or community volunteer over an extended period of years or through a single significant initiative that has had a positive impact on students.

Don GerlitzDon Gerlitz

Adult High School

Don has been a volunteer in the Board’s Central Orientation Class (COC) for a number of years. He goes above and beyond with the students, spending three days a week in the classrooms. Students from past years still stop by to visit Don.

Amid the challenges of COVID-19, Don immediately sought opportunities to continue working with students online to ensure that vulnerable students could access language instruction at home. His concern for everyone in the class is obvious.

Don is an experienced volunteer who needs little direction when working through math or language lessons, which is extremely helpful when working with this diverse group of students.

Kimberly ChenKimberly Chen

Castor Valley Elementary School

Kim has been an active volunteer at Castor Valley Elementary School for many years. Her positive and hardworking attitude is a good example for all students and parents at the school and in the community.

Kim is very altruistic – even though she is a very busy working mom, she always has the students’ well-being first in mind. She has been volunteering as a member of the School Council for many years, and she also leads many of its most important fundraising activities, such as Christmas Shopping and Fun Night. These activities are the kids’ favourites and the council’s biggest fundraisers. She also volunteers for the Milk Program and will take the lead of the Hot Lunches Program next year. 

Everything Kim undertakes is always a success, and she does it all with a very humble spirit to make the school a better place.

Tracy DavidsonTracy Davidson

Elmdale Public School

Tracy has been an active volunteer at Elmdale Public School since 2013, volunteering once a week at the school whereever she is needed. She also works as a classroom volunteer, coordinates helpers for the library, and takes on various roles through the School Council, including Health and Safety lead, Volunteer Coordinator, BookFest committee Public Relations lead, Movie Night organizer, as well as Grade 1 Craft Club. Tracy works tirelessly on these projects, always with a smile and positive outlook.

Tracy takes pride in what she does, ensuring every decision and task is well thought out and completed to the best of her ability. Her work ethic is admired and respected by staff and community members alike. Her spirit and enthusiasm significantly contribute to the positive climate in the school. She recognizes all the students. She gives Elmdale so much of her time, talent, energy, and heart. Tracy's efforts are invaluable, numerous, and appreciated by the school community.

Camille Yip HoiCamille Yip Hoi

Farley Mowat Public School

Camille works tirelessly to support all aspects of student life at Farley Mowat, including co-chairing the School Council for the past two years, volunteering in the JK/SK classrooms for six years, coordinating and assisting with school-wide food programmes (pizza, Subs) for years, and volunteering for school trips and council activities. 

Camille is always one of the first volunteers to support any school initiative. She is always looking for the next activity or contribution she can make in order to create an engaging and vibrant school environment for all students at Farley Mowat. She helps create a warm and welcoming environment: most students know her by first name and love to see her walking down the school halls! 

Melissa AitkenMelissa Aitken

Goulbourn Middle School

Melissa has been on the executive of the Goulbourn Middle School Council for a total of six years. She consistently gives her time and energy to any initiative the council runs. As Chair, she leads by example and participates in every council event – often taking the lead to ensure that events can move ahead. Her dedication and commitment to the school make the council effective in many initiatives. 

Melissa has also been an integral member of the Stittsville Public School Council and the South Carleton High School Council. Her approach to leading council creates a welcoming environment, where others are comfortable joining and contributing as much as they can in terms of time and commitment. This is Melissa’s last year as a Goulbourn Middle School parent, and the council appreciates everything she has done for the school over the past several years.

Debbie HameluckDebbie Hameluck

Jockvale Elementary School

Debbie has been volunteering at Jockvale Elementary School for the past eight years and has been a member of the School Council for four years. She demonstrates ongoing leadership and commitment to every student and staff member and regularly visits the school. 

Debbie’s dedication is demonstrated through her tireless efforts to enhance student wellbeing through fundraisers, food programs, social opportunities, and school spirit initiatives. Her hands-on approach recognizes the importance of tradition within the school, yet also pays very close attention to the importance of the student voice in everything she does. It is Debbie's last year as a member of the Jockvale Pride. Her contributions have exceeded far beyond any expectations.

Tanvir MinhasTanvir Minhas

Merivale High School

Since graduating from Merivale High School in 2011, Tanvir has given countless hours of his time back to the school almost every year. He has coached Junior and Senior Boys’ and Girls’ Volleyball in both the head and assistant positions. He exercises patience, is relatable, understands students, models commitment, and is a great coach. 

Tanvir has done all of this while pursuing his career in medicine and starting his family. He sets an example for students of selflessness, passion for sport, and dedication to being one’s best at everything one does.

Jamie Nickerson

Vimy Ridge Public School

Jamie Nickerson is very involved in the Vimy Ridge community. She is the School Council Secretary and sits on multiple committees. Jamie actively volunteers her time every morning doing the Kiss and Ride drop offs. Three days a week, she can be seen at school for the lunch program. 

Jamie takes care of the Lost and Found, keeping it neat and tidy and arranged to donate unclaimed items to a school in need. She has turned her garage into a collection depot, actively seeking out e-waste items for a fundraiser. 

Jamie has volunteered countless hours in the classroom, helping children to read, setting up and manning the twice-yearly Book Fair, implementing programs in the Maker Space, and organizing fundraisers such as the Spring Fling and Movie Night. Jamie is an invaluable volunteer, and Vimy Ridge Public School wouldn’t be the same without her.

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