Fleming College alumni nominated for provincial awards

Peterborough ON – (December 2, 2019) Fleming College is pleased to name six alumni nominees for the 2019 Premier’s Awards. A total of 118 Ontario college graduates have been nominated this year. The annual awards, presented by Colleges Ontario, honour the important social and economic contributions college graduates make to Ontario and throughout the world. Colleges can nominate their alumni in one of seven categories including Apprenticeship, Business, Community Services, Creative Arts and Design, Health Sciences, Recent Graduate, and Technology. 

“We are very proud to honour the professional accomplishments of these impressive Fleming graduates who continue to make positive impacts in our communities, and our world,” said Fleming College President Maureen Adamson. “To be nominated for a Premier’s Award is an honour in itself. Thank you for representing Fleming College and for all you do in the communities we serve.”  

The 2019 Premier’s Awards nominees representing Fleming College are:


Luke Belfry, Carpenter – General Apprentice (Advanced) ’06

Luke Belfry is the owner of Belfry Custom Carpentry, an award-winning business serving Peterborough and the Kawartha’s since 2007. Belfry’s volunteer and sponsorship generosity helps people in need through organizations such as the United Way, Alzheimer’s Association, sports organizations and Peterborough hospital. Not only does Belfry build amazing structures, he builds a strong community of care.


Phil Heard, Business Administration ‘70

As a distinguished senior executive and consulting business owner, Phil Heard is trailblazing with international events and economic development in Vancouver. Career highlights include championing a $20-Million merger between Hastings Racecourse and Woodbine’s Hastings Racecourse and Great Canadian Casinos, managing Molson Indy, developing a remarkable 2010 Olympic business program, and annually producing the Vancouver International Auto Show for the New Car Dealers Association of British Columbia featuring all worldwide major brands.


Matthew MacNeil, Community Integration and Cooperative Education ‘13

With an infectious loving spirit and contagious smile, Matthew MacNeil is a champion for inclusion. As Chair of the National Voices at the Table for Advocacy Committee for the Canadian Down Syndrome Society and in his 12-year position at Sobey’s, MacNeil changes the way society treats people born with intellectual disabilities. In 2017, he was named Citizen of the Year by the Town of Tillsonburg and invited to address the United Nations at World Down Syndrome Day in New York City.


Craig Harness, Massage Therapy ‘04

Craig Harness is an accomplished Registered Massage Therapist, small business owner, lecturer at Queen’s University, osteopath and founder of the Complementary and Alternative Medicine Human Dissection Experience (CAM – HD Experience) at Queen’s University. The CAM-HD Experience is a ground-breaking dissection opportunity for alternative medicine, an experience previously only available to medical doctors, that gives osteopaths, massage therapists and other CAM professionals a unique hands-on learning experience that will ultimately allow for better patient care.


Ziigwanbinesii (Rachel) Charles, Child and Youth Worker ‘15

Ziigwanbinesii (Spring Thunder Bird) Charles is Mukwa (Bear) clan and her family come from Rama First Nations. As the Cultural Resource Advisor for Dnaagdawenmag Binnoojiiyag Child and Family Services, Charles is passionate about connecting Indigenous peoples to their cultural practices, spirituality and identity. Her volunteerism in First Nations communities includes teaching families traditional hand drumming and membership as a Board Director at Niijkiwendidaa Anishnaabekwewag Services Circle.


Ali Woodley, Parks and Recreation ‘84

With a 33-year career at Honda of Canada Manufacturing, Ali Woodley started as a Paint Inspector and progressively earned her way to VP/Plant 1 Manager located in Alliston, Ontario. She was one of the first female plant managers in Honda North America.  Woodley drives the production of 820 vehicles daily and embraces volunteer opportunities in the workplace that foster diversity in the company’s Lamp: Inclusion and Diversity Program and helps to inspire women of all ages to consider leadership careers in the automotive sector.

Nominees will be celebrated, and winners announced at a gala event in Toronto on December 2, 2019.  To nominate a deserving Fleming graduate for a 2020 Premier’s Award, please contact the Advancement and Alumni Relations Office at 705-749-5530 ext. 1390 or e-mail alumni@flemingcollege.ca.

About Fleming College
Fleming College respectfully acknowledges that we are situated on Michi Saagiig Anishinaabeg lands and territory. Located in the heart of Central Ontario, Fleming College has campus locations in Peterborough, Lindsay, Cobourg and Haliburton. Named for famous Canadian inventor and engineer Sir Sandford Fleming, the college features more than 100 full-time programs in Arts and Heritage, Business, Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences, General Arts and Sciences, Health and Wellness, Justice and Community Development, Skilled Trades and Technology, and Continuing Education. Fleming College has more than 6,800 full-time and 10,000 part-time students, and 75,000 alumni.

About Colleges Ontario

Colleges Ontario is the association representing the province’s 24 public colleges. The association promotes the colleges’ pivotal role in strengthening the economy by producing graduates with the professional qualifications and expertise to succeed in rewarding careers. Colleges Ontario champions policy measures to strengthen the quality of programs available to students and implements province-wide marketing and communications campaigns to promote the full range of programs offered to students.


Media, for more information please contact:

Paula Walton

Alumni Officer


705-749-5530 x 1390

Sara O’Halloran

Communications Officer 


705.749.5530 x 1366