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Premier’s Awards Nominees

Alumni success is something to celebrate. Each year, Fleming College nominates six graduates for a Premier's Award for outstanding achievements and honours them at the Colleges Ontario awards gala in Toronto.

Premier's Awards

The Premier's Awards recognize the important social and economic contribution college graduates make to Ontario and around the world. The six award categories are Business, Creative Arts and Design, Community Services, Health Sciences, Technology and Recent Graduate (within five years).

Nominations are submitted from each of Ontario's 24 colleges in six categories: Business, Creative Arts and Design, Community Services, Health Sciences, Technology and Recent Graduate (within five years). The nominees are honoured at a gala event in Toronto where category winners are announced.

If you know of a Fleming College graduate who deserves a Premier's Award nomination, please contact the alumni@flemingcollege.ca.

2018 Premier's Awards Nominees

Business

Tim McClure
Sporting Goods Business, 1986
Tim McClure, Sporting Goods Business, 1986

Tim McClure is a seasoned marketing professional with over 25 years of senior management experience. Tim has successfully managed teams to record-breaking results throughout his storied career. Much of Tim's success has come from his ability to electrify teams and develop them into highly respected, winning organizations. After a life altering experience with cancer, Tim refocused his energy on the creation of the Great Next Chapter Foundation, an organization committed to offering emotional assistance to people coping with life threatening illnesses. Currently, Tim is a highly sought-after motivational speaker and business and brand consultant at Tim McClure & Partners.


Creative Arts & Design

Bill Deba
Parks and Forest Recreation, 1985
Bill Deba, Parks and Forest Recreation, 1985

Bill Deba is an entertainer, creator and leader in the international loggersports industry. Owner of The Lumberjacks Company and producer, director and host of the LUMBERJACKS TV series, Bill is instrumental in using film to highlight the accomplishments of loggersport competitors across North America. Producing more than 230 episodes, the show has traveled to Ireland, Switzerland and Germany, in addition to destinations across Canada and the U.S. Bill is a household name within the loggersports industry and his dedication to keeping the sport active through TV film has greatly contributed to its continued programming at colleges and universities across Canada.


Health Sciences

Graham Bashford
Personal Support Worker, 2002
Graham Bashford, Personal Support Worker, 2002

Graham Bashford has been serving seniors in various capacities since 1994. With his extensive experience in both facility and home care, he could see certain aspects within the system were flawed. He wanted to make a difference, and in 2012 Graham decided to reinvent home care and began his passionate journey with Castle Keep Retirement. Castle Keep has received various awards including Employer of the Year. His motto, "The answer is yes, now what's your question", gives you a clear vision of his unique services offering personalized home care and companionship for seniors in the City of Kawartha Lakes.


Recent Graduate

Dylan Trepanier
Business Administration, 2018
Dylan Trepanier, Business Administration, 2018

Dylan Trepanier is ambitious and determined to solve the vision-loss crisis occurring in Ontario, and beyond. He has dedicated the last 5 years of his life to learning the scope of the industry, how it performs, how it could be more efficient, and where market trends are predicting shifts in health care services. His business Alexander Optical, uses a business model that could be referred to as "uber for optometrists" with clients lined up in, waiting for service in an orderly fashion. Alexander Optical is a procurement platform of ready to be serviced clients available to our expertly trained optometrists.


Community Services

Kathi Curtin-Williams
Social Service Worker, 2009
Kathi Curtin-Williams, Social Service Worker, 2009

Kathi Curtin-Williams is a social worker and community organizer, specializing on issues of homelessness, poverty and food security in the City of Peterborough. A recipient of two Civic Awards from the City of Peterborough for her volunteerism, Kathi consistently goes beyond the job of a social worker, emerging herself in social issues and becoming a leader who has a vision for change. Co-founder of the Peterborough Pet Food Bank (which has assisted over 20,000 pets since its inception in 2013), and The Livingroom drop in centre, Kathi is able to bring community partners together to work towards a common goal.


Technology

Brian Coones
Electronics Engineering Technologist, 1994
Brian Coones, Electronics Engineering Technologist, 1994

Brian Coones is a successful entrepreneur and technology professional who is the co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Ikkuma, a wellness platform for companies and workplaces. Ikkuma uses gamification to engage employees and believes that every organization can energize their culture by authentically helping employees get healthier and happier. As no one-shoe-fits-all, it is Ikkuma's mission to be agile, responsive, and engaged in their clients' success. Brian's work to develop, support and update this software (available as an app or on desktop) has directly led to Ikkuma's success, and they have supported company giants like Mattel Canada and Magna International.


2017 Premier's Award Winner

Duane Parnham
Mineral Engineering Technology / Geological Technician-Mineral, 1985
Duane Parnham, Mineral Engineering Technology / Geological Technician-Mineral, 1985

With a successful business track record, Duane Parnham is a prominent entrepreneur who champions the high-risk development of mineral resource companies. Since 1996, Duane's companies have generated over CAD$1.2-billion in investor returns. In 2011, The Parnham Foundation was established by Duane and his family to support academically talented—yet economically disadvantaged or underprivileged—students from Namibia, Africa in pursuing a diploma at an Ontario college. In addition to the Foundation, Duane's charitable support includes a gift of CAD$1-million made to an Ontario college which was the largest single gift to an Ontario college by an alumnus.


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2017 Premier's Awards Nominees

Community Services

Michael VanDerHerberg
Geomatics Technician, 2005
Michael VanDerHerberg, Geomatics Technician, 2005

Michael VanDerHerberg is a compelling advocate for causes in social housing, refugee settlement and community development, in both his professional and personal endeavors. His ability to unite people for the greater good has created a community spirit of unprecedented volunteerism and non-profit success. His innovative approached to the Syrian Refugee Crisis helped 43 government assisted refugee families settle in the Peterborough community and he recruited 300+ local volunteers to support them. VanDerHerberg and his wife Andrea own the Silver Bean Café, a welcoming and popular community summertime hub known as the “waterfront cottage in the city”.


Creative Arts and Design

Glenn Ogden
Museum Management and Curatorship, 2002
Glenn Ogden, Museum Management and Curatorship, 2002

Glenn Ogden is an award-winning visionary and the Creative Development Specialist with the Canadian Children's Museum at the Canadian Museum of History. He considers museum interpretation theory, visitor knowledge and museum best practices in creative processes he uses to develop powerful exhibition experiences and interpretive products. Exhibition credits include the Canadian War Museum’s ‘Canadian Experience Galleries’ and the Canadian Museums Association’s award-winning ‘Afghanistan: A Glimpse of War’ and ‘1812’. Ogden commemorated Canada 150 as a core-team member responsible for showcasing 15,000 years of history in the 40,000 square feet Canadian History Hall, a $30-million exhibition revealing Canada’s story as never seen before.


Health Sciences

Heather Lee, RN, BScN
Nursing, 1987
Heather Lee, RN, BScN, Nursing, 1987

With 30 years of experience as a Registered Nurse and Health Care Executive, Heather Lee is championing the future of health care in Rural and Northern Ontario. As the CEO of Sioux Lookout Meno Ya Win Health Centre (SLMHC), Heather collaborates with partners across the province to strengthen relationships within First Nations communities. While delivering operational success, Heather focuses on integrating traditional and modern medicines and practices, respecting the aboriginal cultural and linguistic diversity. With a passion to find solutions to the youth suicide crisis, Heather encouraged staff to complete suicide intervention training and increased the psychologist visits to SLMHC.


Recent Graduate

Thomas Wilkins
Business Administration - Marketing, 2015
Thomas Wilkins, Business Administration- Marketing, 2015

Thomas Wilkins has embraced a corporate teamwork environment, demonstrating outstanding creativity and leadership early in his career. As a User Experience Analyst at Cossette, Thomas played an influential role in developing the ‘SickKids VS’ fundraising campaign for SickKids Foundation. The campaign was the most successful promotion in the Foundation’s 143 year history and earned seven CANNES Lion awards, the marketing industry’s most recognized accolade around the world. Now as a Senior Strategist for FCB/SIX, Wilkins applies his award-winning digital marketing expertise to strategize with clients. He volunteers as a mentor for college and university students and entrepreneurs and is a SickKids Activator.


Technology

Al Stinson
Forestry Technician, 1977
Al Stinson, Forestry Technician, 1977

With 36 years in predominant roles with Ministry of Natural Resources and Forests, Allan Stinson retired as Forest Science Specialist. He developed Ontario’s first Silvicultural Tree Marking program that gained national and international interest and created the Forest Science Partnership that on average committed $9-million annually to forest research and sustainable development in Canada. Dedicated to enhancing aboriginal forest management opportunities, Stinson negotiated the first tree harvest allocation for four First Nations in the Nipissing Forest. In 2015, Stinson became the first college graduate to be elected President of the Canadian Institute of Forestry since its inception in 1908.


2016 Premier's Awards Nominees

Business

Tracey Randall
Tourism and Transportation, 1988
Tracey Randall, Tourism and Transportation, 1988

Tracey Randall's international experience working on the Olympic circuit, volunteering in Zambia, and directing events at Unilever Canada, has fueled her ability to become an accomplished and innovative event management professional in corporate, community, and volunteer settings. As the General Manager of Peterborough Musicfest—the longest free summer concert series in Canada, celebrating 30 years—Tracey generates $4.7 million annually in tourism for the Peterborough area and encourages visitors to relocate to The Kawarthas. She is a Board Director for Peterborough Economic Development and assisted with Women's Professional Golf Association tours, the PanAm Games, and The National Ballet of Canada.


Community Services

John Lyons
Law and Security Administration - Customs Administration, 1984
John Lyons, Law and Security Administration - Customs Administration, 1984

John Lyons' passion for public safety and a spirited community empowers his ideas and leadership that impacts law enforcement, social reform and education for community betterment. In memory of a young drowning victim, John championed a nation-wide 'Swim-to-Survive' program, teaching water survival skills to youth and adults. In September 2015, the Ontario Provincial Police awarded John, and his team of detectives, with an accolade for outstanding and meaningful contribution to the community and extensive work on a high profile homicide case. John's volunteer positions support education, alumni, and social actions, including the prevention of violence against women and AIDS resources.


Creative Arts and Design

Irene Karsten
Art Conservation Techniques, 1994
Irene Karsten, Art Conservation Techniques, 1994

Irene Karsten's passion for preserving Canadian history and specialization in conservation inspires her to effectively protect and save artifacts with high cultural value and vulnerability. As the Preservation Development Advisor for the Canadian Conservation Institute, Irene conducts broad-based facility assessments, conducts emergency preparedness workshops, and develops risk management solutions for museums, heritage groups, and galleries. She is also the editor for the Journal of the Canadian Association for Conservation of Cultural Property. In 2013, Irene remarkably salvaged and stabilized several thousand artifacts from the Museum of the Highwood collection that were submerged for two weeks after the Alberta flood.


Health Sciences

Dr. Tammy O'Rourke
Nursing, 1991
Dr. Tammy O'Rourke, Nursing, 1991

Dr. Tammy O'Rourke is a catalyst for change in primary health care, focusing on team-based delivery models. She practiced as a Registered Nurse for ten years prior to spearheading Ontario's second Nurse Practitioner (NP)-led clinic as the Chief NP and President. Her doctoral dissertation and published research on NP-led clinics in Ontario has influenced change in Alberta's primary care system. Dr. O'Rourke implemented a unique Collaborative Community Care for Seniors initiative in Alberta, which was the largest of its kind in Canada. Her volunteer leadership roles engage her expert level perspectives within professional networks and as an international keynote speaker.


Recent Graduate

Peter Andreas
Biotechnology Technologist - Forensics, 2013
Peter Andreas, Biotechnology Technologist - Forensics, 2013

As a Biology Researcher at Trent University, Peter Andreas investigates biochemical cross species interactions between plants and insects and is a key contributor to post-doctoral research. He co-invented a water remediation system with Noble Purification founder Adam Noble, which was patented in September 2013. Peter is also a Professor in Fleming College's Advanced Biotechnology program, where he provides students with a combination of life-science elements and job-ready skills. As a Second Career graduate, having previously co-owned Andreas Masonry, Peter's scholastic achievements were recognized by faculty and peers, receiving a Biotechnology Faculty Award and the Class of 2013 Valedictorian honour.


2015 Premier's Awards Nominees

Business

J. Todd Ulrich, C.E.T.
Business Leadership, 1998
J. Todd Ulrich, C.E.T., Business Leadership, 1998

Success driven and results-focused, Todd Ulrich is Director of Services for GE Healthcare Canada leading GE Canada's largest medical equipment installation and service team. In 2014, the region achieved record-setting revenue results. Working with GE Energy, Todd sold profitable Wind Energy Services contracts totaling over $70M. Advancing into several leadership roles at FisherCast Global, Todd directed the achievement of gross margin improvement with year over year results. As the United Way Peterborough Campaign Chair in 2000, Todd championed the fundraising of $2-M to set a record for the most money raised in the history of the local United Way.


Community Services

Renée Hodgkinson
Social Service Worker, 1998
Renée Hodgkinson, Social Service Worker, 1998

Renée Hodgkinson is a certified coach with the International Coaching Federation. She provides executive management coaching to those working in the not-for-profit, charitable, and social enterprise sectors including Free the Children and Me to We, an enterprise she re-branded. Renée has paved the way in creating innovative youth leadership and social justice programming within Canadian school boards and through volunteering in Kenya, India, China, and Nicaragua to empower youth to take action on issues that they are passionate about. Renée was honoured in Chatelaine's Top 80 Women to Watch and The Globe and Mail's Top 100 Women of Canada Award.


Creative Arts and Design

Wanda McWilliams
Art Conservation Techniques, 1986
Wanda McWilliams, Art Conservation Techniques, 1986

Wanda McWilliams is the Director of Collections Management and Conservation at The Canadian Museum of History, Canada's most visited museum and a respected centre of museological excellence. Wanda oversees the preservation of the National Collection consisting of more than four million artifacts, specimens, sound and visual recordings, works of art, and archival records that have shaped Canada's history and identity, at home and abroad. She leads a specialized team in the development, application and dissemination of best practices in cultural property management, as well as enables access to the collection and knowledge though internationally recognized lending, exhibiting and learning programs.


Health Sciences

Sharon Pitawanakwat
Nursing, 1990
Sharon Pitawanakwat, Nursing, 1990

As a young mother facing profound personal challenges, Sharon beat the odds and completed academic upgrading and post-secondary education. A nurse by profession, Sharon is now the CEO of the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) - Thunder Bay. She leads CMHA towards the implementation of recovery oriented practice that inspires hope and well-being for individuals challenged with mental health and addictions issues. In 1995, while employed at Dilico Ojibway Child and Family Services, Sharon led the largest health transfer initiative resulting in the delivery of health care to ten First Nations communities when local services were previously not available.


Recent Graduate

Rhonda Belous
Social Service Worker, Accelerated Program, Aboriginal Focus, 2013
Rhonda Belous, Social Service Worker, Accelerated Program, Aboriginal Focus, 2013

As the Head of Development with Europe and The Middle East Global Network for Rights and Development, Rhonda Belous ensures the effectiveness of development projects. With the Canadian High Commissioner of Jamaica and Canadian Navy, Rhonda helped to transform a rail car into an internet station where youth gain computer skills and access career counselling. Her college internship led to a Communications Training Advisor role for Cuso International, Jamaica Diaspora Institute and Mona Social Services. Rhonda managed three international election observation missions in Tunisia and organized 500 Norwegian students in a march to honour the school girls abducted in Nigeria.


Technology

Robert Jameson, C.E.T., Fellow OACETT
Electro-Mechanical Engineering Technology-Robotics, 1982
Robert Jameson, C.E.T., Fellow OACETT Electro-Mechanical Engineering Technology-Robotics, 1982

Bob Jameson is the dynamic President and CEO of Canadian Instrumentation Services Group. He commissioned both the largest hydro generator in Canada and the largest water volume pump storage unit in the United States. Bob credits his success to providing a rewarding and happy environment for customers and employees (60% are Fleming College graduates)-emphasizing that it is never sacrificed to gain a profit. At Tetra-Pak, Bob increased milk sales exponentially with the development of Moo-to-Win milk cartons. Through lead volunteer roles with OACETT and Fleming College, Bob strongly encourages college education for skilled trades and technology careers.


2014 Premier's Awards Nominees

Business

David Cain
Business Administration - Data Processing, 1978
David Cain, Business Administration - Data Processing, 1978

David Cain is an inspirational change champion. He retired as the Founder and President of TeamCain, a company specializing in distribution and warehousing solutions for businesses in Canada, the United States, and Europe. David raised business standards in his field by building his company to reflect his personal morals of integrity, caring and customer satisfaction. Since retiring from TeamCain in 2006, David volunteers as President of Friends of Honduran Children. He inspires positive change in Central America by focusing on delivering sustainable programs that provide necessary aid, supplies and skills that allow Hondurans to obtain self-sufficiency and personal fulfillment.


Community Services

Lorrie Baird
Early Childhood Education, 1985
Lorrie Baird, Early Childhood Education, 1985

An expert in pedagogical leadership with 30 years of experience, Lorrie cares for and educates our youngest citizens. She spent many years exploring the Reggio approach to learning and applied this pedagogy and engagement in reflective practice to transform early childhood education. She is the Associate Executive Director for Kawartha Child Care Services in Peterborough where she championed the implementation of Reggio Inspired Emergent curriculum into 25 sites when this innovative approach was rarely considered. Lorrie is a contributing author in Ministry of Education documents that support early learning. She shares expertise worldwide, most recently inspiring Ontario's First Nations communities.


Creative Arts and Design

Barb Bolin
Recreation Leadership, 1972
Barb Bolin, Recreation Leadership, 1972

Barb brings visual art to life throughout Ontario. She is a catalyst for new education and community economic development initiatives related to the arts. After 35 years, Barb retired as the Principal/Dean of Fleming College's Haliburton School of the Arts where she grew a small part-time education centre to a nationally recognized institution. Barb is the founding Chair of the Haliburton Sculpture Forest and the Haliburton Highlands Arts Council. She is the epitome of volunteerism and community involvement. Barb's work over 40 years has positively shaped the creative arts and cultural landscape industry-wide in the province.


Health Sciences

Julie Cordasco
Nursing, 1989
Julie Cordasco, Nursing, 1989

Julie's 25 year nursing career took her from caring for infants at SickKids to seniors at Prime Care Family Health Team. A Registered Nurse, Julie was Milton's first aging-at-home visiting nurse to help seniors stay home longer with health and dignity. Julie cared for thousands of patients during two medical missions to Guatemala to help natives from Merendon Mountains and is a trained volunteer with GlobalMedic / GlobalFire to assist in disasters worldwide. A Rotarian with Burlington North, Julie fosters youth programs and received the highest honour Rotary can bestow on a person - the Paul Harris Fellowship Award.


Recent Graduate

Joshua See
Environmental Visual Communications, 2013
Joshua See, Environmental Visual Communications, 2013

Joshua is a visual journalist helping society understand our interactions with the natural world. Primarily using photography and videography, Joshua helps organizations reach their education, conservation and communication goals. Based on connections through Fleming College's Environmental Communications program, Joshua has photographs and articles published in Royal Ontario Museum and Alternatives Journal magazines; he contributed significant video content to the TVO documentary series, Museum Diaries; and travelled to destinations in Guyana, Costa Rica, and Western Mexico to film. With a background in natural sciences and photojournalism, Joshua is in a unique position to better communicate science and environmental stories.


Technology

Eric DenOuden
Civil Engineering Technician, 1979
Eric DenOuden, Civil Engineering Technician, 1979

As the Founder, Owner, and President of the award-winning Hilden Homes, Eric has a gift of being a natural-born leader. Eric chaired the $1-M Children's Safety Village and Home Build for Health Care projects to unite community in partnership to support youth, education, and health. As President of the Ontario Home Builders' Association and 2nd Vice-President of the Canadian Home Builders' Association, Eric is the voice of thousands of residential construction professionals across Canada advancing a $42 billion industry in Ontario. He has championed community builds through volunteering to construct or help fund community centres, churches, and schools in developing countries.


2013 Premier's Awards Nominees

Business

Mary Babcock
Business Administration - Marketing, 1988
Mary Babcock, Business Administration - Marketing, 1988

Mary Babcock has risen rapidly in her field to Regional General Manager of over 140 staff, managers, editors and directors. She has won recognition at the highest levels within Metroland for excellence and effective leadership across a business of over 110 newspapers. Metroland newspapers, under her direct responsibility, have grown at rates far exceeding industry averages. While extremely committed to her work, Mary finds time to serve with multiple community organizations including sitting on the boards of the United Way, Food For Kids and Home Builders Association and furthering her Fleming experience by recruiting and mentoring Fleming grads.


Community Services

Jon Popple
Police Foundations, 2001
Jon Popple, Police Foundations, 2001

As Manager of Enforcement in the Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury, Jon Popple demonstrates commitment to the Ontario Municipal Government, specifically law enforcement. His positive influence in volunteer leader roles within the Municipal Law Enforcement Officers' Association of Ontario (MLEAO) is marked in achievements at the provincial and federal levels. Jon developed countless professional training programs, created new levels of certification and accreditation, and spearheaded the creation of the MLEOA Honour Guard, a group that honours fallen members. He promotes valuable services and education to local organizations, and at provincial conferences, to ensure safe communities and desirable places to live.


Creative Arts and Design

Sarah Beam-Borg
Museum Management and Curatorship, 1997
Sarah Beam-Borg, Museum Management and Curatorship, 1997

Sarah Beam-Borg, Exhibition Manager and Assistant Curator at the Bata Shoe Museum, has managed over thirty compelling museum exhibits that find a true balance between collection preservation and a desire to inspire visitors. Sarah managed 'Out of the Box', an exhibition designed by famed Canadian designer Karim Rashid and turned the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences' idea into reality with the JUNO Sole: Celebrating 40 Years of the JUNO Awards exhibit, featuring shoes worn by Canadian music icons, JUNO nominees and winners. Sarah makes it her goal to exceed visitor expectations through creative, authentic, educational galleries and programs.


Health Sciences

Paul Rosebush
Social Services Worker 1981
Paul Rosebush, Social Services Worker 1981

Paul Rosebush, the President & CEO at South Bruce Grey Health Centre, is a visionary and strategic leader in health and human services. His extensive background provides advancements in hospital, health, social services and long-term care settings. Paul provided Canadian Forces troops in Rwanda and Bosnia with psycho-social support and developed military health programs. Paul introduced the first Northwest Territories Group Living Program for disabled adults; a Short-Term Assessment and Treatment home for dually diagnosed individuals; and geothermal energy solutions to reduce costs, preserve the environment and redirect savings to health care - a first for small hospitals in Ontario.


Recent Graduate

Tracey Osborne
Massage Therapy, 2009
Tracey Osborne, Massage Therapy, 2009

As the owner of Absolute Therapeutics in the Town of Cobourg, Tracey is committed to excellence with a focus on individual care by offering unique services and convenience of accessibility to relieve pain and stress and to improve mobility. Since she opened her business in 2010, Tracey has won nine awards for her success and business contributions. Tracey's community involvement is remarkable. She actively sits on a committee that helps local businesses thrive during an unstable economy; she educates high school and college students as a guest speaker; and participates in an average of three local charity events per year.


Technology

Murray Hall
Fish and Wildlife Technician, 1980
Murray Hall, Fish and Wildlife Technician, 1980

Murray Hall is renowned as a Canadian innovator. He founded Halltech Environmental Inc. and Halltech Aquatic Research where he designed and produced countless custom fresh water sampling apparatus, integrated the first GPS receivers with rugged computers for georeferencing large data sets in remote locations and developed the first Canadian-made Backpack Electrofishing System. Murray is a pioneer in precision in the agricultural sector as he broke ground with the first high-precision autopilot system on a tractor using GPS. This technology is now widely spread within the industry to allow farmers the ability to greatly reduce the amount of fertilizers and herbicides they are using to improve surface and groundwater quality. Murray became the first to successfully transport 200,000 live mink breeding stock to Dalian Province, China and reduced mortality rates from 10% to 0% over five shipments. Murray's many distinguished awards from industry partners include the Ontario Global Trader's Award for Innovation and the Award for Market Expansion.

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