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Date: February 21, 2012

Distinguished Community Heros Honoured At 2012 VLAs Ceremony

The annual Victoria Leadership Awards (VLAs) showcase the distinguished accomplishments of local heroes — our city's very own Academy Awards for community volunteerism, dedication and achievement. The many inspirational achievements of Victoria’s community leaders were celebrated today at the eighth annual VLA gala at the Fairmont Empress hotel. Led by Leadership Victoria, the awards are a partnership between Leadership Victoria, the University of Victoria, the Rotary Clubs of Greater Victoria, the Victoria Foundation, and (new this year), the United Way of Greater Victoria. The awards aim to recognize outstanding contributions to the vibrancy of our community.

A total of 29 nominees were honoured at the 2012 Victoria Leadership Awards. This year’s recipients are:

  • Leadership Victoria Lifetime Achievement Award honours outstanding current or posthumous long-term service in community leadership roles such as philanthropy, innovation, mentoring and career achievement (previously announced) — Naz Rayani
  • University of Victoria Community Leadership Awards acknowledge outstanding leadership in linking UVic and the community for greater public benefit — Mary Ellen Purkis and Andrew Weaver
  • Rotary Community Leadership Awards recognize community leaders who meet the Rotary test of the highest levels of ethical behaviour and community leadership benefit — Bruce Williams and Christopher M. Causton
  • Vancity Youth Award recognizes a young leader between the ages of 20 and 30 who demonstrates community leadership in one or more of the following areas: people - building wealth with those who need it most; planet - sustaining our environment; places - promoting community growth and change — Leanna Hill
  • Leadership Victoria Alumni Award recognizes a graduate of the Leadership Victoria program who continues to demonstrate outstanding leadership and service in the Victoria community — Jeannette Hughes
  • Victoria Foundation Community Leadership Award recognizes an organization that is building community capacity and achieving positive change — Pacific Centre Family Services Association
  • United Way of Greater Victoria Award for Collaboration and Partnership recognizes an individual leader in a non-profit organization who is building community capacity by creating partnerships and collaboration — Kathy Stinson
  • Royal Roads University Leadership Excellence through Coaching and Mentoring Award recognizes long term and outstanding service in community leadership roles that specifically focus on coaching and/or mentoring — Sherry LeBlanc


Established in 2004, the VLAs honour accomplished community heroes who inspire and mentor others to become involved in improving the quality of life in Greater Victoria.

Leadership Victoria is a community-based, voluntary organization committed to developing, supporting, recognizing and honouring outstanding community leaders. Since its formation in 2000, it has become the go-to organization for community leadership in Greater Victoria, graduating over 230 leaders who work collaboratively to resolve the complex challenges facing our city.

Information about all nominees for this year’s awards, including biographies and photographs, is available at www.leadershipvictoria.ca.

Backgrounder with further details on each winner is attached. Photos are available upon request.

Media contacts:

Ivan Watson (Communications Director, Leadership Victoria) at 250-418-0700 or ivan@leadershipvictoria.ca
Kate Mansell (Chair, VLA Steering Committee) at 250-478-3872 or katemansell@shaw.ca

Victoria Leadership Awards 2012
Photos page:
Distinguished Community Heros Honoured At 2012 VLAs Ceremony Images

UVic media releases and other resources for journalists are available on the World Wide Web at http://communications.uvic.ca/media

(image: fern)