The VCLAs celebrate the inspiring stories and successes of community leadership in Greater Victoria.
For the past 15 years, our region’s business, government and community sectors have been recognizing the contributions of local leaders who demonstrate commitment, inspiration, encouragement and accomplishment.
From all of us at the The Victoria Community Leadership Awards team, we are grateful for your example and achievement!
2019 VCLA award winners
Arts and Culture - Sponsored by Victoria Foundation
A passionate communicator and a natural leader devoted to promoting diversity and inclusion in the arts, particularly for persons of colour, of different faiths and from Indigenous communities.
An artist, teacher, and community leader who creates a caring and inclusive community using the creative arts to include those who are marginalized by disability or health issues to fully participate.
Belonging and Engagement - Sponsored by Royal Roads University
A dedicated and passionate supporter of collaborative leadership which she brings to chairing HeroWorks and the radical renovations and transformative community-building events her organization heads up.
Dr. Rhonda Hackett
A passionate advocate for the community challenges of immigration, particularly in the fields of separation and reunification, mental health, HIV/AIDS, disabilities and African Caribbean women’s health.
Thriving Children and Youth - Sponsored by Coast Capital
As Executive Director of the Young Parents Support Network, her passion and leadership skills are used to advocate for young parents under the age of 30 needing vital resources for healthy living.
A dance teacher dedicated to giving her students opportunities to learn, to grow and thrive during their teens in a supportive, non-competitive, and caring environment.
Healthy Safe Environments - Sponsored by Bayview Place
Taking concrete actions that inspire and support others to take action for a sustainable future, through tireless work and a love for our West Coast environment.
Rebecca Wolf Gage
A born leader, this 13-year-old has spent more than half her life as a fearless and tenacious advocate for our climate.
Getting Started in Our Community - Sponsored by Vancity
Provides psychological assistance to immigrants and refugees on Vancouver Island to ease their integration and ability to start their lives in new communities.
The 2018 Black History Month laureate, who works with business groups and educational institutions to engage them on issues of diversity, equity and inclusiveness across our community.
Health & Wellness - Sponsored by Victoria Foundation
A passionate supporter of local farms and who works hard to increase food literacy, revitalize sustainable food systems, and increase better access to good food in our community.
Through his persistence in overcoming obstacles of his own, he has become a leader in our community caring for the most impoverished, marginalized, and vulnerable among us.
Lifelong Learning - Sponsored by University of Victoria
A lifelong educator who passionately believes that we can all grow into a fuller sense of ourselves by working collaboratively to make our community a better place to live.
Her tireless efforts on behalf of children and youth excluded due to disabilities have directly impacted the way these members of our community are treated in our schools.
Healthy Standard of Living - Sponsored by BC Transit
Heading up Community Micro Lending enables this community leader to connect local lenders to local borrowers in Southwest BC to ensure small businesses contribute to strong economic development.
She created an outlet for peer support and advocacy by and for tenants and works collaboratively with people across our community to make our region vibrant, accessible and inclusive.
Extending Reconciliation - Sponsored by City of Victoria
Dr. Billie Allan
This Two Spirit Anishinaabe scholar navigates the topic of Indigenous health and wellbeing, including the impact of racism and child welfare programs on the health and wellness of these peoples.
Monique Gray Smith
Monique wants a better and brighter future for Indigenous people, and sees them as our future leaders, lawyers, teachers; or whatever they want to be.
Innovative Science & Technology - Sponsored by Victoria Foundation
As an immigrant and CEO of FreshWorks Studio, he knows that a lack of networks and projects can be disastrous and is committed to making an impact in ways that assist the most vulnerable.
Outstanding Leadership Award - Sponsored by Leadership Victoria
Angela's passion stems from her values of diversity and inclusion. Her graduating class of the 2019 Community Leadership Development Program selected as this year’s winner for embracing learning, overcoming challenges and heightening her leadership skills.
2018 VCLA award winners
Debra Bartlett 100 Women Who Care
Shelley Mann 100 Women Who Care
Sandy Webb 100 Women Who Care
Kim Sabourin 100 Women Who Care
Lynn Henshaw 100 Women Who Care
Catherine Mustafa 100 Women Who Care
Dr. Lara Lauzon University of Victoria
Vince Greco Vancouver Island Soccer League
Kristi Fairholm Mader Scale Collaborative
Nicole Chaland Cook St. Village Residents Network
Lynn Thornton VIDEA
Dr.Bruce Wallace University of Victoria
Dr. James Tanaka University of Victoria
Shazia Rashid BC Muslim Association
Colleen Hobson Saanich Neighbourhood Place
Kate Longpre Intercultural Association of Victoria
Denis Donnelly Getting Higher Choir
Siobhan Robinsong Getting Higher Choir
Beangka Elliott Project Reclaim/Victoria Sexual Assault Centre
Lee Herrin Fernwood Neighbourhood Resource Group
Estelle Paget KidCare Canada Society
Dr. Jessica Rourke Restorative Justice Victoria
Lindsay Shaw Period Posse
Dave Friend Friendly Organics
Debra Alcadinho Westshore Women's Business Network
Lori McLeod Eldercare Foundation
Cathy Armstrong The Land Conservancy
Robyn Quinn Island Women in Science and Technology
2017 VCLA Winners
Starting in 2017, we chose to celebrate a wide range of stories from all aspects of community life.
The Little Free Libaries Mapping Project
Teale Phelps Bondaroff
Esquimalt Farmers Market Society
Shelbourne Community Kitchen
The Shoebox Project
Westshore Youth Health Advisory Committee
Westshore Parent Education & Support Group
Cycle for Life Tour for Hospice
The Mistletoe Project
The Greater Victoria Literacy Initiative
Creatively United for the Planet
Books for Babies Program
Prior to 2017
From 2004 - 2016 the awards were administered to Honourees who were recognized in nine categories.
LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT IN COMMUNITY LEADERSHIP
Recognizing a community leader's long term and outstanding service in community leadership roles such as philanthropy, innovation, mentoring and career achievement. Past winners of this award are:
- 2016: Judith Armstrong and Nick Marsden, Operation Trackshoes
- 2015: Clarence (Butch) Dick
- 2014: Mickey and Donna Hajash
- 2013: Robert Harman
- 2012: Naz Rayani
- 2011: The Late Alex A. Campbell
- 2010: Rev. Tom Oshiro
- 2009: Ted and Helen Hughes
- 2008: The Late Jane Heffelfinger
- 2007: Ron Lou-Poy
- 2006: Fiona Hyslop
- 2005: Mel Cooper
UNIVERSITY OF VICTORIA AWARD: FOR COMMUNITY LEADERSHIP
Recognizing exemplary leadership in linking the University of Victoria and the community for greater public benefit. Past winners of this award are:
- 2016: Frank Low
- 2015: Bill Anderson and Bruce Parisian
- 2014: Helene Cazes and Donna Greschner
- 2013: David Lai and Ana Maria Peredo
- 2012: Mary Ellen Purkis and Andrew Weaver
- 2011: Bernie Pauly and Michael Prince
- 2010: David Burns
- 2009: Elaine Gallagher and Bud Hall
- 2008: Sibylle Artz and Bonnie Leadbeater
- 2007: Glenn Gallins and Ian MacPherson
- 2006: David Leeming and Rebecca Grant
- 2005: Marge Reitsma-Street and Nigel Livingston
ROTARY CLUBS OF GREATER VICTORIA AWARD: FOR COMMUNITY SERVICE
Recognizing leadership in community service that demonstrates the highest standards of personal integrity and ethical behaviour. Past winners of this award are:
- 2016: Deborah Antonsen
- 2015: Kelly Reid and Scott Treble
- 2014: Gordy Dodd and Cindy Moyer
- 2013: Colin Smith and Gordon Harper
- 2012: Chris Causton and Bruce Williams
- 2011: Sandra Richardson
- 2010: Charlayne Thornton-Joe
- 2009: Trudi Brown and Bea Holland
- 2008: Bob Skene and Mabel Jean Rawlins
- 2007: The Late Roger Colwill and Terry Farmer
- 2006: Michael Kovacs and Hajimohammed Charania
- 2005: Bob Beckett and Barbara Smith
UNITED WAY GREATER VICTORIA AWARD: FOR COMMUNITY COLLABORATION AND PARTNERSHIP
Recognizing an individual leader in a non-profit organization who is building community capacity by creating partnerships and collaboration. Past winners of this award are:
- 2016: Ready to Rent BC
- 2015: Maureen Sawa
- 2014: Kelly Greenwell
- 2013: Jean McRae
- 2012: Kathy Stinson
VICTORIA FOUNDATION AWARD: FOR COMMUNITY CAPACITY AND CHANGE
Recognizing an organization that is building community capacity and achieving positive change. Past winners of this award are:
- 2016: Artemis Place Society
- 2015: Pacifica Housing Advisory Association
- 2014: The Cridge Centre for the Family
- 2013: Victoria Cool Aid Society
- 2012: Pacific Centre Family Services Association
- 2011: Volunteer Victoria
- 2010: Victoria Women's Sexual Assault Centre
- 2009: Victoria Native Friendship Centre
VANCITY SAVINGS CREDIT UNION AWARD: FOR SOCIAL INNOVATION
Recognizing leadership that challenges the status quo and develops new approaches to community challenges in the areas of social justice, food security and financial empowerment. This award was created for 2016 and was sponsored by Vancity Savings Credit Union, which previously sponsored the Youth Leadership Award.
- 2016: Amanda Evans
COAST CAPITAL AWARD: FOR CHILDREN AND YOUTH LEADERSHIP
Recognizing a young leader between the ages of 15-30 who demonstrates community leadership. Past winners of this award are:
- 2016: Jordan Perrault
- 2015: Alex Harned
- 2014: Sarah Rose Robert
- 2013: Rupinder Prihar
- 2012: Leanna Hill
- 2011: Jill Doucette
- 2010: Katie Shaw
- 2009: Ivan Watson
- 2008: Roselynn Verwoord
- 2007: Ashley Heaslip
- 2006: Robin Irving
ROYAL ROADS UNIVERSITY AWARD: FOR LEADERSHIP EXCELLENCE THROUGH COACHING AND MENTORING
Recognizing long-term and outstanding service in community leadership with roles that specifically focus on coaching and/or mentoring either professionally or informally. Past winners of this award are:
- 2016: Lily Seto
- 2015: Ingrid Bergmann
- 2014: Tammy Dewar
- 2013: Dianne de Champlain
- 2012: Sherry LeBlanc
LEADERSHIP VICTORIA AWARD: FOR ACCOMPLISHED ALUMNI
Recognizing a graduate of the Leadership Victoria Community Leadership Development Program. This award celebrates a Leadership Victoria Alumni who has demonstrated the principles of leadership while making a significant impact on a community issue or need. Past winners of this award are:
- 2016: Erika Ladouceur
- 2015: Maja Tait
- 2014: Yasmin Rampuri
- 2013: Shawn Steele
- 2012: Jeannette Hughes
- 2011: Rick Anthony
- 2010: Laura Walsh
Thank you to the countless volunteers who create this amazing event. If you are interested in volunteering for the VCLAs (approximately a 20-50 hour commitment per month for 3 months) please email for details