On Tuesday, April 10th, I had the honour of celebrating thirteen incredible women and girls in Ottawa West-Nepean through our second annual Leading Women, Leading Girls Awards. You can read the Ottawa Citizen’s story on the awards here.
These awards recognize women and girls whose exceptional leadership has made a positive difference in our community.
When I asked Ottawa West-Nepean residents for nominations, incredible stories poured in from around the riding. From a young girl empowering her peers by teaching self-defense, to an accomplished individual promoting women in public life both here and abroad, Ottawa West-Nepean is blessed to count these individuals as our own. I was especially impressed by the young students we honoured on Tuesday – they are all well on their way to changing the world!
One of the things I enjoy most about this event is that it highlights what a caring community we live in. Ottawa has one of the highest rates of volunteerism in Canada–something to be very proud of!
I would like to share with you the impressive accomplishments of this year’s Leading Women, Leading Girl Award winners in Ottawa West-Nepean:
• Kameela Alibhai: For her leadership, mentorship and volunteerism of her peers at school and in her community.
• Nancy Bullis: For her work creating programming for individuals with Multiple Sclerosis.
• Marlene Catterall: For promoting the participation of women and girls in public life with the Famous 5 organization.
• Achan Akwai Cham: For her extensive volunteerism with the Boys and Girls Club, The Provincial Youth Council, and Child and Youth Friendly Ottawa.
• Anne-Clara Gingras: For her commitment to teaching self-defence to her peers.
• Joan Heard: For her work creating programming for individuals with Multiple Sclerosis.
• Janice Long-Mills: For her dedicated volunteerism with Matthew House, aiding new-comers to our community.
• Cheryl Matthew: For her leadership initiatives for Aboriginal women and girls.
• Vanessa Modeste-Doherty: For her mentoring efforts and for her work coordinating Ottawa’s Martin Luther King Day celebrations.
• Safia Rasheed: For her long-standing work with the South Nepean Muslim Community.
• Marina Smiley: For her dedicated volunteerism with Matthew House, aiding new-comers to our community.
• Emma Thuot: For her leadership and mentorship of her peers with the Parkwood Hills Flip Action Committee, a youth advisory committee in the Parkwood Hills community.
• Anita Vandenbeld: For her strong commitment to promoting the participation of women and girls in politics.
These volunteers are the heart and soul of our community; their dedication and selflessness is truly an inspiration to us all. Congratulations!
To learn more about the Leading Women, Leading Girls Awards, visit www.Ontario.ca/Women
I look forward to your nominations for next year’s awards!
Bob Chiarelli, MPP