Volume 12 Week 5

Tuesday, Jan. 21


Posted Jan. 10

Posted Jan. 9

Posted Jan. 7


Orléans Ward
Matt Luloff

Beacon Hill,
Cyrville Ward
Tim Tierney




(Updated 10:30 a.m., Feb. 14)
Ottawa-Orléans MPP honours Leading Women/Leading Girls

By Heather Jamieson
The Orléans Star

The depth of our community’s volunteer sector and its linguistic, cultural and religious diversity were clearly evident on March 9 as Ottawa-Orléans MPP Marie-France Lalonde presented the Ontario 2018 Leading Women/Leading Girls Building Communities awards.

Following a female-only International Women’s Day breakfast for more than 160 local women, Lalonde recognized 30 women and seven girls under the age of 18 as leaders, community builders and outstanding contributors to the community.

Recipients of this year's Orléans Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards pose for a group photo at the Hilton Lac Leamy. Fred Sherwin/Photo

The number of recipients this year is a significant increase from the 18 honoured last year, says Lalonde, indicating both an increased awareness of the program and the value the community places on their contribu-tions. Each nomination requires two letters of support and recipients are chosen by an independent committee.

The women and girls honoured came from virtually every sector of the community, including education, sports, advocacy, faith groups and healthcare.

The most emotional moment of the ceremony was the posthumous presentation to former Blackburn Hamlet resident Linda Platt, who died of cancer on February 13 at the age of 61.

Visibly moved, Lalonde paid tribute to Platt for her kindness, generosity and unfailing desire to help. The award was accepted by Platt’s daughter Lisa Bilow, who described her mother as “an amazing lady” who showed remarkable positivity throughout her illness.

Proving community service can be a family affair, two mother/daughter pairs were honoured: Pascale Bazinet and her daughter Celeste Bazinet Gill, 15, and Lisa DiNoble and her daughter Alison Feltmate, 14.

It’s cool that my mom is the person who inspired me to volunteer,” says Celeste, who volunteers with the Heart of Orléans Market and the City of Ottawa summer camps.

Perhaps the highest praise went to Masjid Bilal volunteer Saida Faiz, who Lalonde said was described as the mosque’s “single most indispensable asset.”

Émilie-Anne Duval was recognized for her contribution to the Queenswood Heights Community Association. She is serving her fourth term as president and has been a member of the association for seven of the 10 years she has lived in the community.

“It is very humbling to be recognized like this,” said the mother of two. “When we get involved in our communities, we don’t expect anything in return. My main reason (for being involved) is because this is where I live. I want to contribute to building a better neighbourhood and a better community.”

In her welcoming remarks, Lalonde highlighted recent provincial government strategies toward economic empowerment for women and urged attendees to embrace the 2018 International Women’s Day theme #PressforProgress.

In a taped message, Premier Kathleen Wynne spoke of the remarkable global movements that are empowering women.

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)





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