Civic Recognition Program

The Town of Grimsby hosts a Civic Recognition Program every 2 years.  The program is generally hosted in the Spring of even calendar years, and nominations become available a few months prior to the date. Due to COVID-19, the scheduled Civic Recognition for 2020 was postponed, and a new nomination period is open for 2021 awards in its place. 

2021 Civic Recognition Award Recipients

Congratulations to our 2021 recipients! Look for a featured post of each recipient on Town of Grimsby Facebook and Instagram channels throughout the year. 

 50 Quilters Club
Outstanding Volunteer Award - COVID-19 Adapt and Recover 

Over the years, the club has made multiple quilts for those in Shelters/in need. When the pandemic arrived in March 2020, The Quilting Club went into immediate action, making/sewing 3-ply face masks and donated over 3000 hand made face masks to our local hospitals, Hospices and Emergency Workers. By May of 2020, they began to make well over another 1500 face masks that were then provided to the Grimsby Lions Club to use as a fundraiser.

 Barb Wright
  Outstanding Volunteer Award 

Barb is a founding member of Thursday at Ten, a local community programming group started in 1976. She is still relied upon to dig in to set up chairs, turn off lights, organize tables and sell at "book sales".  Over forty-plus years, she has rarely missed a Committee Meeting. She also plays a large role in the yearly Christmas Bazaar, taking on whatever needs to be done to make the event a success.

Barb is also a cherished volunteer at the GBF, McNally House and Trinity United Church and is loved and admired by many people for her community work. 

Barb Wright is a dedicated, reliable, amiable volunteer. 

 Grimsby Beach Community Garden

Special Achievement Award 2

 

Start Up Team: Sharon Porter, Catherine Corey, Hayley Pankhurst and Renee Delaney

 

These four ladies came together and developed a full plan to create a community garden in the Grimsby Beach neighbourhood. The garden is an open, communal style garden, with a wide variety of vegetable and fruit plants. The garden started in the summer of 2019, and now the garden will begin its third season of operation with hopes to expand the garden further.


A great amount of work and detail went in to the garden plans, as well as a continual commitment to maintain the garden. This project also served as an example for others to follow, and a toolkit for the community was developed along side this project.

 

 Grimsby Garden Club

 Special Achievement Award 2

 

The Grimsby Garden Club promotes the beautification of Grimsby recognizing and supporting horticultural efforts to meet this goal. Several programs and activities delivered by the Club are:

1. Annual Trillium Awards Program recognizes the efforts of individual gardeners to design and maintain exceptional gardens

2. Bi-annual Grimsby Garden Tour, selects several outstanding gardens to be appreciated by local and regional garden lovers

3. Annual Garden of the month

4. Annual Hanging Basket Display beautifies Grimsby for the benefit of residents and visitors

5. Design and maintenance of Elm Street Flower Beds

6. Annual High School Scholastic Bursary awarded to a student for horticulture and associated disciplines

 Grimsby Seniors Choir

Special Achievement Award 2

 

The Grimsby Seniors Choir was also nominated for a COVID-19 Adapt and Recover Award.

 

The Grimsby Seniors Choir (GSC) is a social hub for local seniors to come together and sing for more then 25 years. The GSC has been performing two concerts annually and raising funds. In the past decade, they have donated almost $20,000 to 17 different local charities.
Recent highlights by the GSC include:

• Recognition for Good Citizenship by the Brandee Elliot Projects.
• Organizing an Intergenerational CD Project
• Christmas Caroling in downtown Grimsby
• Providing videos of past concerts to local seniors’ homes due to the cancellations of in-person performances

The GSC also responded to COVID-19 by continuing programming as much as possible and keeping their connection to the community through:

• Outdoor, in-person and virtual rehearsals
• Providing videos of past concerts to local seniors’ homes due to the cancellations of in-person performances
• Facilitating phone calls, porch drop offs, and support through the pandemic
• Organizing a pen pal project with local school children and local seniors
• Organizing the Grimsby Sings /Bringing Unity to the Community through Song project.

 Ian Bingham

 Ian BinghamSpecial Achievement Award 2

Ian has volunteered in numerous capacities to support Grimsby and Niagara
residents, including:

• Sitting on the Board of Directors for Community Care of West Niagara
• Raising money for the SPCA through National Cupcake Day 2020 and 2021.
• Organizing the Secret 3K Run in Grimsby in 2020 in support of women's rights, raising over $600 for the Grimsby Girl Guides.
• Organizing a team for Coldest Night of the Year in 2019 and 2020
• Organizing a foot drive raising over 100 lbs of foot care supplies for the homeless in the Niagara Region

 Jane Franks

Outstanding Volunteer Award

Jane was one of the Grimsby Citizens who spearheaded the newly formed Grimsby Lions Club in 2013. Her efforts include supporting numerous BBQ and Festival events, the annual Dog Guide walk for the community and volunteering with two local Retirement homes in Grimsby. Jane also served as Chair of the Childhood Cancer fundraiser for the Club, which raised over $75,000 and secured a Matching Grant of $75,000 from Lions International. The total of $150,000 was donated to the McMaster Children's Hospital, Pediatric Oncology Unit to renovate the Teen Zone.

 

Jane is also a member of the 50 Quilters Club. 

 Jim Howden

 Jim HowdenSpecial Achievement Award 2

Jim Howden has dedicated numerous volunteer hours to special projects, events, and initiatives that have contributed positively to the Grimsby community and continues to do so. Including:

• Volunteer Director: Grimsby Energy Inc
• Past President: Grimsby Rotary Club:
• Fantasy of Trees Committee Chair for 2013/14/15.
• Grimsby Festival of Arts Committee Chair for 2013/14/15
• Past Volunteer Board Treasurer: Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln and West Lincoln
• Past Volunteer Board Treasurer: Grimsby Garden Club
• Past Director: Niagara Community Foundation
• Volunteer Director: Niagara Power

 

 John Leonard Thorton

 John ThorntonOutstanding Volunteer Award

Len Thornton, and his wife Linda, came to Canada from England 38 years ago. In May 2017, their lives changed when Linda was diagnosed with early onset dementia.  Since then Len and Linda have been involved with the Alzheimer Society Niagara Region and Len has been a constant ambassador and has donated his time as a spokesperson of the Society.  Len also volunteers his time to lead a Men's Support and Social group for caregivers who started meeting in Grimsby in June of 2019 and has continued virtually though this pandemic. His knowledge and personal expertise has benefited other men caregivers who participate in various programs.  Len's approach to promote awareness for caregiver's in our community is exceptional. 

 Jonathan Wetselaar

Outstanding Volunteer Award 

Jonathan has, for the last 6 years, been an integral volunteer within the Grimsby Basketball Association. He has dedicated countless hours coaching, mentoring and convening for the betterment of our youth within our community. Jonathan has assisted in promoting the sport of basketball as a life lesson to our young members. He has coached at the development, rep/travel and the house league level, effortlessly giving his time to those in need of it. Jonathan is also the first to volunteer to assist with the GBA's community participation in the Santa Claus Parade and the annual Downtown Festival. His selfless sacrifice has set an excellent standard for our youth to follow and become outstanding members of our community.

 Laura Graham

 Laura GrahamSpecial Achievement Award 2

Laura Graham spent over 100 hours volunteering for the Grimsby Public Library, the Grimsby Museum, and Grimsby Historical Society to scan copies of the Grimsby Independent newspaper. The digital image files were then uploaded to the Our Ontario Newspapers website to make them accessible to the general public. Laura completed over 2,000 scans during her work on this project.

By helping to digitize and upload scans, Laura contributed to preserving a vital historical document that would be useful for anyone doing historical or genealogical research on events covered by The Grimsby Independent. The community owes a debt of gratitude to Laura for helping the public understand and access Grimsby’s history.

 Liza Fuller

 Liza FullerSpecial Achievement Award 1

Liza Fuller was nominated twice this year, for Special Achievement 1 and 3.

Liza Fuller won Canada’s Backyard Contest in Communities in Bloom in 2018 highlighting Grimsby and promoting an appreciation for nature. She is also an active member of the Grimsby Garden Club, including coordinating the Earth Day Tree and Shrub Sale in 2021 to promote the planting of Carolinian Native Trees.

Liza is also crossing the milestone of over 30 years of exceptional service to the Grimsby Town Youth Soccer Club. Liza is an excellent ambassador for the Club and has always been dedicated to its players, coaches, referees and supporters.  Her passion and commitment to Soccer over the years has been very much appreciated and respected.  

 Mike Rilstone Jr. 

 Mike RilstoneSpecial Achievement Award 1

Mike is a local videographer and photographer who was recently nominated by the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television for a 2021 Award for Best Photography, Lifestyle or Reality/Competition. Mike received this nomination working as the Director of Photography for the TV program “Making it Home with Kortney and Dave.”

 Pamela Bowen

Outstanding Volunteer Award 

Pamela, a neighbour of Mountainview Church, initiated the idea for an outdoor skating rink on the Church Property. Pamela went door to door, speaking with neighbours and building a group to move the project forward. Gathering donations, sponsorship and materials, the rink was built and opened by volunteers providing a valuable outdoor activity when the community needed it most.

She inspired neighbours and demonstrated initiative to our youth. Winter 2020-2021 was different for the neighbourhood. Pamela made life better for many.

 Peter Zwart

 Peter ZwartOutstanding Volunteer Award

Once settled in Grimsby, Peter lived up to his indefatigable nature by quickly joining several volunteer organizations and accepting different roles of responsibility with them. Including:

  • Peter is an active member of the Grimsby Men's PROBUS Club and has been on the management committee for the last seven years as Secretary. In addition he has been the Editor, (publisher, photographer, writer and distributor) of the Club's, informative and colourful monthly Grimsby PROBUS Newsletter.
  • Peter has been an active member of the Mountainview Christian Reformed Church in Grimsby and serves as the parish Archivist.
  • Peter is also a long standing member of the Grimsby Seniors Club and serves conscientiously on its executive as Secretary and also helps with the publication of their newsletter. In more recent years, Peter lends his voice to singing in the acclaimed Grimsby Seniors Choir.
  • Currently, Peter sits on the Family Committee at Shalom Manor where Anna is now a resident.

Peter Zwart has contributed significantly to the quality of life in our community
through his involvement in numerous volunteer positions.

 Rob Falconer

 Rob FalconerOutstanding Volunteer Award 

Rob was instrumental in the rebirth of the Grimsby Lions Club back in 2013. His tireless efforts and commitment, working with other supporting Lions in our District, facilitated the current Grimsby & District Lions Club to grow and flourish in the Grimsby community and beyond. He has also been a committed member of Lions International since 1996 when he first became involved with the Grimsby Lions Club. During this time, he has undertaken various positions including the President of the Club on four occasions, along with Senior Leadership positions with the local District Lions Clubs.

He has served the Grimsby community through his membership with the Grimsby & District Chamber of Commerce, including their Board and Executive for four years. Rob has also served as a Lay member for the Parks and Recreation Committee of Grimsby between 2014 to 2018.

 Ron and Gillian Mauro

 Ron and Gillian MauroSpecial Achievement Award 1

In 2019, Gillian Mauro and her father Ron volunteered their time to bring an international wheelchair tennis tournament to Grimsby. A year in the making, 27 athletes descended on Grimsby showing the precision and skill that goes into the sport and giving wheelchair tennis the attention it deserves. An additional tournament is scheduled for 2022. Ron and Gillian should be commended for bringing this event to Grimsby. 

 Sandi Ward

 Sandi WardOutstanding Volunteer Award 

Sandi Ward is the founder and leader of Newcomers and Neighbours of Grimsby & Area. The social club offers a warm welcome to both newcomer and the established residents of Grimsby and Area and to promote opportunities to develop lasting friendship. Sandi works tirelessly to schedule small activities and gatherings through the group, and during COVID-19 adapted to hold virtual activities and outdoor walking and hiking groups. 

 Shelley Trocki

 Shelley TrockiOutstanding Volunteer Award

Shelley Trocki has been instrumental in building Pickleball in Grimsby, advocating for the sport and organizing local residents to give them an opportunity to play. Shelley singlehandedly spearheaded a group of over 80 residents to facilitate outdoor play on Grimsby's Outdoor Rink. From setting up the nets, scheduling daily play, and ensuring COVID-19 guidelines are met, Shelley has poured countless volunteer hours into giving residents access to a valuable outlet for physical activity. Shelley was also key in the advocacy for the Outdoor Pickleball Court installation coming Fall 2021.

 Simon Duong

 Simon DuongSpecial Achievement Award 2

 

Simon is an active member of the Grimsby community and volunteers tirelessly for the benefit of Grimsby residents.

 

He is the President of :

  • Grimsby Minor hockey
  • West Niagara Minor hockey
  • Niagara District Hockey League
  • Grimsby Peach Kings
  • Chairman of Happening in Grimsby 

In addition to his work with these community groups, Simon has organized fundraisers for members of the community that are undergoing financial hardship. He helped raise $10,000 + for  Lane Tadeson, a boy in Smithville who had a rare disease called, PANDAS , the boy had to travel out of province for treatment and this helped the family cover some of those costs. He also held a fundraiser for Nicole Martens who lost her husband last summer kayaking on Lake Ontario. He raised over $10,000 to help her family manage expenses in the coming years.

 

Stephanie Husband

 Stephanie HusbandOutstanding Volunteer Award - COVID-19 Adapt and Recover

Stephanie Husband is the President of the Grimsby Skating Club. While her dedication to the club and the sport have long been known in Grimsby, Stephanie went the extra mile to keep children on the Ice during COVID-19. As a scheduler, screener, organizer, etc. Stephanie put in countless extra volunteer hours to ensure local skaters had the chance to participate and play in 2020.  

Tim Scholman

 Tim SCholmanOutstanding Volunteer Award 

Tim is constantly donating his time and energy to organize community volunteers through NewLife church at various events such as Family Day at the Peach King Centre, The Santa Claus Parade, and serving as a board member for Happening in Grimsby. Tim has been instrumental at making sure there are inflatables for the children at the Forty and other local events. If Mr. Scholman has time available, it's spent thinking about our community. He builds parade floats, organizes groups to assist at community events and, often, he and his family are known to volunteer at the Grimsby Benevolent Fund. If anyone has community spirit it is Tim. 

Civic Recognition Categories:

Special Achievement Award

  • Citizens who have achieved Provincial, National or International Recognition and, in doing so, have brought honour to the Town of Grimsby.
  • Citizens who have completed special projects, voluntary in nature, that have brought favourable publicity to the community or that have contributed positively to the Grimsby community.
  • Citizens who have achieved a special milestone through community service efforts. (eg.  50th anniversary of a volunteer organization serving local purposes).

Outstanding Volunteer Award

  • Those who in the view of  Town Council, have contributed significantly to the quality of life in the community through their volunteer efforts.

NEW - Outstanding Volunteer Award - COVID 19 Adapt and Recover 

  • Citizens and community organizations who have contributed significant volunteer efforts towards Grimsby’s COVID-19 recovery. (E.g. providing assistance and support to residents impacted by the pandemic.

Advertisements for the program will be posted in the newspaper, on social media, and in community buildings.

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