Honorary Citizen Award
2021 Honorary Citizen Award Recipients
The City of Victoria is pleased to announce the 25 recipients of its 2021 Honorary Citizen Award. The public was invited to co-nominate individuals who have performed outstanding service and personal achievements for the betterment of the community.
Award recipients are current or former residents of the local First Nations, the City of Victoria and the Capital Region, and have demonstrated outstanding contributions in the areas of arts and culture, business, communication, community volunteering, education, environmental stewardship, heritage, Indigenous, multiculturalism, social and health issues, sports, and youth up to 24 years of age.
This year, the City received the most nomination packages it has in recent award years, and the number of recipients almost doubled. Congratulations to this year's recipients!
- Andrew Beckerman: For work as a volunteer and charitable leadership in assisting his homeless neighbours, advocating to advance equality, promoting health care, protection of human rights for his LGBTQ2+ and HIV+ peers, education and strengthening cultural institutions.
- Trevor Botkin: For efforts as Executive Director of HeroWork Victoria. Trevor has brought together Victoria’s construction industry and many volunteers to complete major renovations for charitable organizations, ensuring they can continue to deliver, or to expand, their services. Past projects include renovations for Mustard Seed, Anawim House, PEERS, and Threshold Housing, among others.
- Adrienne Carter: For efforts as Co-Founder and Director of Services with the Vancouver Island Counselling Centre for Immigrants and Refugees (VICCIR) which works to remove barriers that often prevent marginalized communities from seeking mental health assistance.
- Eddy Charlie and Kristin Spray: For their volunteer, community building and reconciliation efforts associated with the Xe xe Smun’ eem-Victoria Orange Shirt Day: Every Child Matters Ceremony. Together, Eddy and Kristin have helped to shift the consciousness and awareness of thousands of Victoria residents; they have inspired others in the Indigenous community to speak up about residential school experience and abuses; and they have been leaders in a movement so significant that it has resulted in the new statutory holiday, the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.
- Robin-Lee Clarke: For efforts as President and Managing Director of The Butchart Gardens. Robin-Lee has maintained a renowned destination through the pandemic and the 2008 financial crises, all while promoting tourism to Greater Victoria, prioritizing environmental practices and being one of the largest employers in the region. Robin-Lee is the great granddaughter of Robert Pim and Jennie Butchart.
- Keith Dagg: For decades of volunteerism and lending expertise to many community-based causes. Keith has also been a driving force behind bringing several world-class sporting events to Victoria.
- Jane Devonshire: For work as a volunteer and advocate related to emergency preparedness and environmental causes. Jane is involved with numerous regional organizations working to promote sustainable solutions to help combat the climate crisis.
- Nəʔəmtənat Florence Rose Dick: For work as a spokesperson, a knowledge keeper, a teacher, a partner in Reconciliation, and for acting as a representative of the Lekwungen speaking people, and a liaison to the settler community. Florence mentors young people in the Songhees Nation, and mentors non-Indigenous people who want to engage in Reconciliation.
- Kim Dixon: For work as the Executive Director of James Bay New Horizons. Kim has expanded programming and created a positive community for seniors in Victoria. During the pandemic, Kim ensured the centre not only stayed open but created new programs to support isolated seniors.
- Dr. Bonnie Henry: For work and leadership during public health emergencies including: COVID-19, Ebola, SARS, pandemic influenza and the opioid crisis. Dr. Henry is a committed and passionate public health physician who has worked at all levels of public health practice in Canada and internationally.
- Ivonne Hernandez: For pursuing musical excellence, for pushing cultural boundaries and for providing youth mentorship. Ivonne is Victoria’s most decorated fiddler, winning numerous B.C. provincial Fiddle Championships as well as a European Fiddle Championship. Ivonne has won a prestigious Juno Award and graduated Magna Cum Laude from the Berklee School of Music in Boston. Ivonne is also a successful music teacher and mentor to youth fiddlers.
- Carole James: For a lifetime dedicated to social justice, fairness, equality and public service. Carole has held several elected positions, has spent countless hours volunteering and has been a passionate community builder in the region throughout her adult life.
- Raven Lacerte: For co-founding the Moose Hide Campaign at 16 years of age, to raise awareness about the issue of violence against Indigenous women, girls, and 2-Spirit people. Raven is now a National Ambassador for Moose Hide and works both provincially and nationally on behalf of Indigenous women and the Carrier Nation.
- Pamela Madoff: For being dedicated to the betterment of Victoria, and to ensuring its liveability for people from all walks of life. Pamela has been involved in neighbourhood planning, the expansion of parks, and is best known for her community work to preserve heritage architecture throughout the city.
- Andrei Marti: For work as a youth advocate to raise awareness for Type One Diabetes. Additionally, for fundraising efforts in association with the Help Fill A Dream Foundation and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
- John McEown: For community leadership and volunteering time and expertise for many decades to deliver services to people experiencing homelessness. Additionally, for initiating and contributing to major fundraising efforts towards such projects as Our Place and My Place on Yates Street.
- Jean McRae: For long-time work as CEO of the Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria. Jean has promoted inclusion, equality and diversity in Victoria while creating a welcoming environment for immigrants and refugees. For many years, Jean also ran two art festivals focused on creating community, FolkFest and Luminara.
- Shelley Morris: For work with the Cridge Centre for the Family for 40 years, including as CEO, in which time the Centre has become a renowned leader in family and social services. Shelley is dedicated to improving the lives of Victoria residents facing adversity, while building and leveraging off community, government and business relationships to create and grow programming.
- Tara Moss: For work as an international best-selling author of 13 books, published in 19 countries, in over a dozen languages. Tara is also a UNICEF Ambassador and an award-winning advocate for the rights of women, children and people with accessibility concerns and disabilities.
- Carey Newman: For work as a leader, role model, change maker and educator. From the Kwakwak’awakw Nation, Carey is a Coast Salish artist, master carver, singer, volunteer, author, and a well-known speaker about the spirit of reconciliation. He has worked on various reconciliation initiatives and delivered important contributions to the field of Indigenous education.
- Dr. Jillian Roberts: For advocacy for children and families, and for work directly with them, providing mental health and wellness counselling. Dr. Roberts is also a recognized children's author and media influencer and focuses on providing support, resources and advice for families grappling with many of today’s complex issues, including prejudice and racism, poverty, gender differences and climate change.
- Asiyah Robinson: For being a champion of social justice, a gifted poet and public speaker, and a tireless community volunteer. Asiyah has served as the President of the UVIC Muslim Student Association, a core organizer for the Victoria’s Black Lives Matter rally in June of 2020 and has been a consistent advocate for issues pertaining to reconciliation, multiculturalism, homelessness and environmentalism.
- Gloria Roze: For working closely with the Indigenous Street Community (ISC) in Victoria as an Elder Mentor and as a cornerstone of the Aboriginal Coalition to End Homelessness Society (ACEH). In this role, Gloria has built strong familial relationships with many members of the street community, providing a safe and caring environment through a gentle, non-judgemental, and loving approach.
- Bruce Saunders: For work to promote arts, culture and community cohesion through the Movie Monday initiative, which has become a place for fellowship, empathy and conversation. Bruce is also a passionate volunteer and mental health advocate.
Learn about past recipients.
The Honorary Citizen Award program was established in 1970 as an official recognition of persons who had, over time, served the city meritoriously in any walk of life, often in a volunteer capacity and without recognition. The awards are presented every four years.
The 2021 Honorary Citizen Award selection committee consists of co-chairs Councillor Charlayne Thornton-Joe and Councillor Ben Isitt and six previous recipients: Gordy Dodd, Fran Hunt-Jinnouchi, Frances Litman, Ben Pires, Rob Reid and Rupert Yakelashek.
How to Nominate
Nominees were to be a current or former resident of the local First Nations, the City of Victoria or the Capital Region, and must demonstrate outstanding contribution(s) in one or more of the following categories:
- Arts and Culture
- Inspirational Youth (up to and including 24 years of age)
- Social/Health Issues
NOTE: Previous recipients were not eligible for nomination, except for recipients of the Inspirational Youth category once 10 years had elapsed.
Nomination packages were to include a completed nomination form signed by two nominators, a statement of nomination, a digital photo of the nominee for publication purposes and two letters of support.
- Honorary Citizen Award Nomination Package
- Honorary Citizen Award Nomination Package – accessible file
For more information, please read the Terms of Reference below:
There were three ways to submit your nomination package:
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- In Person: Victoria City Hall Public Service Centre, #1 Centennial Square (enter from Pandora Avenue) Note: Please wear a face mask when visiting City Hall.
- By Mail: Print and mail package to City of Victoria, Honorary Citizen Award Committee, #1 Centennial Square, Victoria, BC V8W 1P6.
For more information, please email email@example.com or call 250.361.0200.