Avtar Gosal

Avtar Gosal is an exemplary British Columbian who has worked to create a harmonious role for the Indo-Canadian community. He was an integral part in the establishment of the Immigrant Services Centre in Vancouver; he has helped new immigrants meet language and cultural challenges; he effectively represents the Indo-Canadian community at conferences and boards at the city and provincial levels. An active fundraiser, Avtar has also assisted with eye research, cancer programs, and with the Children’s Hospital Indo-Canadian fundraising committee.

Surinderpal Rathor

Surinderpal Rathor has volunteered more than 52,000 hours to the City of Williams Lake, the surrounding areas and to his Indo-Canadian community . Currently a respected city councilor, Surinderpal has been involved in fundraising for community events, has been a member of the local health board, founded the Community Policing Committee and also assists new immigrants and the underprivileged whether it is preparing income tax returns or acting as an interpreter. Of Surinderpal, his nominator says, ‘he is a blooded soldier in our volunteer community service army. He stands very tall in our community and is held in high esteem. He carries a presence wherever he goes’.

Marion Hunt-Doig

Marion Hunt-Doig is a cultural trailblazer and educator. Since 1974, Marion has presented her First People’s Program, sharing the traditions of the First Nations culture and heritage to children and adults in her community, in BC and around the world. Marion’s unique program is part museum exhibit, part lecture and part dance recital, all designed to highlight the First Nations culture. The centerpiece of her program is the button blankets that she so carefully makes. A talented fabric artist, these blankets tell the story of her family. Marion is a living example of how to build bridges between cultures and encourage relationships and partnerships that result in an enriched community.

Jacob Schuurman

The community of Cloverdale is richer because of Jacob Schuurman’s spirit of compassion for the underprivileged. He works tirelessly for the benefit of others and, on a day-to-day basis, making an significant difference in his community. Jacob established and continues to lead the local soup kitchen, he leads the Christmas Hamper program and he has been involved in the Big Brothers’ Association, the Surrey Emergency Services Society and has been active in his local Church and its program. He spends an enormous amount of personal time to help those who cannot help themselves without any expectations in return. Jacob is truly a community achiever.

Beryl Itani

As the volunteer emergency social services director for the City of Kelowna and latterly for the Central Okanagan Regional District, BURL Itani has been on-call, every hour of every day, for the last 20 years. During the 2003 Okanagan Firestorm, Beryl was instrumental in the region’s largest evacuation in history. It was her professional leadership that led the team that evacuated and cared for 30,000 Kelowna residents. As well, Beryl has served in other volunteer capacities in her community; the Sunshine Theatre, the Justice Institute of B.C.and for 27 years on Kelowna’s Snowfest Committee. Fire Chief Gerry Zimmerman notes that Beryl is considered one of the best examples of a true volunteer and regardless of the situation over the years, ‘Beryl has never let us down’.

Dennis Skulsky

Dennis Skulsky is synomynous with volunteering and enthusiasm. He is energetic and passionate about his community. He is someone who can take the germ of an idea ‘such as improving literacy’ and get everyone around him excited and turn the idea into a successful nation-wide program, called the CanWest Raise-a-Reader campaign for family literacy. In addition, Dennis is active in Vancouver with the 2005 Grey Cup Committee, the Vancouver Fireworks Society, the YMCA, the United Way, St. Paul’s Hospital Foundation, the Vancouver Public Library Foundation, the Vancouver Board of Trade, B.C. Business Council, and the UBC Faculty of Arts-Dean’s Advisory Board. All this, whilst publishing BC’s two largest newspapers and overseeing the Province’s biggest media operation. Dennis Skulsky exemplifies true all-around community service.

Arnold Amonson

Arnold Amonson is known as a selfless volunteer who will devote whatever time is necessary to strengthening the community of Houston. Over the past 24 years, Arnold has volunteered with a wide range of clubs and associations including the Houston and District Chamber of Commerce, Houston Seniors Association, Houston Curling Club, and the BC Seniors Games. What sets Arnold apart is that he not only sits as a member, chair or President of many organizations but that for each organization Arnold is actively involved. Arnold Amonson makes a difference in the District of Houston.

Carolynn Janzer

For more than 50 years, Carolynn Janzer has put the community and its citizens ahead of herself. An outspoken advocate for children, women and positive social change, she has devoted time to over 38 organizations including the Foster Parents Association, Royal Jubilee Hospital, One Breath at a Time Foundation, the YM-YWCA Women of Distinction, and organizations on the West Shore including the West Shore Chamber of Commerce and the Rotary Club. She has not only contributed herself but has also mobilized hundreds of people behind her causes to promote the betterment of her community.