The District of West Vancouver thanked eight of the community’s most dedicated volunteers at a council meeting Monday.
The normally sombre council chambers turned festive as West Vancouverites packed the room to cheer on the octet of do-gooders.
Barbara Brink picked up a plaque for her work at the West Vancouver Community Centre where she helped implement a new governance model and helped turn the organization into a not-for-profit society.
“It doesn’t sound sexy, but I get really excited about constating [founding] documents,” said Coun. Mary-Ann Booth, who presented the award.
In a brief acceptance speech, Brink was one of several honourees to note the pleasure of volunteering.
“We always thank volunteers, but I think you need to know we always have a reason for what they’re doing and sometimes it’s quite self-serving,” she said.
While accepting a trophy for his work in creating a salmon rearing pond in Memorial Park, West Vancouver Streamkeeper Society Bill McAllister struck a similar tone, quoting fellow streamkeeper Hugh Hamilton.
“’I didn’t do anything, I was just having fun.’ So it was with me,” he said.
Coun. Bill Soprovich praised McAllister for doing the onerous task of working with the district and securing donations.
McAllister’s work has also yielded an educational venue for students.
A few of the awards recipients couldn’t seem to stop working long enough to accept the award.
Clad in their uniforms, 20-year scout leaders Chris and Irene Nemeth picked up awards for contributing countless volunteer hours to West Vancouver’s first scouting program.
“I would just like to remind everybody that our Christmas tree sale starts—” Chris began before laughter drowned him out.
Despite having served as president of the West Vancouver Historical Society, Ann Brousson was focused on current events.
While accepting her award she called the audience’s attention to the Hollyburn House restoration and invited concerned citizens to a Nov. 20 meeting concerning the future of the Point Atkinson Lighthouse.
“Within about 18 months it could be taken over,” she said. “Come out if you’re at all interested in saving this important icon.”
Brousson was also instrumental in promoting West Vancouver’s historical coffee table book Cottages to Communities, which has sold 2,900 out of 3,000 published copies.
Barbara Kaiser earned her hardware for working with numerous arts organizations as well as the West Vancouver Museum.
In her speech, she recounted that the job ended up being more demanding than she was first told when she asked about volunteer opportunities.
“’You just come and you sit and you make sure nobody takes anything,’” she recalled being told.
Following that conversation, Kaiser spent 10 years volunteering including five years as chairwoman of the museum advisory committee.
“I don’t want to put down what the museum was at the time. It wasn’t what it is now,” she said.
Ingunn Kemble picked up an award for serving on both the museum advisory ccommittee and the Ferry Building advisory board.
Bill Drake won his award due to 17 years spent organizing community events and sports programs, including working as a race organizer for the Cypress Ski Club.
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