Amazing Airdrie Women nominees announced
Thursday, Mar 13, 2014 10:33 am
The nominations are in for the 2014 Bijou Clothing/airdrielife Amazing Airdrie Women awards and the 31 women selected represent a cross-section of women from all walks of life including students, longtime residents, businesswomen, advocates and volunteers.
“It’s an honour,” said McKee Homes Amazing Leadership nominee Linda Bruce. “It’s one of those things where it sometimes feels awkward to be included in such a group of amazing women.”
The Amazing Leadership award is given to a woman whose integrity, vision and discipline have proved an inspiration for others.
Bruce, a former Airdrie mayor, has been a resident of Airdrie for more than 20 years and has seen the city blossom from 12,000 to nearly 50,000.
“I think our community is really shining when we see the level of people living and contributing to our city,” she said of the nominees. “What’s really neat is it’s such a large group of women.”
Bruce lead Airdrie as mayor from 2004 to 2010 and now is regional lead of education business development at Bow Valley College.
She said she is still proud to call Airdrie home.
“I think everyone is surprised when we talk about our population. It’s so cliché but it’s so true because it does still fell small,” she said, adding part of Airdrie’s charm is the young population that come together and form friendships through the activities their children are involved in.
She said when you live in a community where you recognize people and can say hello to them on a daily basis, it helps maintain that small-town appeal.
Other nominees for Amazing Leadership are Heather Crippen, Laura Jacyk, Nicole Lacoursiere and Dawn Smith.
Rebecca Reaville, owner of Grow With Us Retail and Consignment, said she was shocked when she learned she was nominated for the Hassett & Reid Amazing Determination award.
“Everyone nominated is so wonderful, it’s kind of humbling to be amongst them all,” she said.
The Amazing Determination award is given to a woman who has confronted challenges with perseverance and resolve.
Reaville has lived in Airdrie for eight years and opened Grow With Us about three –and-a-half years ago. In 2013, she partnered Airdrie Upcycle, a thrift store with the goal of donating profits to local organizations in need.
“We donate so much, we figured there has got to be a way to generate income from that and give it back to the community,” she said of Airdrie Upcycle.
Airdrie Upcyle is sponsored by Grow With Us and is working everyday towards creating a profit that will be donated to community groups nominated by residents, but is still in the growing process and has not yet been able to make a substantial donation.
On top of that, Reaville is mom to three kids, who range in age from 19 months to six years old, and she and her husband home-school their eldest daughter.
“I’m honoured to be in amongst the nominees,” Reaville said of the nomination.
Other Amazing Determination award nominees are Jeanette Akhurst, double nominee Heather Crippen, Danielle Polsom, and Odell Sinclair.
Local Realtor and business owner Michelle Carre has called Airdrie home for all of her whole life and said it is the community that makes Airdrie a place like no other.
“It truly does have that sense of community and that small-town feel even as it gets bigger,” Carre said.
She said Airdrie is a welcoming city to newcomers and a city that wants its people to succeed.
Carre is nominated for the Pharmasave Amazing Heart award, which honours a woman whose humanity and compassion has touched the lives of others.
“It’s flattering. It’s humbling and it’s appreciated,” she said of the nomination.
Carre has been involved in Airdrie in many aspects over the years, participating in the first two years of ARTember, helping with the city’s Centennial, working with Alberta 55 Plus Summer Games and numerous other events.
She currently sits as vice chairperson for the 2014 Alberta Summer Games organizing committee, working to make the July event a success.
“It’s an opportunity to be part of something that’s bigger than us,” Carre said of the Games. “It will bring us together as a community to put this on.”
She said the Games bring a sense of pride and excitement to the city and provides a venue for Airdrie to shine as it welcomes the province to the community.
The other nominees for Amazing Heart are Robyn Cooper, Tara Daigle, Kelly Holmes, Kathy Gelsi, Shelley Goulet, Nicole Kamke, double nominee Nicole Lacoursiere, Tara Murphy, Linda Rae, Collette Reyes, Adila Saeed, Stephanie Van Dewark and Wendy Wiebe.
Voting for the Amazing Airdrie Women awards is now open at airdrielife.com and finalists will be announced April 1, at the annual luncheon that celebrates all nominees.
Winners are selected by community votes, which account for 50 per cent of the decision-making process. The other 50 per cent comes from sponsors, award recipients from the previous year and the airdrielife editorial team.
Nominees for the ATB Amazing Promise award include the female students enrolled in the Building Futures program at George McDougall High School, Breanne McPhee and Megan Rolfe.
The Amazing Promise award is for women under 21 whose initiative and enthusiasm promises for a bright future.
The one award that is not included in the voting process is The Tracy Work Amazing Courage Award, which this year will go to anti-bullying advocate Mackenzie Murphy.
For more information on the awards or to vote, visit www.airdrielife.com