A word or two more on the volunteer award winners

There’s never enough room to properly recognize the winners of the Citizen of the Year and Lifetime Volunteer Award winners in the next issue of The Leader. But that’s okay! Because there’s always another issue coming out, with space to fill. So here goes:
TinaMarie Ritter was named Citizen of the Year for 2016. Her nominator said she’s been volunteering more or less constantly for the past 17 years, starting at the age of 12! Her work on behalf of the Girl Guides in Slave Lake is what her nominator mostly focused on. That’s a big enough commitment, but it’s far from the whole story. She’s also helped out with Santas Anonymous and bingos at the Friendship Centre, done things with/for the Elks Club and the Rotary Club, Citizens on Patrol, helped out at the demo derby, the Oilmen’s, Canada Day and Riverboat Daze, not to mention Victim Services.
A well-deserved winner, no question.
Lifetime Volunteer Award winner Gordon Ferguson’s nominator probably didn’t cover half the things he’s done to improve life in the community he’s called home for the past 40 years. Ferguson brings a certain enthusiasm to everything he does, and as a successful businessman, he has had and continues to have the means to do quite a lot. Now semi-retired, he has even more time to do it, and he’s been indulging his love of music at the same time as fundraising for good causes and brightening the lives of seniors and others all over town lately. He’s also spent plenty of time on various health boards, church boards, school boards and others.
Ritter and Ferguson both appeared to be taken by surprise when their names were announced at the April 22 ceremony. The plan of the people that organize the event is to surprise the winners if possible, but it seldom works that way. This time it did, like a charm, with both having been lured there for other quite legitimate reasons. Next year we’ll do it all over again with two brand new award winners. ‘We,’ being the Friendship Centre, the Town of Slave Lake and us, The Leader.

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