Announcing the Scarborough Hero Award Winners!
Impacting thousands in our community, winners exemplify service and support.
SCARBOROUGH (June 22, 2021) – In a global emergency, not all heroes wear capes. Some wear scrubs and layers of personal protective equipment (PPE). Some give hours each week to get meals to families in need. Some bring computers to kids who need them for online learning. Some keep the public greenspaces we cherish safe and clean. Still, others donate their time and money to source face masks and PPE for people who otherwise would be unprotected.
These are the acts of everyday heroes who have gone above and beyond to serve and support the Scarborough community during the COVID-19 pandemic. And these are the winners of the Scarborough Hero Awards:
Seema David – Community Action and Service Hero Award
Theresa Pastore – Education Hero Award
Lucas Denov – Environmental Hero Award
KGO Grassroots Leaders – Good Neighbour Hero Award
TAIBU Community Health Centre – Outstanding Organization Hero Award
Emily Power – Outstanding Youth Leader Hero Award
Dr. Hilda Lim (with loving dedication to Emily Lim) – Health Hero Award
Dr. Reena Lovinsky – Health Hero Award
Dr. Abdel Belhaj – Health Hero Award
Dru Ann Skeates – Health Hero Award
Katrina Studeny – Health Hero Award
Dr. Lisa Salamon – Health Hero Award
“It is an absolute pleasure to recognize and honour each of these individuals and organizations. The commitment they have shown to their neighbours and community is extraordinary and, because of their efforts, thousands of people in Scarborough have been helped and supported throughout the pandemic,” said Dr. Craig Stephenson, President & CEO of Centennial College, on behalf of the leaders of the Scarborough Anchor Institutions.
More than 250 nominations were submitted by colleagues, family members and friends. Leaders of the Anchor Institutions compiled a shortlist, and winners were selected by a jury of Scarborough City Councillors and community organizations.
“The Scarborough Hero Award recipients prove that we are stronger together. I am honoured to live amongst these outstanding individuals who commit acts of kindness on a daily basis. These heroes set an example for us all and inspire us to support our Scarborough community,” said Andrea Hazell, President of the Scarborough Business Association and a Scarborough Hero Awards jury member.
Fellow jury members Gerard Baribeau, Past President of Scarborough Rotary Club and Denise Bacon, Board Member of the Scarborough Community Renewal Organization (SCRO) agree, “Community is at the heart of a great city. Throughout the past 15 months, the Scarborough Hero Award winners have exemplified what it means to take care of each other, look out for neighbours, and help those who need it most”.
The Scarborough Hero Award recipients will each receive gift cards provided by the Scarborough Town Centre. In addition, they will be granted a special honour from the Toronto Zoo. Each of the winners will have a Blanding’s turtle, a threatened Canadian species, named in their honour to recognize the award they received. Each year, Toronto Zoo and Parks Canada collaborate in a Blanding’s Head Start Conservation Program, where Blanding’s turtles are raised at the Zoo for two years, before being released into the wild in Rouge National Urban Park.
When public health and safety guidelines allow, the Scarborough Hero Award winners will be celebrated at an event at the Toronto Zoo. A community art installation created by students from Centennial College’s School of Communications, Media, Arts and Design will be unveiled at the event. The installation will serve as a tribute to the heroes and honour the vibrancy and resilience of the Scarborough community. The installation will be open to the public, and hosted by each of the Anchor Institutions over the following months.
“Congratulations to all of the recipients of the Scarborough Hero Awards. All of these winners have been on the frontlines during the pandemic, serving and protecting our residents and city and are much-deserving of this honour. Throughout the pandemic, residents have come together to support one another - these awards are an opportunity to recognize and celebrate the contributions made by those making a difference in their local community. I want to thank everyone who applied and nominated someone to show support to everyone working hard throughout this pandemic - we are grateful for your commitment and sacrifice to our city." - Mayor John Tory, City of Toronto.
For more information about the awards and the contributions each Scarborough Hero Award winner has made to their community, please visit www.ScarbTOhero.com.
For more information:
Supervisor, Strategic Communications
Senior Communications Officer