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Nineteen Sask. individuals honoured with Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers

Nineteen individuals across Saskatchewan were honoured with the Sovereign's Medal for Volunteers this past weekend.
government house regina
Lieutenant Governor Russ Mirasty made the medal presentation to 19 recipients at Government House in Regina, Sask.

REGINA — Lieutenant Governor Russ Mirasty presented nineteen individuals with the Sovereign's Medal for Volunteers on Sunday, during a ceremony at Government House in Regina.

The Sovereign's Medal honours recipients who have shown passion and dedication to their communities through volunteer work, in fields including in the arts, organized sports, youth and community organizations and social issues.

“These impressive volunteers have donated their time in diverse ways, but share in common a desire to improve their community,” said Mirasty. 

This year’s recipients are:

  • Ron Belchinger, Regina, who has helped maintain local cross country ski trails for the Regina Ski Club for more than three decades, and served as a board member of the Regina Lyrical Music Theatre;
  • Sabrina Cataldo, Regina, who has worked as a communications expert with the Regina Cat Rescue and Carmichael Outreach for over ten years, and volunteered with the Regina Lyrical Music Theatre;
  • Susan Graham, Regina, who has served as a board member for the Regina Lyrical Music Theatre for almost twenty years, helping the organization reach funding goals and organizing performances;
  • Russ Hart, Regina, who has served the Phoenix Residential Society for over three decades, helping to expand capacity for the rehabilitation organization and it's clients with disabilities;
  • Dave Hedlund, Regina, who has volunteered with the Regina Symphony Orchestra and South Saskatchewan Youth Orchestra for twenty years, including conducting recent research to preserve the legacy of the RSO;
  • Kathy Hillman-Weir, Regina, who has been connecting local youth  through the preforming arts since 2009, serving as a board members for various theatre and arts organizations;
  • Brad Hrycyna, Regina, who has offered supports to veterans for more than ten years, including through the Royal United Services Institute of Regina and by helping raise over $20,000 for the Royal Canadian Legion Poppy Fund;
  • Dr. Michael Jackson, Regina, who has served as a board member of the Institute for the Study of the Crown in Canada at Massey College since 2005, providing residents with in-context information on the Crown and the Commonwealth;
  • Krishan Kapila, Regina, who has brought the community together for almost a decade, through the Hindu Samaj Society of Southern Saskatchewan and the Saskatchewan Youth Visual Art Project, including the 2017 launch of a video project that included 86 local youth sharing their hopes and dreams for Canada;
  • Carol LaFayette-Boyd, Regina, who has been celebrating and preserving the history and contributions of those from African heritage through the Saskatchewan African Canadian Heritage Museum for fifteen years, fostering inclusivity in her community;
  • Neil Sawatzky, Regina, who has raised over $176,000 for local charities as a member of the Royal Road Race organizing committee in the past fifteen years, as well as serving as a board member for RuBarb Productions in Moose Jaw;
  • Edward Willett, Regina, who has supported the Regina Lyrical Music Theatre for thirty years, including in the role as publicity director and president;
  • Janet Wilson, Regina, who has been bringing live theatre to her community for more than a decade with the Regina Lyrical Music Theatre, serving as president and in productions backstage;
  • Mary Lynne Golphy, Davidson, who has volunteered in numerous roles within the Girl Guides of Canada for three decades, in currently serves as president of the Trefoil Guild, which delivers care packages to seniors;
  • Hilary Johnstone, La Ronge, who has served the interest of local cross-country ski athletes for over thirty years, including as a coach and high-level trainer;
  • Sid Robinson, La Ronge, who has helped organize events like the annual Saskatchewan Cup and maintain 50 kilometres of trails with the La Ronge Ski Club for fifteen years;
  • Bill Kalmakoff, Saskatoon, who served more than two decades as the community representative at meeting of the Saskatoon Doukhobor Society and the Doukhobor Society of Saskatchewan, promoting public awareness and appreciation;
  • Sandra Kerr, Saltcoats, who has been actively preserving Saltcoats heritage since 1985, through program planning and fundraising with the Saltcoats Museum;
  • Darlene Stakiw, Yorkton, who has spent five decades contributing to her community through culture, health and recreation initiatives, including the Yorkton Mental Health Drop-In Centre and the Multicultural Council of Saskatchewan.

“I congratulate each recipient on this well-deserved recognition and I thank them for their inspiring example of service,” said Mirasty.