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Volunteer Awards

Meet our incredible volunteer award winners and nominees for 2021:

2021 Volunteer Award Winners:

  • Years of Volunteering: Marlis Butcher (10 years), Darci Lombard (10 years), Paul Toffoletti (10 years)
  • Calypso Orchid Environmental Award: David Knox
  • Honorary Membership: David Tyson
  • Ross McLean Volunteer of the Year Award: Marg Glendon
  • Tom East Award: Beaver Valley Club, East Mountain reroute
  • Susan Oleskevich Award: Carl Alexander

The Bruce Trail Conservancy's annual awards recognize volunteers and supporters for extraordinary achievement for the Bruce Trail and the Niagara Escarpment. Every year we ask our members and volunteers to nominate people in the Bruce Trail community for their exceptional contributions. The awards are presented at the Bruce Trail Conservancy Annual Meeting.

Ross McLean Volunteer of the Year Award

The Ross McLean Volunteer of the Year Award recognizes a volunteer who has shown extraordinary contributions to the Bruce Trail Conservancy within a single year (from April of the previous year to April of the current year only). The award is not intended to recognize a lifetime of contributions as that would preclude volunteers who have been with us for a short time. Any form of volunteering for the Bruce Trail Conservancy may be considered for this award.

This annual award was renamed in 2020 to honour the passing of its first recipient and remarkable volunteer, Ross McLean. 

Nomination Information: Submit nomination letter of 250 words outlining why the nominee should be considered for this award to the BTC Director Organizational Resources at by June 1

Past recipients

2007 Ross McLean
2007 Carol Sheppard
2008 Grant Ehrhardt
2009 Albert McMaster
2010 Don McIlraith
2010 Jack Morgan
2010 Fred Nix
2012 Jean Kerins
2013 Jane Greenhouse
2014 Ron Savage
2015 Colleen Darrell
2016 Ros Rossetti
2017 Deborah Sturdevant
2018 Glenda Collings
2019 Tom Thayer
2020 Joan Nuffield
2021 Marg Glendon

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Honorary Membership

The Bruce Trail Conservancy Honorary Membership is a prestigious award given to a member who has made a lasting, significant volunteer contribution to the organization at both the Bruce Trail Club and Bruce Trail Conservancy levels. The nominee must have demonstrated leadership, innovation, and commitment and have accomplished significant achievements in furthering the Bruce Trail Conservancy mission. The recipient is awarded a certificate and a complimentary lifetime membership.

Nomination Information: Request nomination form from the BTC Director of Organizational Resources at Send completed nomination to same email by June 1.

Past recipients, Honorary Members

Lynn Allen & Hamish Duthie
Robert Bateman
Frank Birch
Edna & Walter Blacklock
Bruce & Ruth Calvert
Barbara & Bill Cannon
Annie Carlisle
Betty Carter
Sally Cohen-Moule
Margaret Cooper
Elmer Cserhalmi
May & Jack Denreyer
Tom East
Helen English
Gord Fenton
Lily Forler
Ila & Vic Franklin
Ron Gatis 
Beth Gilhespy
Philip Gosling
Robert Lee
Peter Leeney
Ray Lowes
Alex & Christine Matulewicz
Jim Macdonald
Janice McClelland
Ross McLean
Cathie Mills
David Moule
Paul Naray
Syd Pearce
Norman Pearson
Muriel & John Poste
Ian Reid
George Robinson 
Malcolm Sanderson
Trudy Senesi
Alan Shaw
Maureen Smith 
Trevor Stock & Irmgard Richter
Fred Turner
David Tyson
Chris Walker
Martin Walsh 
Mike Webb
Barry Westhouse

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Susan Oleskevich Award

This award is presented annually to an outstanding trail worker. Susan Oleskevich was a special Bruce Trail volunteer. For more than a decade she was a loyal trail maintenance volunteer. During this time, she was Trail Director for the Conservancy, and for the Caledon Hills and Toronto Bruce Trail Clubs.

When Susan died suddenly in the summer of 1995, a group of her friends wanted to donate a lasting symbol of her contribution to the Trail. From these discussions came the Susan Oleskevich Award. The contributions of Susan Oleskevich deserve to be remembered. With the annual presentation of this award, her memory will remain strong and provide a source of motivation for all of us as we continue our volunteer commitment.

The criteria for selection are that the winner shall:

  • Have been actively involved in the physical work of trail maintenance and development
  • Have long-standing commitment to trail work
  • Be an outstanding trail worker

Nomination Information: Submit a nomination letter to the Bruce Trail Conservancy Trail Director by August 15

Past Recipients

1996 Ken Ingham
1997 Laurence Christie
1997 Charles Grant
1998 Barry Westhouse
1999 Graham McCallum
2000 James Swalwell
2000 Frank Holley
2001 Clayton & Anne Roberts
2001 Elsa Karha
2003 James & Ann Couse
2004 George & Joan Bowman
2005 Dave Sheppard
2006 Ralph Tremills
2006 Tys Murra
2007 John Cunningham
2007 Robert Light
2008 Frank Bouma
2009 Mac McDonald
2010 Dennis Gallant
2011 John Hollingsworth
2012 Ralph Tremills
2013 Ron Spotton
2014 Andrew Costley
2015 Rose-Mary Mitter
2016 Rick Edwards
2017 Richard Pomeroy
2018 Vince Zvonar
2019 Dave Paape
2020 Jim Standen
2021 Carl Alexander

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Calypso Orchid Environmental Award

The Calypso Orchid Environmental Award is awarded to an individual, volunteer group, institution or company that has demonstrated a significant contribution to the restoration and preservation of the Bruce Trail and/or the Niagara Escarpment Biosphere Reserve, or significantly enhanced the education of users or potential users of the Trail and/or the Niagara Escarpment Biosphere Reserve. The recipient needs not be a member of the Bruce Trail Conservancy. Exemplary actions by the recipients can have either a direct and/or indirect effect on the Bruce Trail. Meritorious actions can be a single event or undertaken over several years.

Background: In the spring of 1956 Arthur Storey saw his first calypso orchid on a trip to Tobermory. Twenty years later Lloyd Smith commemorated the event by carving a diamond willow walking staff for him, including a likeness of a calypso orchid on the handle. In 1997 Arthur donated the walking staff to the Bruce Trail Conservancy, with the wish that an environmental award be established. The Calypso Orchid Environmental Award was established in 2000.

Nomination Information: Request nomination form from the BTC Director of Organizational Resources at Send completed nomination to same email by June 1.

Past Recipients

2000 Peninsula Bruce Trail Club 
2000 Chippewas of Nawash First Nations 
2001 John Burton 
2001 Margaret Reed 
2003 George Francis 
2005 K. Elizabeth Kümmling
2006 Walter M. Tovell
2006 Leonard O. Gertler
2007 Bruce Krug 
2008 David Moule 
2011 KEEN Canada 
2012 Ned Morgan
2013 Bruce Trail Expedition for Kids
2015 Kevin Warburton
2016 The Town of Blue Mountains
2017 Anne Clock
2018 Bob Hann and Joan Nuffield
2019 Laurence Christie
2020 The Gosling Foundation
2021 David Knox

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Bruce Trail Conservancy Head Office Volunteer Award

This annual award is given in recognition of the invaluable contributions made by our volunteers at the Bruce Trail Conservancy head office. Recipients are chosen annually by BTC staff and the award is presented at our year-end celebration. 

Past Recipients

1998 The Mop Brigade
2006 Cheryl Duke
2006 Jim Standen
2006 Karl Massfeller
2007 Doug Gordon
2007 Chris Cropper
2008 Jeanne Keldson
2009 Maureen Case
2010 John Harrison
2012 Sarah Veldhoen
2012 Stella Parr
2014 Dorothy Wengler
2015 Frank Spadafora
2016 Nick Avery
2017 Donna Plyley
2018 Cheryl Duke
2019 Hugh Fuller

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Years of Service Awards

The Bruce Trail Conservancy Years of Service Awards recognize volunteers who have contributed so many years to volunteering directly for the Conservancy, either through committees, boards, workgroups, or at the Head Office. Awards are given out for 1, 3, 5, 10,15, 20 and 25 years of service.

Years of service awards have been recorded since 1993. In 1993 a catch-up award was given to all volunteers, and volunteer time given since 1993 are all that is counted towards the years of service awards.

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Philip & Jean Gosling Award

Awarded annually to the Bruce Trail Club completing the year’s most significant trail project which improves or protects the environment

Past Recipients

2002 Iroquoia
2003 Beaver Valley
2004 Iroquoia
2005 Toronto
2006 Sydenham
2006 Dufferin Hi-land
2007 Caledon Hills
2008 Niagara
2009 Sydenham
2010 Iroquoia
2011 Dufferin Hi-land
2012 Beaver Valley
2013 Caledon Hills
2014 Niagara
2015 Peninsula
2016 Toronto
2017 Peninsula
2018 Sydenham
2019 Niagara
2020 Toronto

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Tom East Award

Awarded annually to the Bruce Trail Club completing the most significant trail project that places the Trail on the Optimum Route, or adds a worthwhile new side trail.

Past Recipients

1988 Toronto
1989 Beaver Valley
1990 Dufferin Hi-land
1991 Toronto
1992 Beaver Valley
1993 Dufferin Hi-land
1994 Blue Mountains
1995 Peninsula
1996 Iroquoia
1996 Caledon Hills
1997 Caledon Hills
1998 Iroquoia
1999 Sydenham
2000 Iroquoia
2001 Peninsula
2002 Peninsula
2003 Sydenham
2004 Peninsula
2005 Sydenham
2006 Peninsula
2007 Peninsula
2007 Iroquoia
2008 Sydenham
2008 Niagara
2009 Beaver Valley
2010 Caledon Hills
2011 Sydenham
2012 Sydenham
2013 Dufferin Hi-land
2013 Caledon Hills
2013 Caledon Hills
2014 Caledon Hills
2015 Sydenham
2016 Peninsula
2017 Sydenham
2018 Blue Mountains
2019 Sydenham
2020 Peninsula
2021 Beaver Valley

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Annual Meeting Participation: George Willis Family Trophy

Awarded to the youngest hiker participating in the Sunday hikes on the Bruce Trail Conservancy's Annual Meeting weekend.

Past Recipients

1986 Emily Swidersky
1987 Luba Swidersky
1988 Pauline Sanderson
1994 Jaden Calvert
1996 Lauren Cathcart
1997 Kathy Dewar
1998 Peter Moule
1999 Rachel Bilbieja
2000 Helen Paul
2002 David Burgess
2004 Pauline Sanderson
2005 Robert Duke
2006 Kathryn Moddle
2007 Tristan Kummling
2009 Karen Montgomery-Wilson
2010 Pauline Sanderson
2011 Laurie Mutton
2012 Donald Campbell
2013 Donald Campbell
2014 Donald Campbell
2016 Kailey Brunner
2018 Isabelle Mei
2019 Kai Gibbons & Lara Gibbons

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Annual Meeting Participation: Lloyd Smith Walking Stick

Awarded to the Bruce Trail Club with the most members participating in the Sunday hikes on the Bruce Trail Conservancy's Annual Meeting weekend.

Past Recipients

1966 Toronto
1967 Blue Mountains
1968 Beaver Valley
1969 Beaver Valley
1970 Iroquoia
1971 Blue Mountains
1972 Dufferin Hi-Land
1973 Lower Bruce
1974 Lower Bruce
1975 Dufferin Hi-Land
1976 Iroquoia
1984 Beaver Valley
1986 Beaver Valley
1987 Beaver Valley
1988 Beaver Valley
1989 Beaver Valley
1990 Beaver Valley
1991 Beaver Valley
1992 Toronto
1993 Sydenham
1994 Sydenham
1995 Beaver Valley
1996 Beaver Valley
1997 Beaver Valley
1998 Beaver Valley
1999 Beaver Valley
2000 Beaver Valley
2001 Beaver Valley
2002 Sydenham
2003 Beaver Valley
2004 Iroquoia
2005 Beaver Valley
2006 Beaver Valley
2007 Caledon Hills
2008 Niagara
2009 Beaver Valley
2010 Niagara
2011 Sydenham
2012 Beaver Valley
2013 Dufferin Hi-Land
2014 Niagara
2015 Niagara
2016 Caledon Hills
2017 Iroquoia
2018 Caledon Hills

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