South Glengarry recognizes business excellence and volunteerism

By Adam Brazeau 
CORNWALL, Ontario – South Glengarry celebrated its movers and shakers at the township’s ninth annual Business and Community Awards banquet on Saturday.

Seaway News reported from the event live as all seven awards were being handed out.

Sylvia Thomson was named Citizen of the Year.

“To all you hockey fans out there, this is like winning the Stanley Cup,” said Thomson. “I can’t believe it.”

The lifelong resident of South Glengarry has devoted much of her time to her community, neighbours and family.

She visited hospitals, donated and delivered food, and provided transportation for medical appointments. For the better part of 50 years, Thomson has been actively involved in leadership roles with the Martintown Horticultural Society, the Martintown Women’s Institute, and the United Church Women, among others.

An accomplished volunteer, she donated countless hours to the Maxville Manor for over a decade and always assisted with decorating for various seasonal events.

Thomson was a 4-H leader for many years and helped initiate ‘The Grasshoppers,’ a gardening group for young children. In her down time, Thomson also constructed woodwork items, which were used to provide donations for various groups such as Ducks Unlimited.

The Special Recognition Award was handed to the regional campaign team volunteers of the Cornwall Hospital Foundation: Bruce Munro, Todd Rozon, Rick Marvel, Tish Humphries, and Micheline Carter.

This team of volunteers played a significant role in helping the Foundation exceed the goal of raising $3.5 million to purchase an MRI and digital urology table for the Cornwall Community Hospital (CCH).

Conversations at kitchen tables, board tables, and meeting places resulted in over $534,000 being donated by South Glengarry families and businesses alone.

Bainsville resident Kathleen McDougald received the Youth Merit Award.

McDougald discovered and fell in love with her Scottish roots at an early age, enrolling into the MacCulloch School of Highland and Tap Dance and playing the fiddle, all by the age of six.

A star athlete, McDougald started playing soccer early on, which led to hockey, volleyball, tennis, and every other sport offered through school. She’s now an integral member of the Seaway Valley Blazers soccer team.

Developing her leadership skills at Holy Trinity High School Leadership Camp ‘Falcon Fever,’ McDougald has applied these skills by helping organize the Relay for Life, which in 2013 raised over $40,000. She also organizes Open House Orientations, Welcome BBQs, and many sporting events at school.

Dimitris Restaurant owners Dimitrios & Colette Kritikos walked away with the Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

The Kritikos family has a long history in South Glengarry for operating very successful restaurants. After acquiring the former Glendale Hotel, site they went about transforming the building and the grounds into a restaurant offering quality Greek and Canadian food within an authentic Greek Island style and ambiance.

Accessible by land and by water, Dimitris Restaurant has become a favourite destination for anyone who appreciates fine dining by the lovely St. Lawrence River.

A tireless volunteer, Chelsea Hope received the Community Service Award.

Hope has devoted countless hours to the Williamstown Public School, Williamstown Fair, Rebels Hockey Club, and many other community events and activities.

She is a champion for worthy causes, but nothing spurs her into action more than when someone in the South Glengarry community is faced with adversity. When three-month-old Emma McCuaig was diagnosed with a dangerous form of eye cancer, Hope spearheaded fundraising efforts to help cover the cost of treatment at Toronto’s Sick Kids Hospital.

A wife, a mother to two girls, a friend, and a mentor – Chelsea counters the notion that people with busy lives have no extra time to volunteer.

The Business of the Year Award went to Cruickshank, a company that is immediately recognizable by almost anyone who has lived in South Glengarry.

Since 1956, Cruickshank has lived by the motto “we do our level best” – driving ingenuity in road, bridge and infrastructure construction services with an engaged team and leading edge tools to get the job done.

Along with generous annual donations to local hospitals, including Glengarry Memorial Hospital, Cruickshank is a very approachable company and often help support community activities and projects throughout South Glengarry, including the awards banquet.

Scott Fourney of Fourneyview Farms, a fourth generation farmer, farming for himself since the 1990s, accepted the Excellence In Agriculture Award.

Fourney has a strong customer base to which he provides custom combining, trucking, bailing and silo filling.

The award recipient is a former member and past chairperson of the Agricultural Advisory Committee, participates in the local Food Grains Bank, has given area city schools tours of his operation, participates in the Williamstown Fair, and serves as an Elder and manager of St. Andrews Presbyterian Church.

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