Changes to Citizen of the Year Program
Prince George, BC. – In about 9 days, the Prince George Community Foundation will unveil who will be honoured as a Citizen of the Year in Prince George, and there won’t be any competition.
In the past, names were put forward, a committee whittled it down to the 5 best candidates, there was a vote, and the successful candidate’s name was revealed at a gala event with all proceeds going to the Prince George Community Foundation.
Well, the competition factor has been eliminated.
Teresa Saunders, Chair of the Citizen of the Year Committee for the Prince George Community Foundation says the focus will shift to celebrating five people ( or couples) “We have had many fabulous nominations over the year of people who have given back to our community in many, many ways. Over time, it has become more difficult to find people who are willing to be in a competition with other wonderful citizens in our community.” Saunders says the Foundation has been “struggling” with the number of nominees coming forward and that is why they changed the format.
She says it isn’t a case of the same people always stepping up to do things for the community “I find there are many more individuals than we have honoured who very well could be Citizens of the Year.” She says many who were nominated in the past “Continue to do fine work in our community.”
The new format means some who were nominated in the past, but who didn’t “win” the competition will be eligible for this new honour program. “This gives us the opportunity to perhaps honour them as one of the Citizens of the Year.”
The process now also eliminates the need for those making a nomination to complete a full nomination package, a task which some felt cumbersome. The new process will see suggestions made, and the Foundation will do the leg work to find out more about the person and their contributions. “The committee will be probably 9 – 15 people who will be tasked with going to find people who should be considered for selection.” The same criteria will be used to select the five honourees as would have been used to select the five “finalists” in the past. Difference this year, is that there will be no voting, as the five selected as honourees will each be named a “Citizen of the Year”.
The five will be named on September 10th, and the gala celebration is set for October 16th at the Coast Inn of the North.