The Chemainus & District Chamber of Commerce honoured those who have made a difference to their community at the annual Golden Brush Awards gala, held at the Chemainus Theatre April 2.
Nine awards were given out during the ceremony, with Chamber President George Gates, emceeing the event:
• The Good Neighbour Award went to the Hospital Auxiliary Thrift store.
• The Business Booster Award to Beyond the Usual.
• Attractive Business, Hansel & Gretel Candy Co.
• Beautiful Streetscape Award, Bound to be Different and The Art of Secondhand & Beloved Stained Glass.
• Senior Supporter Award, 49th Parallel Grocery.
• Youth Mentor Award, Hospital Auxiliary Thrift Store.
• Customer Service Award, Lula Vegh, Chemainus Health Food Store.
• Volunteer of the Year Award, Mike Beggs of the Rotary Club of Chemainus and the Royal Canadian Legion,
The ceremony concluded with a standing ovation for Edna Brown, 92, who was given the President’s Award for 2016.
In her years with the Hospital Auxiliary, Brown has held just about every position on the board, including president.
She has also been hands on in every way imaginable, Gates said. “Edna has sewn countless numbers of hospital gowns and bed linens, created costumes and culinary delights, contributing many hours to fundraising activities.”
And she’s still volunteering, taking regular shifts at the Thrift Shop cash register and in the warehouse, as well as applying “her strategic planning, organizational skills to the revamping of Auxiliary bylaws, policies and procedures.
“Her knowledge of the community, leadership, advice and mentoring are invaluable and so respected and appreciated,” Gates said.
Her work as a volunteer began shortly after she became a substitute teacher at Chemainus Secondary School in 1951. She and her husband Al both volunteered with scouts and cubs, and Edna also began volunteering with the Hospital Auxiliary in 1952.
“Yes, you do the math, Edna has been a very consistent and active member of the auxiliary for 64 years,” Gates said.