College announces winners of inaugural Chair’s Award of Excellence

The Ontario College of Trades (College) is very proud to announce the distinguished recipients of the first annual Chair’s Award of Excellence.

“All winners announced today are outstanding examples of how the College, our members and many stakeholders come together to promote and grow the skilled trades in Ontario,” said Pat Blackwood, Chair of the Board of Governors, Ontario College of Trades. “We are so proud to stand up and recognize the hardworking men and women in our apprenticeship system and across the skilled trades through this new award.”

And the winners are;

Algonquin College’s Apprenticeship Program
For their continued support of the inclusion of underrepresented groups in the trades, for encouraging the participation of people with disabilities and for hosting annual women in the trades events.

James Bodanis, Program Coordinator, Ontario Youth Apprentice Cook and Baker Program – Humber College
For his involvement in promoting and supporting the culinary trades, managing and supporting apprentice cooks and institutional cooks, and supporting students and apprentices in advancing their careers.

College of Carpenters and Allied Trades
For their commitment to training pre-apprentices and apprentices, and for supporting thousands of men, women and underrepresented groups.

Vince Kacaba, Director of Training – United Association Local 46, Plumbers, Steamfitters and Welders
For his mentorship and support of apprentices throughout their training, increasing apprenticeship completion rates, and for providing consistent training to a very high standard.

Roy King, Coordinator, Motorcycle and Powersports Program – Centennial College
For developing and supporting Centennial College’s pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship program, assisting with the Red Seal exam bank and supporting apprentices as they prepare for their Certificate of Qualification exams.

Katrina McFadden, Vice President, Corporate Administration and Human Resources – ArcelorMittal Dofasco
For her dedication and guidance assisting apprentices with placements, offering support through programs and consistently providing the right tools for apprentices to gain Certificate of Qualification credentials.

John Norris, Executive Director – Collision Industry Information Assistance
For his commitment to organizing Certificate of Qualification preparation courses and offering free of charge pre-apprenticeship orientations for those interested in becoming auto body and collision damage repairers.

Gail Smyth, Executive Director – Skills Ontario
For developing programs which elevate apprenticeships and skilled trades careers, including the Skills Ontario competition, Skills Works summer camps and in-school presentations. Gail is also recognized for her development of initiatives geared towards the inclusion of First Nations, Métis, Inuit and young women.

Stephen Speers, Chair, Trades and Apprenticeship, Motive Power Trades – Conestoga College
For strengthening the motive power program at Conestoga College, establishing the International Technical Education Program and increasing the number of skilled trades recognized in Ontario.

“We were so pleased with the high calibre of the nominees, making the selection process was very difficult,” says Blackwood. “We will continue to celebrate the hard work of all those in the skilled trades with this important award for many years to come.”

All winners are recognized and honoured having made a difference in apprenticeships and skilled trades throughout Ontario. Nominations were open from February 27 until March 31 and criteria for the award includes:

  • Demonstrates outstanding support for apprenticeship in Ontario, including promotion, diversity, consistent training, and completion;
  • Delivers innovative training and support for apprentices or demonstrate long-standing success in completion rates and outcomes;
  • Demonstrates outstanding leadership as ambassadors to increase the sustainability and promotion of Ontario’s skilled trades.

For more information on the Chair’s Award of Excellence, including the full list of winners, visit: www.collegeoftrades.ca.

The Ontario College of Trades is winding down as the government takes action to modernize the skilled trades and apprenticeship system.

Information on this website is moving to Ontario.ca. Visit the Ontario government’s new Skilled Trades page for more information and resources.