University volunteers recognized for community involvement

Guelph, ON, March 26, 2014 – University of Guelph’s Professor Ajay Heble, Martha Harley and student Jenifer Truong are the recipients of this year’s Dr. William Winegard Exemplary Volunteer Involvement Awards.Presented by Dr. Winegard at a ceremony on Wednesday, the awards recognize the volunteer contributions of University of Guelph faculty, staff and students to community organizations in Guelph and Wellington County.

“Ajay, Martha and Jenifer have shown how volunteers can turn their passions into lasting contributions benefitting people and organizations in our community,” said Christine Oldfield, executive director of the Volunteer Centre of Guelph/Wellington.

Mr. Heble’s passion for music led him to create the award winning and world-renowned Guelph Jazz Festival, now in its 20th year.  His volunteerism extends to Amnesty International and raising funds for international relief through benefit concerts.

Ms. Harley’s personal drive to support her community sees her volunteering with both Hospice Wellington and the Macdonald Stewart Art Centre, and offering pro bono professional advice to other small not-for-profits locally.

Ms. Truong, a third-year Biomedical Science student, has dedicated herself to numerous causes, both locally and internationally.  While balancing the challenges of school, family illness and two part-time jobs, Jenifer has shown incredible generosity of time, volunteering with such organizations as VIDA Medical, Project Serve Canada, the Guelph Community Foundation, Guelph General Hospital and Big Brothers Big Sisters.

“Ajay, Martha and Jenifer are three dedicated volunteers, recognized today for their tremendous community spirit,” said Ken Dardano, executive director of United Way Guelph Wellington Dufferin. “United Way is pleased to partner with the Volunteer Centre and the University of Guelph to present these outstanding volunteers with this year’s Winegard Awards.”


About the Winegard Awards

In 2007, the University of Guelph, United Way Guelph Wellington Dufferin, and the Volunteer Centre of Guelph/Wellington introduced the Dr. William Winegard Exemplary Volunteer Involvement Awards. The Winegard Awards recognize the contributions that volunteers from the university community make in Guelph and Wellington County.

The awards are named in honour of University of Guelph past president, Dr. William Winegard. Dr. Winegard came to the University of Guelph in 1964 and served as president until 1975. After retiring from academia, Winegard served as the Member of Parliament for Guelph from 1984 to 1993. He held the portfolio of Minister of State (Science and Technology) from 1989 to 1990 and of Minister for Science from 1990 to 1993. He was named an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1998. Dr. Winegard remains active in the Guelph community through his volunteer involvement.

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