City council to honour 2015 Waterloo Award recipients
Waterloo - The newest Waterloo Award recipients will be honoured for their considerable contributions to this community at tonight’s city council meeting. The 2015 recipients of this prestigious civic award are Mr. Neil Aitchison, Mr. Roger Farwell and Ms. Tricia Siemens, all of whom have made a lasting difference in our community. “I am honoured to recognize Neil, Roger and Tricia for their outstanding leadership,” said Mayor Dave Jaworsky. “Their spirit of collaboration helps make Waterloo an incredible city.”
Neil Aitchison has made dynamic contributions to community building and leadership as a business executive, philanthropist and volunteer and local celebrity. For the past 25 years he has been a champion of artistic and cultural opportunities for Waterloo Region with Drayton Entertainment, leading major fundraising events, professional hosting of concerts, fundraisers and galas, ambassadorship at professional speaking events, mentoring of staff and performing on stage. He has promoted a vibrant cultural community through his work with the K-W Symphony, K-W Musical Productions, Gilbert and Sullivan Society, K-W Art Gallery, Twin City Harmonizers and the Ontario District of Barbershop Harmony Society. As an employee of Melloul-Blamey Construction, he developed the company’s marketing and Public Relations department and has worked to increase brand awareness with K-W residents.
Roger Farwell is a committed community leader with impressive credentials, a “can do” attitude and a passion for making a difference in the community. Roger has made significant contributions in the local arts community through his involvement with Creative Enterprise Initiative. His leadership roles with community organizations include Junior Achievement of Waterloo Region, the Salvation Army, K-W Counselling, the Greater K-W Chamber of Commerce, the Prosperity Council of Waterloo Region and the Kitchener and Waterloo Community Foundation. A professional architect with Walter Fedy and over 40 years in the industry, Roger has applied his creative and technical abilities to many iconic, key projects within the community including KidsAbility, UpTown Waterloo Parkade, the University of Waterloo, the Waterloo Region Museum, Waterloo Regional Police Headquarters and more.
Tricia Siemens has played a key role in helping to make Waterloo a vibrant, caring community. As the founder of Wordsworth Books, she initiated many creative endeavours for book lovers such as One Book, One Community, and attracted famous authors to Waterloo. As a member of city Council from 1991 to 1997, she helped guide the city through the loss of Labatt Brewery and Seagrams, and convened an architect workshop to incorporate the distinctive beams of the Seagrams plant into the design of Seagrams Lofts. Tricia has advocated for the homeless as president of the Supportive Housing of Waterloo (SHOW)project, which opened an apartment building on Erb Street, as a volunteer with the Out of the Cold program, and worked on other local housing options. Tricia was co-chair of the Laurel Creek watershed study and a member of the Focus for Ethnic Women, instrumental in training immigrant women. Her volunteer work has increased donations to K-W Opera and K-W Symphony and provided literary program assistance to elementary students. Tricia has conducted a Jane’s Walk through the Mary Allen Neighbourhood and advocated for the preservation of historic homes in Waterloo.