Alumni Awards and Recipients

VIU Alumni Association recognizes the outstanding accomplishments and achievements of VIU alumni by offering our Distinguished Alumni Awards. The honorary awards celebrate a standard of excellence and innovation which is exemplary to students, faculty and staff.

Distinguished Alumni Awards consists of three categories:

  • Professional Achievement - The recipient will have earned provincial, national or international prominence as a result of their exceptional professional achievements.
  • Early Achievement - The recipient will have demonstrated outstanding achievement within 10 years of receiving a credential from Vancouver Island University. Areas of achievement could include endeavours in their professional, research, community service, business, athletics or the arts.
  • Service to Society - The recipient exhibits integrity and a demonstrated commitment to service to society through an interest in bettering the lives of others through volunteer leadership, humanitarian endeavours and community and public service.

Nominations are accepted in September each year. Please fill out the VIU Honorary Alumni Award Intent to Nominate form and submit it to the Advancement & Alumni Relations Office.


Professional Achievement Award Recipients

Chief Douglas White III (BA with Distinction '00) received VIU's Distinguished Alumni Award for Professional Achievement on June 3rd, 2013 at VIU's convocation ceremony. Member and Chief of the Snuneymuxw First Nation, Douglas White III, received VIU's Professional Achievement Award that recognizes the outstanding accomplishment of an alumnus who has earned provincial or national prominence as a result of their exceptional professional achievements and/or service to society.

White is being recognized for the exceptional leadership role he's taken on First Nation issues both in his community and at provincial and national levels. It's a role he takes very seriously thanks to lessons he learned from his family as a young boy.

2012 Don Hubbard (Heavy Equipment Operator '66; ABE '71; BA in Anthropoloy)

2011 Chef Bernard Casavant (Culinary Arts '76)

2010 Warren Erhart (Hotel & Restaurant Management '76)

2009 Terence Fitzgerald (Arts '92)

2005 Edwin Johnston (Hairdressing Certificate '87)


Early Achievement Award Recipients

2016 Katelin Albert (Bachelor of Arts '08) grew up in Powell River and came to VIU in 2003 to play soccer for the women's varsity team. At first, she didn't know what she wanted to do, wasn't a top student, and had never heard of graduate school. However, she was curious and outgoing and soon began to pursue her interests in psychology and sociology.

The combination of VIU's small class sizes, personal attention, patient professors and undergraduate research opportunities, coupled with her own natural inquisitiveness, helped Albert blossom. "VIU changed my life," says Albert, who received VIU's 2016 Distinguished Alumni Early Achievement Award at the convocation ceremony on January 28, 2016. "I am beyond honoured and humbled to receive this award."

Albert completed a double Major in Psychology and Sociology with Distinction at VIU in 2008, then a Master's degree in Sociology at the University of Victoria. She is currently a fifth year PhD candidate in Canada's top-ranked Department of Sociology at the University of Toronto.

Albert has garnered provincial, national and international acclaim for her scholarship and is well on her way to becoming a university professor. In January, she will begin teaching a fourth year undergraduate level course she developed titled, "Gender, Health, and Medicine." Please read the VIU News Article for further details.

2015 Dr. Skye Creba (BSc in Biology '06)

2014 Serene Kerpan (BA in Physical Education & History '08)

2013 Lynne Burns (BSc in Biology '04)

2012 Owen Stechishin (BSc in Biology '06)

2010 Rebekah Shoop (BSc in Nursing with Distinction '02)

2009 Dr. Tanya Griffiths (BSc '00)

2007 Dr. Aaron R. Jex (BSc in Biology '00)

2006 Alison Keple (BSc in Biology '99)

2005 Dr. Chris Whipps (BSc in Biology '97)


Service to Society Award Recipients

2014 Malerie Meeker (Early Childhood Education and Care Diploma '86) has made exceptional contributions to VIU and to society throughout her career as an educator and activist in Powell River's community living sector. Retiring in 2010 as an educator and program coordinator at VIU's Powell River campus, Meeker continued to work on contract as an advocate for people with developmental disabilities. Her work has had profound impacts on individuals, families, early childhood education practitioners and students. Please view the VIU News article for further details. Watch Malerie's acceptance speech on our VIU Alumni Association YouTube Channel.

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