2015 Recipients

Kevin Loring

Arts & Culture Award

Honoured for his significant regional, national and international impact on Canadian arts and culture as a playwright, actor, instructor and mentor.

Kevin Loring is from the Lytton First Nation, a member of the Nlaka’pamux (Thompson) Nation Tribal Council. As an actor he has performed in numerous plays across Canada including Marie Clements’s Burning Vision and Copper Thunderbird, and in the NAC’s 40th anniversary production of George Ryga’s The Ecstasy of Rita Joe. He was the recipient of the 2005 City of Vancouver Mayor’s Arts Award for Emerging Theatre Artist, Artist in Residence at The Playhouse Theatre Company in 2006, and Playwright in Residence at the National Arts Centre, Ottawa, in 2010.

His first play Where the Blood Mixes won the Jessie Richardson Award for Outstanding Original Script; the Sydney J. Risk Prize for Outstanding Original Script by an Emerging Playwright; and the 2009 Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama. Where the Blood Mixes premiered at the 2008 Luminato Festival in Toronto. Presented at the 2008 Magnetic North Festival in Vancouver, it opened on the same day of the House of Commons apology for the legacy of suffering generations of aboriginal people continue to endure as a result of their experiences at residential schools. Kevin also participated in the closing ceremonies of the Aboriginal Pavilion at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

Jokull Bergmann (Thorarinsson)

Young Alumni Award

Honoured for his significant regional, national and international impact made within the Adventure Tourism field as young entrepreneur, guide, instructor and mentor.

Jokull Bergmann (aka JB), whose name aptly translates as Glacier Mountain Man, is founder and lead guide for Bergmenn Mountain Guides. As Iceland’s first and only International Federation of Mountain Guides Associations certified mountain guide, Jokull (pronounced “Yekutl”) leads adventures in Iceland, Greenland and around the globe.  He specializes in ski touring, ski mountaineering, heli-skiing, ice and alpine climbing in those regions. Through each course of Jokull’s time at TRU, he approached all with the same determination as the last. This determination is what moved Jokull so quickly through the process with the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides.

Jokull’s experience in the Canadian heli-skiing industry gave him the know-how and skills to set up an operation in Iceland. The Troll peninsula was an obvious choice as it is by far the best terrain in Iceland and a world-class destination for backcountry skiing. Bergmann’s heli-ski operation was originally run out of the old family farmhouse, which still contains the kitchen and dining room where meals feature locally sourced organic lamb, fish and goose are served. Alongside sit a separate sauna hut and four detached wood-clad cottages for most of the guests.

Daley & Company

Milestone Achievement Award

Honoured for their collective efforts and unique relationship with TRU which have created an institutional milestone and made a unique contribution through mentorship, philanthropy, volunteerism and hiring practices, and positively affected the lives and goals of TRU students and alumni.

Three of five Daley & Co partners are TRU Alumni, all of their senior management team are TRU Alumni, and 75 percent of their staff are TRU Alumni! The firm has actively supported Thompson Rivers University for more than 20 years, annually providing funds for student financial awards, mentoring students, hiring graduates, sponsoring events, and participating on boards and committees. The TRU Milestone Achievement Award is being presented to Daley & Company for the accumulated impact that the entire staff has made on the lives of TRU students and Alumni. This organization is led by five partners that certainly walk the walk and have impacted TRU decision-making with over 21 years of participating in a variety of committees. Daley & Company is the largest independent accounting and business advisory firm in Kamloops, specializing in tax services, business advisory and consultation, retirement and estate planning, First Nations services, accounting and auditing.

The partnership of the firm is comprised of Norman Daley, Maureen McCurdy, Paul Mumford, Michael Parker and Sean Wandler. Paul Mumford spent 6 years on the Sports Task Force and was a member of the  Cariboo College Cheifs hockey team. Sean Wandler among other things has been the volunteer coach of the Kamloops Riverdogs for the past 16 seasons and was recognized as BC Minor Baseballs Coach of the Year for 2014. Maureen McCurdy who is a tireless volunteer has been involved in some of our communities biggest events including the Western Canada Games, BC Seniors Games and the Tim Hortons Brier.  She was a winner of a 2013 Community Service Award from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of BC. In addition, senior manager and tax specialist, Sandra Blair, is a TRU alumna and was an All-Canadian star in TRU basketball and soccer, a two-sport phenomenon.  Sandra also contributed ten years of her time and talent to many activities of the TRU Sports Task Force.

Norman Daley is well known throughout the business community as not only a CA, but also a community advocate volunteering on many committees to enhance the city for visitors and residents alike. As a partner of the company since 1991, Norm appreciates the opportunities the firm provides to students looking for their first start in an accounting firm as well as to seasoned professionals who can further the great reputation of the company.  He has been a member of the TRU Foundation board for four years and states, “it is a part if our DNA at Daley and Company to give back to the community. We encourage and support our staff in community involvement and find the results very rewarding for all concerned.”

Dylan Robinson

Neil Russell Student Leadership Award

This award is presented to a Student Leader whose commitment to academic excellence and significant involvement in university affairs inspires others and improves the campus community.

Dylan Robinson has been very active in the TRU Students’ Union executive since coming to TRU five years ago. After serving in various executive positions, he was elected President for the past two years, making TRUSU a force to be reckoned with and one which plays a much more concerted role in TRU governance. Dylan has served on the University Senate, Budget Committee of Senate, Arts Faculty Council, and has been a leader in the Annual Philosophy, History, and Politics (PHP) Conference. He is well informed on issues under discussion, and demonstrates a deep concern for a diversity of student needs.

His ability to identify the key points of an issue allow him to contribute with clarity and brevity to discussions. When he speaks, he commands attention. Ultimately, however, what truly sets Dylan apart is his drive to use his education, critical thinking skills and leadership to create change for the benefit of others, namely for the student body that has elected him. Dylan is quoted as saying, “I believe that students have elected me to three terms on the TRU Senate, two terms as President and one term as Vice President External of the TRU Students’ Union because I’ve been able to make small, positive changes for our campus community.  For me, leadership is not about working in isolation or serving your own interests, but is about working together with as many folks as you can fit around the table to make your community better.”

Blessing Chiduuro


TD Meloche Monnex Scholarship for Career Development

Blessing Chiduuro is a 4th year BBA student majoring in finance and marketing and currently sits on the TRU Board of Governors as a student representative. He is a highly motivated with a passion for helping others and uses leadership positons in campus clubs to influence and impact the career development of fellow students. As the President of the TRU Finance club, Blessing has a goal to improve students’ employment opportunities after graduation. In his role as president he initiated a career development trip with members of the club to meet and network with industry professionals in the Financial District of Toronto.  The group of students met with over 10 professionals in a three day period.

Blessing is the Director of Entrepreneurship with Enactus, a student run club with the focus of using entrepreneurship to improve the lives of others; he also supported other numerous career development activities to TRU students across campus. His critical thinking and management skills have made him very attractive to many employers but Blessing has accepted a job offer with a Zimbabwean steel company to achieve his lifelong goal of alleviating poverty in Africa.

It’s Blessing’s accomplishments and leadership in career development, both inside and outside the classroom, that have garnered him the TD Meloche Monnex Scholarship for Career Development.

Career Mentor of the Year

The goals of the Career Mentor Program are to enhance student graduate outcomes and engage alumni and friends in being co-career educators. This program directly impacts student success by increasing their career knowledge which in turn increases their ability to secure meaningful work upon graduation.

We would like to thank all mentors for sharing their stories, giving back to TRU and learning the true strength of our student body. We have many testimonials where connections have been made, careers have been started and career decisions have been influenced. Alumni and Friends have responded with  increased generosity of their time and expertise to give our students an edge as they transition to the workforce. Mentor participation has increase from 18 to over 175 mentors per year since 2009.

Corey Darling, CIBC, branch manager and Rob Maciak KGHM, Environmental Scientist. These two mentors have shared countless hours of their time and expertise to provide career information for TRU students.

Corey and Rob are being recognized for their exceptional support and engagement in the career development of TRU students.

They have been essential in providing industry feedback to support students in their career knowledge acquisition and career development, including providing information on industry skills, recruiting practices, education requirements to increase career success and by providing advice on how to leverage these skills in the current labour market.

Over the past four years, they have attended Networking 411 events, accepted 1 on 1 mentor connections, spoke in the classroom and invited students for coffee for informational meetings.   They are our Mentors of the Year. Thank you for being available wherever and whenever.

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