2011in recognition of outstanding contributors to lifelong
learning in Calgary
CelebratinThank You to our Donors and Sponsor
The LOLA honoraria and event are made possible through the
generous support of our donors and event sponsor.
Alberta Association of
Calgary Learns Staff & Board
Oilfield Electrical Inspection Ltd.
Spirit Pipelines Ltd.
TD Canada Trust Prairie Region
Young Energyserve Inc.
Thanks to our major event sponsor, Bunch Projects, for their
generous ongoing contribution to the LOLA awards.
Celebrating LEARNINGFOREWARDAbout the LOLAs
In 2000, Calgary Learns presented the first Life of Learning
Awards as a way to honour outstanding
contributors to lifelong learning in Calgary. These awards,
affectionately known as the LOLAs, are
presented annually in three categories:
An adult learner who has achieved outstanding results in a
part-time adult education setting.
A facilitator or instructor of non-credit, part-time adult
education who has
shown exceptional skill, creativity and understanding.
A program designer or director who has made extraordinary and
contributions to the promotion, advancement and development of
learning in Calgary.
LOLA recipients are nominated by their peers and chosen from a
field of dedicated adult learning
champions. During a special awards ceremony held each spring,
winners receive our traditional LOLA
award, a unique hand-carved and polished serpentine stone
sculpture from Zimbabwe.
in recognition of outstanding contributorsto lifelong learning
LOLAMeet the Winners Calgary Learns takes great pleasure in
honoring the commitment and courage of our award recipients,
41 inspiring Calgarians who have found their own way to make a
Adult Learner Instructor/Facilitator Designer/Director
2011 Cindy (Dan) Yu Carolyn Reicher Terri Peters Bradley Henkel
Elena Beckwermert Denise Theunissen Ana Paula Mullen
2010 Sufia Chowdhury Linda Faulkner Tricia Donovan
2009 Patricia Kingsbury Fenna Schaapman Phyllis Regier
2008 Rowshon ana Sheuly Brenda Henley Belle Auld
2007 Euphema Blake Peter Cutting Diane Hardy
2006 Dee-Ann Mercer Jennifer Lippold Laureen MacKenzie
2005 Greg MacIntyre Abbas Ali Behmanesh Nancy Bain
2004 Donald Patterson Sharon Christie Anne Price
2003 Philippe Gagnon Ruth Bieber Marnie Schaetti
2002 Janice Shaw Audrey Gates Celia Osenton Conrad Murphy
2001 Roy Pentland Geri Marentette Desiree Lopez
2000 Candace Soul John Johnson Wilma Rubens
If my life is a journey, this first year I spent in Canada will
be the most
breathtaking part with the inspiring highlight being the
LOLA award. Whats more, it empowers me to keep
trying and encourages me to continue sharing the beauty of
life-long learning with everyone I encounter in
Cindy Dan Yu
2011Ana Paula MullenAdult Learner
Ana Paula Mullen proves how commitment to learning can help you
to achieve your goals.
Ana Paula came from Portugal as an adolescent
and despite attending school in Canada she
left without being fluent in reading or writing
English. Now she works to improve her skills,
taking classes at the library and enrolling in Bow
Valley Colleges Building Reading and Writing
Skills. Ana Paula focuses on her ultimate goal of
working in the education field with children with
special needs. Those who know her see that she
is on this learning path already. Ana Paula is a
mother of 7 children, 4 of whom are challenged
with learning disabilities. Her nominator says it
is because of Ana Paulas advocacy and passion
for learning that all her children are thriving in
school and adds that Ana Paula demonstrates
to her children, classmates and instructors that
with determination and passion for learning she
will achieve her goals.
Honorarium donated by
Young EnergyServe Inc.
Bradley HenkelAdult Learner
Bradley Henkel changes perceptions of people with disabilities
through leadership and learning.
Brad Henkel does not let his developmental
disability slow him down. Since graduating
from high school in 2008 Brad has been
active in the Participation in Academics and
Career Exploration (PACE) program at the
Developmental Disabilities Resource Centre
of Calgary. Whether taking classes, attending
workshops or finding employment, Brad
embraces the PACE program which helps
young adults develop their career and learning
pathways. Many who know Brad say he is
helping to change the stereotype of people with
disabilities. His nominator explains, Brad has
become a strong leader in different communities
he works and learns in simply by setting an
example as an active volunteer, responsible
co-worker, and equally, always passionate
student. Brad sets a great example of what you
can achieve through learning.
Honorarium donated by
Oilfield Electrical Inspection Ltd.
Cindy (Dan) YuAdult Learner
Cindy (Dan) Yu came to Canada last April and has been learning
and volunteering here nonstop.
A teacher in her homeland of China, Cindy
now shines as a learner in Bow Valley Colleges
English for Academic Purposes program. Cindys
nominator marvels that on top of her studies
and taking numerous workshops, Cindy has
been volunteering since the second week of
her arrival. She has logged over 200 volunteer
hours working at a number of different
community organizations, including the Book
Nook at the Calgary Drop-In and Rehab Centre,
delivering Citizen Engagement Workshops in
Mandarin for clients of the Calgary Immigrant
Womens Association and acting as a part-time
group leader at the Calgary Bridge Foundation
for Youth in the after school program. A
dedicated mother, Cindy also participates in the
Parent Council at her sons school and trained
to be an interpreter within the school district.
Her nominator is right, Cindy is a real treasure
Honorarium donated by
Spirit Pipelines Ltd.
Carolyn Reicher leads the way for learners as an exceptional
Over the past decade Carolyn has been
instrumental in bringing to life many of the
Calgary Public Librarys literacy and learning
programs. One of her most impressive
achievements has been her role in supporting
the Librarys Reading Advantage program to help
over 400 adult learners improve their reading and
writing skills. According to Carolyns nominator
her vision for the improvement of the daily
lives of literacy learners never falters. It is this
commitment to learners that makes her stand out.
On top of her work at the library Carolyn is also
a passionate and active community volunteer.
A colleague summarizes her strengths Carolyn
is not only a promoter of adult literacy. She is a
community animator who helps individuals and
organizations connect the dots from the personal,
to the local to the global community.
Receiving a LOLA honors the purpose of my work which is to
create an environment in which clients get rid of the fear that
they are less than they think
they are and see that they are so much more.
Elena Beckwermert helps women break away from past trauma and
For over 10 years Elena has been a life changing
facilitator and counsellor at the Youville
Recovery Residence for Women where she
delivers programming for mothers entering
treatment with their children. Elena is seen
as an innovator by her colleagues always
working to create a learning environment that is
welcoming, nurturing and suiting the individual
needs of clients. Elenas nominators all spoke of
her dedication, compassion and genuine desire
to promote self worth and empowerment for the
women and children she works with. And her
dedication to creating a nurturing environment
is not just professional: Elenas own twins,
born at 24 weeks, are now close to graduating
university on the deans list! Clearly, Elenas
three decades as a beloved and knowledgeable
educator have influenced the lives of many.
Honorarium donated by
TD Canada Trust Prairie Region
Alberta Association for Multicultural
Education Instructor 2011:
I am delighted to be a LOLA recipient as this means that I
am recognized by our team as a facilitator of lifelong learning
myself, our students and staff. We are all unique learners and
have abilities that need to be explored
Denise Theunissen champions innovations that advance learner
services across the globe.
Through her work as a learning specialist at
Bow Valley College, Denise has contributed
to a number of innovative projects involving
assistive technologies and learner access.
Denise is a passionate advocate of Universal
Design principles, which strive to create
learning environments that are inclusive
and accessible for all. She has even taken
her knowledge of Universal Design teaching
principles overseas working with instructors in
Mozambique, Namibia, Ghana and Thailand. It
is clear from her nominators that Denise goes
out of her way to motivate and encourage
coworkers.and her dedication to learners is
shown through her tireless efforts advocating
for Universal Design principles for all students.
Thanks to the efforts of visionaries like Denise
learning is more accessible to us all.
Honorarium donated by
Calgary Learns staff and board
Terri Peters is a passionate and effective designer for adult
literacy and learning
Terri has dedicated her lifes work to education
and literacy. In her role as a project manager at
Literacy Alberta, Terri developed tools such as
the Literacy Audit Tool Kit and Health Literacy
Audit that are making a tremendous impact
in the field of literacy and the lives of literacy
learners. Terri is also a sought-after training
facilitator and member of several advisory
groups. She uses her knowledge, sense of
humor and passion for literacy and learning to
inspire all those around her. This is clear in the
following praise from one of her nominators, In
spreading her enthusiasm and belief in literacy
work she leads by example and carries others
along with her. It is clear that through Terri, our
community has found a passionate voice for the
critical issue of literacy.
Honorarium donated by Calgary Learns
staff and board
Patricia KingsburyAdult Learner
In 2006 Pat enrolled in the Never Too Late Program, which helps
adult learners study for and pass their General Equivalency Diploma
(GED) exams. Bright, determined and an inspiration to students half
her age, Pat is following her lifelong learning goal. And
Combining conventional and creative approaches, Fenna leads
workshops at the Youville Womens Residence. Fenna is guided by a
belief that everyone can learn and achieve. A truly holistic
instructor, Fenna helps others believe in themselves.
As the ESL Program Manager at Chinook Learning Services, Phyllis
Regier has created a program that is respected by adult students
and professional educators throughout Calgary. Deeply committed to
her work, Phyllis goes above and beyond to create a truly
Sufia Chowdhury Adult Learner
Sufia began taking classes to improve her English after
emigrating from Bangladesh. She blossomed in her new learning
environment and has become a role model for all finding the balance
between observing her faith and inspiring learning in her
Linda Faulkner Instructor/Facilitator
Linda Faulkner takes on the challenge of helping multi-
barriered refugee and immigrant women in her role at the Calgary
Immigrant Womens Association (CIWA). She creatively combines
crafts, music, dance, exercise and everyday activities such as
cooking with literacy learning.
Dr. Tricia Donovan Designer/Director
As the Executive Director of eCampusAlberta, Tricia Donovan has
played a key leadership role in bringing together a consortium of
15 Alberta post-secondary institutions and developing a
revolutionary way of delivering education across Alberta.
Thank you Calgary Learns. Your mission
has made so much of my fulfilling life possible.
Rowshon ana SheulyAdult Learner
When Rowshon ana Sheuly and her family emigrated from
Bangladesh, her lack of English made it tough to step out her door.
An inspiration and role model, Rowshon now leads one of the
programs she took herself just a few years ago with the Further
Education Society of Alberta.
At Families Matter, Brenda creatively designs and teaches
positive strategies that are useful for everyday parenting
struggles. Brenda creates responsive classrooms where parents from
all backgrounds can pull together, openly explore their issues and
learn from each other.
A literacy advocate throughout her career, Belle Auld
coordinates the Bow Valley Colleges Speech Assisted Reading and
Writing Program (SARAW). By dedicating herself to improving the way
services are delivered to learners, Belle is recognized with
creating one of the strongest SARAW programs in Canada.
Euphema Blake Adult Learner
Euphema Blake decided to fulfill her lifelong dream and learn to
read and write. Since joining the Reading Advantage program at the
Calgary Public Library, Euphema now reads widely, adding her voice
to bible readings
and hymn sings at church.
For more than two decades serving as board member, fundraiser
and tutor, Peter Cutting has been helping learners achieve life
skills through improved literacy learning. Peter now coaches
learners at the Calgary Public Library.
Diane Hardy Designer/Director
Diane is the coordinator of multiple ESL programs at Bow Valley
College. Her pivotal work to establish the Bridge Program, received
the 2007 Mayors Excellence Award. A committed educator, Diane is
willing to put incredible effort into making a difference.
There is so much talent in the field of adult education that to
offered this recognition celebrates not only an
individual achievement, but the collective and
collaborative nature of what we do.
Greg MacIntyre Adult Learner
Greg refuses to let potential barriers like former addictions,
cost or time get in his way. Greg became a certified life skills
instructor at Momentum and an instructor at the Mustard Seed, Gregs
enthusiasm for learning and life is inspirational.
Abbas Ali BehmaneshInstructor/Facilitator
As a deaf learner himself, Ali teaches by example. During his
time at Bow Valley Colleges Deaf and Hard of Hearing Unit, he
worked determinedly to create a learning bridge to the hearing
Nancy Bain Designer/Director
A consummate adult learner, Nancy Bain became one of the first
students to complete a masters degree in Continuing Education, all
while carrying out her valuable work at the City of Calgary,
providing e-learning and traditional learning opportunities for
Dee-Ann MercerAdult Learner
After losing her hearing to a rare disease, Dee-Ann Mercer
enrolled in an American Sign Language (ASL) course at Deaf and Hard
of Hearing Services. More than a passive student, Dee-Ann created a
study booklet that has since become a useful companion study guide
for other learners.
As a financial literacy facilitator at Momentum, Jennifer led
programs for low income Calgarians. Jennifer is described as a
passionate facilitator who, with kindness and respect, helps her
students to find value in their skills and experiences.
As co-founder and co-executive director of the Further Education
Society of Alberta (FESA), Laureen is dedicated to strengthening
communities through family learning. Laureen co-authored FESAs
award winning Literacy and Parenting Skills, a program that has
...it gave me pride and self appreciation that to this day stays
Donald Patterson Adult Learner
Because of a speech difficulty, Donald Patterson had always
struggled to be heard. Motivated by his success learning sign
language, Donald created a book of visual cues that allows him to
participate in day-to-day conversations. Donald is now a
sought-after public speaker.
Sharon Christie coordinates the Grace Womens Health Resources
Outreach Program, reaching 7,000 marginalized women and
facilitating more than 230 health education presentations on topics
that include parenting, family
violence and womans health.
Dr. Anne PriceDesigner/Director
Anne Price is a committed advocate of learning, especially for
those with learning disabilities. In her roles at the Calgary
Learning Centre Anne has developed multiple resources for parents,
counselors and educators and is a supporter of
educators in training.
Philippe Gagnon Adult Learner
Philippe is a committed actor who gives 100 per cent to the
Inside Out Integrated Theatre Project, a program for participants
with disabilities. Philippe never misses a beat, bringing his sense
of humour and invaluable life experience to every performance.
Ruth Bieber Instructor/Facilitator
As Artistic Director of Inside Out Integrated Theatre, Ruth
Bieber worked tirelessly to create a learning environmentunique in
Canadathat is accepting, challenging and very fun. With Ruths
guidance and vision, her acting troupes have been able to break
down myths and barriers.
Marnie Schaetti Designer/Director
Marnie is a dedicated lifelong learner who helped to drive the
successful merger of the Alberta Association of Adult Literacy and
the Literacy Coordinators of Alberta into Literacy Alberta; she
then went on to lead that organization.
2002 01Celia Osenton Designer/Director
Celia Osentons passion is to provide access to quality parenting
education for all interested Calgarians. Her dedication and
expertise over the last 25 years have been key in helping to design
and direct award winning parenting education classes.
Conrad Murphy is passionate about workplace learning. As leader
of the Business Development division at Bow Valley College, Conrad
is nationally recognized as a community educator, partnership
builder, policy influencer and researcher.
Janice ShawAdult Learner
Janice did not let her learning disability limit her; earning
her BSW at the University of Calgary she spearheaded the creation
of services for learning disabled students. In her work she
continues to be a mentor for others overcoming obstacles.
Audrey Gates is an intervenor for the deafblind. Audrey builds
relationships based on mutual respect and care. She has touched
many colleagues and clients with her skill and dedication as she
helps the deafblind understand and interact with the world.
The award acknowledges the effort involved behind the titles
advertised, and the importance
of the work being done in our community.
Candace SoulAdult Learner
Candace Soul has spent her lifetime learning. She has completed
coursework in business, fitness and recreation, academics,
alternative medicine and family life.
Working with young adults at Motive-Action Training Foundation,
John strives to provide the best possible learning experience for
his students, many who find themselves at significant crossroads in
Wilma Rubens is a dedicated life skills facilitator who helps
diverse learners build on their strengths and develop their
potential. Specializing in conflict resolution, parent education
and life writing, she builds relationships with compassion and
Roy PentlandAdult Learner
Roy Pentland has been an enthusiastic and successful learner in
every course TVP has had to offer him. Roy is now giving back to
the learning community as a volunteer assistant in the TVP drivers
Geri Marentette was the coordinator of the Bridges Program at
the Elizabeth Fry Society. Working with women in conflict with the
law, Geri has helped countless women make permanent and profound
changes in their lives.
Desiree is the designer of Pebbles in the Sand at the Calgary
Immigrant Womens Association. Her creative program design and
ongoing leadership have had huge impact, helping immigrant and
refugee women to realize their dreams.
The LOLA awards give valuable recognition to talented
facilitators who spend many hours in preparation and are
committed to encouraging their students to live to
Wilma G. Rubens
LOLAThe LOLA award can be an acronym for Love of Life Award. As
a facilitator I am involved in the education and personal growth of
each woman who attends Pebbles in the Sand classes. The award is a
statement that reminds me to keep on with learning new tasks so I
can encourage each woman to learn anything she may wish to
I am humbled by receiving this honour. As the Executive Director
of eCampusAlberta, I have been privileged to play a part in
increasing access to learning opportunities for adults in Calgary
and across the province. Our success is only made possible through
the hard work, dedication and commitment to learning that our team,
our stakeholders and our members provide.
As a mere volunteer tutor I was deeply moved and encouraged that
I had been chosen from amongst many professionals in the adult
literacy field. It was affirming to me how valuable my efforts are
in helping adults improve their literacy skills. On a week by week
basis sometimes progress is quite slow, and theres a feeling of Why
do I continue to do this? But then along comes the recognition that
yes, I am making a difference and this makes this all
Receiving the life time learning award was a great honour for
me. To have a plaque I could display in my office with the saying
life of learning award was such a gift I was so proud to display.
It was amazing to be given an award to celebrate me and my
achievements, After reading the letters written for my nomination
package I never doubted myself again. It gave me pride and self
appreciation that to this day stays with me.
LOLAMy joy in accepting this award is enlarged by the memories
of all the continu-ing education instructors who made this
possible. Whenever I had a gap in education that needed filling or
a desire for fun (singing, sewing, investing) there were accessible
and innovative continuing education cours-es available to me. Thank
you Calgary Learns. Your mission has made so much of my fulfilling
As a LOLA recipient I would just have to say what I said when I
accepted the award that it is an honour and a humbling experience
to be recognized by ones peers. It makes me feel less like I am
working in isolation; that something Im working on might be making
a difference And it makes me feel like I am part of a larger
community of people working in Calgary to make a difference in our
The challenge for directors of Family Education programs is to
design a course that is attractive, informative and is perceived to
take a new approach to issues. In my opinion The LOLA award for
Designer/Director provides encouragement for all who work in the
field, to design such innovative programs that will motivate
parents to attend and ultimately result in improved parent-ing
practices. The award also acknowledges the effort involved behind
the titles advertised, and the im-portance of the work being done
in our community.
I was honoured to receive the LOLA a few years ago. It was the
first award that I ever received for the work that we do in the
area of essential skills assessment and training. The recogni-tion
from peers provided an affirmation that we were on the right track
when we developed the TOWES assessment products.
2011200, 301 -14th Street NW
Calgary, AB T2N 2A1
Phone: (403) 266-6444 Fax: (403) 266-6449