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Proifles of our LOLA recipients from 2000-2011

Text of LOLA Storybook 2011

  • 2011in recognition of outstanding contributors to lifelong learning in Calgary

    The LOLAs

    SPRING 2011

  • 2011

    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

    Multicultural Education

    Calgary Learns Staff & Board

    Jim Osenton

    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.

  • LOLA


    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 non-credit,

    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 innovative

    contributions to the promotion, advancement and development of lifelong

    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 in Calgary!

  • LOLA

    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 difference.

    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

    this journey.

    Cindy Dan Yu

  • 112011

    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

    to Canada.

    Honorarium donated by

    Spirit Pipelines Ltd.

  • 11201111

    2011Carolyn ReicherInstructor/Facilitator

    Carolyn Reicher leads the way for learners as an exceptional literacy practitioner.

    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

    Elena BeckwermertInstructor/Facilitator

    Elena Beckwermert helps women break away from past trauma and addictions.

    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:

  • 11 112011


    I am delighted to be a LOLA recipient as this means that I

    am recognized by our team as a facilitator of lifelong learning for

    myself, our students and staff. We are all unique learners and have abilities that need to be explored

    and developed.

    Denise Theunissen

    Denise TheunissenDesigner/Director

    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 PetersDesigner/Director

    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

  • 102009

    2010 082009

    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 succeeding!

    Fenna SchaapmanInstructor/Facilitator

    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.

    Phyllis RegierDesigner/Director

    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 exceptional


    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 community.

    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.

    Fenna Schaapman

  • 082008



    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.

    Brenda HenleyInstructor/Facilitator

    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.

    Belle AuldDesigner/Director

    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.

    Peter CuttingInstructor/Facilitator

    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 be

    offered this recognition celebrates not only an

    individual achievement, but the collective and

    collaborative nature of what we do.

    Diane Hardy

  • 062005


    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 world.

    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 City staff.


    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.

    Jennifer LippoldInstructor/Facilitator

    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.

    Laureen MacKenzieDesigner/Director

    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 reached thousands. gave me pride and self appreciation that to this day stays with me.

    Janice Shaw

  • 042004



    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 ChristieInstructor/Facilitator

    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.

  • 022002

    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 MurphyDesigner/Director

    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 GatesInstructor/Facilitator

    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.

    Celia Osenton

  • 012001


    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.

    John JohnsonInstructor/Facilitator

    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 their lives.

    Wilma RubensInstructor/Facilitator

    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 wisdom.


    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 education course.

    Geri MarentetteInstructor/Facilitator

    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 LopezDesigner/Director

    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

    the fullest.

    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 discover.

    Linda Faulkner

    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.

    Tricia Donovan

    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 worthwhile.

    Peter Cutting

    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.

    Janice Shaw


    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 life possible.

    Fenna Schaapman

    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 clients lives.

    Belle Auld

    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.

    Celia Osenton

    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.

    Conrad Murphy

  • 2011200, 301 -14th Street NW

    Calgary, AB T2N 2A1

    Phone: (403) 266-6444 Fax: (403) 266-6449