Mayor honours volunteers who make Petrolia better

The Town of Petrolia honoured local volunteers recently at an awards dinner at Petrolia Legion. L-R: Honourees for 2015 include: Sylvia Fairbank, Arts and Culture Volunteer of the Year; Rosanne Orcutt, Community Service Volunteer of the Year, while Les Whiting picked up the Community Partnership volunteer award. Pat Traichevich received special volunteer recognition award.  


A love of her community is why Rosanne Orcutt has been named Petrolia’s Volunteer of the Year for Community Service for 2015.

The retired teacher was honoured at the town’s annual dinner at the Legion last week.

However, the humble Orcutt attributes her success to her fellow citizens because of their willingness to work to build the community of Petrolia.

“No matter who you ask for help, they come and help,” she said. “It makes it very easy, so thank you guys too.”

Orcutt’s numerous accomplishments include: founding member of Charlotte’s Task For Rural Health to maintain CEE Hospital in the community; volunteer member of Bluewater Health Rural Health Advisory Panel; Chair of Doctor’s Recruitment Committee, helping bring four new doctors to Petrolia; working with local students to bring understand of participatory democracy, for which she won the Samara Canada award and she helped organize action against truck traffic through the downtown.

Other volunteers share Orcutt’s willingness to share their time to help.

Town Crier Les Whiting, also a retired teacher, was recognized as the 2015 Volunteer of the Year for Community Partnership.

His was cited for advocating for Petrolia through his personal travels and as Town Crier He was also instrumental is getting the deteriorating band shell rebuilt and he helped restore the Petrolia Legion’s cannon wheels.

He also sits on many planning committees, including the Committee of Adjustment and was a force in rebuilding Victoria Hall.

Sylvia Fairbank was named the 2015 Arts and Culture Volunteer for of the Year for her work with Victoria Playhouse, Petrolia Community Theatre, the Community Services Committee, and for helping bring a Syrian family to Petrolia.

A special volunteer award went to Pat Traichevich for her devotion to Petrolia. She is a perpetual volunteer at parks and recreation events and spearheaded the move to bring a large marching bank to the town’s annual Christmas parade. She also volunteers at Meadowview and the IODE.

The 2015 Volunteer of the Year award went to Petrolia Minor Hockey Association president Nick Salaris. He is part of the Silver Stick committee and was instrumental in Petrolia’s bid for Kraft Hockeyville 2016.

Salaris is also involved in Petrolia Minor Soccer and is known for being an active coach and board member.

Pam Wright/Special to The Independent


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