Citizen of the Year gala next week

This year’s Citizen of the Year and Young Citizen of the Year will be announced at a gala next week.

The Red Deer Citizen of the Year Spring Gala is set to take place May 4 at the Red Deer Lodge. Cocktails begin at 6 p.m. with the award presentation at 7:30 p.m.

Guest speaker for the event is demographic expert David Foot, author of Boom, Bust and Echo and a professor emeritus of economics at the University of Toronto.

In February, Red Deerians were called upon to nominate people as the City’s Citizen of the Year and Young Citizen of the Year.

At that time, chair of the event, Graham Schofield said choosing the final recipients from the nominations is not an easy task.

“I know that in past years they’ve been flooded with a lot of very, very worthy nominees and the nominating committee puts in a lot of hard work to go through them and make sure the right person ends up at the top,” he said. “These people are our future and they contribute so much and I’m always amazed at what they’ve accomplished in such a short amount of time. I’m always very inspired. It

is very important to recognize those people and keep them in our community.”

The annual award goes to people with a longstanding record of volunteerism and leadership in community involvement and people who make a contribution and impact on the City.

Citizen of the Year dates back to 1969 when it was started by the City and the Red Deer Chamber of Commerce, but was later taken over by the Rotary Clubs of Red Deer.

Past recipients include Hazel and Morris Flewwelling, Joan and Jack Donald as well as Dennis Moffat, Don Hepburn and Lyn Radford.

Last year’s Citizen of the Year was Phil Neufeld who was recognized for his longstanding involvement with groups like the Women’s Shelter, the Youth and Volunteer Centre, Festival of Trees and many others. Megan McLavish was named Young Citizen of the Year.

Tickets for the Red Deer Citizen of the Year Spring Gala are $100 per person. Reserved tables are $1,000.

For tickets call the Black Knight ticket centre at 403-755-6626.