Sandy Wakeling is the 2013 Pitt Meadows Citizen of the year.
Presented by the Pitt Meadows Foundation on Pitt Meadows Day, the award recognizes someone who makes a contribution to improving the quality of life of a single person, a family, a school or the community. A person chosen is usually involved in a number of community projects and is resident of Pitt Meadows for at least one year.
“Sandy really stood out in the selection process,” said Michael Hayes, president of the Pitt Meadows Foundation. “Pretty amazing with all of what he’s done. He was a very deserving candidate for this award.”
There were 11 candidates this year with numerous nomination forms filled out for each one.
Wakeling spent five years serving as chair of the Pitt Meadows Economic Development Advisory Committee and another year when it transitioned to the Economic Development Corporation. He served as the director for the chamber of commerce and spent two years on the Pitt Meadows Official Community Plan Review Committee.
He was also on the Pitt Meadows Day Organizing Committee for several years and spent two years with the Friends in Need Food Bank.
Wakeling has also been a communications assistant at B.C. Hydro, a communications analyst at the B.C. Medical Association, a community relations manager and constituency assistant for former Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows MLA Ken Stewart, a community relations officer for Fraser Health, director of marketing and communications for Meadowridge School, director and online recruitment and online E-day chair for B.C. Premier Christy Clark, a freelance and social media strategist at Communications Professional and executive assistant to the Hon. Michael de Jong, when he was the B.C. Minister of Health.
Wakeling is now the communications manager for the Langley School District.
Wakeling is flattered and humbled by the recognition.
“Community service for me has never been about the recognition, but it’s certainly heartwarming to see that what I’ve done or what I’ve had the opportunity to take part in hasn’t gone unnoticed,” said Wakeling.
“I hope it serves, if nothing else, as an inspiration to our own children about the importance of being involved and giving back to the community that you live in.”
Nomination forms are held onto for three years to give all nominations a fair chance.
“That gives everybody a fair chance,” Hayes said.
As Citizen of the Year, Wakeling will be participating in the Pitt Meadows Day parade and opening ceremonies, Pitt Meadows Canada Day celebrations and also the Remembrance Day ceremony.
The Pitt Meadows Community Foundation has been honouring Citizen of the Year since 1997.