Manitoba Excellence in Sustainability Awards

2016 Winners

News Release

Manitoba Sustainable Development announced the 2016 winners of the Manitoba Excellence in Sustainability Awards at an awards reception on May 10, 2016 at the Manitoba Legislature. The awards announced are as follows:

Champion for Sustainability
Brian Humniski, Winnipeg

Humniski is a teacher at Maples Collegiate and has been at the forefront of tourism education for over 20 years and continues to promote the industry through his teachings. He has assisted with the development of much of the tourism curriculum not only in Manitoba but across Canada. He developed curricula that encourages student engagement in the cultural, economic and sociological aspects of tourism development and highlights the importance of sustainability in the adoption of policies and practices. Numerous schools have used his program as the model for enhancing the teachings of sustainability.

Honourable Mention
B. Rocke Landscaping, Winnipeg

B. Rocke Landscaping is a locally owned and operated company specializing in paving stone, patios and other hardscaping work. The company has committed to reduce waste and greenhouse-gas emissions at all levels of their business while educating clients on the importance of doing it too. B. Rocke Landscaping also strives to work with business partners who share their values and appreciate the importance of being environmentally responsible.

Outstanding Achievement
Oak Hammock Marsh Interpretive Centre, Oak Hammock Marsh

The Oak Hammock Marsh Interpretive Centre increases public understanding of the values of wetlands and encourages public support for their conservation through innovative education and outreach programs. The centre is located on the edge of the Oak Hammock Marsh Wildlife Management Area, which is one of North America’s birding hotspots. The centre has welcomed over two million visitors since it opened in 1993, connecting them with the natural and cultural heritage of the area.

Sustainability in Water and Natural Area Stewardship
Mike Stainton, Elie

Stainton has demonstrated a commitment to innovative research in both his professional and personal life. Stainton has been instrumental in the design and operation of the chemistry programs at the Experimental Lakes Area and the Freshwater Institute of Fisheries and Oceans Canada. He is also a founding member of the Lake Winnipeg Research Consortium and remains actively involved in Lake Winnipeg research through this organization. Throughout his career, Stainton has helped to train countless numbers of students and technicians in aquatic chemistry and analytical research.

Honourable Mention
Gordon Bluesky, Brokenhead Ojibway Nation

For the past decade, Bluesky has demonstrated his commitment to sustainability as the lands and resources manager for Brokenhead Ojibway Nation and as a member of the board of directors for the National Aboriginal Lands Managers Association. Bluesky has also acted as the chair of the South Basin of the Lake Winnipeg Indigenous Collective (LWIC) for the past two years. The LWIC brings a valuable perspective to the conservation of Lake Winnipeg and has been a catalyst in bringing First Nation communities together to identify issues for their communities as they relate to Lake Winnipeg.

Education for Sustainability
St. George School Freshwater and Ecological Institute, Winnipeg

The St. George Freshwater and Ecological Institute, under the direction of Brent Atkins and the grade 7 and 8 students at St. George School, has been engaging youth to be actively involved in protecting the environment. Using the local Seine River as a backdrop to study both water quality and the importance of the riparian habitat, students learn that a connection to natural habitats is the first step in their protection. The institute’s goal is to educate, raise awareness and involve the young leaders of tomorrow in local watershed management issues, especially as they relate to local resource management and land use, as well as environmental, social and economic development.

Honourable Mention
Strathmillan Elementary School, Winnipeg

The students and staff at Strathmillan Elementary School have been putting water stewardship into practice as they embark on an educational exploration of the issues facing local waters. “Water” was chosen as the school’s educational theme for 2015-16 and the Lake Winnipeg Foundation as a local charity partner. As a result, sustainability via water stewardship was incorporated into the school’s lesson plans and extra-curricular activities. Students have also been encouraged to reduce their water usage at home, in school and in the community.

Sustainable Community
Mother Earth Recycling, Winnipeg

Mother Earth Recycling is a Winnipeg-based social enterprise that focuses on making environmental and social change in the community. Mother Earth operates an electronic waste depot, refurbishment store and mattress recycling facility. It also provides training and employment opportunities to members of the community, with a strong focus on social responsibility. Through its work with schools, youth programs, community groups and other local small businesses and social enterprises, Mother Earth has become an integral part of the Point Douglas community.

Innovation and Research for Sustainability
Red River College, Winnipeg

Red River College (RRC) has been conducting innovative research and applying knowledge to reduce energy consumption, increase sustainability and generate high-quality graduates and jobs in Manitoba. RRC has formed a number of partnerships with local companies and organizations to innovate and develop major research advancements that contribute to sustainability by testing and implementing new sustainable technologies in Manitoba. Some recent projects have included research related to energy-efficient buildings, sustainable transportation, clean water innovation and training students in the area of sustainable technologies.