Recipients honoured at Red Deer College Community Awards

Date posted: 
Thu, 05/18/2017
2017 Community Award Recipients

In a celebratory evening that focused on community contributions and connections, Red Deer College honoured two deserving individuals and one community partner at the Community Awards ceremony on May 17.

The event provided a meaningful opportunity for community members, alumni and distinguished guests to celebrate and honour the following award recipients:  

• Alfio Truant was awarded the G.H. Dawe Memorial Award for his commitment to community and leadership.
• RDC bestowed the Distinguished Alumnus Award to Rod Kennedy for his personal and professional achievements, as well as public service.
• The Community Partner Award was presented to seven central Alberta School Divisions, in recognition of their collaborations with Red Deer College in promoting high school completion and the transition to post-secondary learning. 

The Alumni Legacy Award was not presented this year but nominations are encouraged for 2018.

For complete details on each of the Community Awards recipients, please see the additional information below.

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Photo caption information: Rod Kennedy, Distinguished Alumnus Award recipient (left), with representatives from the seven central Alberta School Divisions, recipients of the Community Partner Award (centre), and Alfio Truant, recipient of the G.H. Dawe Memorial Award (right).

To view a highlight video from the event, please click here.  

For additional information contact:

Janice Wing      
Director, Community Relations    

Erin Forbes
Communications Strategist - Corporate


Alfio Truant recipient of 2017 G.H. Dawe Memorial Award at Red Deer College Community Awards

Red Deer, May 17, 2017 – Alfio Truant is a business and community leader in Red Deer and central Alberta.  With an extensive history of volunteerism and commitment to his community, Alfio has spent countless hours demonstrating leadership by giving back, investing in local organizations and continually showing his support for education in central Alberta. 
Alfio was born in Nordegg, Alberta but grew up in Red Deer.  He attended school at St. Josephs Convent and graduated from Red Deer High School, now known as Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School, in 1948.  He attended post-secondary classes at both Red Deer College and the University of Waterloo. 

He joined his father, Romano and brother Dino in the family business, Red Deer Bottling Co. in the early 1950’s.  After his father passed away in 1977, Dino and Alfio continued to grow Red Deer Bottling into one of the most respected businesses in central Alberta.   Still a thriving business in Red Deer’s Edgar Industrial Park, Alfio currently serves as the Chairman of the Board.

Family is a priority to Alfio.  He married his wife Phyllis in 1950 and they had two children together, Michael and Tammy.  After sixty two years of marriage, Phyllis passed away in 2012.  Alfio is the proud grandfather to four grandchildren, Micah-Lynn, Tarah-Lynn, Marley and Jarred.

Alfio has long seen the value of quality education and learning opportunities in central Alberta.  In 2003 he was recognized for his success and support of education by being inducted into the Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School Hall of Fame.  His commitment also extends to the post-secondary level.  At Red Deer College, Alfio has supported both learners and alumni through the creation of numerous scholarships recognizing leadership, athletics, music, motion picture arts as well as small business and entrepreneurship.  His support of capital projects has resulted in classrooms and learning spaces across a variety of programs.  

Community involvement and giving back are a key part of who Alfio Truant is.  He has served as President of the Alberta Lung Association and Secretary Treasurer of the Alberta Soft Drink Association.  He is a past Board Member of Parkland Industries, has volunteered extensively with Westerner Park and was a key supporter in the establishment of the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame. 

Alfio has also been a long standing member of the Red Deer Kinsmen and K40 Club, Rotary Club of Red Deer, Knights of Columbus as well as a member of the Elks and the Royal Canadian Legion #35.   He is an active supporter of the Red Deer Hospice Society, established a charitable gift fund with RBC for local causes and is an ongoing supporter of the Red Deer Regional Hospital.



Rod Kennedy receives Distinguished Alumnus Award at 2017 Red Deer College Community Awards

Red Deer, May 17, 2017 – Roderick (Rod) Kennedy is driven by a desire to lead change for the betterment of Red Deer and Alberta.  His efforts and beliefs about contribution and community, both locally and provincially, have lead him to valuable volunteer and professional experiences. 

As a youth and a young man Rod almost always had a job and they were diverse. He worked as a paper boy, in mess halls and kitchens, movie theatres, bakeries, digging ditches, a pipe layer, on rural rail crews and repossessing cars.  It gave him perspective on life, work and good values.

His desire to volunteer began at a young age when he became president of his junior high school student’s union.  He was active in many team sports as he grew up and continued that tradition in his post-secondary career.  While at Red Deer College, Rod was part of the basketball and ski teams as well as representing other individual sports.

While finishing his post-secondary education and starting his career took him to cities across Alberta, Rod returned to Red Deer in 1982.  After a successful career as a business analyst, Rod decided to take an entrepreneurial leap and developed an investment and wealth management practice with RBC Dominion securities.  After twenty three years, Rod continues to enjoy this fulfilling career. 

Committed to community and giving back, Rod has been immensely involved and assumed many leadership roles with the Normandeau Society, Red Deer Chamber of Commerce, Piper Creek Optimist Club, Westerner Exposition, Agri-Trade Exposition, Red Deer College, STARS and the University of Alberta.  He was also a founding member of the Business Advisory Network, a unique and ground breaking project focused on coordinating business service offerings.  

Currently Rod is serving his second term on both the STARS Foundation Board and the STARS Society Board, where he continues to promote the needs of the citizens of Red Deer and central Alberta.  He also continues to serve as an elected member of the University of Alberta Senate.  Additionally Rod is currently a part of the 2019 Canada Winter Games Governance Committee and the Risk Committee.

Rod has been recognized for his extensive contributions having been awarded the Alberta Centennial Medal, the Optimist of the Year for Red Deer, Distinguished Service Awards - Canadian Association of Fairs & Expositions, Distinguished Service Award - Westerner Park and the 2016 Red Deer Citizen of Year.



Seven central Alberta School Divisions receive Community Partner Award at 2017 Red Deer College Community Awards

Red Deer, May 17, 2017 - Red Deer College is proud to partner with the following seven local School Divisions to ensure that the diverse needs of central Alberta’s learners are being met:

Chinook’s Edge School Division
Clearview Public Schools
Prairie Land Regional Division
Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools
Red Deer Public School District
Wild Rose School Division
Wolf Creek Public Schools

The College and these School Divisions formalized its long-standing partnership by signing the Learning Pathways in Central Alberta Memorandum of Understanding in March 2013. This agreement recognized the need to enhance learning opportunities in the region by promoting high school completion and the transition to post-secondary learning.

Through this agreement, the School Divisions and the College committed to establishing effective relationships to increase educational choices for students, while also promoting and respecting the mutual organization interests of each of the partners.

This collaboration enhanced the strong spirit of cooperation where all learners in the region are considered, including rural and remote learners, who may experience unique challenges in accessing post-secondary education. Whether students wish to pursue apprenticeship designations, certificates, diplomas or degrees, this partnership helps to ensure that learner pathways and access to education are being enhanced through a variety of creative opportunities and program delivery options.

The partnership between these organizations has benefited students since its creation, and it will continue into a bright future. Today, on Wednesday, May 17, Red Deer College and the seven School Divisions further enhanced their commitment to learners in the region by signing a renewal of the Learning Pathways in Central Alberta Memorandum of Understanding. This on-going partnership is an exceptional example of diverse groups working together for the benefit of learners in central Alberta.