Recipients recognized at Red Deer College Community Awards

Date posted: 
Wed, 05/16/2018
Community Award Recipients_May 16 2018

Photo:  RDC Community Award recipients. Left to right:  Parker Slaymaker, Reed Slaymaker (two of Linda Slaymaker's sons, accepting the Alumni Legacy Award in honour of their mother), Sharilee Fossum (Distinguished Alumna Award recipient), Guy Pelletier (G.H. Dawe Memorial Award of Excellence) and Lyn Radford, Board Chair of 2019 Canada Winter Games Host Society (Community Partner Award recipient). 

In a celebratory evening that focused on community contributions and connections, Red Deer College honoured three deserving individuals and one community partner at its annual Community Awards ceremony on May 16.

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

• Guy Pelletier was awarded the G.H. Dawe Memorial Award for his commitment to community and leadership.
• Linda Slaymaker was posthumously presented with the Alumni Legacy Award, for her contributions to her community and to RDC during her 24-year career working in the College’s Financial Services department.
• RDC bestowed the Distinguished Alumna Award to Sharilee Fossum for her personal and professional achievements, as well as public service.
• The 2019 Canada Winter Games Host Society was the recipient of RDC’s Community Partner Award, in recognition of its collaboration with Red Deer College to strengthen central Alberta, its communities and the College, now and for future generations. 


Guy Pelletier honoured with G.H. Dawe Memorial Award 

Guy’s extensive resume of community involvement began to take shape when he was a Red Deer College Business Administration student starting classes in 1985. Coming from Rocky Mountain House, after high school Guy attended the University of Calgary for three semesters but was eventually drawn to the smaller size and community of RDC.

He felt an instant attachment to RDC and joined several clubs, which fuelled his desire to become more involved in the central Alberta community. He enjoyed the increased ability to associate with classmates and instructors, several of whom had a terrific influence, helping him to grow personally and to understand what that social connection meant to be involved in the College community.

Guy’s involvement in central Alberta grew over time. He reached out to the College first, when the Alumni Association was initially formed. As an alumnus and having worked at RDC as a Contracts & Benefits Officer/Acting Director from 1993 to 1996, Guy has a strong bond with RDC that has continued over the years.

He helped shape the Alumni Association when it was initially formed. Guy has also served on the Red Deer College Board of Governors, RDC Foundation Board and RDC Donald School of Business Advisory Council. Among Guy’s many accomplishments supporting RDC students, he chaired the Access & Excellence Committee which raised more than $5 million and resulted in 56 endowments and 156 new financial awards to assist RDC students. This Committee’s enthusiastic work played a huge role in the College’s overall success raising $35 during the Building Communities Through Learning Campaign.

Like George Harold Dawe, Guy’s leadership and community involvement often centres on youth and helps ensure success of students of all ages. Beyond his commitment to RDC, Guy’s passion for supporting education in the region is further demonstrated in his service as an elected trustee and Board Chair of the Red Deer Catholic Regional School Division School Board.

The Red Deer Catholic School Board saw tremendous growth in student population during Guy’s time with the school division. He was part of successfully lobbying the government for three new schools, modernization projects and adding portables.

Guy has also enjoyed contributing to building the community by being a Big Brother and Board member with the Youth and Volunteer Centre. He is now focusing his volunteer efforts as a Director on the Board of the 2019 Canada Winter Games Host Society, along with balancing commitments to honour his family and work.

Guy began working at Melcor Developments Ltd. in 1997. It has been a great fit professionally and personally. As Vice President for the Red Deer Region, Guy works as a land development professional. He conducts himself with a high level of integrity and ethical standards, one of the many attributes he shares with Mr. Dawe. Melcor Developments is a strong proponent of education and volunteerism. This organization sponsors several scholarships at RDC, including the Melcor Developments Scholarship for Excellence in Community Involvement, of which Guy is a huge proponent. This scholarship recognizes recipients for academic performance and community leadership.

As a devoted husband to Lee Ann and father to Benjamin, Morgan and Halle, family is one of Guy’s principal focuses. Family, work and the community are three pillars of importance in his life and maintaining balance between the three is very important to him.

Guy has been recognized on several occasions for his generous involvement in central Alberta. Among his accolades, Guy received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Red Deer College in 2003 and the Alberta Centennial Medal in 2005 for leadership and community contributions.


Linda Slaymaker announced as Alumni Legacy Award recipient 

The 2018 Alumni Legacy Award is presented posthumously to Linda Slaymaker. Linda loved her family, community and work at Red Deer College, and she touched the lives of everyone that she met.

Born in 1957, Linda spent 11 years in Lake Louise where she developed a love for the mountains. Family was an important component of Linda’s life, and she grew up under the guidance of her parents, Hubert and Josephine Scott. Linda enjoyed spending time with her siblings David, John, Brenda and Kathy, and in 1968 her family moved to Red Deer, where she graduated from Lindsay Thurber High School. In Red Deer, Linda met Ron Slaymaker, her loving husband of 34 years. She took joy in family and was a proud mother to Reed (Audra), Rylie (Christine), Parker and Mitch, and grandmother to Payton, Taylor and Birkley.

While employed at Red Deer College for 24 years, Linda’s expertise and enjoyment at work were apparent. She was a key member in the RDC Financial Services department, where she worked as a Budget Manager with enthusiasm and kindness. In that role, she provided support in developing and managing budgets with a high level of skill, attention to detail and understanding of RDC’s commitment to learners. As a valuable member of the College team, Linda earned her colleague’s confidence in her ability to transform RDC’s vision into a successful financial plan. She was always willing to assist and took on extra responsibilities to help others.

In her career, Linda consistently communicated in an informed and clear manner. She considered different points of view yet was confident expressing her perspective with a valued and respected voice. Linda was a consummate professional in how she handled confidential and sensitive information. She showed great care for the people around her and made many positive personal connections at RDC.

Linda was passionate about lifelong learning. In addition to her work, she was a proud alumna of Red Deer College. She completed a Certificate in Management in 2004, and earned a Business Administration Diploma in 2009.

Involved in community and College events, Linda helped with fundraising, including the United Way, as well as sports groups. She was well-known for leading walks around RDC’s main campus to encourage well-being. Caring and humble, Linda personified what it meant to be part of the College community.

In July 2012, Linda was diagnosed with a brain tumour and she passed away November 24, 2013.

Her love of life, dedication to family, service to the College and community personifies the spirit of the Alumni Legacy Award.

Sharilee Fossum presented Distinguished Alumna Award 

Sharilee Fossum approaches work, education and community involvement with energy, integrity and as a positive example for others. 

Her value for education is evident with her commitment to lifelong learning. After earning a Business Administration Diploma at RDC in 1979, she completed a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Alberta two years later. Her quest for more knowledge continued. In 1999, Sharilee finished a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Regina and then received her Certified Management Accounting designation in 2003.

She has an impressive resume with an impeccable track record. Under her leadership, she has helped several organizations become foundationally stronger and financially viable.

Since May 2015, Sharilee has been the Chief Financial and Administration Officer at Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) and has upheld the mandate with professionalism, enthusiasm and integrity. Her tireless work with APEGA’s Audit Committee has been instrumental and her diligence has been exemplary.

Previously, she was the CFO and Vice President Corporate Services at Northlands, where she maintained the fiscal and operational credibility and viability of the organization. Then as Interim President and CEO at Northlands, Sharilee helped develop innovative programming such as Alberta Flavour, which helped place the local food industry in a more desirable position globally.

Sharilee has been involved in senior financial and operating roles within other key organizations in Alberta. She worked as a Chief Operating Officer for the evolving Alberta Urban Municipalities Association (AUMA) which advocates for the interests of urban municipalities and over 85 per cent of Albertans. With the Government of Alberta, she was the Executive Director and Senior Financial Officer for Service Alberta.

Sharilee has used her wealth of skills, knowledge and experience to give back to the community. She has been a proud Board Member with the Red Deer College Foundation since March 2014. Currently, Sharilee is also a Board Member and Chair Audit with Edmonton Economic Development and the Telus World of Science, as well as a Board Member with the Friends of the Alberta Jubilee Auditorium Society. As a model leader, Sharilee’s guidance at work and in the community displays an outstanding example of diligence, knowledge and standards for others to follow.

Canada Winter Games Host Society receives Community Partner Award 

Red Deer College and the 2019 Canada Winter Games Host Society have developed a strong working relationship since Red Deer was announced as the host for the 2019 Canada Winter Games. The Games, through the valuable work now of the Host Society, will strengthen and enhance this region, its communities and the College, for generations to come.

Together with its partners, the Host Society is committed to creating a life-shaping experience for athletes, the region, and beyond. The Host Society’s mission outlines its desire to leave a legacy for athletic and leadership development through living its core values of being innovative, collaborative, sustainable, inclusive, authentic, tenacious and creating a frontier spirit.

As a result of Red Deer hosting the Canada Winter Games, upgrades to several recreational areas, along with new facilities, will benefit central Albertans. Setters Place at Great Chief Park, River Bend Enhancements, Central Elementary School Revitalization Project and the Canyon Ski Resort upgrades are all enhanced facility projects that will enhance athletic competition and create community gathering places in the spirit of the Games.

The Games acted as a catalyst in cementing the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre/Centre des Jeux du Canada Gary W. Harris at RDC. The Canada Games Centre will shape the future of the College, creating new learning spaces to increase and enhance programming for learners. The Canada Games Centre will be well-equipped to host many local, provincial and national tournaments and events in the future, including RDC’s national championship-winning Kings and Queens, which all contribute to the community.

The region’s new and improved infrastructure will support future athletes training in central Alberta. Equipment used at the Games will be given to local sporting organizations, assisting in the development of youth athletics. The Host Society has championed creation of a 2019 Canada Games Legacy Fund that will help support future sport leadership and development projects.

Along with enhanced facilities and recreation opportunities, the 2019 Canada Winter Games will provide central Albertans with the opportunity to watch, and cheer for, Canada’s next generation of potential Olympians as they compete. More than 5,000 volunteers will be trained for the Games and will be capable of assisting at future central Alberta events.

The positive effects of the 2019 Canada Winter Games go well beyond athletics. Several research and learning opportunities will arise for RDC students and instructors. This includes business students who will gain valuable practical experience as they complete a full post-event economic impact assessment of the Games.

Operating with a significant sustainability program, the 2019 Canada Winter Games will focus on areas such as: mitigating climate change, local food sourcing, integrated social and community planning, building green and minimizing or eliminating waste. Financially, the 2019 Canada Winter Games will have a significant impact. It is expected that 20,000 people will visit central Alberta, along with the thousands of Canadian athletes, coaches and trainers competing in 19 sports.

Arts and culture will be showcased during the Games through programming being organized for athletes and the community. With the new Canada Games Celebration Plaza in downtown Red Deer, the legacy of the Games means this collaborative, inclusive plaza will allow Red Deer to host arts and cultural festivals in the future, growing a stronger central Alberta community.

This truly is our moment as a community and the legacy of the 2019 Canada Winter Games will be vast, thanks to the strong community building efforts of the Host Society, as our region hosts this once-in-a-lifetime event.


For additional information contact:

Brent Forster      
Communications Strategist - Corporate     
work: 403.342.3389 
Shelley Newman  
Communications Strategist – Corporate  
work: 403.342.3401