BIG Awards

BIG Awards lead the BIG on Bloor Festival opening ceremonies on the Bloordale Stage at 1141 Bloor Street, July 19, 2014, 1:00 PM.


Awards of appreciation presented by the Bloordale BIA

The Bloordale BIA take this opportunity to express its appreciation to our elected politicians and the police department and to warmly welcome recently elected Cristina Martins, Member of Provincial Parliament for Davenport and a new member of the BIG organization.

This year the BIA is pleased to acknowledge the team of people who are making Bloordale’s renewed streetscape. Thank you to: Carlo Sansalone, Chris Myer and all the construction people at Sanscon Construction, The City of Toronto, Antonella Nicaso and Ron Nash, Economic Development + Culture, BIA Office, Councilor Ana Bailao and Michael Vieira, Brad Fleisher, FRP Landscape Architects, Mark Mullins, Forestry, John Mason, Tom Mills, Caludia Denes and many others. 


Elected officials, Ana Bailão, City Councilor for Ward 18 and Andrew Cash, Canadian Member of Parliament for Davenport, will each present awards to 10 outstanding local citizens.


Awards of appreciation presented by Ana Bailão, City Councillor, Ward 18 

Toronto Media Arts Centre (TMAC) - In the heart of Toronto's Art and Design District, in the West Queen West neighbourhood, TMAC is creating an environment where people can engage with innovation and art.  Six non-profit organizations came together to form the Toronto Media Arts Centre in a 38,000 square foot facility that was the result of Section 37 negotiations.  Despite this facility opening up next year, we must recognize this group's efforts thus far.

Bloordale Community Improvement Association (Bloordale CIA) – in the Bloordale area, the newly formed Bloordale CIA is comprised of super engaged local residents that have worked very hard to improve their neighbourhood in a number of ways over the past few months.  Their efforts thus far in improved traffic safety, improving bike parking opportunities and ensuring the newly planted trees on Bloor St. West ought to be recognized.

Kevin Putnam - A key organizer of the Junction Triangle Library Expansion Committee, Kevin Putnam has been a tireless champion of this community initiative. Never one to be discouraged, Kevin's commitment to the local community has been a tremendous asset to this project and is greatly appreciated as we continue to make progress towards construction.

Scott Dobson (Friends of West Toronto Railpath) - Scott Dobson has been involved in the Friends of the West Toronto Railpath as long as there has been a Railpath, and stands as a testament to the kind of significant local contribution of residents and volunteers that have made the Railpath a true gem of West Toronto. Scott's past hard work is eclipsed only by his great vision for the future and leadership during the work to make the expansion of Railpath Phase #2 world-class.

Roselyn Brown (1011 Lansdowne Avenue) – As property manager, Roselyn Brown, has worked effortlessly to revitalize the building at 1011 Lansdowne Avenue as part of the Tower Renewal Program.  By taking this important extra initiative, Roselyn has brought important social services to the benefit of the local community.  In addition to the major renovations, the building now has 24 hour security on site, social programming for residents and affordable housing services.

Liz Sutherland (Ward 18 Cycling Group) - In only a short time as President of the Ward 18 Cycle Toronto group, Liz Sutherland has shared her infectious passion for cycling with a wide section of our community. Her energy and organizational-prowess have led to an impressive number of events, meetings, and briefings designed to keep the local community involved, informed and having fun with Ward 18's cycling opportunities.

Martin Ship - A long time resident in the Bloor/Dufferin area, Martin has worked effortlessly with the Councillor's office to improve accessibility, cleanliness, streetscape, and traffic safety in the neighbourhood.  Thanks to Martin's passion and dedication to his community, the neighbourhood is a much better place to live, work and play.

First Portuguese School – The First Portuguese Cultural Centre was the first community organization in Toronto.  As part of the many services they provide, the organization has been operating a Portuguese language school for the last 50 years.  The language school not only provides skills to youth, but contributes to the Toronto's multicultural landscape and our neighbourhood diversity.

Lori Nytko - The proprietor of Full of Beans Café at 1384 Dundas St. West, Lori offers her cafe to writers, musicians, dancers, poets, painters to use as a cultural hub, art gallery, library, performance space and community gathering space

Gurbeen - Aangen Community Centre - Few people represent the warmth and diversity of our community better than Gurbeen. Her selflessness, dedication to community service, and willingness to go the extra mile is source of constant inspiration. Both inside and outside her work at the Aangen Community Centre, Gurbeen is a tireless social advocate, making our community a more accessible, more compassionate and more just place to live and work.


Awards of appreciation presented by Andrew Cash MP

Erella Ganon – Erella manages the Dufferin Grove Park Community listserve, an active and thriving place for our community on the web.  Erella volunteers her time to moderate and run this very active listserve and she does it with caring, thoughtfulness, and respect!

Millennium Kids – Millennium Kids is a youth movement that calls on all countries to meet the United Nations’ Millennium Development goals.  Many kids in Davenport participated in this important initiative, then travelled to Ottawa to raise the issue with MPs and present them with petitions. 

The Bloor-Gladstone Librarians – The Bloor-Gladstone Library isn't just a library, it is a community hub. At the heart of this are its dedicated librarians who run integral programming, encourage literacy, community building—and have great reading recommendations. 

Associação Cultural 25 de Abril - Associação Cultural 25 de Abril continues the important work of commemorating the 1974 peaceful overthrow of Portugal's fascist dictatorship, known as the Carnation Revolution. This year, their work also resulted in the renaming of a Toronto park in the name of Portuguese diplomat Aristides de Sousa Mendes who saved thousands of refugees fleeing Nazi terror in 1940. 

Pride Toronto – Pride Toronto is a non-profit organization that celebrates the diversity of the LGBT community in Toronto. This year, the organization made Toronto proud once again by hosting WorldPride 2014, the world’s largest pride celebration of activism, education, and entertainment. 

Bike Pirates – Bike Pirates is a local volunteer-run organization that supports local cyclists and builds community, through low-cost bicycle sales, teaching mechanical repairs, and encouraging people to bike! 

Field to Table Schools – Field to Table Schools is a program of FoodShare that focuses on food education in schools. At our local Brock Public School, they have built a rooftop garden and created long-term programming focused on healthy environments.  

West Neighbourhood House (formerly St Christopher House): Children and Youth Programs – For more than 100 years, West Neighbourhood House (formerly St Christopher House) has been providing excellent children and youth programs. They offer a wide range of programs for children and youth from all walks of life and focus on building strong community members. 

Steve De Quintal – Steve is a dedicated, local teacher who works to make our schools hubs through outreach and exchange to community members.  He is also consistently raising awareness for many local organizations and issues. 

MacGregor Park Art Club – The MacGregor Park Art Club has been working for 9 years to bring together community members and artists to learn new techniques, create art, and celebrate our natural world. 

Please invite the family, friends and community to join us in honouring our out-standing citizens on July 19, 2014, 1:00 pm.


“Nowhere in the City of Toronto do we have the unique level of culture, talent, and creativity as in our own backyard. Whether it is that neighbour maintaining the community garden, or that parent starting a new recreation art program for youth, we may not know their names, but we are surrounded by their positive contributions as community leaders. The BIG awards are our chance to learn about the incredible projects taking place in our neighbourhood and recognize those people who make our area a special place to live, work and play.”
- Ana Bailão, City Councilor of Ward 18 

“A community is as good as the people in it. In Davenport we have great people—people willing to put in countless hours volunteering, people willing to put their significant gifts, skills and intelligence to the purpose of creating a thriving community that cares for each other. It is important that from time to time we take the time to honour those unsung heroes in our midst who help make Davenport such a great place to live, to work and to be.”
 - Andrew Cash, Canadian Member of Parliament