The late Mark Goldblatt, the Desjardins Group, and François Hastir were honoured at the CMC Co-operative Congress in a ceremony held Thursday, June 18 at the Delta Bessborough in Saskatoon. The CMC Awards committee awarded the prizes after considering all the candidates nominated by member cooperatives.

Linda Goldblatt, wife of Mark Goldblatt was in Saskatoon to accept the CMC Award of Excellence. Mr. Goldblatt’s brother and sister also attended the ceremony. Ms. Goldblatt was keen to stress the importance of co-operative engagement in her husband life and work by sharing some highlights of his career and emphasizing his passion for co‑operation. It was an emotional moment when the co-operative leaders in attendance showed their respect for Mr. Goldblatt.

Francois Hastir, former president of the COOPSCO and now regional manager for the Conseil de la coopération de l’Ontario (CCO), won the prize for Emerging Co-operator of the Year. In accepting the prize, Mr. Hastir shared his vision for the future of co-operation and the role of youth in that vision. Mr. Hastir stressed the role of mentors and sharing of experience between experienced and emerging co-operative colleagues. He also affirmed his faith in co-operation, which empowers us to consider a better and more just future.

The Desjardins Group was awarded Co-operative of the Year Award for its leadership in the design and organization of the International Summit of Co-operatives, which took place in 2012 and 2014 in Quebec City. The Award was accepted by Ms. Monique F. Leroux, President and Chief Executive Officer of Desjardins. Mme Leroux shared her thoughts on the importance of the International Summit for co-operatives and mutuals for Canada and Quebec. She also thanked the organizing team and its Executive Director Stéphane Bertrand.