Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada held their first annual awards ceremony to recognize co‑operators and mutualists who made a distinguished contribution to the development of the Canadian co‑operative sector. The late Mark Goldblatt, the Desjardins Group, and François-Michel Hastir were the recipients honoured at the ceremony, which took place on Thursday, June 18 at the Delta Bessborough Saskatoon. The CMC Awards Committee selected recipients for recognition from nominations made by member co‑operatives from across Canada.
The Award for Co-operative Excellence, which honours an individual who has contributed significantly to the development, promotion and unification of co-operatives in Canada and/or internationally, was awarded to Mark Goldblatt posthumously. Mr. Goldblatt was deeply involved in many co-op sectors as the founder or director of several co-operative endeavours including the Canadian Co-operative Association, CHF Canada, the Canadian Worker Co-op Federation, and the Funeral Co-operative of Ottawa. Mark Goldblatt played a leading role in the development of the Canadian co-operative movement. He passed away suddenly on February 3, 2015. His wife, Linda, was in attendance to accept the Award.
The prize for Canada’s Emerging Co-operator went to François-Michel Hastir, past President of the Fédération québécoise des coopératives en milieu scolaire (Coopsco/FQCMS). A Board Member, Vice President and then President, Mr. Hastir has been deeply involved in the development of COOPSCO and sits on several boards and committees, including Canada’s Emerging Co-operators (CEC) for ardent co‑operators 18-35 years of age. He is now working for Conseil de la coopération de l’Ontario as a co-operative developer for Northern Ontario.The Award is reserved for co-operators under 35 years of age who have dedicated their efforts to the development of co-operative and mutual enterprises.
The Desjardins Group has been awarded the prize for Co-operative of the Year, which rewards a co‑operative or mutual for their contribution to the co-operative and mutualist movement in Canada and/or internationally. The Desjardins Group has been chosen thanks to its commitment to establishing the International Summit of Co-operatives. This biennial event, designed by the Desjardins Group and organized in collaboration with the International Co-operative Alliance, took place in Quebec City in 2012 and 2014 and is the world’s leading event for business development in the co-operative and mutual community. It offers managers, decision-makers and leaders of co-operative and mutual enterprises a unique forum for reflection. Chair of the Board, President and CEO, Monique F. Leroux received the award on behalf of the Desjardins Group. Mme. Leroux is also a founding director of Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada.
About Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada
The Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada (CMC) is the national, bilingual association for co-operatives and mutuals in Canada. CMC’s members come from many sectors of the economy, including finance, insurance, agri-food and supply, wholesale and retail, housing, health and the services sector. CMC provides leadership to support, promote, and develop the co-operative economy for the benefit of Canadians.
For further information:
Brendan Denovan, Manager of Communications 613.238.6712 x206
Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada 275 Bank Street, Suite 400 Ottawa ON K2P 2L6