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Mike Elrick Environmental Leadership Award

Mike-ElrickMike Elrick was an Upper Grand DSB teacher who demonstrated outstanding commitment and leadership in his work on environmental issues within our board. In addition to running the Community Environmental Leadership and Headwaters Programs for fifteen years, he also chaired the board-wide Environmental Issues Committee and was involved in numerous other initiatives within our board. Mike role modeled environmentally friendly practices from biking to school to washing mugs for staff meetings. Mike passed away in November 2009 from lung cancer.

Each year, the UGDSB is honouring Mike’s memory with the “Mike Elrick Environmental Leadership Award” for staff and volunteers who have demonstrated environmental leadership within their school community or our school board.

The recipient of this award would be someone who demonstrates the following:

If you know of a UGDSB staff member or volunteer who you feel would be a worthy recipient of this award, please complete a nomination form in the spring when the application becomes available. The award recipient will get financial support for an environmental project or program within their school.

Mike Elrick Environmental Leadership Award 2019

In this 10th anniversary year, the UGDSB received 24 nominations of deserving candidates, including 10 brand new nominees. The Award Committee, comprised of previous award recipients and nominees, curriculum leads and the board’s Environmental Sustainability Lead had a difficult decision to make amongst so many deserving nominations.

This year’s winner is Kim Gordon, a teacher at Westminster Woods PS. Kim’s dedication and passion for the environment is evident, as she has been nominated for this award a total of five times, as far back as 2011.

The 2019 winner of the Mike Elrick Environmental Leadership Award is Kim Gordon, a teacher at Westminster Woods PS. Kim received the award on June 27, 2019.


According to Kim’s colleagues, “Kim has been an environmental lead for about 10 years. Each year at Westminster Woods we have qualified as an ECO School and this is largely due to the amazing efforts of Kim Gordon. In the first year we opened, we were Silver, and for the past seven years we have achieved Gold! Each year Kim champions staff and students to help meet requirements for Eco Schools.  She holds weekly Green Team/Eco League meetings and supports her students to conduct waste audits, undertake Earth Hour, participate in the Eco Resolution contest, maintain the pollinator garden and host Litterless Lunches on a weekly basis. She successfully implemented a composting program so that each class now has a small compost bin for tissues and paper towels and has recycling competitions amongst the classes. Her ideas for Earth Day activities and assemblies are incredible and in the past have included “Green Olympics” as well as writing and directing a play for our Earth Day assembly. This year she organized a trip to recycling plant in Guelph and coordinated with several schools so we could network and share ideas and issues with other Eco Teams. Overall, Kim dedicates countless hours and recesses helping running our environmental initiatives and models environmental stewardship in everything she does. She does a fantastic job in this leadership role and is highly focussed on supporting the students at our school to be environmentally conscious. Our school wouldn’t be nearly as green without her”!

We congratulate Kim, as well as all nominees this year for their inspiring efforts.

Past Winners of the Mike Elrick Environmental Leadership Award

Congratulations to all the winners and nominees for their Leadership in Environmental Action!