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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 2020

Now in its 11th year, the UGDSB received 13 nominations of deserving candidates throughout the school board for the 2020 award. The Award Committee, comprised of previous award recipients and nominees, curriculum leads and board staff, had a difficult decision to make. 

On June 22, 2020, members of UGDSB staff presented Yvette Tendick with the 2020 Mike Elrick Environmental Leadership Award.Teacher Yvette Tendick is the 2020 recipient of the Mike Elrick Environmental Leadership Award.

Yvette is being honoured for her dedication and commitment to the environment, both in her school and in the community. Yvette has been a champion of the environment at Edward Johnson PS for years, running environmental clubs for the past 12 years and organizing programs at the school such as a compost and recycling program, litterless lunches, walk/bike to school, presentations and plays about taking care of the Earth and more.

As just a small example of her community involvement, Yvette has been President of the Guelph Coalition for Active Transportation (GCAT) for eight years, is engaged in the Active and Safe Routes to School committee, organized and ran a city-wide bike skills program for children in grades 4 and 5 last June 2019, called the Royal City Bike Rodeo, and is currently organizing “Bikes 4 Community Connections” with the City of Guelph and Guelph Wellington Immigration services to help newcomers and refugees learn about their community by riding through Guelph with bike mentors.

According to her many nominators, Yvette selflessly coordinates numerous programs and eco-initiatives at the school and is a role model for the students and staff every day.

“Yvette is the epitome of an environmentalist. Her care and respect for the environment permeates her beliefs, attitudes and lifestyle,” said one nominator.

On Monday, Yvette was surprised with the news of the award through a virtual staff meeting with her school. Members of the award selection committee, including last year’s winner Kim Gordon, presented the award to Yvette at her home.

Congratulations Yvette!


Past Winners of the Mike Elrick Environmental Leadership Award

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