Trent University Celebrates 2009 Community Leaders Awards Winners


Gala Event Honours Three Outstanding Community Leaders

Monday, October 26, 2009, Peterborough

At a special gala event held at the University today, Trent University honoured three outstanding community members as the recipients of the 2009 Community Leaders Awards: Goodith Heeney for the Trent University Award for Community Leadership; Norman Vandenberg for the Trent University Award for Leadership Through Education; and Lewis Schofield for the Trent University Award for Youth Leadership.

“Trent is sending a signal to the broader Peterborough community through the Community Leaders Award Program that we are connecting, in new ways, with the community and the people that did so much to support the establishment of Trent University over four decades ago,” said Dianne Lister, vice president of External Relations and Advancement. “The awards provide an opportunity to deepen Trent’s connection with Peterborough by engaging our community in a bi-annual program whereby local community members are both recognized and linked to future student success.”

Awarded every other year, Trent University’s Community Leaders Awards recognize and celebrate outstanding members of the community who have made significant contributions toward the betterment of the Greater Peterborough Region. These awards uniquely honour individuals who have made a world of difference through their expertise and their community involvement.

The Community Leaders Awards provide a unique opportunity for the community to celebrate the contribution of outstanding individuals through the creation of an endowed student bursary in honour of each of them. These bursaries will support Trent University students in their academic pursuits based on criteria developed by the individual Community Leaders Award winners.

A selection committee comprised of local community members evaluated nominations and selected the winners. Award recipients must be a living past or present resident of Peterborough. Community Leaders Awards were presented to the following individuals who have helped strengthen the community through their professional expertise and through community involvement:

Trent University Award for Community Leadership – 2009 Recipient – Goodith Heeney

The Trent University Award for Community Leadership recognizes individuals who have made a significant difference to the wellbeing of the community. Mrs. Heeney’s great friendship and volunteer service have led to the establishment of the Ontario Early Years Centre and Hospice Peterborough. Goodith has been the Founding Chairperson for “Friends of Kinark” for over a decade, is a Community Advisor for YWCA Crossroads Safe Haven Campaign, and leads the Community Lunch Program for St. John’s Anglican Church.

Trent University Award for Leadership Through Education – 2009 Recipient – Norman Vandenberg

The Trent University Award for Leadership Through Education recognizes exemplary commitment to the community through formal or informal education. Norman Vandenberg is a history teacher at Norwood District High School. Twice nominated for a Governor General’s Award in 2002 and 2003, he is responsible for the creation of the American Civil War and War of 1812 Reenactment programs that operate on alternating years. Mr. Vandenberg has been bringing awareness of history not only to his students but to the entire local community since 1991.

Trent University Award for Youth Leadership – 2009 Recipient – Lewis Schofield

The Trent University Award for Youth Leadership recognizes individuals under the age of 25 who play a leading role in their community. Lewis Schofield educates youth and adults globally about Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome and Myasthenia Gravis, a rare and complex neuromuscular autoimmune disease for which there is no cure. Mr. Schofield raises money for Autism organizations in Canada and the United States while promoting awareness, tolerance and acceptance of difference through his artwork, writings and videos in the classroom, in the community and on the internet. Mr. Schofield is 14 years old and has Asperger’s Syndrome and Myasthenia Gravis.

To accelerate the establishment of the student bursaries in honour of the Community Leaders Award winners, donors can take advantage of the Ontario Trust for Student Support Program (OTSS). Established by the Government of Ontario in 2005, OTSS matches endowed donations on a dollar-for-dollar basis to provide bursaries and awards to Ontario students.

For more information about Trent University’s Community Leaders Awards, visit


For more information, please contact:
Shirlanne Pawley-Boyd, Senior Director, Advancement, Trent University, (705) 748-1011 x7955