The Premier’s Awards recognize the tremendous social and economic contributions that Ontario’s college graduates make to Ontario and throughout the world.
Presented annually, the Premier’s Awards recognize graduates in the following six categories:
Sean Pinsonneault is a revolutionary leader who is changing the face of the horse racing industry across North America and the world. Considered an expert in his field, he is called upon to provide his expertise on the most influential Boards in horse racing. Pinsonneault’s ability to navigate change and uncertainty with respect to wagering-related activities through the creation of a strategic vision has allowed him to drastically increase revenue generation for Woodbine Entertainment Group. His career success has transcended boundaries, resulting in the creation of industry standards that have changed how many other companies conduct their own business.
After overcoming a 10 year addiction battle and issues of racism, homophobia, and abuse, Shawn Johnston found a new life at Lambton College. Having used the services provided by the Aboriginal Centre during his post-secondary journey and understanding the important role it plays, Johnston has dedicated his career to paying it forward. Johnston now works at the Aboriginal Centre at the University of Waterloo where he strives to make a difference in the lives of the Aboriginal students he serves. Johnston used his strong relationship building skills to drastically grow the program, ensuring that no Aboriginal student is left behind.
As the Owner and Creative Director for Eclipse Media Productions, Aaron J. Huggett is a visionary film-maker who aims to bring about social change through the use of independent feature films, commercials, music videos and advocacy videos for non-profits. His innovative techniques have allowed him to produce a multitude of critically acclaimed feature films on the independent film circuit, impressively with some of the smallest budgets in the industry. As a screenwriter and film maker, Huggett’s films have been distributed in 66 countries on all continents and have received numerous awards around the world.
Christopher Omira has spent his life defying the odds. Growing up in a small Kenyan village, he walked 10 km to school each day, often hungry, believing education was the key to lifting himself out of poverty. Omira has dedicated his life to making the world a better place. In Canada, he uses his nursing education to provide primary health care to some of the most disadvantaged residents in the country who live in isolated First Nation communities. In Africa, he co-founded a non-profit organization and helped launch a new school, student loan program, sanitary pad program, and health centre.
In January 2016, Anthony Varga was named the President and CEO of Endress+Hauser Canada Ltd. This move came as a natural progression in Varga’s career where he has gained a reputation as being a game-changer who gets results. A born leader, Varga has successfully used value stream mapping to evaluate an organization’s operations from top to bottom, all while bringing an accelerated evolution into an organization in a way that people understand and fully engage with the changes. His reputation to bring about efficiencies and effectiveness to each organization he has worked with has been the cornerstone of his career.