Department of Justice

2015 Community Safety Award Recipients

 (Left to Right):  Jeff Hunston (accepting of behalf of Viola Campbell), Gordon Rhys Watson, Constable Jean-Michel Sauvé, Cheryl O'Brien, Corporal Shawn Pollard, Jon Trefry, Minister Brad Cathers, Brian Hoover, Christina Sim, Constable Robert Drapeau, Corporal Jeffrey Myke, Corporal Karina Watson, Constable Chris Christinger, Teresa Frost.

Recipients of the 2015 Community Safety Awards

Outstanding Program – Constable Robert Drapeau
Constable Drapeau of the Faro RCMP Detachment has involved himself in many community activities for children and youth, both sports and literacy related. Constable Drapeau has contributed to community safety by promoting healthy relationships between police and community youth through the Top-Cop Reading Program. He has spent many hours reading and playing sports with Faro students and also facilitates an awards program for those engaged in the program.

First Responder Award: Wildland Fire Management – Brian Hoover
Brian Hoover is an Emergency Response Officer with Yukon’s Wildland Fire Management team. Mr. Hoover stands a cut above with respect to his dedication and professionalism. His diligent nature has been described as infectious as he manages to inspire energy and passion in those around him. His long-standing dedication to the protection of our communities from wildfire has earned him a First Responder Community Safety Award.

First Responder Award: Emergency Medical Services – Jon Trefry
Jon Trefry is a Stations Supervisor with Yukon EMS. Throughout his career as a paramedic and supervisor, Mr. Trefry’s dedication to public safety and patient care has seen him become the face of EMS for community tours, school visits and recruitment presentations. Since 2002, he has been a leader for P.A.R.T.Y. or Prevention of Alcohol Related Trauma in Youth and he has also coordinated successful programs like the placement of stuffed toys for children in ambulances to help comfort those dealing with traumatic experiences, and he also collaborates with Yukon’s Workers’ Compensation Health and Safety Board to ensure uniform territorial safety standards are met.

Outstanding Project – Constable Jean-Michel Sauvé
Constable Sauvé of the Watson Lake RCMP Detachment partnered with the National Hockey League Players Association and the “Mike Smith Hockey Tour” to have the town of Watson Lake, along with the RCMP, host the “Goals and Dreams” program. The program saw current and former NHL players travel to Watson Lake to run a hockey camp for Yukon youth. The program included the donation of 25 sets of hockey equipment to the minor hockey association of Watson Lake. Through Constable Sauvé’s efforts, the camp provided Yukon youth with a unique and memorable experience that managed to bring the whole community together. Constable Sauvé takes an active role in mentoring youth, building skills, confidence and a sense of pride for self and community – ingredients that will inevitably help build safer communities.

Mentorship Award – Corporal Jeffrey R. Myke
Corporal Myke is a Watch Commander with RCMP’s “M” Division at the Whitehorse Detachment. Corporal Myke is a truly inspiring leader volunteering to build bridges with First Nation communities and police services. His focussed engagement of First Nation youth and his strong connection to his own First Nation traditions has made him a recognized leader within his community. Corporal Myke volunteers his time teaching traditional dance, attending youth camps, organizing and attending regular First Nation Youth Committee meetings and is a mentor, helping youth realize the importance of community and country through his devotion to tradition.

Outstanding Youth Volunteer – Gordon Rhys Watson
Currently 15 years old, Rhys Watson has always been an active member of his community. As a member of the Canadian Naval Memorial Trust, Monarchist League of Canada, Royal Canadian Air Cadets, Youth member of the Canadian Hemophilia Society, and as a church and community pianist and saxophonist, he continues to inspire others to participate in the community, volunteer for causes and understand that developing citizenship is essential to the development of community safety. A cadet since the age of nine, he has shown a strong sense of devotion to community and Canada. He has been a Navy League Cadet, Sea Cadet, and is presently an Air Cadet where he is a Sergeant responsible for junior members. An advocate for people with bleeding disorders, Rhys believes that community safety also involves educating people on how to respond to unique medical circumstances. Rhys suffers himself from moderate/severe hemophilia and teaches others what the condition is, how to treat when a bleed occurs and signs to be aware of as many people have undiagnosed bleeding disorders.

Lifetime Contribution to Community Safety – Catherine Spence
Ms. Spence is an extremely capable and diligent member of Yukon Government’s Wildland Fire Management Branch as the Wildfire Operations Centre Supervisor. Catherine has been in her current position for 28 years experiencing a diverse array of fire seasons, including some of the most volatile and challenging incidents imaginable. Well organized, reliable, dedicated – Catherine is a valued employee. She is an excellent team member, often going far beyond her standard job duties or requirements. Her experience in the Operations Centre has merited a highly-skilled spot as one of the Duty Officers, whose role is to oversee and coordinate strategic response to the various wildfires occurring in a given shift. In any operational decision she makes, community safety is paramount importance.

Outstanding Contribution to Community Safety – Corporal Karina Watson, Constable Chris Christinger and Teresa Frost
After a community tragedy, Corporal Watson, formerly of Old Crow RCMP Detachment and Constable Christinger, Old Crow RCMP Detachment identified a community safety issue in relation to firearm storage. Working with community partners in Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation, they developed a plan to reduce the risk of firearm safety and potential violence associated with unsafe storage measures. With administrative support from Teresa Frost, they were able to secure funding and cost effective transport of gun lockers for the community. The lockers were secured in the preferred locations and homes. On arrival of the gun lockers to the community, Constable Christinger presented a gun safety lecture to community members. They are to be commended for finding a solution that was efficient and applicable to their community, thereby improving community safety for years to come.

Bridge Builder – Cheryl O’Brien
Cheryl O’Brien has been a driving force behind assisting Watson Lake RCMP members to become better integrated into the community, through the Watson Lake Riding Association and as the President of the Watson Lake Chamber of Commerce. In 2013, she helped implement the first Policeman’s Ball and Chamber Gala. This initiative brings together RCMP, their spouses and community members in a formal Red Serge celebration with dinner and dance. This allows the community to get to know the RCMP outside their normal working environment. Without Cheryl’s hard work and dedication, this event would never come to fruition. She has been instrumental in breaking down barriers and building positive relationships between the community and RCMP.

Volunteer Award – Christina Sim
A Registered Nurse at the Kwanlin Dun First Nation Health Centre, Christina Sim sits on the Sexualized Assault Response Committee (SARC) and is being recognized for her accomplishments through this work. In 2012, Christina created “A Safe Ride Home” where KDFN provides the vehicle and two volunteer drivers (of which Christina is one). As a result, this program now runs every year during Sexual Assault Prevention Month. She was also involved with SANE (Sexualized Assault Nurse Examiner) training. Christina also offers her services alongside the Outreach Van as a trained Nurse Examiner after hours to perform exams for people who don’t feel comfortable at the hospital and may decide to not report the situation.

Lifetime Contribution to Community Safety – Viola Campbell (posthumous)
After receiving her nursing degree in 1948, Viola provided care to Dawson residents for 30 years. Viola Campbell made community contributions in many different roles:  as an Alderman on Dawson City Council, as Mayor of Dawson City in 1977, as a Justice of the Peace, a Coroner and a Notary Public. Of her many accomplishments, sitting on the national “Canada 125” anniversary board and successfully advocating for the Trans Canada trail’s extension to Yukon are among the highlights. Viola Campbell has been called one of “the North’s true patriots” and she will be greatly missed by her community.

Outstanding Community Policing – Corporal Shawn Pollard
Corporal Pollard has been a board member of Madd Whitehorse for the past 8 years. His primary role has been the liaison between MADD and the RCMP. His contribution to community safety includes: helping coordinate volunteers to attend road check stops; speaking at MADD’s High School Multimedia Shows; and preparing legislation reviews on impaired driving. Shawn has partnered with MADD to create a recognition award for RCMP members who go above and beyond in their efforts to remove impaired drivers from Yukon roadways. Shawn has been an invaluable asset to the chapter, promoting MADD’s message on impaired driving.