December 09, 2013 - 4:10 PM
KELOWNA - Recognized for giving back to their communities, Ken Bessason of Royal LePage Kelowna and Helen Holton of Prudential Kelowna Properties are the 2013 recipients of the REALTORS® Care Awards for the Central Okanagan Zone of the Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB).
Many REALTORS® give of their time, money and expertise, and this is the seventh year OMREB has recognized the exemplary volunteer efforts of its member REALTORS® in the Central Okanagan. The announcements were made at the Central Zone’s annual holiday luncheon on Friday, December 6, 2013, and Board-wide recognition will occur at OMREB’s Annual General Meeting in March, 2014.
“Ken and Helen are very worthy recipients of this award,” notes OMREB President and working REALTOR® Karen Singbeil. “Their energetic and ongoing support for worthwhile causes in the Kelowna and West Kelowna area exemplifies those REALTORS® who have made long-term contributions to the communities in which they live and earn a living. They promote public awareness that our members care deeply and are actively involved.”
Ken Bessason is recognized for his outstanding community service and leadership -- tirelessly and selflessly supporting fundraising events for a variety of non-profit societies, and volunteering his time and expertise to a number of business organizations. For the 15 years he has lived in Kelowna, Ken has devoted many hours to helping those in need and making a difference in the lives of those less fortunate – most notably, the Okanagan Kids Care Society which has raised and donated close to $1.4 since 1995. Over the years, he has also worked diligently to further the efforts of the Variety Club Boat for Hope, Shelter Foundation, Salvation Army, and United Way.
Ken also graciously gives back to the business community. He is involved in the judging committees for the Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards and the Kelowna Civic Awards, and has served on the Board of Directors and is a past President of the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce. Ken has donated his time and business acumen to the advisory boards of the Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission and Okanagan College Business programs, and the investment review committees of the Okanagan Innovation Fund and Southern Interior Investment Fund.
Ken finds time to participate in every Royal LePage fundraising event. Highly respected for his integrity and strong work ethic, he is always there to help fellow REALTORS® and mentor newer agents. While Ken has donated much of himself -- both in dollars and hours – he is very humble and always shows gratitude towards others.
Helen Holton is acknowledged for her exemplary community service and leadership as President of the Westside Community Food Bank. Since 2002, she has devoted countless hours to fundraising in order to provide a service dedicated to much needed food and support to the less fortunate living in the District of West Kelowna.
During the five years Helen has been on the Food Bank’s Board of Directors and served as President, she has led the organization through a coming of age process to create a greater presence in the committee. Under her leadership, the Westside Community Food Bank has now evolved into a well-run, non-profit charitable organization dedicated to serving the needs of all citizens of this community. During Helen’s tenure, she was instrumental in the fundraising needed to acquire the current building.
The Westside Food Bank currently helps more than 300 families per month with approximately 40% of its clients being children under the age of 15. It distributes $750,000 worth of food per year. Recognizing the valuable contribution to the community, the Food Bank recently received the 2013 Community and Public Service Award during the Key Business Awards hosted by the Westbank and District Chamber of Commerce.
Helen also served as OMREB’s MLS® Tour Coordinator for the Central Zone for many years. She does not seek out accolades for her good work -- going quietly about her business and generating great results that benefit many.
During the slowdown in the economy, the need for volunteers and engaged community citizenship has never been greater. Once again, our REALTORS® rose to the challenge. This year there were a total of six nominees for the OMREB Central Zone -- the second largest number of nominations since the 2006 launch.
Four very worthy 2013 nominees also recognized for their outstanding community involvement and contributions to their Central Okanagan communities: Lisa Hilts of Realty Executives of the Okanagan (Kelowna), Scott Jennings of RE/MAX Kelowna, Joel Sherlock of RE/MAX Kelowna, and Jerry Redman of RE/MAX Kelowna.
“Congratulations to the winners and all nominees for being good public citizens, and caring about their local and global communities,” says Janice Myers, Executive Director of the Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board. “It is amazing to see the diverse ways our REALTORS® give back, the leadership they take, and the good example they set for others. Their community spirit remains undeterred.”
As the Okanagan moves towards further economic recovery and market stability during 2014, local REALTORS® look forward to continued involvement in their communities.
The Central Zone of OMREB covers an area from Peachland to Lake Country and east along Highway 33 to Westbridge (including the Christian Valley). The Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB) is comprised of 1,008 member REALTORS® and 92 real estate offices in the Southern Interior of BC.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013