Dragons’ Den’s Arlene Dickinson, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal’s Gradimir Pankov and 23 other inspiring immigrants are the 2014 recipients of the RBC Top 25 Canadian Immigrant Awards.
Other winners of the sixth annual awards include Ugandan-born Farah Mohamed, president and CEO of the G(irls)20 Summit in Toronto, Indian-born child prodigy Sarthak Sinha of Calgary, and Bangladesh-born Manwar Khan, an everyday hero who intervened in a violent attack in Edmonton. The awards are presented by Canadian Immigrant magazine, and celebrate the inspiring stories and achievements of these and other notable immigrants to Canada.
“This year’s 25 are as diverse as they are interesting,” says Margaret Jetelina, editor of Canadian Immigrant Magazine. “Thanks to the people who nominated and voted for them, we have uncovered the inspiring stories of artists, philanthropists, entrepreneurs, volunteers and activists from across the country who are truly making Canada a better place.”
More than 630 nominations were received, from which 75 finalists were shortlisted by a diverse judging panel, including several past winners. More than 40,000 votes were cast online, making it the most popular year in the award’s history. The final 25 were chosen based on a combination of votes and a second round of judging.
Each of the RBC Top 25 award winners will receive a commemorative plaque and a $500 donation will be made towards a registered Canadian charity of their choice. Winners will also be featured on canadianimmigrant.ca/rbctop25 and in the July print edition of Canadian Immigrant Magazine.
The RBC Top 25 Canadian Immigrant Award winners of 2014 (in alphabetical order):
Vivian Abboud (Edmonton/Lebanon)
Akram Al-otumi (Halifax /Yemen)
Dalal Al-Waheidi (Toronto/Palestine)
Naval Bajaj (Brampton/India)
Amit Chakma (London, ON /Bangladesh)
Shala Chandani (Vancouver /Tanzania)
Senthi Chelliah (Markham, ON / Sri Lanka)
Arlene Dickinson (Vancouver/South Africa)
Alan Diner (Toronto/South Africa)
Nassreen Filsoof (Vancouver/Iran)
Roberto Hausman (Toronto/Uruguay)
Mobina Jaffer (Vancouver/Uganda)
Manwar Khan (Edmonton/Bangladesh)
Dr. Surinder Singh Khurana (Mississauga/India)
Peter Mielzynski (Burlington, ON /Poland)
Gentil Misigaro (Winnipeg/Congo)
Farah Mohamed (Toronto/Uganda)
Gradimir Pankov (Montreal/Macedonia)
Alberto Rodil (Toronto/Philippines)
Sarthak Sinha (Calgary/India)
Julie Suen (Richmond Hill, ON/Hong Kong)
Ilse Treurnicht (Toronto/South Africa)
John Volken (Surrey, BC/Germany)
James Wang (Burnaby/China)
Dr. Anna Wolak (Vancouver/Philippines)
2014 RBC Top 25 Immigrants