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Andree Janyk named citizen of the year



Andree Janyk is Whistler's Citizen of the Year.

A resident for over 35 years, Janyk received the award from last year's Citizen of the Year, Alison Hunter. The presentation by the Community Foundation of Whistler was made Saturday evening at Millennium Place.

Reached Tuesday afternoon, Janyk was elated at the news.

"It was a bit of a surprise for sure," she said. "I know I've had a long career at volunteering, but it's just been long and steady."

Nominated by Bob Calladine, Janyk was recognized for a long list of contributions to the community. Her resume includes her tenure as a founding member of the Blackcomb Ski Club and its first volunteer program director; as a multi-term trustee with School District 48; and as the co-founder of the Whistler Youth Soccer Club.

Janyk counts the latter among her favourite volunteer efforts.

"One of my favourite things was starting the soccer club and giving the kids in this town a chance to play a great game," she said. "I love refereeing soccer, I love anything that makes children's faces light up. It gives me nothing but the great bound of joy."

She laughs when asked whether that includes handing out yellow and red cards.

"I referee the adult league," Janyk said. "I know how to give out red and yellow cards, it's not my favourite thing to do."

Other efforts in her resume include her time as a member of the Resort Municipality of Whistler's Parks and Recreation Committee. She has also been a Whistler 2020 Learning Task Force member since it was initiated and she started the Drama Club at Whistler Secondary in the spring of 2003.

In his nomination form Calladine said that Janyk has been a "driving force" in the development of youth and sports programs within Whistler. He added that Janyk has helped local athletes achieve their goals and she's passionate about creating a great community.

Janyk and her daughter Britt, a member of the Canadian Alpine Ski Team, also shared their 2010 Olympic experiences as two of the participants in the Whistler Arts Council's evening of story telling Saturday evening. Andree Janyk was a slip crew volunteer during the Olympics.

There were six nominees for the Citizen of the Year award this year. Other nominees were Joan Richoz, Patrick McCurdy, Tony Horn, Bernard Messeguer and Tim Koshul.