Saturday, January 31, 2009

Clarification on my comments re: Spirit of Niagara Awards

A couple of people have questioned my comments on the Citizen of the Year selection for NOTL.

I am not aware of the nominations for Citizen of the Year that the committee and Lord Mayor had to choose from so they very well might have selected the best from the nominees. In past years they have eliminated awards or chosen not to give them out at all. They eliminated the Young Enterpenur and later the Youth Citizen of the Year.  

A couple of comments have mentioned: 

D W at 9:04am January 28
I lived in Welland when I received my Youth Citizen of the Year from NOTL

 KM at 9:57am January 28
Well he does own massive amounts of property in NOTL. Also what his companies bring to NOTL is non comparable, employing over 200 Notlers including myself. Mr. Peller is a NOTL visionary and I’m kinda ashamed to see you post this award in such negative light Crispin.

 R V B at 10:58am January 28
I commend Mr. Peller for all his contributions and opportunities he has created in NOTL. He definately deserves a regional award or an award from Burlington. The point of NOTL citizen of the year award is for a citizen of NOTL to be honourd for their involvement and contributions the NOTL community.

 BG at 12:04pm January 28
I agree 100% with ya Crisp... Sure he brings business to NOTL but he isn't local and should not recieve a award for local citizens, kinda defeats the purpose of the award...

 D W at 6:48am January 29
Well done John Peller, I believe John has made a difference in NOTL, the Award is to give recognition to those who do that in the town of NOTL. This should drive us to contribute more to our communities, so that someone not living there is not awarded with a great honour like this.

C D at 12:04am January 28
Complain to Terry Flynn
R A R at 5:31am January 28
So when did Burlington become part of NOTL????
 M B at 6:31pm January 28
That sucks!

From where I stand, while Mr. Peller and his company is a land owner in NOTL, he is from Burlington. Mr. Peller and his businesses has brought jobs to Niagara-on-the-Lake, visitors here, and many contributions to the viticulture industry. Burlington has its own citizen of the year awards -

I CONGRATULATE him and thank him for his contributions to NOTL. He has made us all think of how we an do more for our community. 

You will recall that in my post Some Thoughts for Christmas
In the Queen's Christmas message today she asked Her commoners where it is we can find lasting happiness. 

Over the years it seems to Her that the people who are the most contented and fulfilled have always been the people who have lived the most outgoing and unselfish lives; the kind of people who are generous with their talents or their time. 

Take some time over the holidays to think about how you can help organizations in your/our community with your time or talent in 2009. 


The Chamber has made a lot of erors from my point of view starting when gave the CITIZEN award to a company - Vintage Inns, and the next year to a group - Arena Fund raising Committee. I guess I should have expected this from them.

If the chamber of commerce wanted to recognize Mr. Peller's contribution to NOTL they have any number of different awards that he could have received instead. 

Here are some examples of awards the committe could have given him. 

Chamber of Commerce President
’s Award - For his contribution to advancing NOTL 

Peter Ling Award for Entrepreneurial Spirit - for developing businesses such as Peller, Hildabrand, and JT. 

Chamber of Commerce Community Leadership Award - For choosing NOTL as the site of the Wine Weekend, and being the Chair --- he did choose St.Catharines hospital instead of NOTL though 

Christopher Newton Award for Extraordinary Vision in Business - Lord Mayor Gary Burroughs said. “This man has energy and vision enough for us all.”

Chamber of Commerce Company of the Year Award - Andrew Peller Group 

Merriam - Webster defines citizen as --> 

cit·i·zen            Listen to the pronunciation of citizen
\ˈsi-tə-zən also -sən\
Middle English citizein, from Anglo-French citezein, alteration of citeien,from cité city
14th century
1: an inhabitant of a city or town ; especially : one entitled to the rights and privileges of a freeman2 a: a member of a state b: a native or naturalized person who owes allegiance to a government and is entitled to protection from it3: a civilian as distinguished from a specialized servant of the state
— cit·i·zen·ly            Listen to the pronunciation of citizenly \-zən-lē also -sən-\ adjective
synonyms citizen , subject , national mean a person owing allegiance to and entitled to the protection of a sovereign state. citizen is preferred for one owing allegiance to a state in which sovereign power is retained by the people and sharing in the political rights of those people citizen>subject implies allegiance to a personal sovereign such as a monarch subjects>nationaldesignates one who may claim the protection of a state and applies especially to one living or traveling outside that state nationals working in the Middle East>.

I hope this helps clarify why I think that Mr. Peller should have declined the Citizen of the Year Award

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