Alberta starts year of celebrations to mark Diamond Jubilee

A special medal ceremony was held today to mark the 60th anniversary of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s reign and to launch a year of Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

His Honour Col. (Ret’d) the Honourable Donald S. Ethell and Her Honour Linda Ethell welcomed 21 outstanding Albertans to Government House for the Diamond Jubilee Medal ceremony. The medal, which is a national honour, recognizes citizens of all ages and walks of life who have made significant contributions to their communities.

“Queen Elizabeth has been a part of the fabric of Canadian life since she ascended to the throne on February 6, 1952, said Lieutenant Governor Ethell. “Her Majesty has been a model of dignity, grace and service above self, linking Canadians with the heritage and traditions that built our great nation and encouraging us to constantly strive for an even stronger future. The Diamond Jubilee medals and this special year of celebration offer an opportunity for Albertans and all Canadians to honour Her Majesty and to reflect on the importance of the Crown in Canada.”

The Honourable Alison Redford, Premier of Alberta was the first to receive a medal at the province’s inaugural ceremony, followed by distinguished representatives of the judiciary, First Nations and the Canadian Forces as well as community and youth leaders. A list of recipients is attached. Diamond Jubilee medals will be presented at ceremonies across the province throughout 2012-13, hosted by the Lieutenant Governor and other dignitaries, public bodies and organizations taking part in the program.

Alberta also participated today in a cross-Canada series of sunrise ceremonies to raise the Queen’s Canadian Flag atop provincial legislature buildings from coast to coast. The flags will be lowered at sunset and kept as a memento of the Diamond Jubilee year.

Upcoming events to mark the year will include garden parties at the Legislature in Edmonton on Saturday, June 2 and at McDougall Centre in Calgary on Saturday, July 21. The parties will be open to the public. Further details will be posted at at a later date. Albertans wishing to send a message of congratulations to Her Majesty can sign books at the Legislature Building and McDougall Centre in Calgary, which will be available all year. An online book of congratulations will be available later this month.


Attachment: Alberta’s first recipients of the Diamond Jubilee medal

Media inquiries may be directed to:

Janet Resta
Communications Officer, Office of the Lieutenant Governor





Alberta’s first recipients of the Diamond Jubilee Medal

The following Albertans were honoured in the province’s inaugural Diamond Jubilee medal ceremony at Government House in Edmonton on Monday, February 6. Information on the Diamond Jubilee medal program is at

The Honourable Alison M. Redford, Q.C.

The Honourable Alison Redford is Alberta's 14th premier. Her previous public service includes duties as a Senior Policy Advisor to the Right Honourable Joe Clark and as a technical advisor on constitutional and legal reform in Africa, focusing on human rights litigation and education programs.

Her Honour Linda M. Ethell

Her Honour Linda Ethell is the wife of Lieutenant Governor Donald Ethell. In her capacity as an Army officer and Lieutenant Governor’s spouse, she has been a longstanding supporter of the Canadian Armed Forces, veterans and their families.

The Honourable A. Gail Vickery

The Honourable A. Gail Vickery has been the Chief Judge of the Provincial Court of Alberta since 2006. She holds the distinction of being the first woman appointed to the role. She has offered extensive legal service on the provincial, national and international stage.

Grand Chief Cameron Alexis

Cameron Alexis is Chief of the Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation in central Alberta and Treaty 6 Grand Chief. His service as Chief comes following a long career with the RCMP.

Grand Chief Richard Kappo

Richard Kappo is Chief of the Sturgeon Lake Cree Nation and Grand Chief of Treaty 8 First Nations of Alberta. He is former Grand Chief of the Western Cree Tribal Council and is known for his love of the land.

Audrey Poitras

Audrey Poitras is the President of the Métis Nation of Alberta. She has made significant social and economic advances for Metis people during her 16 years at the helm, including negotiating historic agreements with the federal and provincial governments.

Brigadier-General Paul Wynnyk

B-Gen Wynnyk is Commander Land Force Western Area. His 30-year career with the Armed Forces includes overseas service in Germany, Cambodia, the Congo and Afghanistan. He holds many honours and is a Member of the Order of Military Merit.

Taylor Boyko

Taylor is a caring youth leader. She held toy drives for children after Hurricane Katrina, is a volunteer for Easter Seals, Canadian Liver Foundation and Samaritan’s Purse and is a member of Kids on Track which empowers youth to build a strong future

Helen Cashman

Helen is a Page with the Legislative Assembly of Alberta and an Honours Grade 11 student in Edmonton. She is a two-time recipient of her school’s major service award and acts as an effective youth mentor in her capacity as Assistant Girl Guide Leader.

Ryan Crosschild 

Ryan is a proud Blood Tribe member who has been a dedicated advocate for his fellow Aboriginal youth across the province and a leader in encouraging First Nations youth to get involved in creating positive change. 

Sarah Fairfull

Sarah is a Grade 9 honours student in Edmonton. She is a key contributor to her school’s leadership team and is very active in school social justice projects. She is s a dedicated volunteer with the Food Bank, Santa’s Anonymous and local sports teams.

Bunny Ferguson

Bunny Ferguson has dedicated a lifetime of volunteerism to the community of Edmonton in a wide range of social endeavours from the arts and post-secondary education to health care. She is a member of the Order of Canada.

John Ferguson

John Ferguson is a respected leader of the Alberta and Canadian business community who has offered extensive service to the University of Alberta as well as a long list of worthwhile community and business organizations.

Maj. (Ret’d) Bruce Henwood

Double amputee Bruce Henwood is a decorated veteran of the Canadian Forces who has played a leading role in overhauling compensation plans for severely injured service members.

Ellen McClure

Ellen is a Grade 11 student in St. Albert and a Page with the Legislative Assembly of Alberta. She volunteers with Edmonton Public Schools and Oxfam, is active in public speaking, debate and sports, and has received numerous school honours and awards

Honourary Colonel (Ret’d) Stanley A. Milner

Hon. Col. (Ret’d) Stanley Milner is a business and industry leader who has offered extensive community service to organizations that range from post-secondary education and health care, to the arts, to the Canadian Forces. He is a Member of the Order of Canada and the Alberta Order of Excellence.

Dustin Rider

Dustin an active youth leader who serves as an inspiration due to his triumphs in the face of Cerebral Palsy. He plays hockey and volunteers for War Amps and has served as a volunteer fire fighter and sailed with the HMCS Oriole Tall Ship Adventure.

Harvey Shevalier

Mr. Shevalier is former Command President of the Royal Canadian Legion who holds numerous distinguished awards for his longstanding leadership as a veterans’ advocate at the provincial and national level.

Holly Strang

Holly is a strong youth leader and advocate of more tolerant schools and society. She served on Alberta’s Prevention of Bullying Youth Committee and represented Alberta youth at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in France.

Douglas Whorrall

A Korea War veteran, Mr. Whorrall is a dedicated volunteer and strong advocate for veterans in his community and across Canada. He also is an active volunteer in efforts to help young Canadians learn about the service and sacrifices of veterans.

Jenny Wu

Jenny Wu is a Grade 9 student at Mary Butterworth School in Edmonton. She earns top honours, is an active community volunteer with the YMCA, serves as a school leader and is a talented artist.


Media inquiries may be directed to:

Janet Resta
Communications Officer, Office of the Lieutenant Governor