TORONTO, ON and VANCOUVER, B.C., February 10, 2023 – The Gary Gillam Award, jointly sponsored by Alterna Savings and Central 1 Credit Union (Central 1), is now open for nominations.

The Gary Gillam award was established in 1996 and is awarded annually to recognize individuals within the British Columbia and Ontario credit union systems who have demonstrated co-operative values and made significant achievements in social impact.

The nominees will have made meaningful accomplishments in social impact and sustainability in credit unions or promoted credit unions as a socially responsible and progressive alternative to traditional banking.

Up to two awards may be presented each year: one to a credit union employee and/or one to a credit union volunteer. Recipients each receive $2,500, provided by Alterna Savings and Central 1 to be donated to the recipients’ charity, organization, or project of choice.

Nominations are limited to those who have taken credit unions beyond traditional philanthropy and good corporate citizenship. To be eligible, nominees must be a credit union member and a current or past director, employee, or volunteer.

Nominations must be received by March 24, 2023. The award committee will review all nominations and select the annual recipient. The recipients will be announced at Central 1’s Member Forum in April 2023.

For information about the nomination process, view the 2023 Nomination Guide & Selection Criteria package.

About Gary Gillam

The Gary Gillam Award was established to honour the memory and work of Gary H. Gillam. Gary was the Director, Legal, Governmental Affairs and Administration, at Credit Union Central of Ontario (now Central 1) from 1982 to 1988.

In 1988, Gary became CEO of Unicoll Credit Union (now Alterna Savings), where he worked until illness forced his resignation in 1993.

Gary Gillam was one of the leading advocates for social responsibility in the credit union system, long before it became popular within organizations. He vigorously promoted the concept of social investment, calling on credit unions and their centrals to use social as well as financial criteria for their investment portfolios. He supported the development of community loan funds to assist socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. At CUCO and his own credit union, he initiated social audits to measure the social performance of the organization, as a complementary process to the financial audit.

About Alterna Savings

Alterna Savings and Credit Union Limited (Alterna) has been the good in banking™ for over 110 years. Alterna is made up of Alterna Savings and Credit Union Limited and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Alterna Bank.

As the first full-service, member-owned cooperative financial institution outside Quebec, Alterna Savings shares its expertise with 217,000 members through a network of 46 branches across Ontario, as well as call centre and digital channels. Members and customers also benefit from an industry-leading online brokerage, investment management services, and have access to over 43,000 surcharge-free ATMs in North America with THE EXCHANGE Network in Canada and the Allpoint Network in the US.

About Central 1

Central 1 cooperatively empowers credit unions and other financial institutions who deliver banking choice to Canadians. With assets of $12.6 billion as of September 30, 2022, Central 1 provides critical services at scale to enable a thriving credit union system. We do this by collaborating with our clients, developing strategies, products, and services to support the financial well-being of their more than 5 million diverse customers in communities across Canada. For more information, visit www.central1.com.

– ENDS –

Media Contacts

LeeAnn Acton
Director of Communications
Alterna Savings | Alterna Bank
E: LeeAnn.Acton@alterna.ca

Tracey Kliesch
Director, Member Relations
Central 1
E: tracey.kliesch@central1.com

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