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Dorothy Watson honoured with the Gary Gillam Award

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Central 1 and Alterna Savings partnership

Vancouver, B.C. – April 30, 2020 – Central 1 and Alterna Savings are proud to announce Dorothy Watson as the recipient of the 24th annual, 2020 Gary Gillam award. This award celebrates exemplary social responsibility and sustainability within the Canadian credit union system.

Throughout her 37-year career, Dorothy Watson has been recognized as an impactful and inspiring leader, showcasing cooperative principles, while advancing social responsibility and sustainability. She has advocated for smaller credit unions while helping them build strong relationships and make impacts within their communities. Before retiring in 2019, Dorothy administered the Gary Gillam Award since it’s inception in 1996, honouring thirty people and organizations.

“Dorothy Watson worked tirelessly to advocate for social responsibility within the credit union system. Her efforts continue to influence credit unions across Canada in their approaches to working with their communities, and we are honoured to recognize her lasting impact,” says Mark Blucher, CEO Central 1.

“On behalf of Alterna Savings, I congratulate Dorothy Watson for her outstanding achievements and for embodying the credit union principle, Concern for Community. Members and employees like Dorothy set credit unions apart from more traditional financial institutions. We are extremely pleased to celebrate members’ socially responsible and sustainable community values through the Gary Gilliam Award,” said Rob Paterson, Alterna President and CEO.

As sponsors of the award, Central 1 and Alterna will be donating $2,500 towards the charity of Dorothy’s choice, the Dorothy Watson Co-operative Young Leaders Bursary fund. The fund supports emerging leaders that are advancing the cooperative system. Advocating for social responsibility and sustainability is vital to helping next-generation leaders understand and feel supported as they advance the mission of credit unions.

For more information on the Gary Gillam awards please check the Alterna Savings or Central 1



About Central 1

Central 1 is a preferred partner for financial, digital banking and payment products and services – fueling the success of businesses across Canada. We leverage our scale, strength and expertise to power progress for more than 250 credit unions and other financial institutions, enhancing the financial well-being of more than 5 million customers from coast to coast. For more information, visit

About Alterna Savings

Alterna Savings and Credit Union Limited (Alterna) has been the Good in BankingTM for 112 years! Alterna is made up of Alterna Savings and Credit Union Limited and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Alterna Bank. Together, we have $9.1 billion in assets under administration.

As the first full-service, member-owned co-operative financial institution outside Quebec, Alterna Savings shares its expertise with more than 169,000 members through a network of 33 branches across Ontario, that includes partners Toronto Municipal Employees’ Savings, City Savings, and Peterborough Community Savings, as well as call centre and digital channels. Members and customers also benefit from industry-leading online brokerage, investment management services, and have access to the largest surcharge-free ATM network in Canada through THE EXCHANGE® Network, with over 3,700 ATMs to serve them.

For more information please visit  and connect with us on

Media Contact:

Alexa Creelman
Manager, Member Relations and Co-operative Social Responsibility
Central 1

Jackie Duhard
Corporate Communications Specialist
Alterna Savings
P: 613.560.0150 ext. 6031