by Treena Mielke
Being mindful of looking after what nature has provided locally and on a global level and living her vision that women can be inspirational leaders has earned a Sylvan Lake environmentalist a Women of Excellence award.
Beverly Anderson, deputy mayor of the Summer Village of Norglenwold, received the environment award at Red Deer & District Community Foundation’s sixth annual Women of Excellence awards gala.
As well as being deputy mayor, Anderson is chairman of Sylvan Lake Art Society, Sylvan Lake Management Committee and Norglenwold Municipal Planning Commission. She is also executive director of the Association of Summer Villages of Alberta.
Anderson’s impressive environmental track record began when she graduated from the University of Waterloo with a Bachelor of Environmental Studies. After working for environmental consulting firms and conservation authorities, she was employed with the provincial government as a planner for Kananaskis Country.
She later moved to Rocky Mountain House where she worked as tourism director for the town and county. After teaching recreation planning at Red Deer College she went to work for Alberta Environment and completed her Masters in project management, later becoming executive director of Red Deer River Watershed Planning and Advisory Council.
Anderson said she is thrilled to be recognized for the environmental work she has done for the last 37 years of her life.
She added it may be difficult to make an environmental impact globally, but everyone can do something to improve the environment at a community level.
Leading initiatives like the removal of ice fishing huts off of Sylvan Lake, the cumulative effects management system for the lake and recycling for the summer village are some of the ways Anderson does her part to pay it forward on local issues.”
In her acceptance speech, Anderson said road trips taken across Canada and the United States with her family when she was a child instilled in her a desire to travel.
“Having now been to 39 countries, I have learned to appreciate what we have — our beautiful country of Canada and our province of Alberta and have passed on that desire to see the world as a whole ecosystem, to my two amazing daughters, Kelly and Julie, already women of excellence in their own right.”
Anderson acknowledged Sylvan Lake Mayor Susan Samson and Deb Carlson for their continual support and encouragement.
“Like everyone else, my life is a roller coaster of events; some highs, some lows. The lows are important as they make you appreciate the highs.”
About 350 people attended the awards ceremony held June 12 at the Sheraton Centre in Red Deer.