Two up for top citizen of Maple Ridge

Maple Ridge Community Foundation recognizes yearly those who give back

One of two candidates will be announced as the Maple Ridge citizen of the year on Thursday.

Maria Raynolds and Diane Stadel were both nominated by the Maple Ridge Community Foundation, which sponsors the award, recognizing dedicated individuals who have made outstanding volunteer contributions to enhance the quality of life in Maple Ridge or enhance the image of the city in the areas of arts, culture, athletics, social service or business.

Raynolds has played a strong leadership role in Maple Ridge, aspiring others to take action through her own dedication to finding solutions to the many challenges in our society, according to the community foundation.

She has many causes dear to her heart, including the Golden Ears Gogos group supporting the important work of the Stephen Lewis Foundation Grandmothers to Grandmothers campaign in Africa. This program focuses on raising orphaned grandchildren and building the supports necessary to sustain life in challenging circumstances. She is tireless in pursuit of projects that will further the cause.

While Raynolds was a director at the CEED Centre, serving as president for two years, she was instrumental in reviving the Celebrate Earth Day festival, creating the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Environmental Council and contributing to community and school neighbourhood gardens.

She has been a member of the Ridge Meadows Recycling Society for more than 20 years and served on the board of directors on and off throughout the years. She is an avid environmentalist with a clear vision for the future. Her voice is recognized as a knowledgeable contributor to sustainable practices and programs.

Raynolds has also served many years on the municipal Social Planning Advisory Committee, which tackles pressing social issues.

Stadel has a life-long commitment to volunteerism and community service. She represents the Ridge Meadows Seniors Society as a volunteer at the reception desk for the Friday afternoon shift, a position she has proudly and efficiently manned for more than 15 years. She makes it a point to be informed of what’s happening at the centre and within the community.

During her teen years, she served on the student council at Maple Ridge secondary in many capacities. She continues to be active in MRSS affairs as a member of the 1955 school re committee. She also took an active part in the Haney Fall Fair during her teen years, winning many competitions in baking, canning and handicrafts.

Through the years, Stadel has been active in the Golden Ears Winter Club and St. Paul’s Lutheran Church.

In 2011, the Golden Ears Winter Club named her an “Honorary Life Member.”

In January 2015, she was chosen to throw the ceremonial first rock at the provincial playdowns, the Scotties Tournament of Hearts. held at Golden Ears.

At St. Paul’s, She has been a key volunteer, holding a variety of leadership positions and serving on various committees. Stadel has supported a number of outreach activities to improve the circumstances of people in Maple Ridge through support of the Friends in Need Food Bank and or similar agencies.

The Citizen of the Year award will be announced at 9 a.m. Thursday, at Meadow Gardens Golf Club.

The Maple Ridge Community Foundation provides ways for people to give to causes that matter in Maple Ridge through the generosity of donors. Gifts are invested and held forever in an endowment. Through prudent investment and judicious grant making, the Maple Ridge Community Foundation is able to ensure that donors’ wishes are respected in perpetuity, creating a lasting legacy that addresses not only the needs of today, but also the needs of tomorrow.