Greater St. Albert Catholic Schools present Long Service Awards

Above From Left: Ron Gamache has been with the Division for 35 years, Judy Craig 20 and Matthew Woodland for 5 years.
by Lucie Roy
The Board of Trustees hosted their 2020 Long Service Awards virtually this year.

Together they celebrated 103 staff who have reached 5, 10, 15 20, 25, 30 and 35 milestone years with the Division.

Some of those recipients include five from Georges H. Primeau Middle School: 25 years Vincent Falcone, 20 Cindy Vervynck, 15 Colleen Durand, 10 Travis Hay and 5 Dawn Herrington-McCumber.

From St. Kateri Tekakwitha Academy: 5 years Stacey Palidwar and Brittney Thompson.

From Operations and Maintenance: 35 years Ronald Gamache and 5 for Matthew Woodland, and from the District and working in Accounts Payable out of their building Judy Craig with 20 years.

From Ecole Notre Dame: 25 years Mary Richard, 10 years for Jessica Miniaci and Nicole Lloyd.

There were 18 from Morinville Community High School with 30 years Lisa Appell, Kent Lessard and Catherine Whittal-Williams; with 25 Greg Boutestein and Wade Michael; 20 years Michelle Boucher, Susanne Christensen, Valerie Ferland and Darcy Owen; 15 years Elene Hartman, Neil Korotash, Robert Rawcliffe and Tara Ricioppo; 10 years Vanessa King, and 5 years Aaron Adams, Kyle Coxen, Michelle Receveur and Louise Sansano.

Ronald Gamache

35 years for Ronald Gamache-Manager of Operations and Maintenance.

Gamache said that is correct but it is actually longer than 35 years. It is 35 years in full time. He actually started earlier than than that in Junior High in St. Albert when they were only the St. Albert Catholic School.

He used to cut the grass in the summer and would ride a little tractor with a weed eater from school to school after school and did that for a few summers till circa 1985 when he was hired on full time.

Back then, they just had a maintenance shop which was just a portable behind Father Jan school.

Years later, they moved to the current Operations & Maintenance Facility in Morinville.

He started out, went to NAIT and got a Boiler Operator Ticket and basic instrumentation and was an HV tech till he filled this role. He did HV repair in the district for 29 years.

In 1999, he apprenticed under a local plumbing outfit in St Albert that was contracted to the school board and received his 1st Class Gas Ticket, plumbers ticket and circa 2014 he was the shop foreman for a little while.

When the manager position came up he applied and was successful.

Right now, he oversees nine people serving St Albert, Morinville and Legal.

When he first started out it was St. Albert Catholic School District No.3 and they were the public school district back then.

Later on, in 1995, they operated under the name of the Greater St Albert Catholic Regional Division No.29 when the merged with Morinville and Legal.

Gamache said the 35 years just flew by. “Seems it wasn’t that long ago I was cutting the grass,” he said. “It went by quick.”

Of the many accomplishment one award stands out, it was from the Alberta Emerald Foundation- the Emerald Award.

Gamache said he did a program for the schools to save energy and they saved in water, power and gas by putting time clocks in and reducing temperature and reviewing some of the the electrical contracts and with changes made saved over a 100 thousand dollars doing these energy conservation measures. They got the Emerald Award that year for the school district.

In 2014 Gamache was involved with the 150th anniversary celebrations of the first school opening, which was held on the Seven Hills in St Albert and at the little white school house- where everything started.

Gamache said the biggest change is technology, the schools are computerized now and all the heating plants mostly all computerized.

MCHS Long Service Awards- 30 years Kent Lessard and 25 years Wade Michael. – Photo submitted by MCHS.

Georges H. Primeau Principal Charlene Kushniruk presenting to Travis Hay- 10 years. – Photo submitted by GHPS.
Georges H. Primeau School- Vincent Falcone- 25 years. – Submitted by GHPS
Georges H. Primeau Principal Charlene Kushniruk presenting to Colleen Durand, 15 years.
Photo submitted by GHPS.
Georges H. Primeau Principal Charlene Kushniruk presenting to Cindy Vervynck- 20 years.
Photo submitted by GHPS
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