Making a significant contribution to the community is not always about seeking attention for a cause or being a recognized face in the news.
Kevin Hennessey, who was named Corner Brook’s 2018 Citizen of the Year Tuesday night, epitomizes this.
His face and name may not be widely known beyond the arts community, but he has been an instrumental cog in Corner Brook’s music and theatre scene for the last three decades or so.
Hennessey was among several people and groups honoured at the 2018 Achievement in Community Excellence Awards event Tuesday. The ACE Awards celebrate outstanding contributions in 18 categories for excellence in business, environmental awareness, the arts, athletics, cultural promotion and community-mindedness.
Hennessey is a musician and actor, but his impact has probably been the greatest as a musical director who has elevated the quality of productions at the school, church and community theatre levels.
Being one of the driving forces behind the scenes is fulfilling for Hennessey, whose day job is a hearing impaired program itinerant with the Newfoundland and Labrador English School Board.
“I do all the things I do in the community because I love doing them, but it is a nice feeling to know that people do appreciate all the work you do,” he said after he was announced as the winner.
“A lot of hours go into it, especially when you’re not necessarily involved with the part of the show that everybody sees or hears.”
The other nominees for Citizen of the Year included Stella Michel of the not-for-profit good deeds group 12 Months, 12 Miracles; longtime business owner and promoter of Corner Brook Brenda Lee; community volunteer David Elms; and community volunteer Nicole MacKinnon.
Hennessey said it was an honour just to be mentioned in the same breath as these and all the other ACE Award nominees, especially Michel, whose charity work won the Non-Profit Organization of the Years ACE Award Tuesday night.
“I think it’s cool to come to an event like this and realize just how much amazing work is going on in this town,” he said. “To be able to come up here and be on the same podium as these other people is absolutely humbling.”
ACE Winners 2018
Business Excellence Award:
State of the Arts Gallery and Picture Framing
Community Environmental Leader:
Corner Brook Green Business:
Kenworth Corner Brook
Corner Brook Environmental Award:
Immaculate Heart of Mary School
Overall Artist of the Year:
Arts Event of the Year:
Emerging Artist of the Year:
Heritage Individual Award:
Heritage Project Award:
The Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist
Non-Profit Organization of the Year:
12 Months 12 Miracles
Gerry Basha Female Athlete of the Year:
Male Athlete of the Year:
Coach/Executive of the Year:
Jennifer & George Dolomont
Active Living Community Champion (Individual):
Active Living Community Champion (Organization):
Joe Mullins Lifetime Achievement Award:
Youth Citizen of the Year:
Citizen of the Year:
Source: Achievements in Community Excellence Awards committee