Tickets now available for March 9th event

Aaron Pete, a Chawathil First Nation councillor and entrepreneur, will speak at the 20th annual Fraser Valley Cultural Diversity Awards on March 9th.

Pete is a graduate of Peter A. Allard School of Law and a Native Courtworker. Pete sits on the Board of Directors of the Chilliwack Cultural Centre and on the Chawathil Economic Development Committee.

As the host of the Bigger Than Me Podcast, Pete has interviewed more than 50 guests including Indigenous leaders, authors, and law professors about how they make an impact that is bigger than themselves.

His keynote speech will share how he rose from humble beginnings in Chilliwack in a food-insecure household to finding his way to law school and his band council.

Tickets are now on sale for the awards dinner, which will feature an ethnically diverse dinner buffet, entertainment and remarks from emcee Fred Lee, Vancouver’s “Man About Town”.

Archway Community Services presents the event in partnership with the Mission and Chilliwack Community Services as well as the Langley New Directions English Language School.

“Back in 2003, we weren’t sure if there was enough interest to host an event recognizing diversity and inclusion in our community,” said Manpreet Grewal, Archway Director of Multicultural and Immigrant Integration Services. “But from the beginning, people bought into the concept and sponsors came on board.”

There are more than 40 nominees in six categories: inclusive environment, marketing, innovative initiative, Champion of Diversity (youth and adult), and effective human resources strategies.

Previous winners have been businesses, programs, initiatives, schools and leaders that work towards building an inclusive community, providing their clients and customers with accessible environments, and having workforces reflective of their community.

Past speakers have talked about various forms of cultural diversity, including abilities, ethnicity, gender, age, race, religion, sexual-orientation or socio-economic background.

“We’re looking forward to celebrating the 20th anniversary and thankful for all those who have helped us and this event have such longevity,” said event organizer Jade Geleynse. “A special thanks to our Speaker Sponsor, Prospera Credit Union, for supporting this year’s keynote.”

The awards in each category will be presented by award sponsors: the Abbotsford School District, Archway Interpretation & Translation Services, Business Development Bank of Canada, Envision Financial, United Way British Columbia, University of the Fraser Valley, Vancity, and WorkSafeBC.

The awards ceremony takes place on Thursday, March 9 at the Quality Hotel and Conference Centre.

Tickets are available online at diversityawards.ca or by calling 604-308-5673

Keynote speaker Aaron Pete

“We’re looking forward to celebrating the 20th anniversary and thankful for all those who have helped us and this event have such longevity.”

Jade Geleynse

Event Organizer

The Silk Road musical group will be performing at the event.

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