Bruce McMahon, recently retired senior avalanche forecaster for Mount Revelstoke and Glacier National Parks (MRGNP), Eric Dafoe, senior avalanche technician, MRGNP and Brenda Demone, associate director of the Parks Canada Highway Service Centre received prestigious awards in front of their colleagues and families during an awards ceremony at the Rogers Pass Discovery Centre.
Bruce McMahon, of Golden, and Eric Dafoe, of Revelstoke, were presented with a Parks Canada CEO Award of Excellence, honouring their contribution to and outstanding careers with Parks Canada while Brenda DeMone, of Revelstoke, received a 2012 Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.
The Parks Canada CEO Award of Excellence is the most prestigious honour awarded by the Agency to recognize Parks Canada team members and partners who have demonstrated a high level of excellence.
“Bruce McMahon dedicated more than 30 years to protecting the Trans Canada Highway and Canadian Pacific, the two primary arteries in Western Canada’s transportation network,” said Karen Tierney, Superintendent of Mount Revelstoke and Glacier national parks (MRGNP). “His contribution and commitment to excellence in service has been inspirational to staff and the organizations served by the Avalanche Control Program in Glacier National Park.”
Bruce McMahon was recognized for his important contribution to the field of avalanche control and protection in an outstanding public service career that has spanned over 30 years. He excelled in serving Canadians and in strengthening the avalanche industry as a whole. He developed the Avalanche Terrain Exposure Scale, a tool now recognized in Canada and internationally as the most effective and accurate means of classifying wilderness avalanche terrain. He leaves behind a legacy of innovation and achievement that will be felt for years to come.
“Throughout his career, Eric has been committed to avalanche protection, management of emergency response and mountain search and rescue,” Tierney said. “He has participated in dozens of rescue missions, often at the risk of his own safety. He is highly regarded and respected throughout the agency, by provincial search and rescue organizations and the public that we serve.”
In 2003, Eric Dafoe served as the leader of the largest avalanche rescue to date in Parks Canada’s history, leading to the implementation of current policies on backcountry use and custodial groups. Eric has had a distinguished career with Parks Canada as a Park Warden, Public Safety Specialist and Senior Avalanche Technician.
As part of the celebrations marking the 60th anniversary of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s accession to the Throne as Queen of Canada, Parks Canada was invited to nominate candidates to receive the 2012 Commemorative Medal for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. This new commemorative medal honours significant contributions and achievements by Canadians.
The Jubilee medal went to Brenda DeMone, associate director of the Parks Canada Highway Service Centre, in honour of her significant contributions to Parks Canada and Mount Revelstoke and Glacier national parks (MRG).
Brenda is responsible for MRG’s avalanche control, highway and visitor safety teams and works closely with the BC Ministry of Transportation, Drive BC, Canadian Forces and Canadian Pacific.
Parks Canada works to ensure Canada’s historic and natural heritage is protected and, through a network of 42 national parks, 167 national historic sites, and four national marine conservation areas, invites Canadians and people around the world to engage in personal moments of inspiring discovery at our treasured natural and historic places.
For more information on the avalanche control program, please visit parkscanada.gc.ca/glacieravalanche
Meanwhile, here are some photos from the event: