The following is the Address given by Michael Jackson, Chief of Protocol and Honours for the Province of Saskatchewan, at a spectacular banquet given by Premier Lorne Calvert, held at the Hotel Saskatchewan, Regina, prior to the 20th Investiture on November 16, 2004 of the Saskatchewan Order of Merit to Suzanne Claire Olaski, the Administrator of Cedar Lodge Hotel and Convention Center on Blackstrap Lake, Saskatchewan … Suzanne Claire Olaski has been called “a voice for those who have no voice”. She has given of herself to comfort the afflicted, feed the hungry, rescue the addicted and bring hope to those in despair. Her own journey has taken her from a successful paralegal career in Toronto to a dangerous urban ghetto in California to a street ministry in Saskatchewan. In 1995 Ms. Olaski opened a soup kitchen in Saskatoon. Her clientele expanded exponentially from 5 families to 1200 and she founded Community Alive, a non-profit organization which distributes food to outreach ministries and first nations reserves. Distressed by her encounter with so many lost souls on city streets, Suzanne Olaski determined to find a safe haven for those, especially women and children, suffering from addictions and abuse. With minimal funds, but armed with faith and optimism, she found a way to purchase Cedar Lodge on Blackstrap Lake. Through her blend of compassion, leadership and business acumen, Ms. Olaski has turned this vacant property into a thriving Hotel and Convention Center operated by volunteers, sought after by conference organizers across Canada and beyond. The hotel income subsidizes shelter and treatment for those suffering from drug, alcohol and gambling abuse, dysfunctional families and crime. Suzanne Olaski has experienced the dark side of society at first hand. She is committed to the rehabilitation of its victims. She is an innovator whose charisma inspires others to follow her example and join in her cause. Non-judgemental, she seeks out the strengths in the individuals for whom and with whom she works and inspires them to change their lives. Your honour, I present to you for investiture with the Saskatchewan Order Merit an exemplary entrepreneur whose guiding motivation is social justice.
In 2004, the Administrator of Cedar Lodge, Suzanne Claire Olaski, was awarded the highest honour in the Province, the Saskatchewan Order of Merit for her outstanding contribution to the community and province. the Premier held a banquet at the Hotel Saskatchewan in Regina for the 7 recipients that year where many dignitaries attended. The award was presented by Dr. Lynda Haverstock, S.O.M. who was the Lieutenant Governor at the time. Nomination of Suzanne Claire Olaski by Nanette Moffatt, Saskatoon The following information should shed more light on my decision to nominate Suzanne Claire Olaski for the Saskatchewan Order of Merit Award. In particular, I hope to share her vision, her dedication, her leadership qualities, her ability to cause government to revisit policies, all in addition to the fact that her contribution in the service to others ranks high in her notable achievements. (more…)
Long Shadows on the Road SCN Premiere – A television documentary series produced exclusively for SCN, each episode focuses on influential Saskatchewan people who have made significant contributions to their community, to the province and beyond. You can learn about their lives and accomplishments through their conversations with veteran writer and broadcaster, Bruce Steele. Other notables in the series former Premier Grant Devine and Actress/Singer Andrea Menard. Suzanne Claire Olaski S.O.M. Founder, Leader, Spokesperson and Administrator of Cedar Lodge Hotel & Convention Center and Outreach Services. A dynamic and motivating personality. Her story of faith is inspirational … A copy of the program can be ordered by calling 306-492-4999 Cost $10.00 plus shipping.
Established in 1985, the Saskatchewan Order of Merit is a prestigious recognition of excellence, achievement and contributions to the social, cultural and economic well-being of the province and its residents. It is the highest honour in the Province. The Order recognizes individuals who have made their mark in such areas as the arts, agriculture, business and industry, community leadership, the occupations or professions, public service, research, and volunteer service. It takes precedence over all other provincial honours and awards. (more…)
The Saskatchewan Centennial Medal recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to society and honours their outstanding achievements. The Commemorative Medal for the Centennial of Saskatchewan also called the Saskatchewan Centennial Medal is a commemorative medal struck to celebrate the first 100 years since Saskatchewan’s entrance into Canadian Confederation. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commemorative_Medal_for_the_Centennial_of_Saskatchewan) The Medal was created in May 2003 by the Legislature through amendments to The Provincial Emblems and Honours Act. The legislation establishes the Medal as an official honour of The Crown in right of Saskatchewan, to be presented by the Lieutenant Governor or her designate. It has been granted status in the Canadian Precedence of Orders, Decorations and Medals. Recipients receive a medal displaying the provincial motto under a wreath of western red lilies surmounted by the St. Edward’s Crown. The words “Saskatchewan 1905-2005” are around the circumference of the medal. On the reverse of the medal is the provincial shield of arms. The medal is suspended from a ribbon of gold with two narrow green stripes. Suzanne Claire Olaski was awarded the Saskatchewan Centennial Medal Award …on March 17, 2006.
Administrator of Cedar Lodge, Suzanne Claire Olaski nominated in the category of Lifetime Achievement by the YWCA Women of Distinction Awards Committee. Taken in part from the Saskatoon Star Phoenix Wednesday May 5, 2004, Front Page of the Section LIFESTYLE. Twenty-seven women will be recognized at the annual YWCA Women of Distinction Awards on May 13 at the Centennial Auditorium. The awards program and banquet, with the theme “Inspiring Generations,” celebrates women’s achievements and accomplishments in this community. “This is a night to celebrate women’s talents, skills, and contributions to the community,” said Peggy Slater-Johnson, YWCA executive assistant and fund development co-ordinator. “The awards allow us to publicly recognize women who are inspiring generations – the vibrant and dedicated women who consistently help those around them.” The evening’s guest speaker is Severn Cullis Suzuki, daughter of well-known David Suzuki. She is a TV host, author and environmentalist. Cullis Suzuki is known for addressing the delegates at the Rio Earth Summit when she was just 12, and for her work in protecting British Columbia forests. Suzuki is a graduate of Yale University, with a degree in ecology and evolutionary biology. In the Category of “Lifetime Achievement” two nominees, Suzanne Claire Olaski and Carole Gorgchuck were named. Carole Gorgchuck won the prestigious award for which we sincerely congratulate her as she is a most worthy candidate.