Alberta volunteers awarded prestigious honour

By: Shelly Makrugin, Senior Advisor, Communications

A dedicated emergency management volunteer, a passionate water safety instructor trainer and a loyal educator have received the highest award given by the Canadian Red Cross. The three Alberta volunteers were given the Order of Red Cross, which recognizes extraordinary people who have provided outstanding humanitarian service at home and abroad.

Daniel Chicoine with his Order of the Red Cross award

Daniel Chicoine

Daniel Chicoine has been generously volunteering with the Red Cross for 34 years. Not long after beginning his service, he assisted during a large-scale emergency response when a devastating tornado hit Edmonton in 1987.
Since then, Daniel has supported thousands of Canadians dealing with the worst moments of their lives. A Red Cross emergency response team member, Daniel has also deployed internationally and assisted following Hurricane Frances in Florida in 2004.

He currently volunteers as an on-call provincial duty officer in Alberta. In this role, Daniel humbly mentors his peers and provides expertise to emergency responders across Alberta.


Canadian Red Cross volunteer Donna standing next to her award and holding flowers.Donna McKean

For more than 30 years, Donna McKean has inspired and supported water safety instructors and instructor trainers.

She is a tireless volunteer and advocate of the Red Cross First Aid and Water Safety programs and our organization.

She is part of the Swimming and Water Safety technical advisory committee and has worked on key projects such as the aquatic safety plan and operational best practices and instructor emergency response research that provide recommendations and resources for the aquatics industry in Canada.

Dr. Jeffrey Pellegrino

Dr. Jeff Pellegrino standing by Canadian Red Cross balloons at a podium.Another dedicated volunteer for the Prevention and Safety program, Dr. Jeffrey Pellegrino has continuously served the program as a valued advocate, leader, educator and visionary for 15 years.
An American citizen, Dr. Pellegrino is affectionately known as our “friend to the south.” Although he does not live in Canada, his contributions to Prevention and Safety education can be seen in physical and digital learning spaces across our country and around the world through the International Federation of Red Cross/Red Crescent, and International Committee of the Red Cross.
 “I recognize now even more what I have learned and been inspired to do by people who have offered me opportunities, challenged me to grow, Dr. Pellegrino says. “We have a trust and bond that only kindred spirits share, which has allowed me to be a better me.”

The Order of Red Cross was presented virtually to each volunteer with their families present. Appointments of the Order of the Red Cross are limited to 25 Members annually.
If you would like to get involved, learn more about how to volunteer with us.

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