Order of B.C. for two Surrey residents

A total of 16 people chosen from 249 nominations for 2015 honour.

Order of B.C. medal

A pair of Surrey residents are among 16 “exceptional civic leaders” appointed to the Order of British Columbia for 2015.

Allan B. Etmanski is known for his longtime work to empower people with disabilities. His commitment led him to advocate for initiatives such as the Registered Disability Savings Program, a long-term savings plan that helps Canadians with disabilities and their families save for the future. The co-founder of Planned Lifetime Advocacy Network (PLAN), Allan also leads the non-profit organization in its work to ensure the safety, security and well-being of relatives with disabilities.

Through his work with the BC Partners for Social Impact, he continues to lead and inspire people to work together to find new ways to address society’s most complex and pervasive social problems. Etmanski and his wife, Vickie Cammack, got the Order of Canada earlier this year for their work on PLAN and received a Governor General award in 2005.

Tim Collings has also been honoured with an Order of B.C. appointment for his invention of the V-Chip to filter inappropriate television content. Collings’ invention – now installed in equipment worldwide and is legislated to be included in every TV sold in the U.S. – sparked public discussion and led to a higher level of media literacy among parents and the general public.

Collings has previously been named among B.C.’s Top 40 Under 40, and Top 50 Thinkers.

The Order of British Columbia was established in 1989 to recognize people who have served or excelled in any field, benefiting the people of B.C. or elsewhere. It is the highest form of recognition the province can extend to its citizens.

“This year’s recipients have utilized their talent and passion to make a difference. On behalf of all British Columbians, I want to thank them for their dedication, and all they do to make B.C. a wonderful place to live, work and raise a family,” said Premier Christy Clark.

This year, 249 British Columbians were nominated for the Order of B.C. A ceremony for the recipients will be held in Victoria on June 15.