Announcing 2013's Pioneers for Change!

As part of their continued commitment to celebrate diversity and honour the exceptional achievements and contributions made by the immigrant community, Skills for Change is pleased to announce their honourees for the 21st annual Pioneers for Change Awards. The Awards recognize the following outstanding immigrants to Canada for accomplishments in their fields, for contributions to their communities, for innovating and inspiring:

For CIVIC AND COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT - Dr. Reza Moridi, MPP Richmond Hill, Minister of Research and Innovation

For WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP - Maya Eventov, Artist crescent hill gallery

For LGBTQ INITIATIVES - Karlene Williams-Clarke LGBTQ Newcomer Community Coordinator at the 519 Church Street Community Centre

For ACCESS TO INFORMATION - Loly Rico and Francisco Rico- Martinez, Co-Founders of FCJ Refugee Centre

For YOUTH - Lilian Guilombo, Youth Human Rights Activist CHRIO

For OUTSTANDING ENTREPRENEURS - Dr. Laurelle Jno Baptiste, Co-Founder Scholarlab

The Pioneers for Change Awards Ceremony will take place on Thursday, June 6, at 6pm. The Awards are hosted by CBC News Network anchor Suhana Meharchand and are proudly presented by long-time sponsor CIBC at their Corporate Offices in Toronto.

The event serves as a reminder of the powerful role immigrants play in contributing to our culture and our economy, creating vibrant communities, and building an inclusive and diverse Canada. This year’s honourees will join the ranks of Pioneers past - keeping high profile company with previous recipients including the Rt. Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, Ratna Omidvar and Dr. Alejandro Jadad.

the evening will bring together community partners, sponsors and honourees to celebrate and network. This year’s event will feature a Speaker Series in which each honouree will share their inspiring insights on the successes, struggles and the future of the work being done in their field or community.

The event is also a key fundraising initiative for Skills for Change, a non-profit agency that has been supporting new Canadians for over 30 years through a wide range of programs. Funds raised are used to further develop infrastructure, build the organization's impactful mentoring program, and continue to ensure that immigrants are given every opportunity to succeed.

For more information about the honourees and this year's event, visit