Each May, a nominated individual who resides in either Warfield or Trail, is chosen for the citizen of the year award. The citizen of the year is chosen on the following criteria.
One who has made outstanding contributions to the community in:
- Cultural activities or;
- Recreation or;
- Youth work or;
- Religious activities or;
- Community promotion.
Nomination forms for future recipients are available at City Hall in February of each year. For further information, contact Brian Volpatti at 250 364-1445. View a list of past Citizen of the Year recipients.
2015 Citizen of the Year - KEITH SMYTH
Photo courtesy of Sheri Regnier, Trail Daily Times
Dedication by Mayor Mike Martin, May 3, 2016
Good evening to the representatives of the Knights of Columbus, honored guests, ladies and gentlemen. I bring greetings and congratulations to Keith Smyth from the City of Trail. What an exciting evening for you Keith, Gale and your family and friends and all the others here this evening.
What an absolute delight and pleasure it is to be here this evening to kick off the first official activity of the 53rd annual Silver City Days festivities. We are here this evening to recognize the significant contributions of one of the most dedicated and hardworking citizens in our community,... Keith Smyth. Our community's strength and success is derived from individuals who give tirelessly and selflessly in helping build our community and it is absolutely fitting, well earned and deserved to be recognizing Keith Smyth as the Trail - Warfield Citizen of the Year. Just by coincidence Keith and Gale have lived in both Warfield and Trail. It was not too many years ago that he and Gale relocated to Trail and built a lovely home right on the banks of the Columbia River ... across from downtown Trail .... This location suits Keith perfectly as he can keep a good pulse on the community in which he is so involved.
Keith is well known as a leader, a builder, a mentor, a teacher, an influencer and a community supporter in addition to being a wonderful ambassador of this community. The group assembled here tonight is a real testament to his reach and influence in the community. Keith has responded to the needs of this community in so many ways and on so many occasions whether as part of his career as a teacher and school principal or as a volunteer taking on leadership roles as a coach of many youth sports or the organizer of major events on behalf of the community. As a teacher in our community, Keith had a very distinguished and illustrious career spanning some 35 years in which he touched the lives of hundreds of our youth in a most positive and constructive manner. As a teacher he was involved in many extracurricular sports activities where he coached basketball, volleyball, and track and field. However his true love was coaching baseball and it was this involvement that led to his leadership roles with the sport at local, provincial, national and international events .
Keith's special skill is his uncanny ability to assemble and align groups of people to accomplish specific goals. He has proven this over and over again through leading a number of major sports events. He has lead the BC summer, winter and senior's games in this region - this is most unique as he is probably the only person in the province to take on a leadership role in each of these separate events further demonstrating his depth, commitment and skill. Keith has lead both national and international baseball events (Babe Ruth) and locally provided leadership in Trail's Centennial celebration, the Colombo Piazza Project, the hospital Helipad project at KBRH and now the rejuvenated Silver City Days.
On many occasions Keith has been the go to person by an incumbent mayor and last year was no different when I reached out to Keith to see if he would be interested in leading an initiative to help us rejuvenate Trail Silver City Days. It was a huge task and involved establishing a homecoming event for families and to create some real excitement and the engagement in our community. Keith likes to say, "don't go for coffee with the Mayor" he'll put you to work. Just to set the record straight - it cost me more than coffee - I bought Keith breakfast at the A&W. As usual, Keith embraced the opportunity to help his community and without going into the details we are going to see a wonderful series of events and activities through the next few days. It has taken months of painstaking planning involving many in the community but it only occurred as a result of Keith's leadership. So on behalf of all council and especially Sandy Santori who is the councilor responsible for the Trail Festival event - thank you.
I have not known Keith as long as many others here this evening. During my working life at Teck our paths didn't cross that often. However since I've retired, I have had the advantage of Keith's wisdom and mentorship as I worked on a number of community activities - we also sit on the KSCU Board together - as a matter of fact he recruited me to the Board. Keith was certainly a significant part of my decision to run for elected office and as I mentioned he continues to support me personally by stepping up and taking on such time consuming tasks. Keith you have helped make me, and I am certain many others, successful through your support and guidance.
By any measure Keith is most deserving of this recognition not just for one event or contribution but many years of contributing to our community in so many ways through his family, his professional life as a school teacher and administrator and through his community involvement. There are probably very few people in this community who do not know Keith Smyth - he has touched the lives of so many and in such a positive way. I have never known Keith not to find the good in anything or anyone. He gives us all a reason to be proud of our community. He makes our community better through his commitment, influence and actions. What a great ambassador.
Keith remains actively involved in the community in so many ways and we are so indebted to him. He keeps the pulse of community though his social contacts, his weekly coffee group, his family, his friends and direct involvement with community groups such as Health and Hospital Committee, Retirees Curling, a well respected and seasoned director of Kootenay Savings Credit Union and others. He and his friend Mel Johnson are fixtures at each Smokeaters home Hockey Game
I would be remiss not to mention Gale's role in sharing Keith with the community. The demands on Keith in taking on these many leadership roles has been at the expense of his time with family and all we can say Gale is a big thank you. You are a true partner in allowing Keith to work in the community and you must share in this recognition tonight for without your understanding and support we would not have seen Keith's influence and involvement in our community.
Keith you should take great pride in what you have accomplished and the positive impact you have had on this community. We are delighted to see you get this recognition and along with our congratulations and sincere thanks and we leave with you a token of our appreciation.