BC Southern Interior MP Alex Atamanenko will receive a Honourary Diploma in Peace Studies at the Selkirk College Graduation 2015 Ceremony on April 24 at the Castlegar Campus. The member of the federal NDP party has been a strong proponent of peace in the region and across Canada since first being elected to office in 2006.

MP Alex Atamanenko to receive honourary diploma from Selkirk College

Selkirk College is recognizing retiring British Columbia Southern Interior MP Alex Atamanenko with a Honourary Diploma.

Submitted

West Kootenay Advertiser

Selkirk College is recognizing retiring British Columbia Southern Interior MP Alex Atamanenko with a Honourary Diploma in Peace Studies for his contribution to furthering the cause locally and across Canada.

The representative for the region in Ottawa since the 2006 federal election, Atamanenko has been a strong national voice for peace as a member of the New Democratic Party.

“Alex is passionate about world peace,” says Selkirk College President Angus Graeme. “It has been a significant part of his platform and message to constituents and the Canadian people during his nine years as MP.”

In 2011, Atamanenko introduced a private members bill — the Conscientious Objection Act — which introduced the notion that Canadian citizens opposed to the use of military intervention in conflict zones could have their portion of taxation redirected to other humanitarian uses. Though not successful in passing, the introduction of the bill became part of the national conversation about Canada’s changing military role in the international community and theatres of conflict.

“It was a real surprise and a true honour,” Atamanenko says of the honourary diploma. “I am only getting this diploma because I have been working with people that have been involved and dedicated in furthering the cause of peace. People like the folks at the Mir Centre for Peace at Selkirk College, the people I have marched with in peace rallies over the years and the people all across the country who are making a difference. I am just one spoke in this wheel and it’s quite a humbling experience to be receiving a diploma.”

Atamanenko spent a life teaching prior to entering politics. He moved to the West Kootenay in the early 1990s and began teaching at Stanley Humphries Secondary in Castlegar. In the mid-1990s he teamed up with former Selkirk College instructor Myler Wilkinson in resurrecting the Russian language program at Selkirk College which he helped teach on a part-time basis.

“Selkirk College is a dynamic institution with so many worthwhile and innovative programs that serve our communities,” Atamanenko says about the regional college. “From Nursing to Forestry to Cooking to the Arts, it’s a very major component of our area’s education. It’s also a significant provider of jobs and contributor to our economy.”

Atamanenko’s entry into politics came in 2004 when he represented the NDP in a hard fought election against incumbent Conservative Party MP Jim Gouk. Atamanenko narrowly lost in 2004, but stayed with it and won the local seat by a landslide in 2006. He has remained a popular regional politician, winning both the 2008 and 2011 elections by a large margin.

Over the years, Atamanenko has maintained his connection to Selkirk College and helped enhance post-secondary education in the region.

“Alex has never refused invitations to come and present to students at Selkirk College on a variety of topics,” says Graeme. “He is a frequent contributor to college-wide student events and is always interested in engaging with students on the importance of young Canadians getting involved in the democratic process.”

Now 70, Atamanenko has decided not to seek another term and will not be running in the October, 2015 federal election.

The Selkirk College Graduation 2015 Ceremony will take place at the Castlegar Campus on April 24. Atamanenko will be joined on stage by fellow 2015 special award recipients John Armstrong (Distinguished Educator), Geoff Yule (Distinguished Alumni) and Margaret Scaia (Distinguished Alumni).

 

Just Posted

LETTER: Concern for fossil fuel subsidies

From reader Marylee Banyard

Pedestrian killed on Highway 22 Saturday evening

Police say 51-year-old man died after being hit by car

Nelson Leafs overcome injuries to beat Fernie 3-1

Hunter Young made 26 saves in net for the Leafs

Nelson Boxing Club sweeps fights in Idaho

Caeden Rennie, Marino Raffo, Stryder Sutton and Max Berkeley each won

1st Indigenous woman to start Canadian airline looks to B.C.’s remote regions

Teara Fraser is the first Indigenous woman in Canada to start her own airline, called Iskwew Air

Bankruptcies in British Columbia on the rise

Consumer bankruptcies climbed by 6. 1 per cent in August 2018 from the same month last year.

22 public toilets in Victoria: 136 people currently peeing

World Toilet Day floats some serious health issues

Calgary Stampeders back to Grey Cup with 22-14 win over Winnipeg Blue Bombers

Calgary was favoured to win the 2017 and 2016 Grey Cups, but lost to the Toronto Argonauts and Ottawa Redblacks respectively.

‘A giant step forward’: new $10 bill featuring Viola Desmond to enter circulation

A new $10 banknote featuring Viola Desmond’s portrait will go into circulation, just over 72 years after she was ousted from the whites-only section of a movie theatre in New Glasgow, N.S.

Searchers in California wildfire step up efforts; 77 dead

Trump arrived at the oceanside conclave Saturday afternoon after visiting Northern California to survey the wildfire damage in the town of Paradise.

Trump says ‘no reason’ for him to hear Khashoggi death tape

“It’s a suffering tape, it’s a terrible tape. I’ve been fully briefed on it, there’s no reason for me to hear it,” Trump said in the interview.

Canada Post calls for ‘cooling off’ period to allow for mediated talks

The proposal came as Canada Post workers continued their rotating strikes Monday after rejecting the Crown agency’s latest offer.

Metro Vancouver homicide detectives busy after separate weekend deaths

Homicide detectives in Metro Vancouver are investigating separate cases involving two deaths they say appear to be either targeted or suspicious.

Most Read