2016 Alumni of Distinction

Hannah Elkington
Police Foundations, 2014

After graduating from Durham College’s Police Foundations program in 2014, Hannah Elkington was hired as a police constable with York Regional Police, where she currently works. While pursuing her studies, Elkington participated in the Impossible2Possible Botswana expedition in Africa, where she ran 200 km across the Kalahari Desert over a four-day period. She also travelled with Impossible2Possible on Expedition Peru where she assisted with the delivery of educational content to students via an e-classroom. Additionally, she spent five years working for Durham Regional Police Service in the Youth in Policing program, including two years

as program co-ordinator. In 2014, she received the prestigious Public Hero Award from the Intercultural Dialogue Institute. Despite moving from Durban, South Africa to Ontario, Canada as a child, she still keeps a strong connection with her roots. During her high school years, she volunteered with the Kids in Need program and Team Africa. After graduating from high school, she spent three months volunteering at an orphan safe house in Cape Town, South Africa.

Anna Forder
Public Relations, 1971

Before completing Durham College’s Public Relations program, Anna Forder pursued a successful career in competitive figure skating, including representing Canada at the 1968 Olympic Games in Grenoble, France. She has worked as a professional figure skating coach in Durham Region for more than 45 years. An advocate for both sport and academics, she encourages all of her students to pursue higher education with many going on to graduate from Durham College. She has also given back to the community by sitting on both the Oshawa Hospital board and the Skate Canada National Board of Directors. Over the duration of her career, she has been recognized for her accomplishments as an athlete and coach, including her induction into the Oshawa Sports Hall of Fame in 1988 as well as receiving the Canadian Women’s Mentor Award in 2000.

Melody Gaukel
Public Relations, 1998

Melody Gaukel saw her career take off rapidly after graduating from the Durham College Public Relations program in 1998. Starting as a senior consultant with a Toronto-based public relations firm shortly after graduating, she quickly moved into senior positions in larger agencies, rising to her current position as vice-president, Corporate and Finance, at Environics Communications, one of Canada’s largest public relations and marketing firms. She played

a major role in promoting the Ontario Tire Stewardship program, increasing both public awareness and tire collections to reduce the number of used tires being burned or sent to landfills. She has also worked with several not-for-profit agencies and served as a member of the advisory council for Durham College’s Public Relations program for 15 years. In addition, Melody has served as a mentor for many Durham College graduates and frequently makes herself available to meet with students to provide advice and support on their career goals. Melody is also an active member of St. Andrew’s United Church in Toronto, where she has led building revitalization programs, chaired the communications committee and supported major community fundraising programs.

Philip Pritchard
Sport Administration, 1985

Since graduating from Durham College’s Sport Administration program in 1985, Philip Pritchard has visited more than 35 countries and attended a number of key amateur and pro hockey events, including the Olympic Games and World Championships, promoting the Hockey Hall of Fame (HHOF) and Museum as well as exhibits in its collection. Part of his duties include travelling with the Stanley Cup, a position he has held since his first week on the job. As Keeper of the Cup, he has also gained great notoriety for his role of walking the Stanley Cup out onto the ice to be presented to the National Hockey League’s champion. In addition to his responsibilities with the HHOF, he has served for many years on the board of directors

for the International Sports Heritage Association (ISHA) as well as the Canadian Association of Sport Heritage. He is also a past member of the selection committee for the Sports Hall of Fame in his hometown of Burlington; a committee member for the Lester Patrick Award, which selects outstanding contributions to hockey in the United States; and sits on the International Ice Hockey Federation’s Historical Committee. In 2009, he received the Schroeder Award, the ISHA’s highest honour.