THANK YOU FOR HELPING US REACH OUR GOAL Donor support tops $8.5M for Kelowna Trades Training Complex In 2014, the Okanagan College Foundation set its most ambitious fundraising goal to date: raise $7 million toward the completion of the Kelowna trades facility and provide life-changing student and program support.
Because of you, we have one
of the most advanced trades training facilities in North America Our campaign to raise $7 million for the new Kelowna Trades Training Complex began during a plunging Alberta oil and gas sector which affected many local businesses and individuals. Despite this, the campaign saw an immediate groundswell of support. More than 40 donors kicked off the campaign with contributions totalling $2.5 million. KF Aerospace’s Barry Lapointe was among the first major donors, with a gift of $500,000. From these early days, we knew this campaign was going to be special. It became extraordinary. Industry leaders in the welding, construction, plumbing, mechanical, and electrical sectors mobilized diverse support. The valley’s automotive dealers and collision repair shops drove forward gifts of more than $2 million to trades training.
One of the most inspiring moments of the campaign came in 2015 when the Okanagan College Students’ Union donated $100,000. Okanagan College Foundation not only met its goal, but it exceeded it by $1.5 million with the additional funds going towards student awards and bursaries and program support. To everyone who contributed, local businesses, individuals, non-profits and community organizations, we are sincerely grateful. We’ve included news and updates since the centre opened two years ago in the pages that follow. Okanagan College had a bold vision to build a sustainable, leading-edge Trades Training Complex that would celebrate and honour the trades. You embraced this vision and made it a reality. Our entire community benefits.
Capital goal: $5,000,000
Total raised: $5,131,898
Program and student support goal: $2,000,000
Total raised: $3,369,379
Total campaign goal: $7,000,000
Total raised: $8,501,277
donates $1 million to Okanagan College Funds to honour legacy of successful business owner Ron Jacobsen
(L-R Matt Lebedoff, Rhonda Jacobsen-Lebedoff, Muriel and Shayne Jacobsen)
It’s the largest gift ever to support Okanagan College’s Kelowna campus, and it will accelerate a centre of excellence in automotive training and open doors for students for years to come.
In recognition of the generous gift, the bright new hallway utilized by so many students as a study and gathering space (pictured on cover) has been named the Ron Jacobsen Pathway to Excellence.
Muriel Jacobsen and her children Shayne and Rhonda are donating $1 million to the Kelowna Trades Complex in honour of their late husband and father Ron Jacobsen. Ron owned and operated Jacobsen Pontiac Buick for more than 40 years.
“It feels wonderful to honour my husband’s legacy of pursuing excellence,” says Muriel. “I hope students are inspired by his story.”
Ron was successful in business,
but he didn’t start out that way. Born in Red Deer, Alberta, Ron was an identical twin and youngest of nine children, who grew up working on the family farm. His first job was at a sawmill while taking a correspondence course in accounting. Ron went on to become the accountant at Hub City Motors, a Volkswagen dealership in Prince George. He would later buy into the dealership. In 1971, Ron sold his half of Hub City Motors and moved to Kelowna where he started Jacobsen Pontiac Buick. The company grew to more than 75 employees with a focus on hiring the right people, investing in modern equipment and creating a learning environment. “Any employee, no matter what they wanted to take, be it CPR or building a canoe, would receive 50 per cent of their training funded by the company,” says Matt Lebedoff, a long-time employee and a partner in the dealership from 1993 to 2003. “Ron understood that if someone was eager to learn, no matter what it was, they would do a better job with customers.”
“My dad had a get-it-done attitude. He liked to be the best, and he expected this of his people,” recalls Shayne, who started working in the dealership at age 12 and eventually became an owner. “If you could have some fun while doing your job that was even better.” While committed to his business, Ron was also passionate about his family, enjoying camping, boating and playing cards. He gave back to the community, volunteering with the Kelowna Rotary Club, and sponsoring sports teams, golf tournaments, and the Apple Triathlon. The latest gift from the Jacobsen family builds on past contributions to Okanagan College from Ron. In 2009, Ron set up the Jacobsen Pontiac Lou Simonelli Achievement Award to recognize one of his longest serving automotive technicians. Ron and Muriel also previously donated to the Kelowna Trades Training Complex.
The auto dealership and body shop also adopted the trademark “Jacobsen Excellence.” Ron always encouraged employees to think about whether their actions were good or excellent, and to aim for the latter.
“My dad always wanted to give back to the community who supported him. As someone who loved and valued the importance of learning and improving, he would be delighted to know his success is supporting future automotive leaders.”
– Rhonda Jacobsen-Lebedoff
The family hopes Ron’s legacy will live on with the funds contributing to the following key areas: • Development of a curriculum for an automotive service technician diploma • Alternate fuels service training • Purchase of state-of-the-art training equipment • Refreshing the automotive facilities to more closely resemble the appearance of newer dealerships and service outlets • Financial student support
Trades Success Centre crests 1,000 student visits An initiative that started from donor funds has been so successful it’s now funded on a permanent basis by Okanagan College. A grant from the Joyce Foundation provided some of the initial funds, along with investments from the Okanagan Mission and Ogopogo Rotary Clubs of Kelowna, to enable the launch of the Trades Success Centre in 2016. The Success Centre offers learning assistance and support for any student interested in or taking a trades program. While some believe that the trades are less academic than other programs, almost every trade requires a strong understanding of math and depending on the trade, science. All trades also require good communication and study skills.
Students can access free support for a diverse number of needs, from improving their writing to understanding how to read a blueprint or a refresh on math principles. This year alone, there has been more than 1,000 visits to the Trades Success Centre. Learning Centre Coordinator Elke Pritchard has seen first-hand success stories including helping a student who was planning on withdrawing stay on and excel. “One of the joys of my work is when a student pops their head into my office to share that they just received a 93 per cent on their test,” says Pritchard. “It’s such a thrill for me to hear that. It reinforces the students’ competence and they are always so excited by their results.”
Thank you to our Campaign Team Capital Campaign Team Members Ben Stewart Honorary Campaign Chair Dennis Gabelhouse Campaign Chair Mike Roberts Campaign Ambassador Alf Kempf Past President, Okanagan College Foundation Sharron Simpson President, Okanagan College Foundation Raghwa Gopal Past Vice President, Okanagan College Foundation Jim Hamilton President, Okanagan College Heather Schneider Past Regional Dean, Central Okanagan Steve Moores Dean of Trades & Apprenticeship Kathy Butler Campaign Director & Executive Director, Okanagan College Foundation Anne Kirkpatrick Development Officer, Okanagan College Foundation John Haller Retired Development Officer, Okanagan College Foundation Samantha Blandon Campaign Assistant
Volunteer Campaign Sector Chairs Adam Rich Cordelle Rich Methal Abougoush Gord Wilson Oscar Krueger Hugo Cookson Patrick Waunch Jason Friesen Graeme Jenkins Debbie Robert
Automotive Sector Chair, Sentes Automotive Group Automotive Sector Chair, Sentes Automotive Group Collision Repair Sector Chair, Boyd Autobody & Glass Construction Sector Chair, team Construction Electrical Sector Chair, Krueger Electrical Heavy Duty Mechanics Sector Chair Mechanical Sector Chair, Rambow Mechanical RV Technician Sector Chair, Voyager RV Welding Sector Chair Northern Projects Sector Chair
Thank you to the many others across Okanagan College and in the community who played a role in the campaign’s success.
Automotive sector contributes $2 million for trades By Fall 2014, when the campaign officially kicked off, local car dealerships had already provided $610,000. Momentum from automotive dealers and collision repair shops stayed in high gear throughout the campaign, resulting in the sector raising a little more than $2 million over two years.
The start of the campaign to raise funds for a new Trades Training Complex kicked off with donations from 43 donors totaling $2.5 million, and a significant portion of those donations came from Kelowna area car dealerships.
“As an automotive trades person myself, it’s been inspiring and really gratifying to see our local employers from the sector respond so generously,” says Corey Bransfield, Chair of Okanagan College Motor Vehicle Trades and Automotive Sector Chair for the Bright Horizons Building for Skills Campaign. “Their remarkable support will advance many techs and students in our programs today and for years to come...truly amazing.”
Donor support expands trades training The Vernon Trades Training Centre officially opened on Aug. 6, establishing a trades training hub for the North Okanagan. The new 1,250 square-metre (13,450 square-foot) centre will accommodate about 150 students per year in Carpentry, Welding, Electrical, Plumbing and Piping, and Women in Trades programs. The Province of B.C. provided $2.88 million and the Government of Canada provided $2.66 million toward the $6.2 million total project cost. Thanks to generous donors in the North Okanagan, the Okanagan College Foundation has raised nearly $1 million to cover the $673,000 capital construction cost, as well as provide support for students and programming.
The Kelowna Trades Training House opened at the Kelowna campus on May 15, giving the next generation of carpenters, plumbers, and electricians a state-of-the-art new training space. The 250 square-metre (2,700 square-foot) facility is designed to simulate a real-world jobsite that will constantly change as new techniques, technologies and building materials emerge. The total project cost was $1,060,000. The Government of Canada provided $332,485 in support. Donors and industry partners have contributed $382,000 in donations and gifts-in-kind. Okanagan College contributed the remaining $345,515.
THANK YOU With the support of donors, industry partners and community members like you, we continue to educate the next generation of skilled trades people. Thank you for contributing so generously and know that you’ve created a legacy that will be enjoyed by thousands of trades students and apprentices for years to come. $100,000+
$10,000 to $49,999
$5,000 to $9,999
Argus Properties Ltd. Bannister Automotive Group Bell Media Brad and Birgit Bennett City of Kelowna Flair Airlines Ltd. Harmony Honda & Harmony Acura Horizon Electric Inc. The Jacobsen Family The Joyce Family Foundation KF Aerospace/Barry Lapointe Okanagan Chrysler Jeep Dodge & Okanagan Fiat Okanagan College Students’ Union Orchard Ford Sales Ltd. & Kelowna Ford Lincoln Sales Ltd. Princess Auto Foundation Rambow Mechanical Ltd. Klaus & Lydia Reichwald Shaw Television Limited Partnership Westwood Electric Wilden
Aerospace Industries Association of Canada Anrias Capital Corp. Armstrong Crane & Rigging Inc. Bartle & Gibson Co. Ltd. BC Hydro Bellamy Homes Inc. Boyd Autobody & Glass Brandt Tractor Ltd. Byland’s Nurseries Ltd. C & G Insulation 2003 Ltd. Canadian Home Builders’ Association Central Okanagan Canadian RV Association Castanet Media Ltd. Chemo RV Sales and Service Ltd. CLAC Cookson Motors Ltd. Delnor Custom Homes Ltd. Early Frost Investments Ltd. Enterprise RV Falcon Engineering Ltd. Don Folk Geddes Construction Ltd. Gord Turner Renovations Ltd. Constantin Greenwald Jim & Liz Hamilton Interior Savings Credit Union Jenish House Design Ltd. John Bachelder Construction Ltd. Kelowna Hyundai Kelowna New Car Dealers Association Kelowna Steel Fabricators Ltd. Kelowna Transmission & Auto Repair Mazda Canada Midvalley Sheetmetal Ltd. New Car Dealers’ Foundation of BC Northside Industries Inc. Nutech Safety Ltd. O’Connor RV Okanagan Fire Protection Services Ltd. Okanagan Valley Newspaper Group Outland Design Landscape Architecture Paul Leinemann Construction Ltd. Penticton Fabricating Pushor Mitchell LLP Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association of Canada Reidco Metal Industries Ltd. Rotary Club of Kelowna Foundation Rotary Clubs of Kelowna, Ogopogo & Okanagan Mission Sawchuk Developments Co. Ltd. Muriel & Cecil Schmidt Shadow Ridge Golf Club Shepherd’s Hardware Ltd. SignCraft Ben Stewart Del Stone Tire Stewardship BC (TSBC) TransCDA of BC TRS Building Envelope–TOMTAR Roofing & Sheet Metal Ltd. TRUE Consulting Ltd. Unit Electrical Engineering Ltd. Viega LLC Vintage Design Ltd. Voyager RV Centre Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company White & Peters Ltd.
AcuTruss Industries Air Liquide Canada Dee Capozzi Alan Cohoe Craftsman Group of Companies Excite Homes John Haller Richard Hunter Kelowna Ready-Mix Inc. Kenroc Building Materials Ltd. Kilo-Womp Electric McGregor and Thompson Hardware Art Pike Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association of BC Heather & John Schneider Starline Windows Ltd. WESCO Distribution Canada LP
$50,000 to $99,999 Andrew Sheret Ltd. Bibby-Ste-Croix Alan Carter & Family Frank and Barbara Christian & Family Cloverdale Paint Inc. Coldstream Truck Parts Ltd. D. Hugo Cookson Family D.K.L. Financial Services Inc. Emil Anderson Construction (EAC) Inc. Enterprise Steel Fabricators Ltd. Fender’s Automotive Center FortisBC Fraserway RV Geddes Construction Ltd. Hall Constructors Inland Kenworth (A Partnership) Kal-West Mechanical Systems Inc. Keldon Electric Ltd. Kelowna Capital News Kelowna Kia Kelowna Toyota Ltd. Ute Koessler Krueger Electrical Ltd. Lambert & Paul Construction Ltd. Lee Valley Tools Ltd. Tony & Franca Lunelli PCL Constructors Westcoast Inc. PrairieCoast Equipment Praxair Canada Inc. Refrigerative Supply Ltd. Rotary Club of Kelowna Rykon Construction Management Ltd. Art Salt William & Mary Schooff Sentes Automotive Cliff & Lois Serwa The Sharron Simpson Family Smythe Tool Sales, Snap On Team Construction Management Ltd. Village of Kettle Valley West Manufacturing Ltd. Estate of Gordon and Helen Ziglar
$1,000 to $4,999 Anonymous B.C. Interior RV Society Jayne Brooks Kathy Butler Canadian Aqualine Sales Coast Wholesale Appliances Frank Dieter Sander Dieter Dennis Gabelhouse Gorman Bros. Lumber Ltd. Keith Grayston Hamlet Homes, Paul Day Harris Rebar Barbara Hoffman Estate of David Johnson Kelowna Lite Kast Kenroc Building Materials Ltd. Ken Kilcullen Anne Kirkpatrick Bruce Leavens Legacy Garage Doors Ltd. Richard Mayo Meiklejohn Architects Inc. Vern Nielsen OK Builders Supplies Okanagan Lockmaster Ltd. Violeta Pacheco Pacific Roof Centre Inc. Allison Ramchuk & Family Rotary Club of Lake Country ROV Consulting Inc., Structural Engineers Holly Sauve Steve & Terry Tuck Randy Werger West Kelowna Plumbing & Heating Ltd.