The 2016 COPA Stars Gala brought together office products luminaries from across the industry for a unique evening of networking, fundraising and recognition. The Gala, held in honour of the 2016 COPA Awards recipients and the COPA Scholarship Fund, was hosted at The Vue in Toronto on November 17th and attended by nearly 150 industry individuals—including the evening’s guest of honour, Pete Gibel, this year’s Individual Award of Excellence recipient!
Slides featuring the top submissions from the 2016 COPA Awards Program and scholarship winners rolled in the background, as attendees mingled and enjoyed the hors d’oeuvres and open bar. The event followed last year’s format, giving participants the freedom to move around with no formal seating arrangements and interactive food stations. Guests also perused the fundraising area which raised proceeds for the COPA Scholarship Fund via a Silent Auction, ladies accessories table and candy buffet. Raffle tickets were sold for $500 in gift cards, generously donated by Merangue International, from various vendors, including LCBO, Starbucks, Canadian Tire, The Keg, iTunes, and more.
Just before the food stations opened, participants were asked to find a seat and put their conversations on hold for the awards portion of the event. The awards segment started with the most prestigious award of the night, the Individual Award of Excellence, which honours a longstanding member of the OP industry who has made significant contributions to their organization and the industry as a whole. The 2016 recipient, Pete Gibel of Staples Canada, was presented the award by Staples Canada president, Mary Sagat.
In a compilation video featuring Pete’s co-workers and industry colleagues, one message came through clearly: there is no one more deserving of this award than Pete Gibel, who, oddly enough, hates being the center of attention and often shuns the spotlight, preferring instead to shine it on his team! In fact, there was concern from Pete’s colleague who nominated him as to whether or not he would even accept the recognition. We are thankful he did—it would’ve been a shame if his 25-years of contributions to Staples and the industry went unrecognized!
Pete started off his humourous and moving acceptance speech in which he thanked his Staples family, vendors and business colleagues, and his wife and daughter, who were also in attendance, by emphasizing the importance of COPA to the Canadian OP industry. He stated that the Association represents a unique opportunity for members to interact with and even learn from a broad segment of the industry, including competitors—an opportunity unique to this country. He encouraged organizations to get involved with COPA and maximize the unique benefits the Association offers.
The awards segment continued with the Longstanding Service Recognitions whose recipients had a combined 175 years of service in the OP industry. Members of the Awards Committee then came to the podium to announce the remaining 2016 winners for marketing, product innovation, and corporate social responsibility leadership. (Several categories were hotly contested this year so we are giving honourable mentions to the programs and products that came very close.)
The 2016 Awards Recipients are:
Longstanding Service Recognitions
John Fullerton, Fullerton Sales & Marketing
John Sartor, Staedtler-Mars Limited
Michael Korpan, Staedtler-Mars Limited
Pierre Smith, Staedtler-Mars Limited
Yvon Laforest, Staedtler-Mars Limited
Kensington® BlackBelt™ 2nd Degree Rugged Case for Surface™ Pro 4 – ACCO Brands Canada Inc.
Honourable mentions in this category:
HP Elite X3 – SYNNEX Canada
DoodlePlan™ Colouring Desk Pads – Dominion Blueline Inc.
Online Marketing Award
Inspiration That Sticks – 3M Canada Company
Honourable mention in this category:
Hilroy Labs – ACCO Brands Canada Inc.
Traditional Marketing Award
How to Survive Flu Season in the Office – Staples Business Advantage Canada
Honourable mentions in this category:
Five Star® Five Lives – ACCO Brands Canada Inc.
2016 Fight for your Write Campaign – BIC Canada Inc.
Fellowes #WorkSmart Campaign – Fellowes Canada
Corporate Social Responsibility Leadership (2 recipients)
Grand & Toy – Pause and Affect Volunteer Program
Avery Products Canada – #AveryGivesBack
People’s Choice Award – Best New Office of the Year
DoodlePlan™ Colouring Desk Pads – Dominion Blueline® Inc.
Congratulations to this year’s winners and thank you to everyone who came out and supported this year’s Gala! A special thank you to our Gold Sponsors, 3M Canada Company and Purolator, as well as our Silent Auction donors! COPA is also grateful to our member representatives who worked on the 2016 Awards Committee—thank you for your time and effort in making this year’s program a success; we couldn’t do it without you!
|2016 COPA Awards Committee
Jenny Patrick, 3M Canada Company
Jennifer Blake, OfficeMax Grand & Toy
Heather Reay, Staples Canada
Suzanne Barrette, SYNNEX Canada
Jeff Schoo, ACCO Brands Canada
Darren Plumbe, Inside-Line, In Market Solutions
Gerard Vancraenenbroeck, Newell Rubbermaid
Catherine Rancourt, Dahle Canada, CRD Distribution Inc.
Jordan Hoxie, Beatties Basics
Shirley Parker, Avery Products Canada
|2016 Silent Auction Donors
ACCO Brands Canada
Acme United Ltd.
Fellowes Canada Inc.
Staples Advantage Canada
If you would like to volunteer on the 2017 Awards Committee, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The Committee meets two times per year in-person in February/March and a full day meeting in August/September. Learn more about the Awards Program at www.copa.ca/awards-program.