Steps To The Greater Alumni Award
This award recognizes the outstanding achievements of GPRC alumni early in their careers or community
service. This award was presented for the first time in 2013.
The nominees must be alumni of GPRC. The candidates have demonstrated outstanding excellence in his/her
profession, community or society and are, therefore, an example of alumni excellence for GPRC. Alumni
currently serving the College as Board members are not eligible.
Nominations will be accepted from the public and the College Community. Nominations will be reviewed
and selected by a committee of the Alumni/Foundation Board. The recipients will be contacted in advance so
he/she may attend the event to receive their award.
2019 Steps To The Greater Alumni Award Recipient: Joren Manz
Joren Manz, has always had an interest in helping others and is currently embarking on his Doctor of
Medicine from the University of Alberta. Manz started his academic career at GPRC and was an active
member of the Wolves community, running cross-country and track during his time at the College.
Manz was an inspiration to his teammates and coaches with his countless hours spent volunteering
and juggling the demands of being a student-athlete while still achieving honours.
While achieving academic success, Manz also was a GPRC Wolves Summer Camp leader, Canada West
University Athletics Association Silver and Bronze medalist, worked with the Steadward Centre
coaching para- and wheelchair track athletes and volunteered his time aiding care on missions to
the Philippines, Croatia and Kenya. Manz continues to inspire all those around him with his humble
attitude and desire to help.
2019 Steps To The Greater Alumni Award Recipient: David Lario
David Lario, a professional engineer and entrepreneur finished his first year of engineering at GPRC
in 1995 before heading off to the University of Alberta to complete his Bachelors and then, Masters
in Mechanical Engineering. Throughout his career, Lario has always made a point to give back and
help future and upcoming engineers in our region through his volunteering with the Association of
Professional Engineers and Geoscientists.
Lario lends his expertise on engineering panels at the College, assists with presentations and
workshops throughout the region and serves proudly as a mentor for young engineering students in
the pursuit of their dreams.
Steps to the Greater Alumni Honourees
Steps To The Greater Alumni Award 2018: Matthew Dalen
After developing an interest in music as a member of the Grande Prairie Boys’ Choir, Dalen
nurtured his passion in GPRC's Bachelor of Music University Transfer program. After
finishing at GPRC in 2012, he completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Alberta.
Dalen has gone on to earn his Master’s in Opera Performance from the University of Toronto
and perform throughout Canada, the United States, and Europe. Currently, Dalen is a member of
the Vancouver Opera’s Yulanda M. Faris Young Artists Program.
Steps To The Greater Alumni Award 2017: Dr. Leisa Floreani
Leisa’s passion for animals is evident every day she goes to work at the Fairview
Veterinary Clinic in Fairview, Alberta and credits beginning her educational journey at
GPRC’s Bachelor of Science to her success.
Strong faculty support and the quality programming at GPRC paved the way to continue her
education at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan
graduating with Distinction as a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
Steps To The Greater Alumni Award 2016: Fiona Benson
This year GPRC recognized runner Fiona Benson who represented Canada at the 2015 World Cross
Country Championships in March 2015. In July 2015 she won the Canadian Championship in the
She’s achieved Olympic qualifying times in both the 800m and 1500m for the 2016 Rio
Olympic Games. She ended 2015 ranked 10th in the world in the one mile, 31st in the 1,500
metre, and 41st in the 800 metre.
Steps To The Greater Alumni Award 2015: Cris Seppola
Cris Seppola began as a GPRC student, became a valued employee of the College, and in just a few
short years is now a successful business owner providing professional services to a client list
which includes GPRC.
Cris completed a blended office administration/business administration diploma specializing in
e-commerce and marketing and launched nine10 in 2006. After four years of learning and
development, Cris Seppola founded nine10 Incorporated. What started as a design agency has now
developed into a full-service marketing agency.
nine10 Inc. is known for the positive energy of the partners and staff, who are full of the passion
of potential. That has been one of the key qualities behind what is becoming a notable go-forward
team: passion. Or, as one partner puts it, “That passion to learn and to grow.” Cris
Seppola and her partners took a leap of faith, added plenty of commitment and hard work, and have
already been recognized with a Small Business of The Year award from the Chamber of Commerce.
Steps To The Greater Alumni Award 2014: Ryan Pomeroy
Former Wolves Volleyball star Ryan Pomeroy has accomplished a great deal in the years since he
dominated the nets here and in international competition. Today, as President of Pomeroy
Inn & Suites Inc. and Pomeroy Lodging LP, Ryan is a leader who continues to prove what
ambition, focus, strategic thinking and an unrelenting drive to succeed can accomplish.
Ryan is deeply committed to honouring his roots and supporting his community, and the
Peace Region. He has been involved in many large-scale community projects, including
becoming the title facility sponsor for the Pomeroy Sport Centre in his home town of Fort
St. John. On a personal level, Ryan has founded and funded Impact Volleyball camps for kids,
supported local citizens in need through such projects as the Warriors Fund, and funded
academic scholarships through GPRC in memory of his brother, Tim Pomeroy.
Steps To The Greater Alumni Award 2013: Michael Reeve
Having a passion for entrepreneurship, Michael took the Business Administration program at GPRC,
where in one of his courses, students were tasked with writing a complete business plan for a
fictitious company. Mike based his business plan on a company that he was hoping to start,
involving extreme sports filmmaking. Graduating from GPRC in 2004 with a Business
Administration Certificate and a full business plan to take to the bank, in 2005, at the age of
20, he incorporated, Velocity Video Productions Ltd. Capitalizing on the demand for safety and
training videos in the oil & gas industry, Mike expanded into the files of commercial
business, government and not-for-profit agencies to name a few. Being a one-man enterprise,
during the winter months, Mike returns to his original passion of filming professional
snowmobiling for several large American companies in the remote B.C. backcountry. In the summer
months, he can be found hanging out of a helicopter chasing race boats down the river for the
Canadian circuit of jet boat racing. In 2011 he produced the World Jet Boat Championships film
and was later invited to New Zealand to film their races on the south island. In 2007, at the
age of 22, Michael was nominated for “Young Entrepreneur of the Year” by the Grande
Prairie Chamber of Commerce. Michael credits GPRC’s faculty and staff with kickstarting
his career and business, allowing him to live his dream.