Holland College | Foundation announces 2017 Distinguished Alumni



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Foundation announces 2017 Distinguished Alumni

The Holland College Foundation named Melody Dover, John Sylvester, and Melanie Wildman as the recipients of its tenth annual Distinguished Alumni Awards.

Foundation Board Chair Shaun MacIsaac, said that the 2017 award recipients are all strong entrepreneurs who are to be commended for their long-term vision and professional achievements.

“Our 2017 honourees, Melody Dover, John Sylvester, and Melanie Wildman, have all made significant impact in their communities and their industries.  They are wonderful examples to current and future students of how graduates have used their Holland College education as a platform on which to build a successful career.” said MacIsaac. “Each one is an inspiration in their own right.”

Melody Dover

Melody Dover is a graduate of Holland College’s Visual Communications and Interactive Multimedia programs and is the founder of Fresh Media, where she works alongside her husband Rob, also a Holland College graduate.

Melody was awarded the 2005 BDC Young Entrepreneur’s Award, and in 2006, the Greater Charlottetown Chamber of Commerce Emerging Business Award of Excellence. In 2010 she also won the Growing Business Award from the PEI Business Women’s Association.

Fresh Media won Best Social Media Campaign from AIM in 2012, and a was national finalist for Best Campaign in Atlantic Canada at the 2012 Design Edge Magazine Awards.  In 2014, Fresh Media was the National Winner for Best Integrated Campaign from CAMA (Canadian Agri-Marketing Association). Most recently, they won for the 2016 Best Social Media in Canada CAMA Award.  In addition to several national and regional business awards, Melody and Fresh Media own the successful PEI Burger Love™ campaign which has generated over $8.7 million dollars in burger sales alone over the last seven years, benefiting restaurants, farmers, the beef industry, and the local economy.

Along with being part of a local non-profit board, Melody is also a judge for the annual Canadian Online Marketing Awards, Applied Arts Magazine Community Awards, and the Canadian Marketing Awards.

John Sylvester

John Sylvester is best known as an award-winning landscape, nature and travel photographer.  He moved to PEI in 1982 to attend Holland College’s Photography program, became smitten with the Island, and is now proud to call PEI home.

John’s more than 30-year career has taken him to all 10 provinces and three territories as well as to international destinations such as Iceland and New Zealand. His photographs and articles appear in leading publications throughout the world including Time magazine and Canadian Geographic Travel. He is a four-time winner of The Canadian Tourism Commission’s Northern Lights Award for Excellence in Travel Journalism and Photography, and has been featured on Canada Post stamps.  Most recently, his work is featured on a $10 commemorative coin celebrating Canada 150.

Melanie Wildman

Melanie Wildman graduated from Holland College’s Visual Communications program in 1994.  After living in Western Canada for many years, Melanie returned to PEI in 2015 to launch a wellness company, Nutracelle.

Melanie and the Nutracelle team have won numerous awards, including Start-Up of the Year and Best New Product.  She is currently working with Canada’s Smartest Kitchen, developing an innovative line of natural protein bars, and is launching a new line of single-serve smoothies. Nutracelle has experienced rapid growth in recent years, and continues to expand across the North America.

Melanie hosts a YouTube cooking show, has authored cookbooks, is a 2016 Gold winner in several categories in the International Business Awards, and a finalist for the 2017 Mompreneur Awards.  She is also a former Mrs. Canada and first runner-up for Mrs. Universe. She serves on the Board of Directors for the PEI BioAlliance and sits on the editorial board for Atlantic Business Magazine for Women’s Issues.  She is passionate about improving people’s health along with mentoring and encouraging women in business.

Dover, Sylvester, and Wildman join past recipients Scott Annear, Patti Larsen, David Trainor, Wayne Stewart, Cory LeDrew, Kevin Proude, Sue LeFort, Delaney Chisholm, Norma Lee MacLeod, John Ledwell, Paul Livingston, Robert Webster, Barry Sheen, Kathy Ward Doucette, Steven Barber, Tim Banks, Louise Vessey, David Garcelon, Basil Stewart, Jeff Poirier, Eva O’Hanley, Jamie Hill, Sonya Corrigan, Alan MacLeod, Steven Collicutt, John Avery, Brent Blackmore, Alanna Jankov, and Kevin O’Brien as Holland College Distinguished Alumni.  A display celebrating all alumni who have been honoured with the award is located at the college’s Prince of Wales Campus in Charlottetown.

Holland College president Dr. Brian McMillan said that alumni are part of the ongoing Holland College success story.

“The impact that our graduates have had is tremendous. Our alumni are leading and contributing in just about every sector imaginable.  They bring immense pride to all of us here at Holland College.” - Dr. Brian McMillan, Holland College President

A reception and awards dinner will be held on Thursday, February 8, 2018 at the Tourism and Culinary Centre in Charlottetown. For more information or to purchase tickets, please contact the Holland College Office of Alumni Relations at (902) 566-9590 or alumni@hollandcollege.com. Find out how to nominate an alumnus of Holland College for a Distinguished Alumni Award by visiting Alumni & Friends at hollandcollege.com. Nominations are accepted year-round.

In this picture: (L-R) Melody Dover, John Sylvester, and Melanie Wildman (photo credit for Wildman image: Louise Vessey Photography)

For more information about this release, please contact:
Sara Underwood, Media and Communications Officer
Tel: 902-566-9695
Date: Wednesday, October 18, 2017