For information about how to nominate a Holland College alumnus for a distinguished alumni award, call (902) 566-9590 or email.
2015 Award Winner Bios
Culinary Arts 2001
Cory LeDrew graduated from The Culinary Institute of Canada, Culinary Arts program in 2001 and after completing the program, began his career at Fairmont Hotels & Resort.
He quickly moved his way up the culinary ladder from restaurant chef to banquet chef to executive sous chef. He was also the head chef of the prestigious Banffshire Club Restaurant, a 5-diamond restaurant at the Fairmont, Banff Springs.
In 2011, Cory received the Alberta Best Dish Award for the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, and in 2012, he was recognized as the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge’s Leader of the Year as well as the Company Leader of the Year. In 2013-2014, he held the position of assistant food and beverage director at the Fairmont Jasper Lodge until leaving the Fairmont to pursue his dream of operating his own hotel. Cory is currently the general manager of the Overlander Lodge.
Chef LeDrew’s work has been profiled in numerous newspaper and magazine articles, and blogs. In addition to receiving many professional awards, he has embarked on culinary adventures around the globe, including cooking for the Canadian Ambassador in Singapore, and the opening of O-Bar in Cairo’s downtown core, which has already become the number one venue in Cairo.
Cory has a clear strategic vision about how food can be a vehicle to enhance culinary pleasure and nutrition, increase environmental stewardship, and contribute to community building, all of which makes him a standout in the culinary world.
Holland College was a significant source of inspiration, confidence, and lifelong friends. While attending, everyone at the school became family.
Wayne Stewart graduated from Holland College’s plumbing program, obtained his Red Seal certification, and then moved to Calgary, Alberta. He continued to work in the plumbing business before becoming a co-owner of Blackcomb Plumbing & Heating in 1998.
He and his business partner purchased A. R. Wright Plumbing and Heating in 2006, the second oldest plumbing company in Calgary, established in 1919, and Wayne is currently the president of the company.
In 2006, Wayne was instrumental in starting a fundraising campaign to benefit the Children’s Wish Foundation in Prince Edward Island and Alberta. Together, with the support of the PEI Rumrunners Hockey Club, he established a golf tournament in which the members hoped to raise $5,000. Much to their surprise, they raised $40,000 and continued to exceed that amount each year. In ten years, they have raised $1 million.
Wayne is a champion and advocate for Holland College in Calgary as a proud alumnus. Through Wayne’s love of, and involvement with golf and hockey, both the provinces of Alberta and Prince Edward Island continue to benefit from his efforts.
The Plumbing program was the right choice, as I am still working in the trade. Holland College gave me the opportunity to be where I am today. It is a great honour that I have been chosen for this award.
Retail Management 1988
Kevin Proude is the owner and manager of Proude’s Shoes in Charlottetown. He has worked diligently to ensure that his company remains a preferred choice in the local and regional footwear industry.
Kevin joined his father, Wayne, full-time in 1988 after completing Holland College’s Retail Management program. He grew up learning the business from his parents and has continued to explore ways for the family business to grow and thrive while maintaining the Proude’s Shoes commitment to do their best to properly fit their customers with quality footwear. His achievements in this regard were celebrated in 2007 when Kevin and Wayne were recognized by the Atlantic Canada Shoe Traveller’s Association as Footwear Retailer of the Year for Atlantic Canada.
“Fitting comes before selling” was the model of business that Wayne instilled in Kevin over the years, and it continues to be the goal at Proude’s Shoes. Proper customer attention and satisfaction leads all of Kevin’s endeavours. Such a perspective is why Kevin makes it a point to visit local hospitals and elder care facilities to fit customers. He is aware that for some customers, travelling to the store is simply not an option. Kevin is always willing to take the store to the customer as one way of extending service.
It is not uncommon to see Kevin at a local car wash event or letting others know of a worthwhile charitable event. Kevin’s commitment to volunteerism was recently recognized as he was the recipient of the PEI Roadrunners Association’s 2015 Volunteer of the Year Award.
Many of the skills I learned during my time in the Retail Management program at Holland College are ones that I still use in the day-to-day operation of my business. It has been both interesting and encouraging to see how the college has grown and expanded, not only on Prince Edward Island, but abroad. I am honoured to be named a recipient of the Holland College Distinguished Alumni Award.