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2011 Distinguished Alumni Award Winners


For information about how to nominate a Holland College alumnus for a distinguished alumni award, call (902) 566-9590 or email.

Louise Vessey – Photography

Louise’s interest and love of photography was sparked in 1989 when she and her new husband were getting ready for their honeymoon. Her Dad, an avid amateur photographer, let her borrow his camera bag full of 35mm SLR equipment to use. At the time, Louise was working in a factory job and knew she wanted to pursue something more so she applied to the Photography program at Holland College.Louise graduated from the program in 1992 and was the first student to receive the Stephen Duncan Award of Merit in both her first and second years. That same year, she opened Light and Vision Photography, located in Charlottetown.

The years following graduation were busy ones as she was raising a young family as well as building her business. In 2000, she joined the Maritime Professional Photographer’s Association, now known as PPOC Atlantic or Professional Photographers of Canada Atlantic.

Over the past 12 years she has had images chosen for the prestigious traveling National Loan Collection as well as receiving numerous awards of merit and excellence for her submissions into annual image competitions within the professional association.

Some of her accomplishments include becoming nationally accredited in the category of Environmental Wedding in 2007. That same year she received the highly coveted PPOC Atlantic Portrait Photographer of the Year. In 2009 she was awarded her CPA, Craftsman of Photographic Arts designation within the PPOC. 2008 brought another national accreditation in the category of Child Portrait and the prestigious Paul Harris Fellowship Award from the Rotary Club of Charlottetown Royalty. In 2009, she was awarded her MPA, Master of Photographic Arts designation within the PPOC, and in 2012 Louise achieved the PPOC Atlantic Fellowship designation.

She is currently a member of The Tiny Light Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides professional photography for children and families faced with a life-altering diagnosis. Louise also donates images and time to numerous charities including the Heart and Stroke Foundation and Stars for Life. She currently holds the role of PPOC Atlantic President and has been on the Executive in various positions for over five years.

Louise operates her business Light and Photography in Charlottetown from her home with her supportive husband Blair and their two teenage children. Her work has been published in numerous newspapers, magazines, and books. She continues to produce images and services to commercial, wedding, and portrait clients. This past March she celebrated twenty years in business!

Tim Banks


Tim Banks left school at age 16 to run his father’s garage where he quickly learned the value of a good work ethic. He was able to return to school when he started a part-time job at a construction site and eventually enrolled and graduated from the Construction Technology program at Holland College. After graduation, he spent an additional two years with the same company, learning the industry. In 1980, Tim ventured out on his own, starting a new construction development business, Project Management Services.Tim is presently the CEO and principal shareholder of APM with offices in Charlottetown, Halifax, Toronto, and Calgary, employing approximately 200 people. He is also a director of a number of other companies involved in commercial real estate, retailing, and manufacturing, and is an active partner in a variety of property development projects throughout Atlantic Canada. Tim is a Certified Engineering Technologist with over 35 years of experience in all aspects of construction and property development. He is well known in the Island community, not only as a business leader, but also for his commitment to creating opportunities for future business growth as well as the promotion of our younger Atlantic talent pool.

Tim has been the lead negotiator on thousands of property deals and leases across Canada on behalf of a wide range of landlords and tenants. He is extensively familiar with regional leasing practices and property regulatory bodies. His network reaches across Canada, insuring that he can find the best client for the best property – with no exceptions.

APM is committed to the spirit of community and is a supporter of the Confederation Centre of the Arts, the IWK Hospital, the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, and the Prince County Hospital. Additionally, they sponsor the Holland College Hurricanes, several community bursaries, and several other initiatives.

Tim lives in Charlottetown with his wife Carrie and their two sons, Daniel and William.

David Garcelon – Culinary Arts


Chef David Garcelon took his first kitchen position at the age of 14 and soon recognized his love of food and culinary passion. Throughout his career, Chef Garcelon has consistently developed his culinary expertise to successfully lead some of the largest hotel kitchens in the world.Chef Garcelon, director of culinary at the Waldorf Astoria, is responsible for the entire kitchen operations of the landmark hotel. A 20-year veteran of executive chef positions around North America, he brings his love of food and passion for using the finest, locally sourced ingredients to the iconic hotel’s distinctive restaurants.

Chef Garcelon, who grew up in New Brunswick, is a graduate of Cornell University and The Culinary Institute of Canada, and is a Certified Food and Beverage Executive with the American Hotel & Motel Association and a Certified Executive Chef with the American Culinary Federation. His dedication to the culinary world even extends into his personal life as his wife shares his love of food and hospitality and is currently a culinary instructor.

Prior to joining The Waldorf Astoria, Chef Garcelon served as executive chef of the 1,364-room Fairmont Royal York Hotel in Toronto, where he led Canada’s largest hotel kitchen. As an advocate for local and sustainable food sourcing and purchasing, Chef Garcelon proudly oversaw the hotel’s rooftop herb garden, the only one of its kind in Toronto, as an extension of the hotel’s environmental program and in 2008 established a rooftop apiary. He has also served as executive chef for The Fairmont Southampton Bermuda; Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge, Jasper, Alberta; and CP Hotels’ The Lodge at Kananaskis, Kananaskis, Alberta.

Chef Garcelon has enjoyed numerous culinary awards and accolades, including Certified Chef de Cuisine Canada, Slow Food member, Certified Executive Chef USA, 2005 Chef of the Year Award, Bermuda Visitor Industry Partnership; Bronze Medallion of Excellence, Bermuda Baillage Chaine des Rotissuers; Dish of the Year, Chaine des Rotissuer, Alberta Nord; United States Meat Export Federation Menu Competition Winner; Bronze Medal National Team Hot Competition, Quebec City; Canadian Champion’s and Gold Medal Winner, Canadian Provincial Team Hot Competition; Achieved 1st AAA Five-Diamond Award for The Newport Room Restaurant, Fairmont Southampton; Achieved 1st AAA Four-Diamond Award for L’Escapade Restaurant, The Lodge at Kananaskis.

140 Weymouth Street  •  Charlottetown, PE  •  Canada  •  C1A 4Z1  •  info@hollandcollege.com  •  1-800-446-5265