Bob Porteous is a quiet man, with a deep love for his community.
The Township of North Dundas presented him with the 2021 Community Builder Award recently, in recognition of his dedication and determination spanning more than five decades.
“I am so honoured to celebrate an individual I have known, and known of, for over 30 years,” said Mayor Tony Fraser at the award ceremony.
“We’re here today under this lovely pavilion protecting us from the rain, due in large part to the efforts of Bob Porteous. This award is presented annually to a person who has contributed greatly to improving the quality of life for the residents of North Dundas.”
Bob was nominated for the award by his fellow Winchester Lions Club member, Dwayne Holmes.
“He has done so much for this community,” explained Dwayne. “Bob has a way about him…he’s a quiet person, but he knows how to get things done.”
Bob was one of the founding members of the Winchester Lions, which started back in 1968. Bob was always willing to lend a hand, including coaching for the Hawk’s, and putting together the monthly bulletin for the Lions. Dwayne noted that Bob played a role in creating or improving many community staples, such as the arena, ball diamond, pool, hospital, library, and senior’s hall.
“Bob worked on getting the Trillium grant to build the former library, and he was involved with getting another grant to make the Senior’s Hall accessible,” he explained. “Bob also worked closely with Bill Smirle and the committee that spearheaded the revitalization of the Old Town Hall and Theatre. He’s been doing these things all his life, and I just thought it was time we recognized what he’s done for this community.”
Dwayne recited a poem he wrote about Bob and thanked Bob’s wife, Jean, for sharing her husband with the community for so many years.
During the ceremony, Bob was also presented with the Helen Keller Fellowship Award from the Lions. Guy Belliveau, fellow Lion, read from the plaque: ‘…through untiring service has given light in the darkness, warmth in the cold, compassion in the hurt, and humanity in the suffering.’
Bob says there are many community builders in North Dundas, and he’s honoured to be counted amongst them.
“Community is a group of people working towards something,” says Bob. “In your community, everyone contributes in some way.”