The Silver Star Rotary Club Police Volunteer of the Year Award was presented to Terry Pakenham at Winter Breakout during Vernon Winter Carnival.
The recipient of the award is chosen from nominations submitted by peers. One of the nominations for Pakenham read: “He has continually and unselfishly given of himself because he believed in people.”
Pakenham served 25 years as an RCMP officer, coming to Vernon in 1990. He retired in 1999 but continued to be active in the community, starting the Safe Communities Unit.
In 2009, he came back to the RCMP in the forensic identification section. Since 2011, Pakenham and his wife, Jean, have promoted the Jean Minguy Memorial Youth Academy, for young people who are interested in a career in law enforcement.
“He wants to see every student who wants to attend to have the opportunity to participate. He gives without expecting anything in return,” the nomination went on.
Inspector Reg Burgess said, “He has been a mentor and inspiration to people of all ages. I know he has been to me.”
Mayor Rob Sawatzky added, “It is the kind of work that Terry does that helps make our community the kind we all want to live in.”
Pakenham received a cheque for $500 to presented to the charity of his choice, which was North Okanagan Hospice Society.
“We believe in Vernon, and anything we can do to make it better place to live in, we’re going to do that,” he said.