2020 GDTA Volunteer Recognition Awards

Each year we recognize the efforts of our volunteers who have gone above and beyond to help us achieve our objectives. This year has been an exceptional year for us on many fronts, and as a result we want to recognize the efforts of these 8 individuals whose hard work and dedication were a big part of our success in 2020: 

recognition award

Jim and Annette Schieck – In recognition of their important contributions to the 2020 GDTA Trail Building Trips. Jim and Annette participated in multiple trail building crews this past year. Whatever job they chose, latrine, water, fire pit etc. they did with great enthusiasm. Jim and Annette were very helpful to others and willing to go above and beyond. Jim’s work as a biologist enabled us to get a bird survey done so that work on Hail Ridge could be completed this summer. Both their knowledge of White Bark pine came in particularly handy on the heavily populated south slope so that we were able to keep our trail work from damaging any of this endangered species. 

Dave Higgins – In recognition of his leadership and important contributions to the 2020 GDTA Trail Building, Maintenance and Bridge Building Trips. Dave led multiple trail building, trail maintenance and bridge building trips this year. In fact, Dave built not one but two much needed temporary bridges over Cairnes Creek. Dave has been the main person responsible for the rebuild of the David Thompson Heritage Trail and is leading the charge to get a permanent bridge built over Cairnes Creek. 

Peter Labastide– In recognition of his leadership and important contributions to the 2020 GDTA Trail Building and Scouting Trips. Peter assisted multiple trail building trips this year. Peter was a major part of the organization of all crews and logistics. Peter took on the role of secretary of the Trail Building and Maintenance Committee (TBMC) very well and has been the lead for budgeting and procurement for the TBMC. He is always available for cleaning and organizing the tools and equipment. 

Jud Virtue – In recognition of his leadership and important contributions to the 2020 GDTA Trail Building Trips. Jud was a first time trip leader this year and co-led multiple trips. Without Jud’s volunteering to lead a last minute trip on Section E, we may not have been able to do enough to open the High Rock Trail this summer. 

Dan Durston – In recognition of his leadership and important contributions to Improve the Great Divide Trail and Support the GDT Hikers Community. Dan was a trip co-leader this year. He has been the driving force behind the improvements to notorious Section D resulting in a much more desirable hiking experience. Dan has been extremely helpful in planning and giving assistance to any and all aspiring thru hikers. He has made enormous contributions to the GDT community and continued improvements to the trail.  

Dave Hockey  – In recognition of your leadership and important contributions to 2020 GDTA Trail Building and Scouting Trips and Protecting and Advocating for the Great Divide Trail. Dave was the main person responsible for procuring some major grant money in a year that we thought all grant money was going to dry up. Dave was a leader on the TBMC and trip leader for multiple trips. Dave was the main person responsible for tools and supply storage and procurement for the TBMC. Dave’s incredible work was key to getting the High Rock Trail completed and opened this year despite exceptionally challenging circumstances. 

Kathy Plachta – In recognition of her dedication and important contributions to GDTA Membership, Financial Reporting, Outreach and so much more! Kathy has done a superb job in managing GDTA membership and keeping GDTA finances in order over the years. Kathy has served the GDTA faithfully behind the scenes for numerous years and has been integral in maintaining and strengthening the financial health of this organization. In her positions as Treasurer and Co-Treasurer, she was responsible for keeping the books, budgeting, providing financial updates to the Board, updating corporate returns, preparing year-end statements, and administering membership renewals and donations. All of this was done efficiently and to a high standard. Thanks to her work, the GDTA is in an enviable position of being in great financial shape to weather the “COVID-19 storm”. 

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