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Ray Hoemsen: 2011 ACCC Leadership Award

July 13, 2011


The Association of Canadian Community Colleges (ACCC) has named Ray Hoemsen, Red River College’s (RRC) Director of Applied Research & Commercialization as their prestigious Gold Leadership Excellence Award winner.
“Mr. Hoemsen was recognized for the exceptional work he has done in creating and leading sustained applied research, innovation, and commercialization programs in Manitoba,” said James Knight, ACCC President and CEO. “His leadership in this area has been a model for other colleges regionally and nationally.”
Every year, the ACCC recognizes an individual from a Canadian college that has made the greatest impact on his/her institution and, as a result, the communities it serves.
“We were proud to nominate Ray for this award and are delighted that he has won,” said Stephanie Forsyth, President of RRC.  “Ray is creative, dynamic, and has shown a sustained level of leadership excellence in his field and amongst his communities.”
Ray is credited with launching the College’s applied research enterprise in 2004.  Since then, he has been the driving force behind the creation of four applied research centres and a key factor to RRC winning several government and industry awards that amount to several million dollars in funding for the College.
“RRC continues to overachieve in the area of applied research with Ray leading the way,” said Ken Webb, VP, Academic and Research at RRC. “But the impacts he has made extend far beyond RRC and include leadership roles both nationally and internationally.”
Ray has been a leading advocate in driving the public policy change to recognize the strategic role played by Canadian colleges in Canada’s research and innovation agenda.
“Canadian colleges’ historical focus has been on providing technical education and training,” said Ron Britton, Professor and Associate Dean at the University of Manitoba. “Ray successfully made the case for applied research at the college level to create the program we see today at RRC, and at other Canadian colleges.”
Ray’s leadership contributions are indeed far reaching. He has led, or played a notable role in over 70 community organizations in post-secondary education, engineering and technology, policy leadership, national and local sports, and neighborhood clubs.
“It has been said, half in jest, that a committee that is working for the betterment of our community isn’t officially sanctioned unless Ray is a member,” said Britton.  I’ve known him since his undergraduate days, and even then, you could tell he had that something extra.”
Ray has historically led by example and shown humility.  He was no different in accepting this award.
“This is really a team award,” said Hoemsen. “I love what I do and am lucky to have been surrounded by people who can embrace change and make things happen. “