Pemberton’s Mark Blundell has been honoured for his countless hours of community service with a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal.
The longtime resident said he found out earlier this month that he’d be receiving one of the commemorative medals, which are being presented to 60,000 Canadians this year to mark 60 years of Queen Elizabeth II on the throne.
“I was very honoured and humbled. I can tell you I never expected it,” Blundell said Tuesday (Nov. 28). “After reading a little more about what the award is all about, I was even more humbled and proud to receive it because it is quite an honour.”
The province announced Blundell as a recipient in a Monday (Nov. 26) release alongside three other Sea to Sky residents, including Whistler’s Sue Adams and Squamish’s Sheri Davis.
“These recipients exemplify both excellence and volunteerism at its best,” said local MLA Joan McIntyre in the release. “They serve as positive role models for all.”
According to the release, the medals are being awarded to individuals who “have made a significant contribution to a province, territory, region or community within Canada, or an achievement abroad that brings credit to Canada.”
Owner of the Pemberton Valley Supermarket, Blundell said the business has always tried to operate with a community-first approach.
“Right from Day 1 when we built the store, it was always our mandate to give back to the community,” he said. “Over the years, we’ve not only volunteered but supported a lot of organizations in the community, and we think it’s worth it.”
Beyond initiatives at the store, Blundell has been a key volunteer for many Pemberton organizations. He’s been president of the Pemberton Chamber of Commerce multiple times, is the current chair of the Pemberton and District Health Care Foundation, and has also served on boards of directors for the library, the Pemberton Lions Club and Pemberton Farmer’s Institute.
Blundell also spent three consecutive terms as a Pemberton councillor, last serving in 2008. He is the current alternate director for Squamish-Lillooet Regional District Area C.
Nominations were accepted for the awards, but Blundell said he’s unsure who put his name forward.
“I know it wasn’t my wife or kids,” he laughed. “They didn’t know about it, so it definitely wasn’t them.”
McIntyre presented the latest round of awards on Sunday (Nov. 25). However, Blundell was away attending the 100th Grey Cup in Toronto and could not make the presentation, so the MLA handed him the award during the Whistler Health Care Foundation’s Indulge gala on Nov. 17.