Foundation honours two local female leaders with prestigious award

Nov. 06, 2018

Within our community are individuals that give back through extensive and inspiring volunteer work and leadership. This year, London Community Foundation is humbled to announce that nominees Karen Auzins and Judith Rodger both were honoured with the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers because of their outstanding dedication to our community. The Sovereign’s Medal recognizes the exceptional volunteer achievements of Canadians and celebrates a wide range of voluntary contributions. As an official honour created by the Crown, the Sovereign’s Medal is part of the Canadian Honours System.

Dr. Cec Rorabeck, member of the Order of Canada, who is a dedicated and compassionate orthopaedic surgeon, professor (Emeritus) and health care leader, had the honour of presenting these awards on behalf of Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette.

We sincerely congratulate Karen Auzins and Judith Rodger for receiving this special honour!

Karen Auzins

A strong love for nature, a steadfast commitment to the health and integrity of the local environment, and an inspiring view that educating others can bring about positive change, Karen harnesses all of this to speak up and take a stand for many environmental causes, including:

  • Working with Nature London to preserve the habitat of Chimney Swifts;

  • Saving sensitive plant communities at Westminster Ponds / Pond Mills Environmentally Significant Area; and

  • Saving Spiny Softshell Turtles through her work with the Upper Thames River Conservation Authority (UTRCA)

“Karen is a tireless worker, whose dedication never flags in the pursuit of whatever causes she undertakes. She excels as an initiator, but is also a collaborator. Her optimism and ability to devise win-win initiatives, enlist partners, create positive experiences and engage the community have drawn many into the environmental camp.” - Winifred Wake

Judith Rodger

Judith truly is cultural leader, having spent decades making London a more vibrant city for all.  As an adjunct professor in the Department of Visual Arts at Western University, she is able to combine her passions of art and education, melding them together to inspire vibrancy in our community.

A wonderful friend to LCF, Judith has given her time many times over, including in leadership capacities like board chair, board member, and additional subcommittees. Judith, true to her passion, has also been a tireless volunteer with Museum London, the McIntosh Gallery and countless other local organizations.

“Judith Rodger is a woman of fiery intelligence and energy.  She has the rare ability to keep the larger community picture in view, even as she works with and supports individuals and specific projects. Everyone who works with Judith cannot help but respond to her clarity of thought, positive outlook, and creative initiatives and solutions.” - Dr. Madeline Lennon