The Harold A.D. Roberts Circle Award is presented annually in recognition of substantial contributions made or special service provided by members of the UCC Association, either through short-term involvement or long-term commitment.
It’s named in honour of a man who graduated from the College in 1915 but continued to serve it for more than eight decades. Just as Roberts (who was known by many as “Mr. UCC”) went above and beyond the call of duty, so have this year’s inductees into the circle with their efforts to improve the UCC Association and the College.
This year’s four honourees received their award at UCC’s volunteer reception on May 16.
Lisa Assaf is the mother of Mohamad Assaf ’17 and Zain Assaf, who is in Year 9. She’s co-chaired the Blues Booster Club (BBC) with fellow 2018 Harold A.D. Roberts Circle Award recipient Carita Sheehy for the past two years. Assaf was also BBC vice-chair for a year and a BBC team parent coordinator and parent representative before that. She was a Prep class rep and a Year 12 rep who organized graduation wear. Assaf has also served on the Association Day, Winterfest, Varsity Day, Believe in Blue and UCC Syrian refugee committees. She’s the current communications chair for the Parents’ Organization (PO).
“It is this incredible dedication and selfless voluntary service — giving back to the community in so many positive and inclusive ways, as well as being generous, enthusiastic, resourceful and committed — that they both highly deserve to receive the Harold A.D. Roberts Circle Award,” says parent Jody Howe of Assaf and Sheehy.
Bob Dameron ’75
Bob Dameron had a large contingent of people who nominated him for the award on the strength of his contributions as a class president. Primarily because of his initiative and energy, the class of ’75 has established a mental health and wellness fund that will soon top $50,000. The fund has sponsored professional development for faculty and staff members in the area of identifying young people in crisis, and this year it underwrote a student-led conference on mental health issues. Dameron is now getting his class geared up to provide significant financial backing to UCC’s new strategic directions.
“It is quite heartwarming to see how one Old Boy can galvanize his class towards supporting such an important contemporary issue,” says Rodger Wright ’75 of Dameron’s efforts on behalf of mental health.
Jody Howe’s son Jason is in Year 11 and she’s been an active volunteer at UCC for more than 10 years. She was vice-chair and chair of the Prep Parents’ Organization (PPO) and went on to head the PO after that. Howe was on the Association Council and has volunteered her services for Association Day, Festive Marketplace, Grandparents Day and the BBC over the years.
“Her commitment to UCC is reflected in the various roles she has taken on with enthusiasm and dedication,” says Piera Morra, a 2013 Harold A.D. Roberts Circle Award recipient. “Jody listens, thinks and then acts — all positive attributes when one oversees large groups such as the PO and PPO.”
Carita Sheehy is the mother of Cameron ’17, Matthew ’20 and Ryan ’15. In addition to her many contributions to the BBC, she’s taken on 20 different responsibilities over the years — including spearheading “New to Blue” parent handbooks for incoming families. Her other responsibilities have included serving: as TUBS chair; on the PPO and PO; with the fine wine auction committee for the Believe in Blue gala; as a class and house rep; on the Mother’s Day project; on the Association Day, Winterfest and Varsity Day committees; and doing communications for Festive Marketplace.
“They have shown initiative, drive, passion, leadership and dedication beyond words with everything,” Howe says of Sheehy and Assaf.