My son looks up to a man who is caring, compassionate, devoted, modest, steadfast, insightful, funny and giving, wrote Tamara in her support of Andy Beesleys nomination for 2013 Citizen of the Year.
Tamara is the mother of one of the four boys Andy Beesley has taken under his wing during his 31 years of involvement with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada. Andys efforts have earned him the Big Brothers Lifetime Membership Award. Andy was such an inspirational mentor to one of his little brothers, Chris, who is now 37 years old, that Chris named his son after Andy. He has helped Big Brothers behind the scenes, including two terms as local president, and he has worked tirelessly to raise awareness and attract volunteers, including seven pole sitting campaigns where he camped out on a small scissor lift 40 feet in the air at the intersection of Fifth Avenue and Highway 97 for as long as four days and three nights.
Since arriving in Prince George in 1980, Andys community involvement has been extensive. He has worked with the Prince George Crisis Intervention Centre, including five years as a volunteer crisis counsellor and he helped create the Prince George Teen Crisis Line. Andy has managed the Cariboo Cougars major midget team for six years and has also managed several B.C. Hockey Best Ever teams. He was the volunteer chair of the U-16 B.C. Provincial Hockey Championship in Prince George and trained hundreds of coaches in B.C. Hockeys Speak Out program to help prevent child abuse and bullying. Andy played an instrumental role in the formation of the Drug Abuse Resistance Education program (DARE) in Prince George, a model now used across the country. Andy volunteered to sit on tribunals to mediate disputes between social assistance recipients and social service staff and has since trained more than 100 volunteers to do the same work. He has also served on the City of Prince Georges social grants committee, the ethics committee at Prince George Regional Hospital and was a member of the team that led to Prince Georges winning bid for the 2015 Canada Winter Games.
Andys work with the Prince George entertainment community is legendary. He has performed in the lead roles of numerous amateur musical theatre productions, most recently this summer as Jean Valjean in Les Miserables. His diverse experience has also made Andy a popular workshop trainer and coach.
Hes a mentor, a guide and an inspiration to many in Prince George, and now Andy Beesley is a great nominee for 2013 Citizen of the Year.