Adoption Award Recipients



Every year, we recognize individuals and organizations for their significant contributions to the adoption and permanency community. These individuals and organizations are some of our biggest advocates. They help us make a difference in the lives of waiting children and youth, and for all adoptive families in British Columbia. This year, there are seven very deserving recipients of AFABC Adoption Awards.

The 2021 AFABC Adoption Award recipients were announced at our virtual Annual General Meeting on June 22, 2021.

Adoption Champion Award
This award is given to recognize the hard work and dedication of an individual volunteer or group of volunteers who have made an outstanding personal contribution to AFABC.

Cynthia Dyson

Cynthia has acted as a strategic advisor for the ED and Manager, Communications throughout the past year. Thanks to her support & guidance, we are ready to embark on choosing a new name and brand, and revamping our website.

Adoption in Action Award
This award recognizes a business or organization that acknowledges and promotes adoption in the workplace.

Starbucks, Canada

The Adoption in Action award recognizes a business or organization that acknowledges and promotes adoption in the workplace. This year the award goes to Starbucks Canada. Starbucks provides adoption-expense reimbursements of up to $10,000 per child for eligible employees.

Helen Mark Excellence in Adoption Award
This award recognizes an individual or organization's outstanding contribution to adoption and/or the well being and needs of adoptive families and their children. This award is reserved to recognize those whose passion for adoption and permanency is reflected in their life's work. 

Ashleigh Martinflatt

Ashleigh has been working with AFABC as a contract online facilitator for the last five years. She has a twenty-year career in the Child Welfare community and works to support families, children and youth in permanency planning, trauma-informed practice, counselling, and crisis intervention. She is an adoptive mom of two, holds an MSW, and is currently a doctoral candidate focused on Permanency Planning for Youth in Government Care at the University of Victoria. During her time as an online facilitator at AFABC, she has supported and been part of hundreds of participants' lives, taking their first tentative steps on the adoption journey as they work through the adoption courses and workshops. Her dedication and commitment to adoption and supporting permanency parents are unwavering and invaluable to the community. We consistently hear from AEP participants that Ashleigh made the difference in their knowledge about and commitment to adoption.

Past recipients


Adoption Champion Award:  Bob Armstrong 
Spirit Award - Corporate:  Goodwin & Mark LLP (Herman Cheung)
Spirit Award - Individual:  Brady & Liz Josephson
Special Recognition Award: Deloitte Canada LLP
Helen Mark Excellence in Adoption Award: Maria Bailey


Adoption Champion Award:  Renata Ward, Dale Mernett and Amy Pon
Spirit Award - Corporate:  Broadway Camera
Spirit Award - Individual:  Brian Anderson
Special Recognition Award: Elli Tonn
Helen Mark Excellence in Adoption Award: Karen Madeiros


Adoption Champion Award: Tara Hultin
Spirit Award - Corporate: Social Venture Partners Vancouver
Spirit Award - Individual: Sonja Weissenbacher
Helen Mark Excellence in Adoption Award: Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond
Helen Mark Excellence in Adoption Award: Brenda McCreight, Ph.D., RSW


Adoption Champion Award: Sandra Banks, Insight Support Services
Spirit Award - Individual: Treena & Kevin Innes
Spirit Award - Corporate: The Victoria Foundation
Special Recognition Award: Tracy Sherlock, Lori Culbert, The Vancouver Sun
Helen Mark Excellence in Adoption Award: Anne Clayton

Adoption in Action Award: Deloitte Canada
Adoption Champion Award: Deanna Jones; Drew Savage
Spirit Award - Individual: Peggy Howard
Spirit Award - Corporate: John Hardie Mitchell Family Foundation
Special Recognition Award: Pieta Woolley and The Tyee

Adoption in Action Award: Port Metro Vancouver & International Longshore and Warehouse Union, Local 517
AFABC Champion Award: John Aquing
Spirit Award - Individual: Ian Telfer & Nancy Burke
Spirit Award - Corporate: Accent Inns
Helen Mark Excellence in Adoption Award: Sandra Scarth

Adoption in Action Award: BC Assessment
AFABC Champion Award: Carrie & Gerald Hohnstein
Special Recognition Award: Catherine Pope
Special Recognition Award: Global TV BC

Adoption in Action Award: Certified General Accountants Association of Canada
AFABC Champion Award: Lyn Mogren
Spirit Award - Individual: Trisha Tyrell and Bret Gagnon
Spirit Award - Corporate: Raymond James and Ross Birney
Helen Mark Excellence in Adoption Award: Lalum'utl' Smuneem Child and Family Services

Know someone who supports adoption?

Nominate them for an Adoption Award!


Make a difference

Help us help kids by donating or becoming a corporate partner.