The 2020 Excellence Awards Jury was made up of renowned individuals from the business community and charities.

The Chairperson of the jury is Mr. Andrew Molson, Chairman of the Board, Avenir Global and AFP Outstanding Philanthropist Award (2019) with his family.

The other members who participated in the deliberations are:

  • Myer Bick, President Emeritus, Jewish General Hospital Foundation and AFP Award for Outstanding Career in Philanthropy (2017)
  • Sandra Chartrand, president, Sandra Chartrand et Alain Bouchard Foundation and AFP Award for Outstanding Philanthropist (2015)
  • Marie-Andrée Farmer, Project Manager – Major Community Projects, Foundation of Greater Montréal 
  • Geneviève Paquette, Vice President, Community Engagement and Foundation General Manager, Club de hockey Canadien, Inc. 
  • Lucie Rémillard, President, LR Strategie and AFP Award for Outstanding Career in Philanthropy (2016)
  • Catherine Rowe, CFRE, Consultant Strategic initiatives, Fondation CHU Sainte-Justine and AFP Award  for Outstanding Career in Philanthropy (2018)
  • Stéphanie Roy, Senior Advisor, Community Relations at Saputo and AFP Award for Outstanding Corporation (2018)
  • Fabrice Vil, Co-Founder and President, Pour 3 Points and AFP Award for Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy (2015)
  • Jonathan Wener, Chairman & CEO, Canderel, AFP Award for Outstanding Corporation (2016)

2020 Recipients 

Award for Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy, under 18 years old
Mateo Corrales, Je bouge pour Sainte-Justine challenge and Grand sapin jeunesse de Sainte-Justine ambassador

A graduate of Collège Durocher Saint-Lambert, Mateo is an outstanding philanthropist who has been involved with the Fondation CHU Sainte-Justine for over a year now. Suffering a 25 000-volt shock that led to extensive burns, his resilience, friends and family and Sainte-Justine made it possible for him to resume a normal life.

Unable to participate in the Défi-Jeunesse Sainte-Justine at his school last spring, Mateo was determined to take part in a sports challenge to support the hospital that took care of him. In the midst of the pandemic, and with boundless enthusiasm, Mateo participated last June in the Je bouge pour Sainte-Justine as the ambassador.

He and his family achieved the colossal objective of raising $30,000 for the emergency fund of the Fondation CHU Sainte-Justine, through their online fundraising initiative. This was the largest sum raised among the participating teams and is close to one-third of the total raised as part of this new fundraising initiative carried out right in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis.

Award for Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy, 18 to 35 years old
Justin Lessard Wajcer, Volunteer, Jewish General Hospital Foundation

A student, researcher and entrepreneur, 23-year-old Justin Lessard Wajcer is completing a doctorate in neuroscience and has been involved since 2018 with Mindstrong, a fundraising initiative to invest in improving services and infrastructure in psychiatry at the Montreal Jewish General Hospital. Through his efforts, he has become one of the most successful fundraisers. In 2019, he was appointed co-chair of Mindstrong, the youngest in the history of the Jewish General Hospital. He raised more than $2.6 million, doubling the total raised the previous year.

In 2020, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Mindstrong reinvented itself in virtual format and the committee raised an astounding $1.6 million, once again under Justin’s co-chairmanship. And with this, Mindstrong became the top fundraiser for mental health in North America, having raised more than $8 million in just 6 years.

Award for Outstanding Corporation, Fewer than 250 employees

Jonathan Hamel wanted to create a more enjoyable and motivating fitness formula. In March 2013, he founded the Centre d’entraînement et kinésiologie HAMFIT in Brossard.

Four years later, Jonathan was moved by the cause of paediatric cancer. He felt that the words “cancer” and “child” should never be uttered in the same breath. Since 2017, he has mobilized his team and his community around a dozen events each year, donating 100% of the proceeds to the Fondation Charles-Bruneau. To date, the HAMFIT community has raised over $350,000 for sick children.

Despite the isolation measures due to COVID-19, the HAMFIT team continued to keep people active by providing daily virtual training sessions, for 84 days, free of charge. HAMFIT also pursued its mission to take action to support children with cancer by organizing three virtual events for the Fondation Charles-Bruneau, and raising $25,000 during this difficult period.

Award for Outstanding Corporation, 250 or more employees
Mouvement Desjardins

Desjardins has always been involved in the community, particularly with young people, by supporting them in their education and various projects. The organization ranks 1st among the most generous businesses in Quebec.

  • In 2019, it invested $87 M in the community through donations, sponsorships, philanthropic partnerships and scholarships.
  • In 2019, Desjardins launched the program Tous engagés pour la jeunesse with a $50-M commitment a year to support youth.
  • Through its Fonds du Grand Mouvement, launched in 2016, Desjardins will have donated $250 M by 2024 to fund projects that support community priorities, particularly with respect to youth, sustainable development and entrepreneurship.
  • In 2019, the Desjardins Foundation donated $3 M to foster young people’s academic success, which supported some 220,000 youth.

The Mouvement Desjardins and Desjardins Foundation have partnerships at the local, regional, national and international levels. Their actions are concrete and generate enthusiasm throughout the community. More than a banking institution, Desjardins is present for non-profit organizations, thousands of which are Desjardins members. Mouvement Desjardins provides financial support to many of these organizations in order to respond to their needs and those of the communities they serve. Volunteer involvement is also an important aspect in mobilizing Desjardins’ employees. Through various programs, they contribute to concrete actions in communities, making Desjardins a major philanthropic leader. The organization is ranked among the world’s 100 best employers, according to Forbes.

Award for Outstanding Philanthropist
Chagnon Family


Award for Outstanding Volunteer
Claude Leblanc, Vice-Chair of the Board, Les Petits Frères

The current Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors and a member of the Audit Committee, Claude LeBlanc has been involved with Little Brothers since 2013. In 2015, Claude contributed to the creation of the Fundraising and Communications Committee of Little Brothers and chaired this committee until 2019.

Under Claude’s chairmanship of the Fundraising and Communications Committee, Little Brothers professionalized their philanthropic activities. Claude’s volunteer work has had a major impact on the capacity of Little Brothers to counter the isolation of seniors because his involvement is directly linked to the organization’s financial capacity to realize its mission.

Last March, without hesitation, Claude renewed his commitment to the Fundraising and Communications Committee and put his fundraiser’s cap back on to mobilize his personal and professional network. Claude also worked the phones to make sure every individual major donor was called and made aware of the urgency of giving during this difficult period. And the results were dazzling! Thanks to his devotion and his deep belief in the cause, Claude brought in the two largest donations in the history of Little Brothers!

Award for Outstanding Career in Philanthropy
Shirlane Day, Executive Director, Institut Pacipique

Shirlane Day has the energy of a builder. For 25 years she pursued a brilliant career path that combined philanthropy and advancement. From 1995 to 2000, she was the Executive Director of United Way Outaouais. Her expertise and accomplishments propelled her to the position of Vice-President Quebec of United Way of Canada, where she provided exemplary and influential leadership for eight years and carried out her various mandates with great finesse.

Following a mandate with the Dr. Julien Foundation she joined the ranks of the Institut Pacifique as Executive Director in 2009. She introduced a culture of philanthropy there by organizing their first ever fundraising campaign, which enabled, among other things, a complete renovation of their building. Under her leadership, the Quebec government named the organization a partner emeritus in the fight against bullying and it received the Lieutenant Governor’s Medal as well as official recognition from the Prime Minister of Canada.

With training in professional coaching and a graduate degree in social sciences and management, Shirlane Day brought guidance and innovation to every position she occupied over her rich career in philanthropy and the management of non-profit organizations.

Award for Jury’s Special Choice
Chantal Carrier, Volunteer

Chantal’s volunteer involvement takes many different forms. This year, in the context of the pandemic, she joined another important cause: helping the many, many seniors affected by COVID-19. She wanted to volunteer in a CHSLD, but was unable to due to union rules. So she got a job as a full-time care support assistant for one month and then donated her wages and more to this CHSLD so that it could install air conditioning units, among other things.

The pandemic and her work in the CHSLD did not take her away from supporting the two causes she holds dear to her heart: West Island Community Shares and 60 Million Girls.

Chantal started volunteering for the Fund Distribution Committee of West Island Community Shares in 2006, and is now its Chair. She has also sat on the organization’s Board of Directors since 2010 and the Executive Committee, as well as the finance and HR sub-committees. In addition, Chantal is a member of the Board of Directors and Executive Committee of the organization 60 Million Girls. She is actively involved in their operations, organizing fundraising events and recruiting new donors.

**NEW** Award for Outstanding Innovative Manager
Gabrielle Blackburn, Executive Director, Jeunesses Musicales Canada Foundation

A few weeks after the beginning of the lockdown, the Executive Director of the Jeunesses Musicales Canada Foundation, Gabrielle Blackburn, worked passionately and relentlessly to set up, in record time, a major project to provide direct assistance to young musicians at the beginning of their career, and facing serious financial precariousness. With her strong leadership, knowledge of project management, active network and immense and enthusiastic sense of solidarity with young artists, more than $128,000 was distributed among 74 young Canadians thanks to this project.

Gabrielle took the reins of a brand new and promising project and was able to dynamically bring together young Canadian artists, many local, national and international donors as well as the Foundation’s Board of Directors and every member of its small administrative team. 

The 2020 celebrations of National Philanthropy Day took place over several days:

  • Thursday November 12: Presentation on our social networks of a video that will highlight the successes of philanthropic organizations during the pandemic.
  • Friday November 13 at noon: Panel – Pursuing our missions together – the impact of COVID-19
  • Monday November 16 at 10 a.m. : Conference The Gendron family and the AGF Group: How to help develop a philanthropic culture, create links between employees and partners and give back to communities.
  • Monday November 16 at noon : 2020 Excellence Awards Ceremony
  • Monday  November 16 1 p.m. : Networking event: KCI tea room

To keep up with JNP activities, follow the hashtags:


Panel – Pursuing our missions together – the impact of COVID-19

For many organizations, during the lockdown, solidarity has been revived among their donors and volunteers. A great chain of love and a touching mobilization have been built. But many questions remain:

  • What real impacts has COVID-19 on organizations in different sectors?
  • What are the repercussions and how to bounce back?
  • What are the lessons to be learned from this situation?
  • Are we right to say that there is strength in unity?

Join us for a discussion moderated by a panel of different sectors of the philanthropic community who will attempt to answer these questions: Éricka Alnéus, Pour 3 Points (moderator and participant ), Charles-Éric Lavery, L’Itinéraire  Marina Boulos, Chez Doris Heather Johnston, Projet Autochtone du Québec, Jacinthe Roy, Little Brothers, Benoit Robillard, Douglas Foundation.

To register for the panel


Friday November 13, 2020 at 12 p.m. 


Zoom Videoconference


AFP member: $25 plus tax per person
Non-member: $35 plus tax per person

Session offered in French, Q&A in French and English.

2020 Excellence Awards Ceremony

On November 16 at 12 p.m., the Excellence Awards Ceremony will take place. Join us in honoring and celebrating this year’s recipients, individuals and corporate citizens who help shape the philanthropic landscape here.


The ceremony will be hosted by 

Jasmin Roy
Fondation Jasmin Roy Sophie Desmarais
Instigator member of the Donnant-Donnant movement

Jasmin Roy Biography




Register to the webcast Ceremony



Monday November 16, 2020 at 12 p.m.


In Webcast



Conference – The Gendron family and the AGF Group: How to help develop a philanthropic culture, create links between employees and partners and give back to communities.

Register to the Conference in webcast



November 16, 2020 at 10:00 a.m.


In Webcast


AFP member: $25 plus tax per person
Non-member: $35 plus tax per person


Press Release