Skills Canada NWT

Dominion Diamond Blue Collar Gala

November 4th // 2017

HGTV host and celebrity journeyperson carpenter Bryan Baeumler was in Yellowknife this past weekend to help kick off National Skilled Trades and Technology Week on Saturday November 4th at Skills Canada NWT’s 1st Annual Dominion Diamond Blue Collar Gala. Businesses, trades professionals, apprentices, and community members came together Saturday evening to celebrate trades and technology. “We not only wanted to celebrate trades and technology, but we also wanted to showcase some of the great things that we are doing at Skills Canada NWT.” said Skills Canada NWT Executive Director, Ali Kincaid. The Dominion Diamond Blue Collar Gala also served as a fundraiser for Skills Canada NWT, which is a registered charity with a mission to promote careers in skilled trades and technology to northern youth.

The evening began as Krystal Pidborochynski introduced herself (Vice President, Skills Canada NWT) as the Master of Ceremonies, followed by Elliot Holland (Vice President – Projects, Dominion Diamond Corporation) who welcomed almost 300 guests. Ali Kincaid (Executive Director, Skills Canada NWT) then shared some information about Skills Canada NWT programs and events, and for the first time, Skills Canada NWT awarded scholarships to three outstanding students/apprentices from the NWT, who are all pursuing an education and a career in skilled trades or technology. (Scholarship recipients are listed below.) “In addition to celebrating National Skilled Trades and Technology Week, we also wanted to recognize and reward the achievements of some of our incredible local apprentices and post-secondary students.” said Kincaid.

Following the award of the Skills Canada NWT scholarships, Minister Alfred Moses (Minister of the Department of Education, Culture and Employment, Government of NWT) awarded the Regional Apprenticeship Awards to 16 individuals who were among the top performing apprentices from the NWT.

Joining us as our keynote speaker at the Gala was Bryan Baeumler – owner of Baeumler Quality Construction and Baeumler Productions, Journeyperson Contractor, and HGTV host. Baeumler shared his own story and journey into the trades with the audience, and discussed why his choice to become a carpenter was the best decision he could have made.

“We are so lucky to have so many generous businesses in our community who see the value in what we are trying to achieve.”

Thanks to the generous donations from dozens of local businesses, Skills Canada NWT was able to raise over $25,000 at this inaugural event. “We are so lucky to have so many generous businesses in our community who see the value in what we are trying to achieve.” said Skills Canada NWT Executive Director, Ali Kincaid. “Our goal is to close the skill gap in the Northwest Territories. We are doing this is by providing opportunities to young people to explore careers in skilled trades and technology. We are also simultaneously working to change the perception of these careers.” said Kincaid.

The Dominion Diamond Blue Collar Gala was not only a successful fundraiser for Skills Canada NWT – but also a chance for Yellowknifers to learn more about Skills Canada NWT programs and events. “Bryan Baeumler was the perfect keynote speaker to help us communicate that skilled trades and technology professionals are not only essential to our day to day lives, but they are also some of our most successful business leaders.” said Skills Canada NWT President and Red Seal Chef, Travis Stewart.

Skills Canada NWT would like to thank Dominion Diamond Corporation for making the event possible, as well as all of the incredible sponsors and auction donors who helped make the 1st Annual Dominion Diamond Blue Collar Gala such an incredible success.

Promoting skilled trades and technology to Northern youth.