Archived - Notes for the presentation of the Award of Excellence – Promotion of Linguistic Duality 2009-2010 at AFO's 100th Anniversary Gala
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Ottawa, October 23, 2010
Graham Fraser - Commissioner of Official Languages
Check against delivery
Beginning of dialog
Ladies and Gentlemen, Good day.
I am pleased to be here with you this evening for the 100th Anniversary Gala of your organization. I am also pleased to be presenting in person the Award of Excellence – Promotion of Linguistic Duality 2009-2010.
Created last year, this award recognizes an individual or organization in Canada that is not subject to the federal Official Languages Act but whose leadership has strengthened French of English in Canada or abroad or has contributed to the development of Canada’s official language minority communities.
This prize recognizes Ms. Claudette Paquin’s, a Franco-Ontarian by adoption, unwavering commitment to Francophone communities over the past 20 years of her career. Her contribution to the vitality and development of Francophone communities in Canada is outstanding.
Under her leadership, Toronto-based TFO, has extended the reach of its signal to New Brunswick, Quebec and Manitoba. This allows communities in these provinces to have access to the channel’s programming in their language.
Also, TFO has increased its offering of educational and cultural content through innovative programming such as FranCoeur, the first major French-language Canadian dramatic series produced outside Quebec.
It is also under Ms. Paquin's leadership that, in 2007, TFO became a standalone organization, fully independent from TVOntario, which led to the creation of the Ontario French-language Educational Communications Authority, also headed by Ms. Paquin.
In the words of Madeleine Meilleur, Minister Responsible for Francophone Affairs, this major change allowed TFO to “grow and live up to the aspirations of all Francophones in the province.”
These achievements have created rewarding opportunities in audiovisual production and new technologies, and they have enabled a large number of Canadian youth to benefit from TFO’s outstanding tools in the areas of French-language teaching and Francophone cultural promotion.
Ms. Paquin’s considerable efforts over the years are testament to her ongoing personal and professional dedication to Ontario’s – and Canada’s – Francophone communities. Her contribution reaches far beyond the world of teaching, culture, and broadcasting.
I am honoured to present this Award of Excellence – Promotion of Linguistic Duality 2009-2010 to Claudette Paquin.