Port Hardy High School grad named to Island’s Top 20 under 40

Port Hardy High School grad named to Island’s Top 20 under 40

‘Kathryn is an incredibly hard-working and accomplished person’

A former student at Port Hardy High School and North Island College (NIC) has been selected as one of Vancouver Island’s top young business and community leaders.

Kathryn Jones, an NIC Bachelor of Business degree alumna, chartered accountant and NIC Foundation board treasurer, received a Top 20 Under 40 award April 8 at the sold-out 2017 Business and Community Achievement Awards in Nanaimo.

“I’m still in shock,” she said. “There are some amazing people across the Island doing incredible things. Just to be in the room with them was an honour. There aren’t a lot of opportunities in your career to be recognized for your professional and community work; this award is one of a kind.”

Jones has worked at Presley & Partners since graduating from NIC in 2011; receiving her chartered accountant designation in 2014. She has advocated for accessible post-secondary education through the NIC Foundation ever since.

“When I was a student, I received a scholarship from the foundation and I know what a great impact it had on my life,” she said. “To be able to help students achieve academic success, better themselves and their community through education is very important to me.”

She credits the NIC Foundation board for supporting her voice and abilities.

“Not every young person is allowed the opportunity to take on such a huge role at such an important organization. Everyone on the board and at the college has been supportive of my involvement. They recognize that as an alumni and a scholarship recipient I have a diverse voice and opinion.”

Bill Parkinson, Chair of NIC’s School of Business, says Jones’ focus, intelligence and generous personality served her well during her degree and her career.

“In my decade as an instructor, Kathryn is one of the best students I’ve ever shared a classroom with,” he said. “She continues to add great value to our program as a guest speaker, alumni and community member and it was my pleasure to nominate her for this award.”

Aside from her foundation role, Jones organizes charity spin-a-thon teams, mentors co-op students at her firm and as part of the Chamber of Commerce’s Global Leaders of Tomorrow Initiative and is active in the Comox Valley Young Professionals.

“Kathryn is an incredibly hard-working and accomplished person whose commitment to students and education extends well past graduation,” said Robert Buckley, NIC Foundation Board Chair. “This award is much deserved and the NIC Foundation Board is lucky to have her.”

The NIC Foundation has provided more than $1.95 million in scholarships and bursaries to 3,500 students across the NIC region in the past 25 years through generous donor support. The board is committed to raising awareness and funds to support local students through scholarships and bursaries, equip classrooms with current technology and ensure the best possible facilities are accessible to students across the region.

This is the second time in as many years the Business and Community Achievement Awards have recognized an NIC business alumna. In 2016, the awards recognized Jenny Deters, owner of Design Therapy Inc. (formerly Rattan Plus Home & Patio), for her work and commitment to the community. For a complete list of 2017 award winners, visit www.20under40.ca

For more information on NIC’s School of Business or the NIC Foundation, visit www.nic.bc.ca/business or www.foundation.nic.bc.ca.

— Gazette Staff/NIC news release