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, MLA Burrows
July 4, 2013

Principal George Heshka

It's my pleasure to rise in the House today to recognize an outstanding individual in our community. George Heshka has been the principal of Sisler High School since 1980.

In those 33 years, Sisler has transformed into an innovative institution with award-winning programs in career exploration, youth entrepreneurship, women in trades, robotics and self-directed learning.

Under his guidance, Sisler became one of 63 schools recognized by Microsoft as a Pathfinder School in 2011. Sisler is ranked one of Canada's 10 best schools and the best all-around high school by Maclean's magazine.

Known as Manitoba's largest school with nearly 1,900 students, Sisler is also cited as one of Canada's most multicultural schools; 43 per cent of its students were born outside of Canada representing nearly 25 countries.

As one can imagine, being responsible for such a dynamic and diverse group of students is no easy task, but George Heshka has demonstrated extraordinary leadership and dedication in ensuring that each and every one of his students receives a first-class education.

George Heshka is known as a visionary leader in the heart of Winnipeg's North End. Last year, George received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal. This year, the University of Winnipeg awarded George an honorary doctor of letters for his dedication and commitment to his students and his community.

It was my honour and pleasure to nominate George for the Order of Manitoba. And, Mr. Speaker, it is the pride of Sisler High School and our city that George Heshka will be officially invested into the Order of Manitoba on July 15th.

George's influence on his students is immeasurable even after they leave high school. Thousands of young people are Sisler graduates, and without George Heshka they would not have achieved the measure of success that they have.

Thanks to him, Sisler stands as a defiant champion, providing quality education to the next generation of leaders.

There is no question that George is an inspiration to us for all his brilliance, passion for excellence and a love and respect for his students that has transcended generations.

Mr. Speaker, I ask the members of the House today to join me in recognizing, celebrating and congratulating Principal George Heshka on a lifetime of achievements.