Bill Draayer Award 1992

Given in recognition of outstanding personal contributions to the progress and development of the Alberta Weekly Newspapers Association.


Alan Willis

It is virtually impossible to think of AWNA without thinking also about Alan Willis. The two have become an integral part of each other through Alan's years of unselfish service to the community newspaper industry.

Those who live in his community will not be surprised to learn our industry is honouring Alan for the many roles he has played so well for us in the AWNA. In Stettler they too have been counting on his personal involvement for many years. Alan has been ‘getting it done' as a director of the association for more than 16 years — and he continues to serve AWNA as a director of the Canadian Community Newspaper Association.

His leadership as AWNA president brought us through the financial crisis of 1982 and left us on sound financial footing — and this while handling the always difficult change in senior management at central office.

Alan is a traditional newspaperman. He keeps his hand in every facet of the business. This attention to detail and his sense of history has stood the association well. It is often Alan who reminds us of those who deserve our recognition, a wonderful touch of irony in a year he has been singled out for this honour.

Most recently Alan carried out the responsibilities of 1992 CCNA Convention Chairman with the characteristic thoroughness we have all come to expect and appreciate.

Whether it is around the board table, in general meetings or simply over a beer in the hospitality suites, Alan has brought the voice of reason to our discussions. His honesty and integrity have made him a trusted friend to many. His experience and credibility have made his advice valued by all.

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