In 2013, Toronto Botanical Garden launched the annual Aster Awards to recognize and celebrate the significant contributions of individuals who educate and inspire us to connect with nature. Named for the Greek word for “star”, the Aster Awards speak directly to Toronto Botanical Garden’s mission to “connect people to plants, inspiring us to live in harmony with nature.”
In 2017, Toronto Botanical Garden is shifting its award emphasis to recognize Toronto’s “Environmentalist of the Year”. Nominations will be sought and an award recipient selected by a committee of peers from the environmental sector. Two “Rising Star” recipients will also be selected. In addition to the accolades and respect of their peers, Aster Award recipients will receive a financial award.
Generously supported by The Dalglish Family Foundation and the Jackman Foundation
2017 Toronto Environmentalist of the Year Award announced at Ravine Symposium
Minaz Asani Kanji didn’t know anything about saving the environment when she came to Canada as a student from Kenya 28 years ago. Today she helps new immigrants learn all about recycling, picking up litter and more.
Whether it’s putting people in touch with a Learn to Camp program run by Ontario Parks or helping teenagers living in high rise buildings explore the ravines near where they live, “teaching newcomers about environmental issues is so important,” says the TBG’s new Toronto Environmentalist of the Year. “I’m often told people don’t care but I’ve learned that they simply don’t know.” Read more…
Aster Awards 2016
Aster Awards 2015
Aster Awards 2014
Aster Awards 2013
2017 Aster Awards
- Minaz Asani Kanji, Park People
- Aiden Dahlin Nolan, David Suzuki Foundation
- Alan Colley, Toronto Aboriginal Eco Tours
2016 Aster Awards
- Sarah Harmer, Singer/songwriter and environmental activist
- David Harvey, Parks advocate, policy change-agent
- Eric Davies, Urban ecosystem researcher
2015 Aster Awards
- Dr. Roberta Bondar, astronaut, physician, scientific researcher, photographer, and author
- Geoff Cape, founder of Evergreen and CEO
- Arlene Throness, Coordinator of Rye’s Homegrown Rooftop Farm at Ryerson University.
2014 Aster AwardS
- Margaret Atwood, one of Canada’s most prominent and prolific contemporary writers.
- Dr. Paul Hebert, best known for leading the development of DNA-based identification systems.
- Kanaka Kulendran & Xuan-Yen Cao, garden and food educators from The Stop Community Food Centre
2013 Aster Awards
- Janet Rosenberg, a recognized figure in landscape architecture and urban design across Canada.
- Edward Burtynsky, known as one of Canada’s most respected photographers.
- Scott MacIvor, an ecologist with research interests in biodiversity and ecological trade offs in urban areas and in architectural and landscape design.