Continuing a Family Legacy of Giving
Sylvia Krikun likes to point out to her husband, Mickey, that she needed a higher average in the late 1960s to get into NAIT’s Medical X-ray Technology program than he did to get into the education program across the river. There was no question, however, which campus offered the best courting venue. “Even back then,” says Mickey, "NAIT’s food was delicious and you could get a great meal for three dollars—for both of us.”
Sylvia went to work at the Royal Alexandra Hospital when she graduated in 1968. Mickey graduated in 1970 and they were married in 1971. Rural Alberta beckoned, and the couple moved to Mayerthorpe, where they began to build their lives together. Mickey taught junior and senior high school math and science, and Sylvia worked in both the Mayerthorpe and Whitecourt hospitals.
Both got involved in their community. In the early 1980s, Mickey served on town council. Sylvia also got involved, first serving as a councillor and then as mayor for six years. Both could be counted on to play a role in the community’s seminal projects, including the Catholic Women’s League and Mayerthorpe in Bloom.
Sylvia served on the hospital board and is currently a member of five different boards and organizations, sings in a choir and does volunteer work in the community. Last year, she was named by the Alberta Weekly Newspaper Association (AWNA) as a finalist for Alberta Volunteer Citizen of the Year in Mayerthorpe. And she recently received the Minister’s Senior Service Award for her work with the Friends of the Lac Ste. Anne Foundation and other seniors’ facilities and programs in town.
She’s particularly proud of her involvement with a foundation she helped establish in 2000, which has been dedicated to serving the needs of residents in three seniors’ lodges in the county.
They come by that community-minded spirit honestly. “My parents always donated,” explains Sylvia. And Mickey says his parents instilled in him a real sense of giving back. “My mom and dad were so generous.” More recently, they’ve turned their attention to leaving a longer term legacy of generosity. Both have had siblings and nieces and nephews benefit from a strong NAIT educational experience. It’s really been the basis for both families’ gratifying and prosperous lives. So, it was natural that when they turned their attention to their wills, NAIT and several other organizations would be beneficiaries.
The Krikuns are among a growing number of donors who have planned to leave a legacy. Dr. Clarence Preitz, for example, a regular donor and volunteer, has decided to provide for NAIT in his estate. Sherril Cossey, a donor and staff member, has decided to remember her late husband, Patrick, who also worked at NAIT, by making a gift in his name.