The Board of Rooftops Canada is very proud to announce that our Executive Director, Barry Pinsky, has been awarded the Meritorious Service Medal by the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada. The Meritorious Service Awards “recognize outstanding accomplishments that set an example for others to follow and bring benefit to our country.”
The award recognizes Barry’s role in Rooftops Canada and international development on behalf of the co-operative and social housing movements in Canada. Under his leadership, Rooftops Canada has mobilized over $40 million to support overseas housing, rights and economic development organizations in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. This has leveraged hundreds of millions of additional dollars in housing and development activity, primarily in Sub-Saharan Africa. As a result, tens of thousands of families in the global South have secure tenure, better homes and stronger communities.
“Barry had a vision that enabled our movement to help more people to achieve decent affordable housing,” says Nicholas Gazzard, CHF Canada’s executive director. “We are all proud and honoured to see Barry recognized.”
According to Barry, “While it is wonderful to be singled out, none of this would be possible without the engagement of many deeply committed Rooftops Canada staff, board members, advisors, young professionals and volunteers. The support of co-op and social housing organizations across Canada has been critical to our success. We have also enjoyed a long-standing and very productive relationship with the Government of Canada’s international assistance programs. I have also had the opportunity to work with so many amazing overseas partners. ”
“Mazingira Institute in Nairobi congratulates Barry on a well-deserved honour” says its executive director Davinder Lamba. “With Barry’s guidance, Rooftops Canada has always been responsive to issues coming from its African partners. We have appreciated working together for many years to secure housing and land rights in the region.”
Prior to working full-time for Rooftops Canada, Barry helped coordinate the development of many housing co-ops in Montreal, Peel-Halton Region and Toronto. He has received the CHRA International Award, the CMHC Award for Outstanding Contribution to Co-operative Housing, and he was named a “Wisdom Keeper” by the Habitat International Coalition (HIC). He has participated in many official Canadian delegations to UN Habitat events and presented at numerous workshops and conferences.