Jim Nicol receives Knights of Pythias award through CFKR

The award recognizes an ‘unsung hero’ in the community

Pictured left to right: Lisa Barnes (CFKR Vice-Chair) and CCFS board member and volunteer Jim Nicol. Nicol is the recipient of the Knights of Pythias award through the CFKR. (CFKR file)

Pictured left to right: Lisa Barnes (CFKR Vice-Chair) and CCFS board member and volunteer Jim Nicol. Nicol is the recipient of the Knights of Pythias award through the CFKR. (CFKR file)

Cranbrook’s Jim Nicol is the recipient of the 2021 Knights of Pythias Community Volunteer Award, given by The Community Foundation of the Kootenay Rockies (CFKR).

The award was given to Nicol in recognition of his leadership, dedication, and many volunteer contributions to the Cranbrook Community Forest Society (CCFS), CKFR explained in a release.

The Knights of Pythias award recognizes an ‘unsung hero’ in the community who contributes in a quiet, dedicated and selfless manor.

“This well-deserved award celebrates Jim’s many contributions as a Cranbrook Community Forest Society (CCFS) board member,” CFKR said. “As a member of the Trails Subcommittee, Jim works with multiple stakeholders such as the City of Cranbrook, RDEK, Wildhorse Cycling Club, and Orienteering Club, to plan and develop trails within the CCF.”

Nicol not only develops plans, but seeks out and applies for grants and funding, organizes the work through paid labour and volunteers, and builds trails himself, CFKR adds.

Nicol has lead the charge on several new and popular trails including Espresso, Double Shot, More Poultry, and Coffee Grinder in the south forest.

He was also instrumental in the development of two new green adaptive trails, Padawan and Pod Racer, on the Eager Hill side of the forest.

“Jim and his team are responsible for creating and maintaining the virtual and manual maps of the forest, as well as developing the Trails Maintenance Pilot for the 2021 season, funded by FortisBC,” CFKR explained. “In addition, Jim was the workhorse behind CCFS’ successful application to become a CRA-registered charity.”

Lisa Barnes, CKFR vice-chair, nominated Nicol for the award. Barnes says that the award was the perfect opportunity to recognize Nicol’s work, especially since so many locals and visitors seek out refuge and relaxation in the forest he has helped to develop.

Nicol says he is humbled to receive the award. He pointed to the many others who have helped develop the forest into what it is today.

“I am humbled to receive this award, especially when I am just one of many cogs in the wheel, and there are so many others continually giving of their time and energy to help make this city and the Community Forest a better place for residents and visitors,” Nicol said. “Thank you, it is appreciated.”

Part of the award includes a $500 charitable contribution. Nicol has chosen to designate that funding to the CCFS.

CFKR adds that community members who would like to join in the celebration of Jim’s award are invited to become members of CCFS and/or make a charitable donation via this link: https://www.cranbrookcommunityforest.com/get-involved.