Hall of Innovators

The Hall of Innovators shines a light on the inspiring Yukoners who have built a brighter Yukon with their innovations. Join us to celebrate and recognize Yukoners who are improving and effecting positive change through innovation and transformation.

Nominations are open for the 2022 Hall of Innovators. Nominate an individual, business, or organization that inspires you.

Past Hall of Innovators Award Recipients

2021

ROLF HOUGEN

Lifetime Achievement Award

At 93 years old, this is Rolf Hougen’s fourth-lifetime achievement award honouring his decades of tireless commitment to the Yukon he calls home.

Ever since he started managing the Hougen family store at the age of 19, Rolf has always seen the investing potential of the Yukon. He grew the family store into a major department store that expanded into today’s Hougen Group of Companies, holding real estate and business ventures throughout Yukon.

Go here to read our profile of Rolf Hougen

GREG HAKONSON

Notable Innovators Award

An innovator and a builder at heart, Greg’s main goal is creating and growing a new economy for Dawson and he has the uncanny ability to bring a clear blueprint of what is needed to achieve it. His proven reputation as someone who finishes what he starts while putting his community first cements his place as one of the Notable Innovators this year.

Go here to read our profile of Greg.

HAROLD JOHNSON AND META WILLIAMS

Notable Innovators Award

Harold Johnson and Meta Williams turned the traditional Southern Tutchone camp Harold built from scratch into an educational site.

In May 1995, Kwäday Dän Kenji (“Long Ago People’s Place”) welcomed the public to its grounds. For more than 20 years, Harold and Meta have helped people gain a deeper appreciation for the First Nations way of life.

Go here to read our profile of Harold and Meta

BEVERLEY GRAY

Notable Innovators Award

In 1998, Beverley Gray opened Canada’s most northern herb shop, Aroma Borealis, it filled a gap in the Yukon’s natural health and herb markets with a wide range of locally harvested herbal health products that she skillfully formulated including teas, salves and skin creams–created and manufactured in-house. She then scaled up the business with an online storefront, which was uncommon in her industry at the time. Beverley’s continuous early-adopter mindset makes her one of this year’s Notable Innovators.

Go here to read our profile of Beverley

SHADUNJEN VAN KAMPEN

Youth Innovator Award

Shadunjen van Kampen’s historic achievement sets her apart as the Youth Innovator this year. Her trailblazing perseverance in the face of mounting odds will serve as an inspiration for First Nations and Yukon women of future generations.

The Youth Innovator Award is presented by The Western Arctic Youth Collective.

Go here to read our profile of Shadunjen.

Check out this beautiful video featuring 2021 Hall of Innovator Lifetime Achievement recipient, Rolf Hougen.

2020

GORD DUNCAN

Lifetime Achievement Award

Gord Duncan received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his work in building Total North Communications and for doing so in a way that inspired an enthusiasm for innovation in his team and the broader community. Dan Johnson, current President of Total North Communications, and Gord’s son, Brandon Duncan, accepted the award and spoke about Gord’s contributions.

Read more here.

GORD DUNCAN

Lifetime Achievement Award

Gord Duncan received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his work in building Total North Communications and for doing so in a way that inspired an enthusiasm for innovation in his team and the broader community. Dan Johnson, current President of Total North Communications, and Gord’s son, Brandon Duncan, accepted the award and spoke about Gord’s contributions.

Read more here.

GINA NAGANO

Notable Innovators Award

Gina Nagano received a Notable Innovators Award for her inspiring work to implement Community Safety Officer Programs and crime prevention projects through environmental design in many First Nation communities across the Yukon.

Read more on the blog

RIDE FOR DAD YUKON

Notable Innovators Award

Sean Secord, Co-Chair, accepted a Notable Innovators Award on behalf of Ride for Dad Yukon for being a national leader in the crusade to raise money and awareness for prostate cancer.

Read more on the blog

SYDNEY OLAND

Notable Innovators Award

Sydney Oland received a Notable Innovators Award for her work in establishing Yukon Provisions.

Sydney took her experience and knowledge gained from building the first chocolate factory north of 60 and used it to develop and open a complete commercial kitchen and food manufacturing facility that provides other small food startups an opportunity to grow in an affordable space with access to support and expertise.

Read more here.

Check out this short video to hear from the 2020 Hall of Innovator Award recipients, and to check out the Hall of Innovators Installation at NorthLight Innovation.

The Hall of Innovators is brought to you in partnership with Government of Yukon.