RTOERO District 3
Mickey Contini Award of Merit, 2021

The recipient of the 2021 Mickey Contini Award of Merit is …. Carmelina Spry!

Carmelina has been a member of District 3 for approximately 14 years. She quickly moved up to the Executive Board as Membership Chair where she kept excellent records of every member:  their changing profiles, deceased or transferred members, and new members as our membership continued to grow.

For the last nine years she has been the Telephone Coordinator, one of our most challenging positions. As well as keeping accurate data on all members, she coordinates a team of over 45 callers, each with a list of 25-30 members to contact before each meeting. She then receives 45 phone calls to determine the expected total number for attendance at each luncheon meeting.

Next, she informs the Legion kitchen staff. As our membership heads towards 1200, this is an onerous task.  It is because of this personal networking that District 3 is the envy of many other districts for high membership turnout at all meetings — always well over 100! Her reminder to all her callers, is “Remember, you are part of a vital committee for our organization!”  
How true!

Amazingly, Carmelina rarely loses her cool!  She is always totally organized, pleasant, and very skilled in record-keeping and online communication. District 3 is fortunate that she is willing to share her many skills to support our membership!

Carmelina has also attended Provincial Workshops and Senate Meetings.  Carmelina is an active member in the community. She is on the Vision Screening team and the Festival of Trees Committees.  As well, she is a volunteer at a senior nursing home. There she assists residents with appointments and takes them for outings. She is very active in her parish: a CWL President for many terms and a Lay Minister.  Finally, she is a strong support for her own Rossi family.

Even during this challenging Covid-19 years, Carmelina’s job has been a busy one. Monthly membership reports arrive from Provincial Office, and her task is to add, subtract, correct, revise, and then notify her callers so that all records are accurate and up to date. She also encourages callers to keep in touch with members periodically, especially those in isolation, personal need, or ill health.  In this way, the Goodwill Committee can follow up communications.  Great networking is happening through her determination!

Carmelina rarely misses a meeting, is prepared to volunteer for ad hoc tasks, and she is always ready to express her views and opinions.  Being connected with her on the Executive Committee for many years, she is regarded as an energetic, dedicated member of District 3. She is most worthy of this recognition.

Local and National Scholarships

DISTRICT 3 Scholarships:

District 3 has established awards of $750 at both Algoma University and Sault College.  Recipients are selected by their institution.

Contact:  Current President – rtoalgoma@gmail.com

NATIONAL Scholarships:

Applicants, who are members’ relatives applying for scholarships, must be in the last year from a Faculty of Education  or who were in any programme in their final year of a College or university.
                 CLICK HERE, for Natiional Details

RTOERO $3000 Scholarships Awarded to Two Local Students

Congratulations to Allan Middleton and Leah Ritacco on being recipients of the RTOERO Scholarship for 2021! This year, RTOERO awarded 20 scholarships valued at $3000 each to post-secondary (college or university) students enrolled in programs that lead to careers which could benefit RTOERO members and seniors in Canada. Allan Middleton and Leah Ritacco, both from Algoma, were recommended by two of our members in District 3 Algoma- Deb King (Allan’s mother) and Lynn Uhryn (Leah’s grandmother).

There are some interesting parallels in the study path of each of these students. Both started in Kinesiology, both are in their final year of their current program and both want to go into medicine. After my visit with each of them which was so interesting, I feel very confident about their futures and the contributions they will be making in our community where they both want to work eventually.

Allan Middleton is in his last year at the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSOM) but his career path has been unique and varied. He began in Kinesiology at McMaster where he also excelled in the sport of wrestling. Allan continued his studies in the Physician Assistant program where he was encouraged to pursue medicine even further. Although he said that he wants to go into Family Medicine, he has a deep interest in specializing in Internal Medicine which covers many disciplines. In his spare time, Allan enjoys reading, running and a priority is being with his partner, Sydney, and their two young daughters, Hadley and Genevieve. After internship, Allan hopes to return to the Sault- we will be very lucky to have him here in Algoma!

Leah Ritacco is now in her final year in Kinesiology at Lake Superior State University. Her intent is to apply, both for medical schools in Canada as well as for the Physician Assistant 2-year program in the USA and Canada and hopes to be on the path for Family Medicine next year. When asked about how family medicine became her career goal, Leah said that it was a bit of a circuitous route. She had always wanted to be a dentist but through a co-op program in high school and a summer job with the Ministry of Northern Development involved in telemedicine, she realized that kinesiology and medicine might better use her strengths in sports and working with people. Leah will know in February where she will be headed next- we wish her well in her chosen profession.

On the RTOERO webpage it states: “RTOERO believes in the power of our community to secure a better future, and we are committed to helping secure better futures for students, for each other, and for seniors in Canada. One of the ways we work towards achieving this goal is through our post-secondary scholarship program, established with reference to our strategic goal: To improve the lives of members and seniors.” Allan Middleton and Leah Ritacco are such worthy recipients of these scholarships; they are well on their way to supporting our strategic goals.     

                                                                                                                                                      Submitted by Gayle Manley

Congratulations to Rich Prophet, RTOERO Chair!

Congratulations to Rich Prophet who was elected as the new Chair on the Board of Directors for RTOERO which is now a national organization! Kudos to a hard-working member of District 3!

Rich stepped into “retirement” in 2008. His dedication has been evident throughout his “retirement” serving District 3 as well as provincial committees in an exemplary manner. One only has to glance at our local RTOERO website to get testimony to his commitment.

District 3 has an impressive history with provincial leadership. Weldon Abernethy was President in 1977 and Mickey Contini was RTOERO President in 2002-2003. Gayle Manley has diligently served on the Health and Benefits Committee (2009 to the present). What an outstanding achievement this is!  Gayle is now serving a three-year term on the Board of Directors.  Imagine two members on the Board of Directors are from Sault Ste. Marie! Even the new Vice-Chair on the Board of Directors (Bill Huzar) originally taught in the Sault area. (He retired in British Columbia). To have had five members on the Board with roots well planted in District 3 is remarkable to say the least!

The members of District 3 are extremely proud of those who have sacrificed so much personal time to serve our organization both locally, provincially and nationally. We are confident that with Rich at the helm RTOERO will forge forward in a remarkable way into an exciting future.

UPDATED District 3 Travel Allowance

53 cents/km, to a maximum of $60.00 per Meeting.
District 3 encourages Carpooling!

Travel Expense Forms available at all District 3 Meetings.

If you are a member of the RTOERO Extended Health Care Plan, you have access to the Venngo MemberPerks affinity program without any extra fees. MemberPerks gives you access to discounts at brand named stores and local places- discounts are available on-line as well as in-store.

Getting started is easy!

1. Sign Up – You just need to go to https://rto-ero.venngo.com to create your account and access all the great perks!

2. Download the Venngo Mobile app. Use your perks on the go!

3. Start savingSaving money is easy. Show the mobile app, print the perk, or shop online.

Here is a list of local businesses in Algoma offering discounts through Venngo:

MemberPerks 1

The Top 25 Perks based on savings for RTOERO members are reported as follows (These could be on-line, via telephone or in-store for Algoma members):

MemberPerks 2
*  Please note that perk merchants and discount offers are subject to change.
** Please visit https://rto-ero.venngo.com for current discount offers and redemption information.

National & Local Scholarships

LOCAL Scholarships – District 3 has established awards of $750 at both Algoma University and Sault College.  Recipients are selected by their institution.
                                       District 3 Contact:  Current President District 3 — rtoalgoma@gmail.com

NATIONAL Scholarship ProgrammeApplicants, who are members’ relatives, who apply for scholarships must be in the last year from a Faculty of
 or who were in any programme in their final year of a College or university.
 CLICK HERE, for Natiional Details

The Mickey Contini Award of Merit

The Mickey Contini Award of Merit was established within the Algoma District RTOERO to recognize outstanding contributions to the organization.

Nominees for the award will be selected in recognition of their outstanding and/or long term contributions to the work of RTOERO at the Provincial and/or District level. The Mickey Contini Award of Merit recognizes the great effort that Mickey Contini put forth on behalf of the members of RTOERO for so many years.


Previous Mickey Contini Award of Merit Recipients

2000 Barbara Lamb
2000 Jean DuQuesnay
2000 Leona Galloway

2001 Ben Smith
2001 Grant Lawson
2001 Jean King
2001 John Jefferson
2001 Orlando Sicoly

2003 Bill Kidd
2003 Mary Kidd
2003 Ken Frier
2003 Mickey Contini

2004 John Fleming
2004 Maj-Liisa Donaghue

2005 Marilyn Patterson

2006 Diane Marshall
2006 Leone Hamilton
2006 Pat Fremlin

2008 Bill Purnis

2009 Geoff Shaw

2010 Ora Mae James

2010 Bonnie Forsell

2010 Moyra O’Pallie

2011 Nancy Sachro

2012 Gary Wills

2013 Gayle Manley

2014 Marie DellaVedova

2015 Bruce Avery
2015 Page Nicolson

2016 Emily Noble

2017 Bernice Whalen

2018 Kathryn Greening

2019 Rich Prophet

2020 Blair Sterling

2021 Carmelina Spry

Mickey Contini

Mickey passed away December 7, 2014

To View or Download/Print the 2022 Mickey Contini Award of Merit Nomination Form, click the form

2022 Submission Date – Monday May 30, 2022


Either download and complete the Nomination Form, above, or fill in your nomination, below, and submit online right now!


The Award of Merit was established within the District 3 Algoma RTOERO to recognize outstanding contributions to the organization. Nominees for the award will be selected in recognition of their involvement in the work of RTOERO at the Provincial and/or District level. At the May 28, 2014 Annual General Meeting of RTOERO, the award was renamed THE MICKEY CONTINI AWARD OF MERIT. This recognizes and shows appreciation for all the efforts that Mickey made on behalf of the members of RTOERO throughout the years.

If you wish to nominate an eligible, worthy member, please provide a brief description of the nominee’s contributions to RTOERO locally and/or provincially in the form below, then CLICK SUBMITYou will receive a confirmation email.

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