YEDI president receives Pioneer of Change award

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A prestigious distinction that honours immigrants recognized as nation builders highlighted the work of two York faculty members during the 2016 Pioneers for Change Award Gala.

On June 9, Marat Ressin, president and founder of York Entrepreneurship Development Institute (YEDI), received an award for Excellence in Innovation and Ananya Mukherjee-Reed, dean of the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies, received an award for Excellence in Social Impact.

The awards gala this year focused on “immigrants working to build a Canada where every immigrant succeeds” with a lens on seven different categories.

YEDI is a start-up incubator that works in partnership with the Schulich Executive Education Centre (SEEC) and offers innovators an opportunity to engage in training, education and mentorship through a 12-week fellowship program. He has served as an adjunct faculty member at the institute.

The Pioneers for Change Award Gala was launched in 1993 by Skills for Change, an organization that works to drive forward a shift in immigration and workplace trends.

Pioneers for Change award recipients are, according to Skills for Change, “incredible people who have made a significant and lasting contribution to Canada” and “who inspire newcomers to work toward their own success and follow their vision”.

More than 120 individuals have been recognized as Pioneers for Change since the first awards gala.

For more on the gala, visit

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