Ottawa – Mayor Jim Watson today presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to Michael Hanna for his outstanding generosity and community service.
Mr. Hanna is a successful entrepreneur who immigrated to Ottawa from Lebanon in 1968 with little money and no English. He started work as a busboy and then waiter at the Skyline Hotel, learned English and set aside enough money to bring his family to Canada.
In 1974, he was joined in Ottawa by two brothers and, in the next few years, by his parents and three remaining brothers. In 1977, the Hanna family founded the now-famous Gabriel’s Pizza on St. Joseph Blvd. in Orleans. They remain a proud, locally owned and family-operated business and show their thanks by giving back to the community.
Through Mr. Hanna’s direction, Gabriel’s Pizza has provided valuable support to many local sports and charities, fundraising events and education programs either by donating pizza or by donating to fundraising campaigns. This has amounted to more than $40,000 over the past five years alone.
Teaming up with CHEZ 106, $13,500 was raised for operating rooms at CHEO over the past two years, with a goal this year of $10,000. Similarly, Gabriel’s under Mr. Hanna’s leadership, has partnered with A&W and Metroland Media Group to support the Ottawa Food Bank. Gabriel’s Pizza locations across Ottawa and Gatineau have raised more than $3,000 for the Food Bank.
The Mayor’s City Builder Award is a civic honour created by Mayor Watson to recognize an individual, group or organization that has, through outstanding volunteerism or exemplary action, demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to making our city a better place today and for the future. This may include lifelong service, outstanding acts of kindness, inspiring charitable work, community building or other exemplary achievements. Individuals, groups or organizations may be nominated by members of City Council or the public. The award is presented at the beginning of each City Council meeting.
The City Council meeting is still in progress. More to come.
- 30 -