By Mike Straus
Diane Entwistle was named a Capital News’ Community Leader of the Year in the Above and Beyond category at the 4th Annual Kelowna Capital News Community Leader Awards, held at Okanagan College, Oct. 23, 2017. The Community Leader Awards are given to local members of the community who demonstrate exceptional commitment and leadership.
As the CEO of the Okanagan Boys and Girls Club Diane Entwistle has committed to a life of helping youth and families.
Entwistle has been the organization’s CEO since 2014, after spending 10 years as the club’s director of operations. But she’s been working with the Boys and Girls Club for much longer.
“I started with the club in 1989, when we had just moved to Kelowna,” she said. “I was at home with a small child and wanted to work part-time. I answered an ad in the newspaper, and started with the club.”
Entwistle had worked with several recreation-oriented organizations in the past, but she chose to work with the Boys & Girls Club because it’s recreation with a purpose.
“I passionately believe in our vision that all kids can grow to be healthy, happy, active participants in society. For some kids that path is tough, and I feel fortunate to be able to make a difference. That’s why I’ve been here for 29 years,” she said.
Entwistle was nominated for the award by the Okanagan Boys & Girls Club leadership team, who highlight her commitment to local youth and families. Entwistle is always the first person to arrive in the office in the morning and the last person to leave at the end of the day, and despite her large workload, she maintains an open-door policy with her 300-plus staff.
But her first thought on her time with the organization isn’t the workload. It’s the people.
“It’s great to see our staff develop into leaders, and to see children grow up to be happy, healthy, successful adults. These are the things that make us proud of our work.”