Larry Hnetka Community Builder Award

Purpose of the Award

In honour of the late Larry Hnetka, the Community Builder Award annually recognizes an individual who has made a significant contribution to the health and wellbeing of Vancouver’s Westside neighbourhoods. The award recognizes someone who is committed to neighbourhood values of connection, engagement, and neighbourhood involvement.


What is a Community Builder?
An individual – who through action, passion and commitment – has created opportunity for community members to come together, create together and pursue a common goal for the good of all.

If you know a person who fits this description, nominate them for the Larry Hnetka Community Builder Award!

About Larry Hnetka
Larry Hnetka was born on the prairies and grew up in Regina, Saskatchewan.  He travelled to Vancouver in his 20’s and quickly decided BC was where he wanted to be.  He moved to Kitsalano and lived on W 4th since the mid ’80’s.

He was a beloved friend, neighbor and colleague to all who had the pleasure of knowing him.  He loved his neighbourhood and every dog he met particularly the ones around his home whom he often baby sat.  He used his dog walking as a way to get to know people.

In the last decade of his life he was “the” person who brought the 6th Avenue Kitsilano neighborhood together.

He watched many changes happen in the Kits area, one major one was the revitalization of the Kitsalano community centre.  He walked around the block everyday to see what progress was made. He became friends with every project manager and construction worker on site.

Larry was a proud tour guide when the renovated Kits House opened and had just become actively involved in the art courses at the time of his passing.

Everyone on site as well as many in the neighbourhood knew him by name and by reputation- he was known as the man with a million ideas and the charm and energy to make them happen.

Nomination Form

Nominees for the Larry Hnetka Community Builder Award must be from Vancouver’s Westside which includes the neighbourhoods of Kitsilano, Dunbar-Southlands, Shaughnessy, Kerrisdale, Arbutus Ridge, West Point Grey & UBC.

Nomination forms can be submitted online to – deadline for submissions is Monday October 16, 2023 by 5pm

Nomination forms can be downloaded by clicking on the link below:

Kitsilano Neighbourhood House – The Larry Hnetka Community Builder Award 2023/ PDF

 Award Winners


The Larry Hnetka Community Builder Award Winners
2023 Sue Wong
2022 Mary Bennett
2021 Luisa Deziel
2020 Ksenia Stepkina
2019 Sheila Kirkby
2018 Mel Lehan
2017 Keiko Honda
2016 Ross Moster