Archive for February, 2009

Olson, Basciano to lead Building Futures Campaign

Anna Olson and Mark Basciano announced as Co-chairs of Building Futures Campaign

Anna Olson and Mark Basciano Co-chairs of Building Futures Campaign

Two of Niagara’s community leaders, each of whom has made a tremendous mark in very different fields, will take the helm of Niagara College’s $16.5 million Building Futures Campaign.

Food Network star and Chef Anna Olson and Mark Basciano, President of the Mountainview Group, were introduced November 20 as Campaign Co-chairs. Basciano and Olson will lead the campaign to raise the community portion of the money required to support the College’s $50 million Master Plan.

“We’re extremely fortunate to have two outstanding community leaders join us in this important endeavour,” said Niagara College President Dan Patterson. “Anna and Mark are very aware of the important role Niagara college plays in our community, and they understand the importance of investing in our College’s future. We’re very grateful for their support.”

Basciano is the Owner and President of the Mountainview Group of companies, which includes Mountainview Homes, Mountainview Custom Homes, Mountainview Construction and Mountainview Properties. The award-winning Thorold company was formed in 1979 and is a market leader and premier homebuilder in Niagara.

Like the company he leads, Mark is community-minded and lends his time to many charitable endeavours that benefit local charities and agencies, including the March of Dimes, the Niagara Children’s Centre, Wellspring Niagara, and Hotel Dieu Hospital.

Olson is the host of Food Network Canada’s Sugar, and Kitchen Equipped, which also aired on HGTV. Her latest show, Fresh with Anna Olson, is broadcast from her Welland home, and promotes her motto “eat fresh, eat local.”

Olson has also written three cookbooks and co-authored two more with her husband, Niagara College Chef/Professor Michael Olson. She also writes for various publications, including Vines, LCBO Food & Drink, and a co-written column with her husband for the St. Catharines Standard. Anna and Michel own Olson Foods at Port and Olson Foods at Ravine.

Giving back to the community, Olson supports the Niagara Women’s Enterprise Centre, which provides hospitality training to women. She participates in a number of fundraisers, and her end-of-day product from the bakery is given to the local YWCA women’s shelter or Out of the Cold Program. Olson also sits on the board for the Adolescent Family support Services of Niagara, which provides education daycare support for young mothers.


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