Pop singer Nelly Furtado is among the more recognizable celebrities connected to Greater Victoria.

Pop singer Nelly Furtado is among the more recognizable celebrities connected to Greater Victoria.

Celebrities in our midst

It’s a funny thing, celebrity, especially for Greater Victoria.

It’s a funny thing, celebrity, especially for Greater Victoria.

If we ask each other the names of local celebrities, it seems the ones who keep coming up are those we spot on our televisions and/or on the big screen – primarily the sports stars and the entertainment crowd.

Sure, Steve Nash, Simon Whitfield and Jamie Benn (below) are big names from the sporting world. We instantly recognize Vicki Gabereau, Nelly Furtado (right) and David Foster, and for some, director Atom Egoyan. Even entertainment world celebrity, Pamela Anderson, a Ladysmith import has some local connections.

But what about those famous folks who we don’t see on our TV screens. Let’s talk about writers. West Shore resident Esi Udugyan has won almost every major literary award in Canada in the past couple of years, not to mention several international ones.

Patrick deWitt is another writer who has snapped up awards lately. Writers don’t often appear on our TV screens but we should be aware of these two and others such as the prolific Robert J. Wiersema.

Finally, the most important celebrities are those folks we know who give to the community without any thought to their own public profile. People like Jeneece Edroff, who despite her own ongoing health issues, has fundraised millions of dollars for local causes, or the Cops for Cancer Tour de Rock riders who each year take their own time to train, ride and fundraise to help ease the struggles of children battling cancer.

These are the folks who we should recognize as our real celebrities.