AMS honours landlord, student at City Hall

Danielle Aird receives Golden Key award, honouring 35 years of work; Aird says she’s “very proud”

Danielle Aird, third from right, receives the Golden Key.
Danielle Aird, third from right, receives the Golden Key.
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Victoria Denney, centre, receives the Civic Responsibility Award.
Victoria Denney, centre, receives the Civic Responsibility Award.
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Longtime Kingston landlord Danielle Aird was awarded the 2014-15 Golden Key annual award during Thursday evening’s AMS Assembly at City Hall.

After reading a statement from the winning application, Sydenham District City Councillor Peter Stroud presented Aird with the student-nominated award for the City’s best landlord.

Following the presentation, Aird — who said she’s been a landlord for about 35 years — told the Journal she was “very proud” and “very thankful” to her students for nominating her for the award.

“Twenty years ago they were like my children, but now they’re like my grandchildren,” she said.

As to the origins of her work in the field, Aird referred to her husband’s work as an artist and said, “We realized we needed another source of income”.

She said she began buying properties with a friend, who was good at finding places and making them “look nice” while Aird “was good with numbers”. Though they sold their properties three years ago, Aird has since resumed her work as a landlord.

“I missed it so much within a year that I bought another house and then my daughter agreed that she wanted to do it, too,” she said, adding that her daughter is now doing “most of the work” and deserved to receive the award with her.

Ellen Rowe, a tenant in one of Aird’s homes, said Aird is a “wonderful lady”.

“If I’d just said that, that would pretty much sum it up,” said Rowe, ArtSci ’17.

Rowe said Aird and her daughter, Katie, are quick to help her and her housemates if any problems arise in the house. She added that Aird goes to India and brings back goods that she sells at craft fairs to raise money for the community in India.

“She’s a great landlord for us, she helps us personally, but then she deserved the Golden Key because not only was she a great landlord, but she also extended it to going away and doing these wonderful things,” Rowe said.

“Her daughter Katie — they’re a tag team. They deserve credit together because if Danielle’s not here, Katie will come over. They work together.”

Rowe said she and her five housemates recently signed a contract with Aird for next year, and are pleased to spend another year with her.

Thursday’s meeting also saw Mayor Bryan Paterson present the Civic Responsibility Award, which, Municipal Affairs Commissioner Ariel Aguilar Gonzalez said, “recognizes outstanding Queen’s students for their contribution to the Kingston community”.

Paterson cited Victoria Denney’s “involvement in raising awareness about homelessness in our community” and “involvement in community garden and sustainability” prior to presenting her with the award.

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