If Michael Embury’s past and present is anything to go by, then his future looks incredibly bright.
Embury, 38, was among the recent winners at the Future Leaders of Manitoba Council’s 5th Annual Future Leaders of Manitoba Awards, held at Fort Garry Place.
Formed in 2006, the council is made up of a group of young professionals whose mandate includes promoting Manitoba and recognizing the future leaders of the province.
Embury, a diversity and inclusion co-ordinator at Manitoba Public Insurance, won in the business/professional category and beat out Dr. Paul Komenda, a nephrologist by specialty at Seven Oaks General Hospital and assistant professor at the University of Manitoba, and Lindy Norris, director of advertising at The Dufresne Group.
"It was a humbling experience to simply be a nominee among such accomplished individuals," said Embury, who lives in Norwood Grove, noting he volunteers with various organizations in Winnipeg "that focus on capacity-building and preparing individuals for obtaining meaningful employment."
Embury supports organizations that work with individuals with disabilities, the aboriginal community and newcomers to Canada, and his resume includes positions on the board or steering committee of six organizations.
Among them, he is the co-chair of the Manitoba Employment Equity Practitioners Association, a director with Reaching E-quality Employment Services and is on the employer advisory committee with Urban Circle Training Centre.
He is driven to help these organizations because he believes "we all hold a social responsibility to give back to the community."
"It is very easy for someone to sit back and wait for someone else to step up, but it is about creating a stronger and more vibrant community for everyone," said Embury, who picked up a 2012 Champion for Diversity award from the lieutenant governor. "What drives me is the change that can be created simply by giving your time and talents."
And despite his busy schedule, Embury said his commitment and passion drive him to find enough hours in the day.
"I am often asked where I find the time. I tell people that you have to make it a priority and if you commit to an organization — commit fully," he said.
In addition to his career and volunteerism, Embury has also returned to the University of Manitoba in a full-time capacity during evenings and weekends and will graduate this spring with a BA integrated studies degree, majoring in psychology, and a certificate in adult and continuing education.
"No matter how busy you think you are, if you manage your time well, it can be done."
For more information, visit www.flmc.mb.ca.