UBC Faculty of Medicine facilities to be named after Melville family

Melvilles’ donated $1.5 million to the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation

After donating $1.5 million in 2015 to the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation’s $20-million PRH equipment campaign, Sylvia and George Melville will now see their name associated with the UBC Faculty of Medicine facilities in the new tower. Photo courtesy of Gemini Visuals Creative Photography

Having their name associated with Penticton Regional Hospital, linking both health and education, was an opportunity that definitely captured George and Sylvia Melville’s attention.

Following the Melvilles’ incredibly generous $1.5 million donation to the South Okanagan Similkameen (SOS) Medical Foundation’s PRH campaign in 2015, the provincial government has agreed to link their name with the UBC Faculty of Medicine facilities in the hospital’s new patient care tower.

Related: $1.5 million donation to support medical foundation campaign

The Melville UBC Medical Education Centre, to be located on the third floor of the six-storey tower, will include the Melville Library and Melville Conference Room.

Dr. Allan Jones, Regional Associate Dean – Interior for UBC’s Faculty of Medicine, said the new education space will provide an enhanced learning environment for UBC medical students and resident physicians training at Penticton Regional Hospital and nearby communities. It will also provide an excellent teaching environment for the UBC clinical faculty.

“We are truly grateful for George and Sylvia Melville’s commitment to supporting UBC medical education in the South Okanagan,” Jones said.

George, co-founder of the Boston Pizza restaurant chain, and Sylvia are both Penticton Secondary School graduates. Although they moved to the Vancouver area in the mid-1970s, they still return to the Okanagan every summer.

“I think we’re very excited about the merging of education and the delivery of medical care in the community,” George said. “This is our hometown. We both moved around a lot when we were young, but Penticton is where we settled and began to raise our family before we had to move to Vancouver to manage the business better.”

Related: Treliving and Melville named business laureates

“To give back to this community was really important — and this one really resonated with us with the combination of education and deliverance of medical care. It fit perfectly with what we wanted to give to,” he added.

Sylvia said they genuinely feel it’s an honour to help.

“The idea that we would be able to attract medical students and residents and have them see the value of what they can do for the community and their families – to grow a career and a family here – I think is amazing.”

George’s father worked for the Bank of Montreal and the family moved to Penticton from Prince Rupert when George was entering Grade 12. He and Sylvia met while he was articling with a Penticton accounting firm.

Sylvia went on to obtain her education degree from UBC and returned as a teacher at Carmi Elementary School. George continued with his accounting career in Penticton before teaming together with business partner Jim Treliving to launch the internationally successful Boston Pizza chain in the 1970s.

Both their children were born at PRH.

“If it hadn’t been for George needing to be in Vancouver to further his career and his business, I think we would have stayed to raise our children. It’s perfect,” Sylvia said.

The Melvilles attended the hospital ground-breaking ceremony in July 2016 and Sylvia said to now see how far construction of the tower has progressed is very exciting.

The SOS Medical Foundation is raising $20-million to provide the medical equipment for the $312-million PRH expansion. The new tower is due to open in April 2019.

Just Posted

Photos: West Bench Elementary Christmas Variety Show

Penticton schools are in full Christmas mode with their annual concerts

Penticton man pleads guilty to creating a chid porn forum

Tyler Walker was instrumental in creating a forum online and was involved in moderating others

Accident blocks traffic

Accident in Penticton on Duncan Avenue

Donate your parking fines to 100 Homes

Parking tickets issued for the remainder of the month are now payable to the housing initiative

Quiet time for Santa at OSNS

Quiet Santa visits the child and youth development centre again this year.

VIDEO: Average Canadian food bill to rise by $348 in 2018

Atlantic Canada and B.C. will see the most increases for consumers

Star gazing: Mars – the Red Planet

Mars is part of our culture, currently of extreme scientific interest, and sufficiently like Earth

More than 20,000 pounds of garbage removed from riverside homeless camps

Two camps taken down last week on the banks of the Fraser and Chilliwack rivers

Suspect in Revelstoke standoff killed himself: RCMP

Mohammadali Darabi, suspect in the Calgary homicide of his roommate, was stopped in Revelstoke

Clinton visits Vancouver, applauds Trudeau, celebrates Democrats’ win in Alabama

Clinton told crowd she cheered when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appointed the country’s first gender-balanced cabinet.

VIDEO: Salt Spring Islanders ferry piano to their floating home

Everyone enjoys a little music on the water, but not everyone has a piano on their boat

Bomb detonated in Kamloops neighbourhood

Kamloops RCMP are investigating after an improvised explosive device was detonated Wednesday morning

No More Shootouts: Strong defence will be Canada’s backbone at world juniors

Head coach doesn’t want a situation where a hot goalie or a lucky bounce can determine a team’s fate

Proposed snowmobiles along Sicamous roads concern RCMP

RCMP, ICBC and province not yet on-board with proposed off-road bylaw in the B.C. Interior

Most Read