Steve Reeve and Ashley Laurenson

Steve Reeve and Ashley Laurenson

33 & 31 Years Old

Class of 2020

Steve Reeve

“Success isn’t a milestone. It’s a constant goal to work towards. It’s the opportunity to keep working on what drives you, and the chance to try new things in life.”

For over a decade, the voice of Steve Reeve has been on the Fort McMurray airwaves. Born and raised in Fort McMurray, the host on 100.5 CRUZ FM has lived in a few places around Alberta over the years but has deep roots in the community.

“To get into radio, I went to school for a few years, studying broadcasting and performance. But what interested me first was listening to the radio here in town growing up, and staying up to watch the late-night talk show hosts make their daily jokes,” he said.

“I very badly wanted to do that and to make people laugh. I wanted to make connections with people and brighten their day wherever possible. I still want all of that, so the alarm still goes off early every morning, and I’m often up late in front of the computer screen working on some project.”

As someone with a big heart for the community, Steve has been involved in many fundraisers and events throughout the city, in big roles and small, organizing and hosting events.

He was a founding member of the Fort McMurray Filmmaker’s Association, championing emerging filmmakers through Wood Buffalo and beyond, and helped to execute the Fort McMurray International Film Festival and several other screening events and workshops.

He also helped launch a series of educational community talks called Geek Speak, which allows audiences of all ages to learn amazing things from fellow community members. Together with his partner, Ashley, Steve does a lot of creative work.

“I enjoy writing and creating things that make people laugh or think or feel in various forms of media, from material on the radio, to film and online content, to photography, to performing in community theatre, and to whatever else I can get myself into,” he shared.

All of this, combined with his production company M’Guphyn Media, keeps Steve busy. And, His to-do list for the next twelve months is seemingly endless and includes the evergreen task of improving at being a broadcaster and an entertainer.

“Success isn’t a milestone. It’s a constant goal to work towards,” said Steve. “It’s the opportunity to keep working on what drives you, and the chance to try new things in life.”


Ashley Laurenson

“This year has been particularly difficult for the live event industry. But seeing the passion and enthusiasm of others has been the driving force that keeps me going, and I know the next time we see people on stage is going to be magical.”

When Ashley Laurenson arrived in Fort McMurray from New Zealand twelve years ago, she was expecting to stay for six months to a year. Now, with her partner of eight years, Steve, she can’t imagine ever leaving.

“We have a group of friends up here that we call our Friend Family,” Ashley shared. “The group of us all live far from our own extended families, so we’ve become our own family up here who do the big occasions and holidays together.”

The community of Wood Buffalo itself is also very dear to Ashley’s heart. She has served on several boards, including being one of the founding members of the Fort McMurray Filmmakers Association.

She’s been involved with the Centre of Hope volunteers and has taken the secretary role for the Friends of the Suncor Energy Centre for the Performing Arts. Ashley has also been a part of the PARTY program put on by Safe Community Wood Buffalo since 2016.

For Ashley, filmmaking is a big part of her artistic identity. She is often found behind the scenes, on set, in front of the camera or hosting workshops in film. As a part of M’Guphynn Media, she has been on a team of filmmakers for almost a decade and was an integral part of the viral Batman fan film Arkham Rising.

“It started with a road trip to Edmonton with our Friend Family to catch the midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises in IMAX,” Ashley recalled. “We planned the film in a Denny’s at three in the morning and have never looked back.”

Another passion of Ashley’s is Cosplay culture. She helped launch Geek Speak, a series of educational talks about cool, nerdy topics from members of the community. She has also helped organize some cosplay-themed Canada Day parade float groups, including one awarding-winning float.

Theatre is something she has also been heavily involved in, being a costume and prop designer for some of the Theatre; Just Because shows. Now the Keyano Theatre Box Office Manager, she is making a difference in the Arts using her administrative background.

“This year has been particularly difficult for the live event industry. But seeing the passion and enthusiasm of others has been the driving force that keeps me going, and I know the next time we see people on stage is going to be magical.”

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