Cleary, Crosbie to honour Jubilee Medal recipients
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Feb. 6, 2013
Feb. 6, 2013
St. John’s – New Democrat MP Ryan Cleary (St. John’s South-Mount Pearl), together with Lt.-Gov. John Crosbie, will present Diamond Jubilee Medals to 30 deserving Newfoundlanders and Labradorians who have made significant contributions to their community, province and country.
“I am honoured to present these community leaders with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal as a small token of our appreciation for their significant contributions,” says Cleary.
The medal ceremony will take place at Government House, Thursday, Feb. 7 at 3 p.m. Biographies of medal recipients are attached.
Biographies (in random order)
Harvey Hodder began his career serving the community of Mount Pearl in the early 60’s as a teacher at Mount Pearl Central High. Elected four times as mayor, he served a total of 23 years on Mount Pearl City Council, and was the driving force behind the creation of the Mount Pearl Frosty Festival ― now in its 31st year. He served as MHA for Waterford Valley from 1993-2007 and spent four years as Speaker of the House of Assembly.
As an actor, writer, director, and environmentalist, Greg Malone’s contributions to the arts and culture of the province have been immeasurable. He is a founding member of the Gemini Award winning CODCO comedy troupe. He was a member of the Wonderful Grand Band and has written and performed in numerous stage shows and comedy specials for television and film. He is the author of two books, You Better Watch Out: A Memoir, and, most recently, Don’t Tell the Newfoundlanders.
Dr. T.A. Loeffler is a professor of Outdoor Recreation at Memorial University. Over the past six years, T.A. has shared her message of “Big Dreams, Big Goals” with over 38,000 youth in Newfoundland and Labrador. To date, she has summited six of the “Seven Summits” (the highest peak on each of the seven continents). She is the recipient of the 3M National Teaching Fellowship, the Karl Rhonke Creativity Award from the Association of Experiential Education, and Memorial University’s President’s Award for Distinguished Teaching. She has been named one of the Top Twenty Most Influential Women in Sport and Physical Activity by the Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women in Sport.
Dr. Jack Hand
One of Newfoundland and Labrador’s most beloved physicians, Dr. Jack Hand practised as a paediatric oncologist at the Janeway Hospital from 1997 until he passed away last June. His colleagues describe him as a positive role model ― loving and compassionate. His way with people was described as “The Jack Factor.” One of his patients summed up his contributions in one line, “Because he was, I am.” Receiving the medal on Dr. Hand’s behalf is his wife, Tina.
Progress Magazine called her “A serial entrepreneur with a whole lot of heart.” One of our province’s most celebrated and prominent business persons, Cathy Bennett is the CEO of the Bennett Group of Companies and holds executive positions with the Shaw Group, Atlantic Provinces Economic Council, Diamond Global Recruitment Group, Bell Aliant, Canadian Chamber of Commerce and many others. Cathy has used her business acumen and connections to give back to her community in many significant ways, including chairing the capital campaign for the construction of the province’s first Ronald McDonald House ― raising over $6.5 million in just over 18 months.
Chris Hogan has been active in the environmental movement in Newfoundland and Labrador for more than a decade. In 2012, as executive director of the Newfoundland and Labrador Environment Network, he helped raise public awareness of the need to maintain and strengthen environmental protection measures in our province and country. He has also been involved in campaigns to save NL’s provincial parks, expand our network of protected areas, improve forest management practices, and has helped support the growth of community-based environmental organizations.
Paul Ring is currently tied for the record of most consecutive and total regattas participated in and he will own the record following the 2013 Royal St. John’s Regatta. He rowed in his first regatta at age 12 and has been a rower and/or coxswain in every regatta since. He coxswains three to five crews each year and is also the only person to have participated in all 48 Placentia regattas. He was instrumental in starting the “Squirts” program for children aged 12 and younger who are interested in getting involved in rowing.
Maryanne has been standing up for the rights of youth since 1987. She spearheaded the formation of Justice for Children and Youth. This group began the LISTEN program in 1987 that aimed to change the cycle of EI, work, and social assistance, in which many families found themselves. The group was instrumental in lobbying for the establishment of the Office of the Child and Youth Advocate in 2002. Most recently, Maryann and her family organized a fundraiser in memory of her brother, Gordie Fleming, raising more than $40,000 in aid of organ donation.
Florence Power is an advocate for workers, the disabled, and the environment. She graduated from the General Hospital School of Nursing in 1971 ― while pregnant with twins and raising five children. She received the Academic Award for Proficiency in Maternal and Child Care Nursing and Psychiatric Nursing. A true inspiration to her family, Florence is the embodiment of tenacity and perseverance.
A committed environmentalist, John Gibson has spent his life researching and preserving our province’s fishery and its waterways. In 2008, he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 19th annual Environmental Awards. Much of his professional career has been committed to fisheries research on the life cycle of salmonoids, the province’s freshwater environments, stream ecology, behaviour ecology, and conservation biology. He designed the original concept for the Fluvarium at the Freshwater Resource Centre and is a scientist emeritus at DFO.
In many ways, Ann Payne is an example of how volunteers drive a community. She is the secretary for the Petty Harbour-Maddox Cove Heritage Museum Committee, organizer for the annual Arts and Heritage Festival, and the War Memorial Service. She is also almost solely responsible for keeping the doors open and museum artifacts preserved, displayed, and catalogued. As Mayor Ron Doyle says, “It’s as if she sleeps at the museum.”
Walter has spent 34 years in service to our country. He has served at several Canadian bases and spent three years as a member of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment’s 56th Engineers Squadron. He has been awarded the Canadian Declaration and has been involved with the Royal Canadian Legion for 46 years. Walter has been heavily involved in the community in Mount Pearl ― coaching minor soccer and establishing the first minor basketball program in the city which is still running today. He is the past treasurer of Parkdale Manor, past president of Branch 36, and is the branch’s current Service Officer.
Yamuna is the current president of the Multicultural Women’s Organization of Newfoundland and Labrador and is a council member on the Provincial Advisory Council on the Status of Women. Over the years, she has served on the boards of the St. John’s Status of Women Council, the National Action Committee on the Status of Women, and the National Organization of Immigrant and Visible Minority Women of Canada, among others. She is interested in critical perspectives about lives of immigrant and refugee women. Violence against women and children is one of her big concerns. Yamuna is originally from India and has lived in St. John’s for 45 years.
Fred Bannister has been dubbed by many as “Mr. Mount Pearl.” Fred is a veteran of the Second World War, where he served in the Royal Navy. He has many awards, including Mount Pearl’s Citizen of the Year in 1999 and one of the province’s Seniors of Distinction in 2009. He served 24 years on Mount Pearl City Council, chaired the Mount Pearl Senior’s Independence group, and is a member of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 36 Founding Committee. Fred was a volunteer with Scouts Canada for 15 years, lobbied for the restoration of Admiralty House, and for the construction of the Mount Pearl Public Library.
Sister Mary Tee
Sister Mary Tee has spent her entire life in one capacity or another in education. She was a teacher for 25 years, three of which she spent in Peru on a Sisters of Mercy mission. She founded the Mercy Centre for Ecology and Justice which provides resources and educational opportunities to expand awareness of the intrinsic value of all creation. Today, the centre hosts summer camps for young people and houses a garden used by various organizations who wish to learn about growing produce and its ability to heal the mind.
Eg has spent 25 years in the financial services industry and is an ocean adventurer who, along with his crew, holds the record for the fastest crossing of the Atlantic from St. John’s to Cape Wrath, Scotland. Eg is best known for his work with the Community Food Sharing Association, where he works as general manager. He has spent decades feeding Newfoundlanders and Labradorians and has served in various capacities with Food Banks of Canada and currently sits on their members’ council as a representative for Newfoundland and Labrador.
Gemma is known for her passion for people and her vision for change. She is the current Executive Director of For the Love of Learning, an arts-based charitable organization serving youth facing social and/or economic barriers in Newfoundland & Labrador, and serves on various national and provincial boards and committees. She is well known for her work in the LGBT community and was a major proponent for legalizing same-sex marriage in Canada. Currently she is an executive member of Canadians for Equal Marriage, president of Eagle Canada and PFLAG Canada.
A vocal feminist and disability activist, Leslie has served on numerous working groups, boards, and advisory committees over the past 30 years. Leslie is the Executive Director of the St. John’s Status of Women Council. She served a three-year term as president and CEO of the Provincial Advisory Council on the Status of Women. Leslie is currently co-chair of the Women in Resource Development Corporation, treasurer of the Multicultural Women’s Organization of Newfoundland and Labrador, as well as a member of the YWCA St. John’s Renewal Team and the Coalition Against the Sexual Exploitation of Youth.
Before moving to St. John’s in 1998, he was executive assistant and policy advisor to Ontario Premier Bob Rae and Toronto Councillor (and former federal New Democratic Party leader), Jack Layton. Since 2002, he has served as a community development worker for the St. John’s Community Advisory Committee on Homelessness and helped establish the Newfoundland and Labrador Housing and Homelessness Network.
As an actor, writer, producer, and filmmaker over the past 20 years, Ruth Lawrence has over 100 productions to her credit. She has been honoured by the Newfoundland and Labrador Arts Council as Artist of the Year, received the RBC Michelle Jackson Emerging Filmmaker Award, and the Atlantic Film Festival’s Joan Orenstein Award for best actress. Within our community, Ruth’s leadership roles have included chairing the board for Neighbourhood Dance Works, and she is executive director of the ever-growing and successful Nickel Independent Film Festival.
Protector of our culture, history, resources, ocean, and sport, Gus Etchegary began as a star soccer player. He was president of the St. John’s Football League, which led to soccer’s growing appeal across Newfoundland and Labrador. Beyond sport, he voraciously defends the traditional Newfoundland and Labrador fishery. He was president of the Fisheries Association of Newfoundland and Labrador; vice-president of Fisheries Products International; Canadian Commissioner to the International Commission of the North Atlantic Fisheries Organization; and Director of the Fishery Council of Canada.
At an early age, Tom Best became active as an advocate for the inshore fishery in his hometown of Petty Harbour. From 1969, until it was disbanded in the mid-1990’s, Tom was the chairperson of the Petty Harbour Fishermen’s Committee Inc. Tom was instrumental in leading the establishment of the Petty Harbour Fishermen’s Co-operative, where he was the founding president and is current president of the Board of Directors. Following the moratorium in 1992 the co-operative closed and, under Tom’s leadership, immediately addressed the situation by converting the operation to a licensed education and training facility.
Lucy Stoyles is a current councillor with the City of Mount Pearl, board member with the Municipal Assessment Agency, and tireless volunteer for many causes. She organizes door-to-door campaigns for the Lung Association, is a volunteer driver for the Canadian Cancer Society, and has provided hope for many Newfoundland and Labrador families by organizing countless fundraisers to help patients travelling outside the province for medical treatments. She has been awarded the 1992 Mount Pearl Citizen of the Year Award, VOCM Volunteer of the Year, Canada 125 Commemorative Medal Award for Furthering the Rights of Learning Disabled Individuals, the Norm Carr Award, Honourary Kinette, and the Community Commitment Memorial Award from the Mount Pearl Chamber of Commerce.
Megan Drodge has been volunteering in her community since the young age of 14. Since 2009, she has been involved on both the local and national stages with Scouts Canada. Locally, Megan has been a Beaver Scout Leader, SCOUTSabout Leader, and, most recently, the group commissioner for the first Mount Pearl Scouting Group. Nationally, Megan was the assistant national youth commissioner for Eastern Canada. In 2012, she acted as chair for impACT 2012, National Youth Conference and led the planning for Scouts Canada’s first National Youth Conference in over a decade. Among other awards, Megan was named Mt. Pearl’s Youth Volunteer of the Year in 2007.
A resident of Mount Pearl since 1976, Randy Simms is the current mayor of Mount Pearl and is a founding member of the Mount Pearl Chamber of Commerce. He has also served our province as president of Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador and continues to serve as a representative on the urban municipalities committee. Beyond municipal politics and provincial appointments, Simms is a great advocate of open debate as host of Open Line on VOCM radio. Simms is a treasure-trove of knowledge on all things Newfoundland and Labrador and contributes regularly to the province’s discourse on political and current affairs with his column in The Telegram, as well as contributions to CBC news.
Frankie O’Neill is a champion for inclusive social policies, and for those living with mental illness and mental health issues serving nine years as director in the department of social work at the Janeway; 15 years as the director of Social Work for the Waterford Hospital and 13 years as a board member and multiple committee chair for the Canadian Mental Health Association NL Division. O’Neill is a tireless watchdog for mental health and mental illness issues. She has worked to end domestic violence, kept her finger on the pulse of the status of women, helped increase awareness of mental health and mental illness issues, and has given countless hours to make sure our social framework adequately protects the vulnerable.
Captain Sydney Joseph Hynes
Captain Sydney Hynes is not only an accomplished Master Mariner – a career that began in his early 20s – but also a successful businessman who never forgot where he came. In 1995 he partnered with international companies to provide retraining opportunities for former fishermen. The year 2000 saw Captain Hynes appointed as chairman of the Board of Directors of Marine Atlantic, quickly taking the position of acting president and CEO, which he held for three years. Hynes has received many awards, including being named one of Atlantic Business Magazine’s Top 50 CEO’s. He was appointed honourary captain with the Canadian Navy, awarded a Medal of Merit by the Association of Canadian Port Authorities, inducted into the Junior Achievement Newfoundland and Labrador Business Hall of Fame, and awarded NOIA’s Outstanding Contribution Award. Today Hynes is the executive chairman of Oceanex Inc., which was named one of Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies in 2011.
Tom Murphy Sr. (posthumously)
A dedicated father and husband, devoted to his community and his church, Tom Murphy Sr. seemed to always find the time for everyone with a smile. Tom passed away on June 20th, 2012 ― he would have been 82 years of age. Tom was assistant superintendent of the water department for the City of St. John’s. He worked hard and, according to his son, Tom Murphy Jr., “seemed like he was always on call.” He would get calls on holidays, evenings, weekends, and would never hesitate to rush out of the house to attend to his duties. He volunteered at St. Teresa’s Church for virtually anything that needed to be done. Tom was the living example of a hardworking, community oriented family man ― an example for the whole community.
Robert Chafe is a St. John’s-based playwright, whose work has been seen across Canada, the UK, Australia, and the United States. He is the author of 18 stage scripts and co-author of another 10. He frequently collaborates with directors, including Jillian Keiley, artistic director of English theatre with the National Arts Centre of Canada. He was shortlisted for the Governor General’s Award for Drama (Canada’s highest playwriting honour) for Tempting Providence and Butler’s Marsh, and won the award for Afterimage in 2010. Robert is being honoured for his contribution to Newfoundland and Labrador arts and culture and for his ambassadorship on the national and international stages.
For Bruce, it isn’t the positions that matter. Being Provincial Commissioner of Scouts Canada meant that he could create jamboree experiences for thousands of youth and build an ice cream sundae three quarters of a mile long. Chairing the Bowring Park Foundation meant that playgrounds got rebuilt and wheelchair children could laugh and giggle while playing with their friends. And assisting Santa for 35 years in more than 1000 visits means that events like The Flight to the North Pole pull teams together who are absolutely committed to the children and the community. Through it all, his son and business partner Jim Templeton wisely guides their ever growing financial services company.