Government of New Brunswick

The names of the recipients of the 2014 Order of New Brunswick were released as part of New Brunswick Day celebrations.

The award honours current or former long-time residents of New Brunswick who have demonstrated a high level of individual excellence and achievement in any field, having made outstanding contributions to the social, cultural or economic well-being of New Brunswick and its residents.

    

 

Biographical Notes

 

Roger Augustine, Eel Ground First Nation

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Roger Augustine, AFN Regional Chief for New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island, has been involved in politics, economic development and the environment for over 30 years.

Mr. Augustine was Chief of Eel Ground First Nation from 1980 to 1996. Prior to that, he served on Eel Ground Council for four years. During his time as a community leader, Mr. Augustine co-founded the Atlantic Policy Congress (APC), which is the political voice for First Nations Chiefs in Atlantic Canada. He also co-founded the North Shore Mi'kmaq Tribal Council. In 1981, Mr. Augustine was one of several dozen representative Chiefs from across Canada who signed the historic 1981 Declaration of Aboriginal and Treaty Rights.

Mr. Augustine considers one of his greatest career accomplishments to be in the field of addictions treatment. After receiving specialized credentials from St. Francis Xavier University in Drug and Alcohol Education, Mr. Augustine made enormous strides in dealing with addiction in his community by introducing a curriculum for Eel Ground Federal School. During his tenure as Chairman of National Drug and Alcohol Advisory Board, he received several awards in his field. He is still chairman of the Rising Sun Treatment Centre at Eel Ground.

In 1995, Mr. Augustine successfully negotiated a $90-million partnership between eight New Brunswick First Nations communities and U.S. lumber companies. Two years later, the First Nations received a $2.5 million profit. He has also worked to foster cooperation and understanding between aboriginal and non-aboriginal fishers, helping conclude an agreement between the two fishing communities in 2012.

Mr. Augustine served as a commissioner on the Indian Claims Commission (ICC) for 10 years, and is currently chair of the Centre for Indigenous Environmental Resources (CIER) Board of Directors. He is also a trained mediator and has been involved in several crisis response situations. Mr. Augustine was also a special advisor and Chief of Staff to former National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations Phil Fontaine.

Roger Augustine is receiving the Order of New Brunswick for his efforts in improving the well-being of First Nations communities as well as strengthening the relationships between aboriginal and non-aboriginal communities.

 

 

Wayne Curtis, Fredericton

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Wayne Curtis is a renowned author whose literary works celebrating the Miramichi and New Brunswick have been enjoyed by audiences for decades.

Mr. Curtis was born in Keenan, New Brunswick, and majored in English at St. Thomas University.

He first began writing prose in the late 1960s and is the author of sixteen books as well as a screenplay.

Over the span of his writing career, he has served as a contributor to several newspapers, including the National Post, Globe and Mail, and Telegraph Journal, and such magazines as Quill and Quire, Outdoor Canada, Fly Fisherman (USA), Atlantic Insight, Atlantic Advocate and the Atlantic Salmon Journal. His stories have appeared in various literary journals and anthologies, and have been dramatized on both radio and television.

Mr. Curtis has earned many awards for his writing including the Richards Award for Short Fiction, the Woodcock Award, the CBC Drama Award, and grants from the New Brunswick Arts Board, and the Canada Council for the Arts. He is also a member of the Atlantic Salmon Hall of Fame.

In 2005, Mr. Curtis received an honorary doctorate of letters from St. Thomas University. He is a charter member of the Writers’ Federation of New Brunswick and has served as a director with the federation for the past decade.

For his numerous literary contributions and his commitment and dedication to Atlantic salmon conservation, Wayne Curtis is receiving the Order of New Brunswick.

 

 

Lorraine Diotte, Dalhousie

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Lorraine Diotte is a multidisciplinary artist in the fields of music and writing, dedicated to the betterment of her peers, and especially seniors.

Nicknamed “la Bolduc Acadienne,”* Ms. Diotte has made an exceptional contribution to the regional and national social and cultural heritage.

Educated as a teacher, she has given and continues to give many volunteer hours to different activities in our area, and wherever she goes, she brings joy and pride.

A prolific author and composer, this teacher by training has to her credit around a hundred songs, a total of eight albums, and seven plays.

In 2001, she received the Stompin’ Tom Connors award, given out by the East Coast Music Association, for her body of work.

She also hosted some television shows for a few years, and wrote humourous columns (Polidore) in local weekly publications in the Restigouche region.

Many people say that Ms. Diotte used these different media to decry the injustices and inequalities of society in an attempt to make things better for others, particularly the elderly.

Humour has always occupied a prominent place in the artist's repertoire. Owing, among other things, to her penchant for telling it like it is, her enthusiasm, and her smile, this multidisciplinary artist is very much appreciated wherever she goes.

In addition to her volunteering and her career, Lorraine Diotte has contributed to the development of youth, seniors, and the Acadian culture. This exceptional woman continues to share her enthusiasm on the stage, with her ever-present accordion.

It is for her 50-plus years as a teacher dedicated to educating New Brunswick students, for her volunteering and involvement in various humanitarian and Acadian causes, and for her many artistic contributions that we recognise Lorraine Diotte with the Order of New Brunswick.

* After the celebrated Quebec singer and musician Mary Travers Bolduc, known as “La Bolduc.

 

 

Roxanne Fairweather, Saint John

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Roxanne Fairweather is best known as one of New Brunswick’s most accomplished business executives. Having contributed to several business companies, boards and, groups in the city of Saint John, Ms. Fairweather has established herself as a natural leader. She is currently the co-CEO and co-owner of Innovatia Inc. headquartered in Saint John.

Ms. Fairweather has been involved in many business interest groups, most notably Propel ICT. She also served as the Board Chair in the amalgamation of all non-clinical shared services amongst the regional health care authorities by FacilicorpNB Ltd. Additionally, Ms. Fairweather has served as a director of Brunswick Pipeline and LearnSphere Canada.

Her passion for education has led her to forge a partnership between Innovatia and the Elementary Literacy Friends program, which focuses on increasing literacy throughout the province by providing volunteer tutors to Grade 2 students.   

Ms. Fairweather was named one of the Atlantic region’s 50 most accomplished business executives by Atlantic Business Magazine in 2005, 2013 and 2014. She was also named the EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2013 for the Atlantic Region.

Roxanne Fairweather is receiving the Order of New Brunswick for her strong contribution to the business landscape in New Brunswick, for her work to advance research and innovation in the province, and for her efforts in forging partnerships in the community to offer programs to increase literacy.

 

 

Ivan Hicks, Moncton

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Ivan Hicks is well-known for his contribution to the preservation and promotion of old-time fiddling throughout North America. He is a musical ambassador for his home province of New Brunswick as well as for Canada.

An Upper Sackville native, Mr. Hicks is a graduate of Mount Allison University (1964) and the University of New Brunswick (1976). He is enjoying his retirement after a 32-year teaching career in the Town of Salisbury.

With over 60 years of playing old-time music, he has shared his talents with many students, young and old alike, and has been an inspiration to countless others. Ivan Hicks, the composer, the recording artist, the mentor and the performer has been a great musical ambassador for his home province of New Brunswick as well as Canada.

Over the years Mr. Hicks has performed at numerous official events for Moncton, Riverview, Sackville and Dieppe and has performed for distinguished guests at the National and Provincial level.

Mr. Hick’s long list of achievements includes his induction into the New Brunswick Country Music Hall of Fame in 1985 and North American Fiddlers Hall of Fame in 1990. He served as Chairman of the Fiddles of the World Conference in Halifax in 1999 and won the Volunteer of the Year Award from the East Coast Music Association in 2002 and the Canadian Grand Masters Fiddling Championship Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007.

Ivan Hicks is receiving the Order of New Brunswick for his contributions and work toward preserving and promoting our province’s musical culture both within New Brunswick and across Canada, for his community volunteer efforts, and for his contributions to the New Brunswick education system.

   

 

Himanshu Kumar Mukherjee, Fredericton

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Himanshu Kumar Mukherjee is well-known for his knowledge, dedication and passion to the health-care field; specifically, in the areas of rehabilitation and seniors’ care, and also for his many years of volunteer work in the community dedicated to welcoming and assisting newcomers to New Brunswick.

Mr. Mukherjee immigrated to Canada in 1965 from India. He earned a Master of Science degree in occupational therapy from California State University before joining the New Brunswick Department of Health in the late 1970s, where he focused his studies on senior care and rehabilitation.

Since then, he has served as an expert consultant on the subject of rehabilitation in North America, and written and co-authored many reports and studies within his field of study. He is a World Health Organization (WHO) Fellow, an active member of several professional associations and committees, and served a two-term role as a director of the New Brunswick Health Council. Currently, he serves on the New Brunswick Mental Health Review Board.

Mr. Mukherjee’s contributions to the province extend past his professional accomplishments to his decades of volunteer work in his community. For over 35 years, he has welcomed and assisted newcomers to New Brunswick, and has facilitated the visitations of various dignitaries to the province from his home country of India. In 2010, his contributions earned him the Unsung Hero Award and Business Ambassador Award from the City of Fredericton.

For his outstanding advances in health care and nursing home services in New Brunswick, his community volunteer efforts, and his commitment to welcoming newcomers to New Brunswick, Himanshu Kumar Mukherjee is receiving the Order of New Brunswick.

 

 

Guy A. Richard, Bouctouche

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One of our province’s most distinguished jurists, Guy A. Richard was born in Sainte-Anne-de-Kent, the son of former MLA and provincial cabinet minister André F. Richard. He attended College St.-Joseph in Memramcook and after graduating with a law degree from the University of New Brunswick, Mr. Richard settled down in his home town of Bouctouche.

After a distinguished legal career in Bouctouche from 1958 to 1971, he was appointed to the bench, serving the Northwest counties of the province. In 1976, he was appointed to the Court of Queen’s Bench and in 1979, was promoted to serve as a justice of the New Brunswick Court of Appeal.

In 1982, Mr. Richard was named Chief Justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench and served the people of his province in that role until his retirement in 1994. He did not really retire, but continued to serve as an adjudicator, notably as mediator in the strike between Canada Post Corporation and the Canadian Union of Postal Workers in 1998. He also served with fellow Order of New Brunswick inductee Roger Augustine as mediator during the dispute between non-Aboriginal and Aboriginal fishers at Burnt Church in 2003. In 2004, Mr. Richard was appointed Chair of the Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission of New Brunswick and officially retired from judicial duties in the summer of 2007.

Guy Richard has also been committed to the education of young, especially young francophone, New Brunswickers. In 1987, the University of Moncton offered him an honorary doctorate degree for his lifelong achievements and in 2001, he led a committee on the future of the Université de Moncton, helping the university set its future course as a comprehensive, francophone institution of higher learning and research.

For his exceptional record on the bench and for his contributions and advances to the development of research at the University of Moncton, we are proud to induct Guy A. Richard into the Order of New Brunswick.

 

 

Cheryl Robertson, Saint John

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Cheryl Robertson is a life-long educator, administrator and community volunteer in New Brunswick.

Ms. Robertson studied at both the University of New Brunswick and the University of Maine before beginning her more-than three decade career in the education field. During her professional career, she served as a teacher, guidance counsellor and vice-principal in the public school system, before transitioning to roles within the post-secondary education system, including her appointment as past Principal with the New Brunswick Community College.

Ms. Robertson’s dedication to life-long learning and community involvement extended to her roles on several professional boards, including a two-term role as chair of the New Brunswick Community College Board of Governors, as well as volunteer involvement in many charitable and business organizations in the Saint John area and beyond.

As an advocate for public education, and an active community leader, Robertson has been recognized with numerous awards including recognition from the Institute of Public Administration Canada (IPAC), the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in Public Administration, the Commemorative Medal For Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee, and most recently, Robertson was named Honorary Lieutenant Colonel of the 37 Signal Regiment (CAF Reserve).

Cheryl Robertson is receiving the Order of New Brunswick for her remarkable contributions to both the advancement of the education system in the province, and her decades of volunteer and charitable work within the community.

 

 

Claude Snow, Caraquet

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Claude Snow of Caraquet came to prominence through his social work on the Acadian Peninsula. His contributions have always had a social component, and the titles of his books attest to that.

He began his career when the current social assistance system first came into being, and he has over 45 years of experience in social work. He has worked in social service agencies in New Brunswick, at the Restigouche Hospital Centre, and at the Worker’s Compensation Board.

Self-employed as a community social worker for some 20 years, he specializes in advocating for the disadvantaged, and offers his professional services free of charge to social assistance recipients, youth with emotional problems, injured workers, female home workers, and advocacy organizations. He was the co-founder and has been the spokesperson for about 20 years for the Comité des 12, an organization dedicated to defending the interests of low-income earners.

Above all, he helps those whose limitations are not visible and who have communication barriers with the public service. Through mediation, negotiation, and writing to the authorities, he manages to resolve disputes and re-establish contact between government officials and citizens.

Through his books, his work with public groups, and his social engagement, he continues to advocate for greater recognition of citizen dignity for the underprivileged. His ideal of a better world is one in which the most disadvantaged are able to access services notable for their fairness, diligence, and dignity.

For his work in advancing social justice causes, including his efforts in defending and raising awareness for society’s most vulnerable and disadvantaged people, we are proud to invest Claude Snow into the Order of New Brunswick.

 

 

Roch Voisine, OC, Saint-Basile

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Few New Brunswickers are better known on the world stage than Roch Voisine. For more than two decades, he has dazzled audiences here in Canada and throughout the world with his voice and the stories he tells through his music.

Mr. Voisine was born and grew up in Saint-Basile, the oldest of three children.

After graduating from the University of Ottawa in 1985, he embarked on what would become his true calling. He first came to national attention as an artist when he sang for more than 50,000 people at La Ronde in Montreal on Canada Day.

He hosted the television program, Top Jeunesse, in 1988, and the following year played Danny Ross, a leading role in the popular television series Lance et Compte. In June 1989, he released his first album Hélène, which in a very short time became a huge success in Quebec and in France.

Hélène propelled him to the top of the charts here in Canada and throughout Europe. His success with Hélène continued on his subsequent albums. His first English album, Kissing Rain of 1996, brought him even more accolades and a whole new audience. His subsequent albums in both French and English have continued to delight his fans throughout the world and his talent has garnered him a number of honours, including Félix, Gemini and Juno awards.

Inducted as a Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by France in 1992, he was named an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1995. Closer to home, Mr. Voisine received an honorary doctorate in music from the University of Moncton, Edmundston Campus, to commemorate his musical accomplishments in May 2007.

Mr. Voisine served as official spokesperson for the Congrès mondial acadien 2014 and has worked to promote the Congrès mondial and his home region throughout the world. The theme song of the Congrès, Mon tour de te bercer, is a duet between him and Natasha St-Pier.

Through his songs in both French and English, he has become an ambassador for Canada and Canadian music across the globe, all the while never forgetting his roots here in the Northwest corner of New Brunswick.

For his contributions to the music industry that represent New Brunswick on a provincial, national and international level, it is our pleasure and our honour to invest Roch Voisine as a member of the Order of New Brunswick.