Intergovernmental and International Relations

REVISED / Order of New Brunswick recipients announced (04/08/02)

NB 833

Aug. 2, 2004

EDITOR'S NOTE: Revised versions of the biographies are attached.

TRACADIE-SHEILA (CNB) -- Premier Bernard Lord today announced the names of the nine recipients of the Order of New Brunswick. The Order of New Brunswick is the highest honorary distinction awarded by the Province.

The premier took advantage of the New Brunswick Day celebrations to reveal the names of the recipients of the Order of New Brunswick for 2004. The premier's announcement came as Lt.-Gov. Herménégilde Chiasson signed the Order-in-Council to make this year's appointments official.

The recipients are :

- Paul Boucher, Edmundston
- Fred Cogswell, Fredericton
- Roland Maurice, Moncton
- Frank McKenna, Apohaqui
- Frederick F. Moar, Miramichi
- Matilda Murdoch, Miramichi
- Linna O'Hara, Stanley
- Brenda Robertson, Sussex
- Gérard Saint-Cyr, Caraquet

"It is important to officially recognize the exceptional contribution of people with initiative, compassion, and those who have worked tirelessly to build modern-day New Brunswick," Lord said.

The nine new appointees will receive the Order of New Brunswick at a ceremony to be held this fall at Old Government House in Fredericton. These new appointments bring to 29 the number of New Brunswickers inducted into the select group of recipients of the order.

The Order of New Brunswick was established in 2000 to recognize New Brunswickers who have demonstrated excellence and achievement in a particular area and who have made an outstanding contribution to the social, cultural, or economic well-being of our province. The first official ceremony was held in 2002.

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EDITOR'S NOTE: The biographies of the nine recipients appear below. MEDIA CONTACT: Bruno Godin, Director of Communications, Intergovernmental and International Relations, (506) 444-4594.

Paul E. Boucher

Paul E. Boucher, a native of Edmundston, has worked for the provincial government for more than 30 years in the field of forestry. Throughout his brilliant career, he has worked relentlessly to protect the forests.

In 1950, right after earning his Bachelor of Forestry degree from the University of New Brunswick, he began his career with the provincial Department of Lands and Mines, now known as the Department of Natural Resources.

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He served as an Assistant District Ranger, then District Ranger, and became the first Director of the Forest Protection Division in 1977. Two years later, he was appointed Regional Resource Manager for the Northwest. In 1983, he ended his career as special consultant to the Deputy Minister.

In addition to his professional commitments, Boucher has been very active with many organizations. He was, in turn, president of the Association scout du district d'Edmundston, the Ligue du Sacré-Cœur of the Notre-Dame des Sept Douleurs parish, two home-and-school associations, and the Edmundston Lions' club, as well as being an active member of many other organizations.

In the early 1970s, he started the Centre écologique du Madawaska project. Thanks to his efforts, many thousands of students in the Northwest were able to learn about ecology, the environment, and the protection and conservation of natural resources.
In 1996, the Université de Moncton, Edmundston campus, awarded him an honorary doctorate in Forestry.

For his untiring work for wildlife protection and his unlimited commitment within his community, Paul E. Boucher is appointed a member of the Order of New Brunswick.

Dr. Fred Cogswell (Posthumous)

Dr. Fred Cogswell made an outstanding contribution to New Brunswick as a professor, scholar, editor, publisher, translator and writer and friend of poets and writers. For more than 30 years, he taught in the English Department at the University of New Brunswick and influenced and supported generations of students with his knowledge, humanity and vision.

In addition to his academic work, Cogswell made an enormous contribution to publishing in Canada. He published more than 300 books of poetry. As founder of Fiddlehead Poetry Books and editor of Fiddlehead magazine, Cogswell was a pioneer figure in English-language publishing in New Brunswick. He gave a voice to many who would otherwise never be heard throughout the land.

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In his own right, Cogswell was a prolific poet and writer and published over 40 books of his own poetry, with four unpublished manuscripts to be published posthumously. His first poems were published in the 1930s, and he wrote prolifically to the end of his life. A master of poetic form and the cadences of the language, he practiced the poet's art and craft of language in an exemplary manner.

A unique contribution is Fred Cogswell's translation of French speaking poets in Canada. He co-edited Rêves inachevés, a selection of contemporary Acadian writers, and translated the poems into English in the anthology Unfinished Dreams. His translations are faithful to the originals. He captured the essence of the poems, rendering them into the appropriate idiom in English. Over the last year of his life, he continued to concentrate on translating the works of several leading Acadian poets.

For his enormous contribution, the Canadian publishers honoured him in 2000. At age 86, Cogswell continued to write, translate and publish poetry. He was a member of the Order of Canada, the winner of the Alden Nowlan Prize for Excellence in the Literary Arts (English) awarded by the Province of New Brunswick, a Life Member of the League of Canadian Poets, a Life member of the Canadian Publishers Association, the recipient of several honorary degrees and the Medal for the 125th Anniversary of Canada.

Over the years, Dr. Fred Cogswell earned the recognition of his peers throughout Canada. Today, it is the province's turn to recognize his enormous contribution by awarding him the Order of New Brunswick. He passed away on June 20, 2004, four days after the Order of New Brunswick Advisory Council selected him to be a 2004 recipient.

Dr. Roland Maurice

Dr. Roland Maurice, a native of Kent County and a graduate of the Université de Montréal, devoted 38 years to the practice of medicine. He worked in the Shediac area for six years as a general practitioner, then returned to university for training to become an otorhinolaryngology specialist.

He joined the medical team at the Hôtel-Dieu de Moncton and the Moncton City Hospital in 1965, and became the first doctor to do ear microsurgery in eastern Canada. This specialized and very delicate operation made it possible to restore the hearing of people who had become deaf in adulthood. His exceptional contribution to the advancement of this new surgery earned him recognition in Who's Who International in Science and the Albert Einstein Intelligence Society in the early 1970s.

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Maurice is a great friend of the Université de Moncton. He was a member of the Board of Governors, president of the alumni association, and a member of many other committees at the university. His greatest contribution, however, was the establishment in 1976 of the Clément Cormier scholarship fund, which he presided over until 2002, having served the Université de Moncton as a volunteer for 25 years.

In acknowledgment of his distinguished service, the Université de Moncton awarded him the medal of honour of the Board of Governors in 1998.

Since his retirement in 1993, Maurice has taken up sculpture. He has donated some of his work to various institutions, including the Oncology Centre at the Dr. Georges-L. Dumont Hospital. He also gave 15 acres of marshland to the Nature Conservancy of Canada to be protected in its natural state in perpetuity.

Dr. Roland Maurice is receiving the Order of New Brunswick for his contribution to medicine and his philanthropy to his community.

Frank McKenna

Following a brilliant career as a lawyer in the Miramichi, Francis Joseph (Frank) McKenna was elected to the New Brunswick Legislature in 1982. Three years later, he became the Leader of the Liberal Party of New Brunswick. In 1987, under his leadership, his party swept the province by winning 58 seats.

He was sworn in as the 27th Premier of New Brunswick on Oct. 27, 1987 and his government was re-elected in 1991 and 1995. He retired from the New Brunswick political scene in 1997.

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In his decade of service as New Brunswick Premier, McKenna worked to raise the profile of the province on the national stage. He focused on creating jobs, promoting New Brunswick business and attracting new investment to the province.

He initiated a sweeping overhaul of the government in order to reduce the number and size of departments. He also reformed the province's social programs as well as the education and health care sectors. His numerous accomplishments for the province have been recognized provincially, nationally and internationally.

McKenna is currently counsel with the Atlantic law firm of McInnes Cooper. He devotes his considerable energies to the law firm, numerous corporate directorships, volunteer activities and his long-time passion - continued economic development of the Atlantic region.

Frank McKenna is receiving the Order of New Brunswick for his prolific career in both the public and private sectors.

Frederick F. Moar

Frederick F. Moar, of Miramichi, a veteran of the Normandy landing and with a distinguished wartime service in Europe, was the former Honorary Colonel of the Second Battalion, Royal New Brunswick Regiment (North Shore). During World War II, he was awarded the Commander and Chief Certificate by General Sir Bernard Montgomery.

Moar has been a member of the Royal Canadian Legion, Branch #3, for many years. He is also a life Member of Branch #3 Royal Canadian Legion. He has contributed hours of work in support of veterans receiving pensions and also in support of their spouses. Since 1984, he has worked with three Members of Parliament and the Department of Veterans Affairs to provide the best possible support and service to the veterans and their families.

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For the past 18 years, Colonel Moar has spent at least one day of each week in his MP's office where he fields almost all inquiries related to veterans. He has worked diligently for veterans with disabilities attributable to wartime service providing counseling and advising them and their families of the benefits available to them.

Moar was the co-ordinator of the program Remembrance Day at the local schools. He organized a group that in 1987 co-ordinated the erection of a monument in Carpiquet, France, to the Fallen of the North Shore Regiment as well as a monument to the Regiment's Fallen in Bathurst, N.B.

Moar was awarded Canada's 125th Anniversary medal and the Golden Jubilee Anniversary Medal for volunteer service. He also served as president of the North Shore Regiment Veteran's Association and served as the New Brunswick representative of the Royal Canadian Army Cadets. In addition to his military involvement, he has been very active in numerous community organizations and was awarded the Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendation and the Paul Harris Medal from Rotary International for volunteerism.

It is for a life devoted to his peers, all veterans, that Colonel Frederick F. Moar has received the Order of New Brunswick.

Matilda Murdoch

Matilda Murdoch was born in January 1920 and still resides in the former village of Loggieville, now part of the City of Miramichi. When she was eight, her father gave her a fiddle and later that year, through her own determination, she played her first tune. Since then, she has become an icon in fiddle circles throughout North America.

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Murdoch has been part of the cultural community of Miramichi and New Brunswick for most of her 84 years. She played her first public performance in 1931 at the age of 11 and gained popularity on a local basis that is still heavily evident today. Her style of playing has been admired and studied by not only local fiddlers but also fiddlers from throughout North America and more recently from Ireland. Entertainer Don Messer was one of those many admirers. He invited Matilda to play on the popular Don Messer Show and he also recorded several of her tunes to show his respect for her music.

In the 1970s, she recorded two albums of her own compositions that were specially arranged and set up for step dancing teacher Buster Brown, from the Ottawa Valley. These albums are still being used today across Canada in step dance competitions for beginner, intermediate and championship classes. She continues to compose new music today that is just as inspiring as her old tunes.

She has been an avid supporter of music in all its forms, and as a fiddler, Murdoch has garnered regional, national and international recognition for her abilities as a composer, player and teacher. She was elected into the North American Fiddle Hall of Fame and the New Brunswick Country Music Hall of Fame. As well, her recent honour in 2002 as the recipient of the Stomping Tom Connors Award by the East Coast Music Association is a testament to her achievements in the cultural community of New Brunswick, and her contribution to its ongoing growth and success. She was also honoured by the Mayor and Council of the City of Miramichi in 2002 by being awarded the "Freeman of the City".

Matilda Murdoch has reached and surpassed the definition of success. Organizations and musicians have recognized her on a worldwide scale. It is for her lifetime devotion to the music that she has received the Order of New Brunswick.

Linna O'Hara

Born in 1904 in Welsford, Linna O'Hara dedicated 23 years of her life to teaching in the villages of Tay Falls, Grand Falls, Millville, Red Rock, South Portage and Stanley.


O'Hara graduated from the Provincial Normal School in Fredericton in 1923 and attended the Agricultural School in Sussex.

Always providing her students with a new learning experience, her broad perspective of education still serves as a model for young teachers today. She inspired students to perform to their full potential while making learning fun.

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When not teaching, O'Hara and her late husband Alton raised a family of 15 children.
She instilled the value of a good education in her children and her students, and is considered an archetype in the areas of teaching and parenting.

O'Hara also found time to be an active member of her community. She is a member of the St. Patrick's Roman Catholic Church in Stanley and served as president of Catholic Women's League and the N.B. Women's Institute. She is a member of the Retired Teachers Association of New Brunswick, the Golden Age Club in Stanley, and the Canadian Irish Cultural Society. She also volunteered with the Kindness Club and Canadian Red Cross.

O'Hara received the Strathcona Prize for Physical Education. In 1967, she received a Canadian Centennial Medal with the citation: "In recognition of valuable service to the Nation". This year she observes her own centennial when she turned 100 on August 19.
Linna O'Hara received the Order of New Brunswick for her contributions to the teaching profession and her exemplary citizenship.

Brenda Robertson

Brenda Robertson is a pioneer for women in politics in New Brunswick. She was born in Mount Hebron, a rural community outside of Sussex, in 1929. She received a Bachelor of Science degree from the Mount Allison University. She first worked as a home economist before entering public life.

Robertson was the first woman elected to the New Brunswick Legislature in 1967 as the MLA for Albert County. She was also the first woman appointed to the provincial cabinet in 1970. She was re-elected four times before her appointment to the Senate of Canada in December 1984.

During her 17 years in the New Brunswick Legislature, she held a number of portfolios; Minister of Youth, Minister of Social Services, Minister of Health and Minister responsible for Social Reform.

As Minister of Health, she introduced the Extra-Mural Hospital, which has become an important component of the New Brunswick health-care system, enabling people to receive home health- care services.

In the Senate, she served as Chairperson of both the Standing Committee on Privileges, Standing Rules and Orders, and the Fisheries Committees and vice chair of the Internal Economy, Budgets and Administration and of the Social Affairs, Science and Technology Committees. Robertson was also a senior member of Michael Kirby's committee on the study of health care in Canada.

Robertson received a honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters from Mount St. Vincent University in 1973, and an honorary degree of Doctor of Social Science from l'Université de Moncton in 1983.

She is known for her tremendous work ethic and commitment to serve New Brunswickers and her country. Brenda Robertson received the Order of New Brunswick for her long and successful career, and is an example for all people in the province and in Canada of extraordinary dedication in public service.

Gérard Saint-Cyr

Gérard Saint-Cyr has made a significant contribution to the development of the fisheries sector in New Brunswick. A native of Sherbrooke with a degree in fisheries from Laval University, Mr. Saint-Cyr came to Shippagan in 1956 to take up the position of District Chief of the Inspection Branch of the federal Department of Fisheries.

In 1964, he accepted the position of Director of the New Brunswick School of Fisheries in Caraquet, a position he held until 1985. Under his leadership, the school experienced an almost unlimited provincial, national, and international expansion. He was responsible for the first aquatic safety program in Canada, on-board technical training courses, and courses in oyster culture, navigation, marine machinery and fishing gear, nautical lifesaving, first aid, and industrial safety.

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Saint-Cyr was also one of the forces behind the establishment of the trawler captains' association and the first professional fishermen's association in 1968.

In the context of his duties, he participated in many delegations designed to seek out and offer fisheries expertise in Russia, Norway, Scotland, France, Germany, the West Indies, and Venezuela.

He received an honorary doctorate in fisheries management from the Université de Moncton, Shippagan campus in 1992, and was named a Member of the Order of Canada in 2002. He became a Chevalier of the Ordre de la Pléïade of the Francophonie in 1994.
Gérard Saint-Cyr is receiving the Order of New Brunswick for his role as a pioneer in fisheries development in New Brunswick, the Atlantic region, and Canada.

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