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News

Presentation of Meritorious Service Decorations (Civil Division)

June 21, 2017

Governor General To Present
49 Meritorious Service Decorations (Civil Division)

OTTAWA—His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, will present the Meritorious Service Decorations (Civil Division) to 49 recipients from various sectors across the country on Friday, June 23, 2017, at 10:30 a.m., during a ceremony at Rideau Hall. On this occasion, the Governor General will present 13 Meritorious Service Crosses and 36 Meritorious Service Medals.

The Meritorious Service Decorations were established to recognize the extraordinary people who make Canada proud. Their acts are often innovative, set an example or model for others to follow, or respond to a particular challenge faced by a community. The best candidates are those who inspire others through their motivation to find solutions to specific and pressing needs or provide an important service to their community or country. For more information or to nominate a deserving Canadian, visit www.merit.gg.ca.   

The ceremony schedule, the list of recipients and their citations, as well as a fact sheet on the Meritorious Service Decorations (Civil Division) are attached.

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Media wishing to cover this event are asked to confirm their attendance with the Rideau Hall Press Office, and should arrive at the Princess Anne Entrance no later than 10:15 a.m. on the day of the ceremony.

Media information:

Melanie Primeau                                 
Rideau Hall Press Office        
613-993-2569
613-618-2691 (cell)                             
melanie.primeau@gg.ca                                   

Follow GGDavidJohnston and RideauHall on Facebook and Twitter. 

CEREMONY SCHEDULE 

10:30 a.m.:

Ceremony begins

 

Remarks by the Governor General

 

Governor General presents the decorations

11:30 a.m.:

Ceremony ends

11:40 a.m.:

Interviews with recipients  


RECIPIENTS
 

MERITORIOUS SERVICE CROSS

Pierre Bouvier, M.S.C.

Encinitas, California (U.S.A)

Charles-André Comeau, M.S.C.

Toluca Lake, California (U.S.A)

Sébastien Lefebvre, M.S.C.

Mont-Royal, Que.

Jean-François Stinco, M.S.C.

Montréal, Que.

Jennifer Coghlan, M.S.C.

Ottawa, Ont.

Nicholas Coghlan, M.S.C.

Ottawa, Ont.

Peter Michael Ford, M.S.C.

Mindemoya, Ont.

Madeleine Juneau, M.S.C.

Montréal, Que.

Joanne Liu, M.S.C.

Montréal, Que.

Martin Matte, M.S.C.

Montréal, Que.

Christopher Graham Mowbray, M.S.C.

Edmonton, Alta.

Céline Muloin, M.S.C.

Montréal, Que.

Jocelyn Paiement, M.S.C.

Montréal, Que.


 Meritorious Service Medal

Christopher Joseph Alfano, M.S.M.

Kingston, Ont.

Julian Armstrong, M.S.M.

Westmount, Que.

John Michael Baigent, M.S.M. (deceased)

Enderby, B.C.

William F. Bieber, M.S.M.

Calgary, Alta.

Sharon L. Bieber, M.S.M.

Calgary, Alta.

John J. Kish, M.S.M. (posthumous)

Calgary, Alta.

Marilyn Yvonne Kish, M.S.M.

Calgary, Alta.

Bruce Vanstone, M.S.M. (posthumous)

Calgary, Alta.

Michael Charles Ward, M.S.M.

Calgary, Alta.

Robert Cullimore Blacker, M.S.M.

Richmond, B.C.

Michelle Bruce, M.S.M.

Gibsons, B.C.

Jean-François Claude, M.S.M.

Ottawa, Ont.

Lise Cormier, M.S.M.

L’Assomption, Que.

Patricia Crossley, M.S.M.

Victoria, B.C.

Rod Crossley, M.S.M.

Victoria, B.C.

Stanley Diamond, M.S.M.

Côte-Saint-Luc, Que.

Paul Dickson, M.S.M.

Ottawa, Ont.

Tina Fedeski, M.S.M.

Ottawa, Ont.

Georgette Fry, M.S.M.

Kingston, Ont.

Jennifer Jones, O.M., M.S.M.

Oro-Medonte, Ont.

Brigadier-General Vincent Kennedy, O.M.M., M.S.M., C.D. (Retired)

Brockville, Ont.

Inspector Andrew Stefan Koczerzuk, M.S.M. (Retired)

Kingsville, Ont.

Howe Lee, M.S.M., C.D.

Burnaby, B.C.

Major-General Terrence Liston, M.B.E., M.S.M., C.D. (Retired)

Montréal, Que.

 

David James MacIntyre, M.S.M.

White Rock, B.C.

James P. “Oyster Jim” Martin, M.S.M.

Ucluelet, B.C.

John Alexander McNee, M.S.M.

Ottawa, Ont.

Jackie Milne, M.S.M.

Hay River, N.W.T.

Valerie Nelson, M.S.M.

Edmonton, Alta.

Sherman Olson, M.S.M. (posthumous)

Maple Ridge, B.C.

Michael Ruta, M.S.M.

Winnipeg, Man.

Judy Servay, M.S.M.

Montréal, Que.

Kenneth Setterington, M.S.M.

Toronto, Ont.

William Shurniak, S.O.M., M.S.M.

Limerick, Sask.

Les Voakes, M.S.M.

Almonte, Ont.

Constable Rico Wong, M.S.M. (Retired)

Vancouver, B.C.


CITATIONS
 

MERITORIOUS SERVICE CROSS 


Pierre Bouvier, M.S.C.
Encinitas, California (U.S.A)
Charles-André Comeau, M.S.C.
Toluca Lake, California (U.S.A)
David Desrosiers, M.S.C.
Montréal, Quebec
Sébastien Lefebvre, M.S.C.
Mont-Royal, Quebec
Jean-François Stinco, M.S.C.
Montréal, Quebec 

Through their foundation, the members of Simple Plan, a world-renowned rock band, have made it their mission to help youth in need. Appreciated for both their philanthropy and community involvement, they actively support numerous charitable projects, lending their star power and giving of their time, both in Canada and abroad.

The Meritorious Service Cross presented to Mr. Desrosiers will be presented to him at a later date. 

Jennifer Coghlan, M.S.C.
Nicholas Coghlan, M.S.C.
Ottawa, Ontario

In 2013, when Canadian Ambassador Nicholas Coghlan and his spouse Jennifer were posted to South Sudan, there was a sudden, violent ethnic uprising. After the Canadian embassy closed, the Coghlans stayed behind, working from their truck outside of the Juba International Airport to help over 300 Canadians flee the country. As a result of their commitment, many lives were saved. 

Peter Michael Ford, M.S.C.
Mindemoya, Ontario 

Physician Peter Michael Ford is a determined advocate for effective and compassionate care, and a leading-edge researcher into the transmission of infectious diseases. At a time when HIV/AIDS was viewed with fear and stigma, he established the first clinic in Kingston to treat patients of the burgeoning epidemic. His professional, scientific approach led to positive change in HIV/AIDS treatment within the penitentiary system as well as in the larger community.

Madeleine Juneau, M.S.C.
Montréal, Quebec 

Sister Madeleine Juneau is the general manager of Maison Saint-Gabriel, a museum and historic site with a focus on teaching the history of New France. Thanks to her hard work, this institution is now recognized as a National Historic Site of Canada. The growth of this tourist site is a major driver of economic development, helping to revitalize southwest Montréal.

Joanne Liu, M.S.C.
Montréal, Quebec

As the international president of Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières, Dr. Joanne Liu demonstrated exceptional leadership in running the organization’s clinical and epidemiological response to the largest Ebola outbreak in history. She advocated for the rights of sick people, inspired the teams on the ground with frequent visits, and called for a global humanitarian response to contain, control and mitigate the epidemic.

Martin Matte, M.S.C.
Montréal, Quebec

Unable to find housing adapted to the needs of his brother, who had sustained a head injury, Martin Matte created a foundation to help those living with a similar condition. By funding the construction of several Maison Martin-Matte locations across Quebec, the foundation has given those with a traumatic brain injury a home all their own, encouraging increased independence and rehabilitation. 

Chief Superintendent Craig J. Callens, O.O.M, M.S.C.
Vancouver, British Columbia
Andréanne Emard, M.S.C.
The Hague, Netherlands
Sergeant Cristopher Gastaldo, M.S.C.
Ottawa, Ontario
Superintendent James R. D. Gresham, M.O.M., M.S.C.
Vancouver, British Columbia
Corporal Benoit J. S. Maure, M.S.C.
Ottawa, Ontario
Sergeant Major Alan Daniel McCambridge, M.S.C.
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
Christopher Graham Mowbray, M.S.C.
Edmonton, Alberta
Inspector Trent Rolfe, M.O.M., M.S.C.
Vancouver, British Columbia 

Within hours of learning of journalist Melissa Fung’s kidnapping in Afghanistan, the RCMP assembled this multidisciplinary team of volunteers to investigate and secure her release. Despite the hostile environment, this team overcame many political and cultural obstacles, and established critical alliances with military and government organizations. They cultivated vital intelligence, processed critical leads and gathered quality evidence, which eventually pressured kidnappers to release Ms. Fung 28 days later.

The Meritorious Service Crosses awarded to Chief Superintendent Callens, Ms. Emard, Sergeant Gastaldo, Superintendent Gresham, Corporal Maure, Sergeant Major McCambridge and Inspector Rolfe were awarded to them at a previous ceremony.

Céline Muloin, M.S.C.
Jocelyn Paiement, M.S.C.
Montréal, Quebec

Céline Muloin and Jocelyn Paiement founded Tel-jeunes, a free helpline accessible throughout Quebec and available around the clock to support young people struggling with personal problems. To date, this support organization has listened to, counselled and offered guidance to nearly 1.7 million youths by telephone, online or via text message, helping them to deal with a wide range of issues. 


Meritorious Service Medal
 


Christopher Joseph Alfano, M.S.M.
Kingston, Ontario

Christopher Joseph Alfano implemented an intergenerational music program at La Salle Secondary School in Kingston to share his love of music and to study its impact on students ranging in age from 14 to 84 years. His research has documented the positive effects of music on his students’ mental health and well-being, and has bridged generational barriers through collaborative performances.

Julian Armstrong, M.S.M.
Westmount, Quebec 

A food historian, journalist and cookbook author for over 45 years, Julian Armstrong is renowned for introducing English-speaking Canada to the regional cuisine of Quebec. Her passion for culinary traditions and innovations, as well as her flair as a storyteller, have enhanced readers’ appreciation of Québécois gastronomy and promoted greater understanding between our nation’s linguistic cultures.

John Michael Baigent, M.S.M. (deceased)
Enderby, British Columbia 

As founding executive director of Partners in the Horn of Africa (PIHA), John Baigent created a new model for working with developing communities in Ethiopia. Local groups are partners in each project, actively involved in prioritizing their needs and supplying at least 15 per cent of the resources in either cash or labour. The result is new schools, wells, libraries and bridges—and communities with the skills and commitment to maintain them.

The Meritorious Service Medal awarded to the late John Baigent will be presented to his son, Mr. Andrew Baigent.

William F. Bieber, M.S.M.
Sharon L. Bieber, M.S.M.
John J. Kish, M.S.M. (posthumous)
Marilyn Yvonne Kish, M.S.M.
Bruce Vanstone, M.S.M. (posthumous)
Michael Charles Ward, M.S.M.
Calgary, Alberta

Driven by a desire to make a difference in their community, William and Sharon Bieber, John and Marilyn Kish and reverends Bruce Vanstone and Michael Ward founded the Calgary Urban Project Society. For over 30 years, this non-profit organization has been helping those most in need by providing health care, education and housing. This assistance has enabled numerous adults and families to overcome the vicious cycle of poverty and to regain stability and dignity in their personal lives.

The Meritorious Service Medal awarded to the late John Kish will be presented to his son, Mr. Bradley Kish.  

The Meritorious Service Medal awarded to the late Bruce Vanstone will be presented to his daughter, Ms. Kathryn Howe.

Robert Cullimore Blacker, M.S.M.
Richmond, British Columbia 

As the prime mover behind Write2Read, Robert Cullimore Blacker helped bring permanent and up-to-date libraries to rural First Nations communities across British Columbia. His ability to connect volunteer organizations, socially responsible businesses, and First Nations resulted in donations of trailers, books, computers and high-speed broadband connections used to increase literacy and internet access in isolated communities.

Michelle Bruce, M.S.M.
Gibsons, British Columbia 

A champion of traditional Celtic music and of modern Canadian composers, Michelle Bruce is a dynamic force on the West Coast music scene. Through the Coast String Fiddlers and the Sunshine Coast Community Orchestra, as well as through many smaller ensembles, she has shared the joy of music with West Coast performers young and old for over 20 years.

Jean-François Claude, M.S.M.
Ottawa, Ontario

After being diagnosed with depression, Jean-François Claude became an advocate for mental health. To overcome the stigma associated with this illness, he created The Men’s D.E.N., a blog for men to share messages of hope and to encourage others to talk about their experiences. He has since developed courses on mental health in the workplace and initiated the Men’s Mental Health Awareness Day in June in cities across Canada.       

Lise Cormier, M.S.M.
L’Assomption, Quebec 

A leader in the field of mosaiculture, Lise Cormier created Mosaïcultures Internationales, a major event that showcases horticultural exhibitions on the world stage. This event is a key economic driver for the host cities and helps to promote Canada internationally.

Patricia Crossley, M.S.M.
Rod Crossley, M.S.M.
Victoria, British Columbia 

Patricia and Rod Crossley established the TEMBO-Kenya Community Development Society to improve the quality of life in rural Kenya. Through TEMBO, the Crossleys have made significant improvements to existing infrastructure and have reduced the incidence of water-borne diseases. Thanks to their scholarship program, the number of teenage girls graduating from high school has dramatically increased to 97 per cent.

Stanley Diamond, M.S.M.
Côte-Saint-Luc, Quebec 

Stanley Diamond is a groundbreaking researcher in genealogy, an author, and the executive director of Jewish Records Indexing – Poland, a searchable online database. His commitment to uncovering family histories obscured by war and upheaval has paved the way for countless people of European Jewish ancestry to trace their roots and track down surviving relatives.

Paul Dickson, M.S.M.
Ottawa, Ontario 

In 2012, Paul Dickson was deployed to Kabul, Afghanistan, as a strategic analyst with the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) J2 Red Team, which was responsible for intelligence. Within months, he became the first civilian and the first Canadian to serve as division chief for the Red Team, supporting his commanders on intelligence questions ranging from the threat of factionalism within the Afghan government to the potential merits of fracturing the Taliban. His efforts contributed substantially to Canadian and allied mission effectiveness.

Tina Fedeski, M.S.M.
Ottawa, Ontario 

As the executive and artistic director of OrKidstra, Tina Fedeski puts instruments into kids’ hands and smiles on their faces. In addition to providing free after-school music lessons to children from low-income families, the orchestra program cultivates teamwork and responsibility, and fosters the self-confidence that comes with achievement.

Georgette Fry, M.S.M.
Kingston, Ontario 

Musician Georgette Fry believes that we all love to sing—whether or not we can harmonize or read music—so she started Shout Sister!, a choir open to women of all skill levels.  Today, there are 21 chapters across Ontario. Each choir raises funds for charitable causes, supports community events and provides members with the joy of song and sisterhood.

Jennifer Jones, O.M., M.S.M.
Oro-Medonte, Ontario 

Jennifer Jones is one of Canada’s top curlers. She has dominated the sport at every level, and was the first-ever skip in Olympic history to go undefeated on her way to earning a gold medal. Renowned for her positivity on and off the sheet, she is also a lawyer, as well as a proud Manitoban and mother. She combines grace with competitive spirit, and is a role model not only for aspiring athletes, but for all Canadians. 

Brigadier-General Vincent Kennedy, O.M.M., M.S.M., C.D. (Retired)
Brockville, Ontario 

Retired Brigadier-General Vincent Kennedy was instrumental in planning and organizing the Princess Patricia Canadian Light Infantry’s (PPCLI) centennial celebrations in 2014. His vision was realized with a cross-Canada relay race, a travelling exhibition of historical relics, and a tour of European battlefields upon which many of the Regiment’s first members lost their lives. His decade of planning ensured the Regiment’s storied history was celebrated and preserved for a new generation.

Inspector Andrew Stefan Koczerzuk, M.S.M. (Retired)
Kingsville, Ontario 

RCMP inspector Andrew Koczerzuk was critical to the success of the 2012 Missing Women Commission of Inquiry. He led the RCMP liaison team in collecting volumes of evidence and conducting sensitive interviews with fellow officers. His dedication ensured the transparency of the findings and helped the commission craft meaningful recommendations to improve social services and police investigations into missing persons.

Howe Lee, M.S.M., C.D.
Burnaby, British Columbia 

With gentle persuasion and steely determination, former reservist Howe Lee spearheaded the creation of the Chinese Canadian Military Museum in Vancouver. It showcases the contributions made by Chinese-Canadian veterans during the First and Second world wars and the Korean War, and ensures that their stories are recognized as part of our country’s military heritage.

Major-General Terrence Liston, M.B.E., M.S.M., C.D. (Retired)
Montréal, Quebec 

Retired Major-General Terrence Liston demonstrated outstanding leadership in establishing the Société du Patrimoine de la Citadelle et du Royal 22e Régiment, as well as in planning the celebrations marking the 100th anniversary of the regiment. Tireless in his dedication to improving knowledge of French-Canadian military history, he is a model of generosity. His many media appearances have greatly helped to enhance his regiment’s reputation.

David James MacIntyre, M.S.M.
White Rock, British Columbia 

David James MacIntyre was a driving force behind the creation of the Drug Treatment Court of Vancouver. By using a problem-solving approach to deal with offences that are motivated by drug addiction, the Court helps to break the cycle of drug dependency and criminal activity, and improves the chances of rehabilitation for offenders. 

James P. “Oyster Jim” Martin, M.S.M.
Ucluelet, British Columbia 

Oyster farmer James Martin wanted everyone to witness first-hand the splendour of the juncture between the rainforest and ocean he experienced every day. Leading a team of volunteers, he developed the Wild Pacific Trail, a 12-kilometre stretch of land open to all visitors. His efforts have since transformed the local economy, drawing thousands of nature lovers to the area each year.

John Alexander McNee, M.S.M.
Ottawa, Ontario 

After a 30-year career in Canada’s foreign service, John Alexander McNee was appointed the inaugural secretary-general of the Global Centre for Pluralism. His leadership in operational excellence and financial sustainability has turned the Centre into a hub for research and education that foster the exchange of ideas underpinning the values of a pluralistic society.

Jackie Milne, M.S.M.
Hay River, Northwest Territories 

With global warming affecting traditional hunting grounds, Jackie Milne saw a need to increase access to fresh produce in Canada’s northern communities. She established the Northern Farm Training Institute to teach the local population about sustainable, environmentally sound farming practices that would supplement traditional diets. Since 2013, the institute has trained nearly 100 farmers from across the north, with Indigenous students making up more than half of the program’s graduates. 

Valerie Nelson, M.S.M.
Edmonton, Alberta 

Valerie Nelson founded Familias Saludables, a non-profit organization in Honduras. Compelled by a desire to fight the spread of HIV on Roatan Island, she has promoted HIV testing clinics and prevention programs to raise awareness among the local population of the vectors of transmission for this disease. Thanks to her efforts, the incidence of mother-to-child transmission of HIV has decreased on the island. 

Sherman Olson, M.S.M. (posthumous)
Maple Ridge, British Columbia 

Sherman Olson envisioned the Trans Canada Trail as a symbol of a unified Canada, one that stretched across the land from sea to sea to sea. A founding member and president of the Trans Canada Trail Foundation from 1995 to 2001, he motivated thousands of volunteers by harnessing their energy to keep the project moving forward. Today, the Trail stands 90 per cent complete, thanks in no small part to his passion and enthusiasm.

The Meritorious Service Medal awarded to the late Sherman Olson will be presented to his daughter, Ms. Nancy Olson-Beaulieu.

Michael Ruta, M.S.M.
Winnipeg, Manitoba 

In 1997, Michael Ruta established the Winnipeg Minor Basketball Association, a structured league for Winnipeg youth living in both urban and rural areas. Today, the league is a fixture of civic life that provides thousands of young athletes with an opportunity to participate in this sport and to lead healthy, active lives.

Judy Servay, M.S.M.
Montréal, Quebec 

Judy Servay established Robin des Bois, a restaurant that donates all of its profits to local charities that combat solitude, social isolation and poverty among society’s most vulnerable members. For more than 10 years, Ms. Servay’s tireless efforts have led to the social reintegration of a great number of Montréalers in need.

Kenneth Setterington, M.S.M.
Toronto, Ontario 

A storyteller with a lifelong passion for the written word, Kenneth Setterington has been the driving force behind the TD Summer Reading Club that started in Toronto and has spread across the country. This popular program has encouraged countless children to keep reading over the summer holidays, thereby retaining and improving their reading skills.

William Shurniak, S.O.M., M.S.M.
Limerick, Saskatchewan 

William Shurniak created the Shurniak Art Gallery so that he could share his world-class art collection with others in his community. Since opening its doors, the gallery has drawn tourists from around the globe and inspired a multitude of regional and national artists by giving them an opportunity to showcase their creations.

Les Voakes, M.S.M.
Almonte, Ontario 

Founder and former executive director of Youth Centres Canada, Les Voakes has worked to extend the outreach of Ontario’s youth centres. In addition to fostering self-esteem among young people, these centres give them the opportunity to gain the tools they need to grow into responsible adults capable of reaching their full potential.

Constable Kimberly Anne Ashford, M.B., M.S.M. (Retired)
Vancouver, British Columbia
Corporal Darrel Vincent Gyorfi, M.S.M. (Retired)
Nanaimo, British Columbia
Leo Kwan Yue Ma, M.S.M.
Vancouver, British Columbia
Sergeant John Brian MacDonald, M.S.M.
Langley, British Columbia
Constable William Yun-Ming Ng, M.S.M.
Surrey, British Columbia
Constable Rico Wong, M.S.M. (Retired)
Vancouver, British Columbia 

In 2000, constables Ashford, Ng and Wong, Corporal Gyorfi, Sergeant MacDonald, and civilian member Ma represented the RCMP within an international law enforcement team tracking heroin traffickers in Fiji. Their successful covert operation led to the capture of seven traffickers and the seizure of 350 kilograms of heroin destined for Canadian markets. Equally impressive, these members undertook their work during a political coup and in a hostile environment at great peril to themselves.

The Meritorious Service Medals awarded to Constable Ashford, Corporal Gyorfi, Mr. Ma, Sergeant MacDonald and Constable Ng were awarded to them at a previous ceremony. 


MERITORIOUS SERVICE DECORATIONS (CIVIL DIVISION) FACT SHEET

Meritorious Service Decorations recognize individuals who have performed an exceptional deed or activity over a limited period of time that has brought honour to their community or to Canada.

Eligibility and Nomination

Any Canadian or non-Canadian whose accomplishments or activities over a limited period of time have demonstrated an outstanding level of service or set an exemplary standard of achievement and have brought honour or benefit to Canada can be recognized.

Anyone may nominate an individual for the Civil Division of the Meritorious Service Decorations. Nominations and awards may be made posthumously, but nominations for activities that occurred prior to June 1984, the year in which the honour was first created, are not accepted.

Members of the public are invited to submit nominations throughout the year at www.merit.gg.ca. Nominations will be received by the Chancellery of Honours and reviewed by the MSD (Civil Division) Advisory Committee, which will then make recommendations to the governor general. All nominations are kept confidential to respect privacy and to avoid disappointment if the nominee is not selected. Nominators and others involved in the process are asked to respect this policy.

Description

Created by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the Meritorious Service Decorations recognize Canadians for exceptional deeds that bring honour to our country. The cross was originally created in 1984, for members of the military. In 1991, a medal was added to the military division, and both the cross and medal were introduced for civilians.

The Meritorious Service Cross is a silver Greek cross, ends splayed and convexed, bearing the Royal Crown: on one side appears a maple leaf within a circle and a laurel wreath between the arms, and on the other appears the Royal Cypher, and within a double circle the inscription MERITORIOUS SERVICE MÉRITOIRE.

The Meritorious Service Medal is a circular silver medal bearing the Royal Crown: on one side of which appears the design of the Cross, and on the other appears the Royal Cypher, and within a double circle the inscription MERITORIOUS SERVICE MÉRITOIRE.