Susan Montague   2006 President's Medal Recipient

There are a handful of words customarily used by Susan Montague’s colleagues when they describe her contributions to the University of New Brunswick – professional, diplomatic, hard-working, adept, loyal, dedicated and shrewd.  Susan has set a standard during her 25 years at UNB for which many of us strive but which few of us will reach.  She works incredibly long hours, she excels at projects of monumental stature, she is tireless, she never shies from challenge, and she is the epitome of collaboration and diplomacy.

At the top of the list of Susan’s contributions to the University of New Brunswick is the key role she has played in securing more than $150 million dollars in charitable contributions for the institution.  Susan managed both the Venture Campaign, which exceeded its $30 million goal by more than $10 million, and the Forging our Futures Campaign, which will exceed its $80 million goal before she leaves UNB in June.

A trusted advisor to four UNB presidents and a member of the University’s senior executive group, Susan was seconded from her directorship in 1998-99 to provide direction and leadership to UNB’s Renewal Process.  Susan is also the author of A Pictorial History of the University of New Brunswick, a 300-page volume with more than 500 illustrations which begins with a reproduction of the University’s original charter.  Its nine chapters, which abound with archival and contemporary photos, present UNB people and events.  The book explores the growth and historical richness of Canada’s oldest public university.

Susan has an outstanding record of professional service. As a long-time member of CASE, the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, she has been active at all levels of the organization and a member of numerous committees.  Susan’s record of service to the Canadian Council for the Advancement of Education is equally impressive.  She has served as the organization’s president and on its board of directors.  Susan’s contributions have been publicly recognized by both of these professional organizations.  In 1997 she was presented with CCAE’s Distinguished Service Award which is the Council’s top honour presented to individuals who have shown on-going dedication to post-secondary education, and in 2002, Susan received the Eleanor Collier Award from CASE for outstanding career performance and professional service.  

An honour of which Susan is most proud is her Honorary Membership in the UNB Associated Alumni which she was presented with in 2003 in recognition of her outstanding service to the Association and the University.  She has devoted countless hours to the work of the Associated Alumni and has been a forceful advocate on the Association’s behalf. 

A graduate of Bryn Mawr College and the University of Pennsylvania, Susan began her career at UNB in 1981 as a publications associate in the Department of Public Relations and Information.  In 1982, she assumed the position of information officer and editor of UNB Perspectives.  Two years later, she became the director of Public Relations and Information.  In 1987, Susan was appointed UNB’s Director of Development, a position she will hold until her retirement in June 2006.  During that time, the name of the office has evolved from Development to Development & Public Relations to Development & Donor Relations but the leadership and vision at the helm has remained constant.

A tireless individual and patient source of knowledge, creative solutions and sound advice, Susan’s work ethic, loyalty and concern for others has set a high standard for work and volunteer service that is virtually unmatched.  To quote from her nomination for the Eleanor Collier Award – “Ms. Montague’s work exemplifies the high standards set by the late Eleanor Collier.  Her work ethic, her dedication to the University of New Brunswick, her unstinting volunteerism, and her unflagging loyalty to the ideals of higher education, do more than reflect honour on CASE – they represent the very best of the advancement profession”.

Louise Boldon, Susan Mesheau, Mark Hazlett

Development and Donor Relations and Associated Alumni

Read by Mark Hazlett

April 11, 2006