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Summer 2022

Associated Alumni

Celebrating Alumni: Proudly UNB Awards


On April 7, UNB’s Associated Alumni celebrated the 2020 and 2022 Proudly UNB Awards recipients at a ceremony on the Fredericton campus. These alumni have distinguished themselves through outstanding service to their alma mater, their communities and beyond. The 16 award recipients were honoured by their supporters, fellow alumni, former classmates, and members of the UNB community.

2020 Award Recipients

Award of Distinction

Patricia Beattie-HugganPatricia Beattie-Huggan is the founder and president of The Quaich Inc., a health promotion consulting company located on Prince Edward Island. Her varied nursing career has spanned public health, mental health, medical-surgical nursing, and nursing education, including several leadership roles.

While working in health promotion, Patricia provided leadership to the development of the Circle of Health ©, which is available in six languages, and was embraced by educators, public health professionals and community workers as a practical tool for health promotion and collaboration across sectors. She currently travels internationally to train health promoters in its use.

In 1998, Patricia established The Quaich Inc. and attracted an interdisciplinary team to collaborate on national and international projects focused on health promotion and system change. She later spearheaded the Atlantic Summer Institute on Healthy and Safe Communities, and continues to coordinate this annual learning event designed to build leadership capacity in Atlantic Canada for action on the determinants of health.

Alumni Award of Honour

Marc BedardA Fredericton native, with a long legacy of proud UNB graduates in his family, Marc Bedard has been an outstanding supporter of UNB and the Associated Alumni. During his 30 year business career in Ontario, Marc was recognized for his professional accomplishments with the Faculty of Business Certificate of Achievement and attended many UNB alumni events in the region.

Upon retiring and moving home to New Brunswick, he became an integral member of UNB’s Associated Alumni, serving as treasurer and succeeding to the position of president from 2013-2015. A proud alumnus, he has also served on UNB’s Board of Governors, the Advisory Board for the Faculty of Business Administration (now the Faculty of Management) and has been a positive force in organizing his Class of ’74 reunions.

Marc has worked with several of his classmates to establish a class scholarship and bursary for UNB Fredericton business students, of which the first $2,000 scholarship was awarded in 2019.

Volunteer of the Year

Brian FreemanBrian Freeman is one of the founding members of the UNB Red Bombers Football Club, helping to bring varsity football back to the Fredericton campus in 2009 after having not been played at UNB since 1980. Brian has served as chairman of the board and as a board member since the club’s formation. A former Red Bomber, he has devoted countless hours toward building relationships with UNB administration, reconnecting the alumni to Red Bombers football, rallying support in the community and supporting the work of many others who together have brought the UNB football program to great success as it prepares for its 12th season. Brian has also played an instrumental role in the organization of the annual UNB Homecoming football game, which has served to connect students and alumni, and has also served as the Tony Proudfoot Memorial Game in support of ALS. Throughout his professional career, Brian has held senior positions with large enterprise, and has worked with state and local governments in the US, UK and Canada, but locally is still best known as co-owner of the Lunar Rogue Pub in Fredericton. A community leader, Brian has been a long time volunteer with the New Brunswick Highland Games and is a children’s drumming instructor with the Fredericton Society of St. Andrew Pipe Band’s Academy of Celtic Arts.

Young Alumni Achievement Award

Caleb GroveCaleb Grove is the founder of Mbissa Energy Systems, a New Brunswick-born company that creates sustainable electricity from local materials and labour for use in rural West Africa. While living in the north-west region of the country with his family, Caleb was led to the island of Mbissa, a small community with no possibility of grid development, but had a significant solar resource.

The company has grown from an inspiring idea into the sole source of power for several communities in rural Cameroon, Africa. Since Mbissa Energy's inception in 2015, Caleb has worked with rural Cameroonian communities to create affordable and maintainable solar installations, and has provided Mbissa with daily access to light for the first time through solar panel technology.

Over the last five years, Mbissa Energy's technicians have performed dozens of installations affecting thousands of people through light, communication, health-care, education, micro-business and many other areas of growth.

Alumni Award of Distinction

Thomas ListonThomas Liston is a technology investor and analyst, a CFA charterholder and founder of Water Street Corp. He currently serves on several Board of Directors for public and private technology companies, and he has a strong track record of shareholder value creation in that capacity.

Prior to his current role, he was the Chief Investment Officer of a leading technology-focused venture capital firm, where he was responsible for leading the firm’s investments in Software-as-a-Service, FinTech, and Healthcare IT fields . Throughout his professional career, Tom has been consistently ranked among the top technology analysts in several surveys and has received more StarMine stock picking awards than any other technology analyst.

In 2017, he was the proud recipient of UNB Faculty of Business Administration’s (now the Faculty of Management) Certificate of Achievement. An avid volunteer, Tom has been highly involved with UNB’s Student Investment Fund (SIF), has served as Board Chair for the Toronto Advisory Board and has raised significant funds for the MLSE Foundation and Ride to Conquer Cancer.

Alumni Award of Distinction

Anita NaiduAnita Naidu is an international award-winning humanitarian, engineer and athlete, whose social advocacy and human rights projects have taken her to far reaching corners of the world.

Named as one of the World’s Most Adventurous Women by Men’s Journal, for her global humanitarian pursuits and athletic endeavours, Anita was part of a three-person team that won the distinguished Google Impact Challenge for an app providing services to refugees, newcomers and displaced people.

She has been nominated for multiple prestigious awards for her work in developing tech solutions, providing social impact, policy and anti racism strategies for organizations and raising awareness on modern day slavery, Climate Justice, human trafficking and women’s advancement. The first person of East Indian origin to become a professional mountain biker, Anita rides for numerous top sponsors  and is the founder of the global Bike Fest Series 

She has been recognized as one most of the Most Influential Women of the Outdoors and as one of the 100 most Provocative Innovators and Culture Catalysts of 2019 and her films have won numerous accolades from People's Choice award at the London Film Festival to the Banff Film Festival World Tour. Anita has been named a Protect our Winters Ambassador alongside some of the world's most celebrated mountain athletes.

Alumni Award of Distinction

Peter PaceyActor, director, writer, producer, mentor and founder of Calithumpians Theatre Company, Peter Pacey is one of the most recognized theatre personalities in Fredericton. For more than three decades, Peter has helped shape the lives of hundreds of young theatre students and has provided more than 450,000 Frederictonians and tourists with free, live theatre and guided tours of the city.  (source: theplayhouse.ca)

A founding member of the reborn UNB rugby team, the Ironmen, Peter played a key role in the growth of the game in New Brunswick over the past 50 years. He was a builder of the Loyalists Rugby Club, which was one of the first rugby clubs in Canada to develop its own fields complex and to introduce rugby to boys and girls, thereby supporting the birth of women’s rugby. 

Peter has also been committed to various other causes over this same time. He was heavily involved in editing two walking tour guides to Fredericton’s heritage buildings and has fought to preserve and promote Fredericton’s cultural history. He also sat on various boards and committees - locally, provincially and nationally to build community and grassroots participation in the Canadian dream through various initiatives all inspired in part by his UNB experience.

2022 Award Recipients

Alumni Award of Distinction

John DawesJohn has distinguished himself through a lifetime of service in the betterment of the many communities he’s part of. Even while a student at UNB, he led the overhaul of Frosh Week to focus on orientation, and he was instrumental in working with UNB Administration to gain student representation on the Senate.

He built a very successful career with the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, which was punctuated by the wide-ranging push for social housing and affordable housing. His time in regional offices across the country and his ability to instill his sense of the common good in others contributed to improving the lot of many Canadians in their quest for housing appropriate to their means.

He’s also given his time to leadership positions with the Rotary Club and with Shelterbox Canada, an international disaster relief organization that aids families devasted by conflict or natural disaster. He’s been an influential fundraiser for many good causes, including as the former CEO of the Regina Hospital Foundation. And he’s been recognized for his efforts in developing and promoting good board governance practices in non-profit organizations.

Alumni Award of Distinction

Linda Duffett-LegerA native of New Brunswick, Dr. Duffett-Leger completed her undergraduate (BA’92, BN’96) and graduate degrees (MN’06, PhD’11) at UNB, receiving several awards and scholarships including the highly competitive National Cancer Institute of Canada (NCIC) and Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Allied Health Professional Doctoral Fellowships. She worked in the Faculty of Nursing at UNB as a research assistant and sessional instructor throughout her education, and as senior instructor from 2011-2012, and and assistant professor from 2012-2014 upon completion of her PhD. During this time, she also raised three daughters, Olivia, Isabelle, and Hope, whom she often refers to as her best work.

A registered nurse and certified user experience designer, Dr. Duffett-Leger has been actively involved in community-based research for over two decades. Inspired by her work as a public health nurse in New Brunswick, Dr Duffett-Leger’s PhD research at UNB focused on using participatory approaches in the user interface design of web-based health promotion applications. This early work evolved into her innovative program of research, focused on leveraging wearable and mobile technologies to solve real-world health issues. Her research is particularly timely and poised to have tremendous impact in a COVID-19 context and beyond.

Dr. Duffett-Leger was recruited to the University of Calgary (U of C) in 2014, through the Eyes High Campaign, and has become highly regarded in the biomedical engineering (BME) community as a ‘change maker’. Inspired by her father, who studied electrical engineering at UNB, Dr. Duffett-Leger has become a key member of the BME community at U of C as co-lead of the BME Research Strategy’s Health and Monitoring and Management focus. She is an active member of the STiMM (Sensor Technology in Monitoring Movement) program, funded through the UCalgary BME Strategic Health Research Initiative, and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) CREATE We-TRAC (Wearable Technology Research and Collaboration) program — a unique training program focused on the biomechanics of human motion, data science, visualization, knowledge translation and entrepreneurship for the wearable tech sector.

Dr. Duffett-Leger has led several innovative multidisciplinary projects, publishing her work in highly ranked nursing and technology journals. She is currently principal investigator of a CIHR funded study to co-design two in-home/in-clinic parenting interventions for virtual delivery in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Duffett-Leger received additional funding from the Alberta Labour and Immigration, to integrate wearable technology into the virtual delivery system for deploying two unique psychoeducational programs to first responders, at risk for post-traumatic stress injury (PTSI), and their spouses.

Inspired by a strong family lineage of educators, including both her grandparents and her mother, a former professor in the Faculty of Nursing at UNB, Dr. Duffett-Leger’s scholarly work focuses on student learning experiences. She has partnered with software engineering on the development of a unique interactive virtual platform, aptly named Ignitingale, to promote collaboration between nursing and engineering students on health innovation design. Her innovative approach to teaching and mentorship is distinguishable as she is sought out by graduate students and post-doctoral fellows as a supervisor who creates an exciting multidisciplinary research training environment.    

Through these initiatives, Dr. Duffett-Leger has provided a strong voice for nursing as a leader in health technology. She has built extensive multidisciplinary partnerships, which has led to the development of novel digital systems tailored to the unique needs of consumers. She received the University of Calgary VPRs Peak Scholars: COVID-19 Innovation Excellence Award in 2021, for her entrepreneurship, innovation, and knowledge engagement activities related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Recognized early in her UNB career by Chatelaine in 2009 as one of Top 10 Women Revolutionizing Healthcare, Dr. Duffett-Leger is a leader and entrepreneur, passionate about developing practical and usable digital health solutions for communities.

Alumni Award of Distinction

Amanda O'SullivanOriginally from England, Amanda moved to New Brunswick just prior to her first year at UNB. Amanda, her three siblings, and later her daughter Lauren, all obtained career foundation degrees from UNB. In 1986, she graduated with a Bachelor of Business Administration and later obtained her Certified General Accountant designation. 

Many individuals contributed to Amanda’s academic decisions; however, she credits an NBTel controller she met at a UNB career fair as the person who changed the entire direction of her career. Upon graduation, she joined NBTel, holding financial roles before moving into human resources, which ignited her passion for working with people. As a recruiter for NBTel, then president Gerry Pond, said Amanda had the most important job in the company… “hiring our future leaders”.

Amanda is grateful to have been one of the employees who redesigned the company’s customer experience contributing to NBTel’s reputation as a global telecommunications leader.   

In 2002, Amanda accepted the role of IT director with Moosehead Breweries where she helped the organization strengthen its capabilities in a highly competitive industry. She later turned her focus to continuous improvement, overseeing several large transformation initiatives. In keeping with her desire to support people, Amanda led a safety culture transformation resulting in Moosehead receiving the WorkSafeNB Safety Star Award for demonstrating safety leadership and outstanding achievements.

Amanda joined Mariner Innovations in 2017. There she continues to help organizations redesign and transform their businesses through large organizational change projects.

Amanda’s heart and passion for people shines through her volunteer work. For many years she assisted an organization that brought children from Belfast and paired them with local children to show how communities can live without conflict.

A number of years ago she began volunteering with the Canadian Mental Health Association in New Brunswick. Today, Amanda holds the role of president of CMHA-NB’s Board of Directors and represents New Brunswick on the CMHA National Board. She has had the privilege of participating in important conversations such as Medical Assistance In Dying and building the definition of Persons With Lived Experience.

This role is one Amanda is most proud of, as she believes in the critical need for improvement in our mental health resources. She has personally felt the impact families face when members struggle with mental wellness. She can relate to the pain of hitting a breaking point, and the healing that can stem from those who listen, give hope, share, and help. Today Amanda uses her voice and time to advocate for mental health as a universal human right.

Alumni Award of Distinction

Cherrill Edwina SheaCherrill has served on a number of charitable boards and has for years provided valued scholarship support to UNB students.  In addition, Cherrill currently serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council at UNB Law School.

Cherrill made a mark in the wider world by building upon an all-New Brunswick education. She earned her BA at UNB in 1969 and her law degree from UNB Law School in 1972, one of five women in her class.  She was admitted to practice law as a barrister and solicitor in New Brunswick in 1972. She began her career at what is now Stewart McKelvey where her work was focused on litigation. That background led to her moving to New York City and working at a law firm in corporate and securities litigation.  Cherrill also handled major litigations and arbitrations involving oil transportation and storage that were conducted in Europe against state oil companies that defaulted in their payment obligations to shipowners and charterers.

Later in her career, Cherrill was a member of the senior management of an entrepreneurial telecommunications company that pioneered in the cellular telephone and mobile data businesses.

For the last several years, Cherrill has focused upon various plans and projects for the benefit of UNB.

Young Alumni Achievement Award

Charit KhatriCharit moved to Fredericton in 2004 to attend the University of New Brunswick. In 2011, he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Administration specializing in marketing, economics and human resources, and joined Bulletproof after graduation. Currently as the Director of Strategic Sales at Bulletproof, he is responsible for sales in Canada. Throughout the course of his education, Charit worked in a variety of marketing and management related roles within various industries. Prior to joining Bulletproof, Charit’s past work experience with Enbridge, UNB, Nokia and Bacardi afforded him opportunities to work in diverse work environments in various industries.

He enjoys contributing his spare time to several local organizations. As a past board member with The Fredericton Chamber of Commerce, the Cultural Centre and Multicultural Association of Fredericton (MCAF), he has been bringing forward issues faced by landed immigrants and international students to the business and local community. His contributions and demonstrations of a sustained commitment to Fredericton’s cultural diversity earned him the City of Fredericton’s Intercultural Award in 2014.

During his time volunteering with local organizations, Charit along with two of his friends identified a need to help recent immigrants integrate into the local community. This led to the creation of “The Cultural Market” in 2015. It is the first of its kind in Atlantic Canada, where immigrants had low-cost opportunities to showcase their culture to the city of Fredericton and gave the local community a chance to traverse the world through food, art and culture. The idea was well received and grew from a once weekly market to operating seven days a week. Numerous immigrants who started with the market are now operating full time businesses that serve the Fredericton community. New residents take their spot and keep the diverse and vibrant environment alive.

Charit is an avid golfer and a member of Cricket New Brunswick. He has been a part of a team that represented Cricket New Brunswick in various Atlantic provincial tournaments. He was also part of the group who worked to bring cricket to Fredericton and New Brunswick. Today, multiple teams play across the province, promoting the sport and offering training to kids interested in taking up Cricket. Charit also volunteered at the U Sports University Cup hosted by UNB as the host for visiting teams and is a strong supporter of VREDS. In the summer season, you can find Charit playing a round of golf, outdoor sports or enjoying a meal with his friends and family. In the winter, he enjoys walking through trails and playing winter sports.

Young Alumni Achievement Award

Christos PapadopolousDr. Papadopoulos was born in Saint John, New Brunswick, raised in the Kennebecasis Valley, and completed his undergraduate degree (BSc Honours) at the University of New Brunswick Saint John campus. While at UNB, he served on the Students’ Representative Council (SRC) for two terms and was the vice-president of the UNB graduation class of 2009.  Following his time at UNB, Dr. Papadopoulos earned his Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from Dalhousie University in 2013 and received the Canadian Dental Association’s Student Leader Award.

He was then accepted into a general practice residency, with an emphasis in pediatric dentistry, at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC. In Vancouver, he worked as a dentist at BC Children’s Hospital, and throughout the province delivering regular and emergency dental care to patients of all ages, but mostly serving children with special needs and inpatient children in the hospital.

Subsequently, Dr. Papadopoulos was accepted into Western University's Graduate Orthodontic program where he earned his Master’s Degree in Orthodontics. Throughout the three-year specialization residency, he earned multiple awards and was also presented with the Lindsey O. Kesling Orthodontic Resident Scholarship award in San Diego, California at the American Association of Orthodontists Annual Scientific Session.

Following graduation, he wrote examinations to earn his specialist designation to become a Fellow of the Royal College of Dentists of Canada, the American Association of Orthodontists, and the Canadian Association of Orthodontists. 

 Dr. Papadopoulos is actively involved with continuing education, is the secretary/treasurer of the Atlantic Orthodontists Association (AOA), is on various committees for the Canadian Association of Orthodontists, and voluntarily serves as the Atlantic regional chair for "Smiles4Canada" - a national non-profit foundation whose mission is to provide complimentary orthodontic treatment to children in need. The program has successfully provided free orthodontic treatment to almost 100 Atlantic Canadian children.

Internationally, he has been selected and has attended leadership conferences via the American Association of Orthodontists, including a Leadership Summit taught at the Disney Institute in Orlando, Florida.  Through his experience and leadership in the orthodontic profession, Dr. Papadopoulos was selected by the Northeastern Society of Orthodontists (NESO) to serve on the NESO Board of Directors, as well as to serve as the NESO representative on the Council of New and Younger Members for the American Association of Orthodontists. In 2021, he was also selected to serve on the American Association of Orthodontists' Council on Orthodontic Health Care.

Outside of the clinic Dr. Papadopoulos can be found spending time with family and is an avid fan of the Toronto Raptors and Montreal Canadiens. He enjoys traveling, watching and performing stand-up comedy, playing various instruments, including drums, guitar and piano, and playing basketball and soccer.

Since returning to New Brunswick, Dr. Papadopoulos received the 'Top Orthodontist' award by ThreeBestRated in 2019, was voted as 'Best Dentist' by the Moncton community in 2020, and was selected in 2020 as a 'Top 20 Under 40' by the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Moncton. Dr. Papadopoulos is proud to be back in his hometown to provide specialist orthodontic care to the families of Quispamsis and throughout New Brunswick.

Young Alumni Achievement Award

Emily WestonPrior to starting medical school this year at Dalhousie University, Emily studied engineering at UNB. Namely, she chose this mixed route in the hope of someday contributing to the amazing field of medicine, because she believes innovation often happens at the interface between disciplines.

UNB showed Emily how entrepreneurial principles can improve the way things are done, through math professors who conveyed an unending awe especially for the unsolvable outside-the-box problems, through team-based design-projects in engineering under mentors from different backgrounds, and through UNB’s encouragement to pay forward her experiences.

Between research work and school, Emily was asked to guest-lecture her younger peers, to inspire groups of young aspiring chemists with little experiments of melting gallium spoons, and, as a woman in STEM, had the chance to inspire a group of 550 girls. 

Sharing her love for art by handing out prints of her art as part of her bilingual welcome address to new citizens; and amidst prepping meals and helping start food gardens for soup kitchens, getting to also share her deep love for music by playing piano for hours at meals for Moncton’s homeless. Work like this, or with the Special Olympics, or volunteering abroad to help build water systems, showed Emily how a nod to somebody else’s value as an individual is important respect to confer to empower them and can be demonstrated in how hard we try.

At UNB, Emily researched abstract algebra, and worked in quality improvement of care at IBME’s clinic for upper limb prosthetics.  Later, she received funding at a clinic and co-lead COVID-19 vaccine-clinics for hundreds of the homeless in her hometown while helping people access welfare and housing. Next, she is excited to be working with the Canada Spine East Centre alongside a neurosurgeon, studying whether outcomes are improved for removal of brain tumors if a fluorescent dye is used as a visual guide.

Alumni Volunteer of the Year

Kyle FergusonKyle Ferguson, a native of Saint John, NB, is a marketing and sales professional with over ten years’ experience in the sports and entertainment industry. He is currently employed as director of business operations with the Canadian Hockey League (CHL), the world’s largest development hockey league and top supplier of student athletes to the National Hockey League (NHL) and U SPORTS. As director of business operations, his main responsibilities include overseeing the production and execution of the CHL’s newly formed broadcast partnerships with CBC, TSN and RDS, as well as working with the leagues licensed supplier relationships. He also oversees the strategic priorities of the CHL’s marketing partnerships business and manages the day-to-day relationship with the league’s sales agency, CCMC Sports. Prior to working with the CHL, he had the opportunity of working with the Ontario Hockey League, the NHL’s Ottawa Senators, and the Saint John Sea Dogs of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

Kyle holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of New Brunswick’s Saint John campus with a major in human resource management, minor in French communications and culture, and a concentration in marketing. He also had the opportunity to study abroad in Poitiers, France, at ESCEM School of Business and Management through the study abroad program at UNB, where he focused on sustainable development and tourism management.

During his final academic year at UNB Saint John, Kyle was elected the vice-president external, of the Students’ Representative Council, where he was responsible for external communication and lobbying efforts representing current and prospective students with municipal, provincial, and federal governments, as well as with the media. In addition to this role, he represented students as a student senator of UNB Saint John’s senate. Upon graduation, he was recognized as a graduating student leader by the UNB Associated Alumni for his contributions to student life. Following his graduation in 2009, he has continued to be an active volunteer in various capacities supporting UNB’s U35 Young Alumni Network in different markets including Saint John, Ottawa, and, where he currently resides, Toronto.

In his spare time, Kyle has a passion for travelling and has been to 15 countries to date. He believes that one of the best forms of education is to travel and to be immersed in different cultures and to see it all.

His specialties include: Partnerships, sales, marketing, public relations, public speaking, sponsorship, business development, management, leadership and networking.

Alumni Group of the Year

Beaverbrook Scholars Executive Committee

The Beaverbrook Scholars Executive Committee gives their time, talent and treasure to pay homage to Lord Beaverbrook and celebrate Beaverbrook Scholars through the annual organization of networking events, dinners and meetings. They also ran the most successful alumni fundraising campaign in UNB history – raising over $3.5 million and surpassing $3 million currently awarded in scholarships to students. To date, the awards have supported 92 recipients, currently with annual entrance scholarships valued at $50,000 over four years. The Beaverbrook Scholars awards continue to be among the most prestigious awards at UNB.

The Committee celebrated the 100th anniversary of Beaverbrook scholarships in 2020 and to mark the occasion relaunched their website to highlight the impact of the awards on student recipients and recognize the contributions of Lord Beaverbrook himself.  

Watch the 2022 Proudly UNB Awards video