Philanthropy is often defined as the voluntary giving of time and financial resources to promote the well-being of human kind. If charity begins at home, philanthropy begins in the community through individuals, families, corporations and youth. The Philanthropy in Action Award will recognize those who make philanthropy a part of their contribution to the community.
The Philanthropy in Action Award (formerly Philanthropist of the Year) began in 2010 to honour local individuals, families or businesses that embody the traits of a philanthropist and in doing so make our community a better place to live.
You can nominate someone for the Philanthropy in Action Award by clicking here.
If you are interested in sponsoring the Philanthropy in Action Awards Dinner, please contact us at 454-2262 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gordon and Carol Burtt – 2015
Carol has the well-deserved reputation as Fredericton’s go-to person for fundraising events. She has chaired numerous committees for Canadian Red Cross and founded Feast in the Field, which continues to be a successful fundraiser for Ability New Brunswick. She was the chair of the Chalmers Regional Hospital Foundation fundraising dinner and have chaired events for Fredericton 150, Fredericton Playhouse, York Care Centre, Fredericton Women’s Executive Club, Canadian Diabetes Association, Children’s Wish Foundation, United Way (Forever Fund) and more.
Gordon has been president of the Kindness Club Foundation for over 30 years and on the board of directors for almost 50 years. He also serves as president of the Beatrice Watson-Acheson Foundation and serves on the board of directors of Business Fredericton North, and he is a trustee on the Honourable Hugh John Flemming Memorial Wildlife Park in Upper Woodstock. Gordon has also chaired the Donor Relations Committee of United Way’s Forever Fund and remains a member of the board of directors.
Richard and Margie Clark – 2014
Richard and Margie Clark have been long-standing and humble contributors to many worthy causes in our community too numerous to list, volunteering their special talents and countless hours to causes that they also support financially.
Margie and Richard have a long history of service with both the YMCA and The Chalmers Regional Hospital Foundation. Margie has also been a constant supporter of the Beaverbrook Art Gallery, Transition House, Fredericton Public Library and Meals on Wheels.
Richard has been involved with Fredericton Sports investment for over 30 years. He has also been active with Provincial Artisans and chaired the United Way annual campaign. In 1993, Richard Clark was presented with the Distinguished Citizen’s Award by the Fredericton Chamber of Commerce.
Richard Clark is a driving force at the Fredericton Community Foundation, where he served as Secretary, Vice Chair, Chair, Past Chair and is currently the Chair of the Honorary Council.
Fred Beairsto, and Jason and Tina LeJeune – 2013
Fred Beairsto is a humble man with an unassuming demeanor, an altruistic nature and a strong ability to lead. He has served his community for more than five decades in roles too numerous to list. Always giving of his time, talent and treasure, Fred is the embodiment of philanthropy in action.
Fred has been an active volunteer, organizer, mentor and financial supporter of UNB, serving on UNB’s Alumni Council (including a term as President), Board of Governors and Senate. He and his wife, Dixie, established the Fred and Dixie Beairsto Emergency Aid Fund to support undergraduate students in need. In addition, he served as a director of the New Brunswick SPCA and went on to become the Founding President of the International Fund for Animal Welfare, an organization that began in Fredericton and went on to become one of the world’s leading animal welfare organizations. Recognized with the Order of New Brunswick, he served his Province as the co-Chair of the New Brunswick “Yes” Campaign for the Charlottetown Accord Referendum and was called upon by Premier Frank McKenna to participate in Dialogue NB.
As Chair of the York Foundation’s Transforming Care Campaign, Fred gave hundreds of volunteer hours as well as his own gift. His leadership made the campaign a resounding success.
Jason and Tina LeJeune, owners of Isaac’s Way Restaurant, are keen supporters of children’s cultural activities, providing substantial financial contributions to several local organizations and schools so that underprivileged children can participate in various artistic programs – creative lessons in music, art, dance and theatre. Additionally, for over a decade they have been supplying meals for 30-40 individuals per week at the Wilmot United Church Drop-In Centre. Since the fire that claimed their restaurant, Tina and Jason have been actively supporting the Community Action Group on Homelessness to better the lives of Fredericton’s homeless and those who are marginally housed, with fundraising campaigns such as “The Next 26” and “Let’s Get Frank on Homelessness”. They also spearheaded the Connaught Street School Living Playground, working with many volunteers over a 5 year span, to create this educational green space for the downtown community.
The LeJeunes literally give hundreds of hours each year to philanthropic activities. Coupled with the kindness and respect that they pay to every member of our community, regardless of position, their actions are a shining example of philanthropy in action.
John Bliss and Dorothy McDade – 2012
John and Dorothy exemplify philanthropy in action with their commitment to the community. Both John and Dorothy have provided volunteer service on various boards and have held leadership roles on committees of the Y, UNB and the Forever Fund of the United Way, just to name a few.
John has had a long and honourable career in Engineering having worked for 19 years as the City Engineer. He was instrumental in improving the water quality for the city and his efforts resulted in the naming of the E. John Bliss Water Treatment Plant. John has won numerous awards for his work as both an engineer and as a community leader. He has served both his profession and his community in varying capacities from city councilor to president of the Association of Professional Engineers of New Brunswick.
John and Dorothy have been honoured by UNB with the Associated Alumni Award of Honour. Dorothy is also a Life Member of the New Brunswick Medical Society and the Canadian Medical Society and is a former member of the Board of Governors of UNB. Dorothy currently holds the role of President of the Fredericton Guild of Fiber Artists.
Bud and Peggy Bird – 2011
Mr. Bird served as co-chair of Your New Y Campaign, which raised an astonishing total of more than $5 million in community donations to the new building. As well, the Bird family made a significant financial gift to that campaign. It is in recognition of these contributions that the nomination for this award has been made by the Fredericton YMCA.
For a great many years Bud and Peggy Bird have also been very involved in providing volunteer activities and financial contributions to organizations such as the Miramichi Salmon Association, the Atlantic Salmon Federation and the TNB Theatre School. As well, to varying and lesser extents, they have provided support to the New Brunswick Foundation for the Arts, Nature Conservancy, Ducks Unlimited, Jeunesses Musicales, the Beaverbrook Art Gallery, the University of New Brunswick and other such worthy causes. The Birds have long been members and supporters of St. Paul’s United Church.
During his business career, Mr. Bird was the founder of J.W. Bird and Company Limited in 1958, with that company having since been sold to its senior managers. He also played a leading role in the establishment of Enbridge Gas New Brunswick in 1999.
As an active politician, he has served as Mayor of Fredericton, as provincial Minister of Natural Resources and as a federal Member of Parliament. In 2001 he was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Canada.
Edison and Lois Phillips – 2010
Edison & Lois Phillips have been residents of Fredericton for over 60 years. Edsion worked at Hartt Shoe Factory for 39 years and Lois worked for the Government of NB. They currently reside on the Fredericton’s northside.
The Phillips have been active in their community for many years and since their retirement, they have been even more involved in the community by donating their time and resources to organizations such as the Chalmers Hospital Auxiliary, Royal Canadian Legion, the Rusagonis Heritage Society and York Manor Nursing Home.
The Phillips’ involvement in the community goes beyond their work and commitment to organized charities; they also take a personal interest in helping individuals. Whether it be a senior in need of support, a young neighbour looking for companionship or an international student a long way from family, the Phillips step up to the plate and deliver.
Contact our office for details on nominating a philanthropist, becoming a sponsor or to purchase dinner tickets.