Three alumni from the Dalhousie Faculty of Agriculture were recognized on Friday at the annual awards ceremony. Anna Fitzgerald, from left, Gabriel Comeau, and Audrie-Jo McConkey were given the Alumni Volunteer of the Year award, the Distinguished Alumni award and the Young Alumni Achievement award respectively. Submitted photo
BIBLE HILL - Three alumni from the Dalhousie Faculty of Agriculture were recognized recently for their exceptional achievements in the areas of volunteerism and contribution to the agricultural industry.
Class of ’72 graduate Gabriel Comeau was honoured with the most prestigious award, the Distinguished Alumni Award, for his significant impact on the dairy industry in the province.
In 1989, Comeau was appointed the manager of the Nova Scotia Dairy Commission and held the position for more than a decade. From there, he was named the first general manager of the now Dairy Farmers of Nova Scotia, until his retirement from the position two years later.
Since retiring, Comeau has operated a simultaneous interpretation company, Echovoix, which provides interpretation services to a variety of clients, primarily in the field of agriculture, across North America.
The Alumni Volunteer of the Year award went to Anna Fitzgerald, a member of the class of ’86.
Fitzgerald dedicated so much of her time over the years helping international students, it eventually lead to the creation of a full-time position.
She helped launch the International Student Association and continued to assist the group by taking care of the “behind the scenes” work. She chauffeured students on weekends, took them sightseeing and on outings that would enhance their cultural experiences.
But her volunteer work didn’t stop there. Fitzgerald became involved with the local science fairs, volunteering her professional skills, drawing on her knowledge to provide advice to the general public.
Audrie-Jo McConkey, class of ’03, was the other award recipient - being presented with the Young Alumni Achievement Award.
McConkey spends her free time volunteering for various organizations and initiatives that focus on young children and youth.
She’s been involved in supervising more than 15 different high school science fair projects and has been a judge for regional and national science fairs and 4-H fisheries projects. She’s visited Grade 9 classrooms to educate students on the significance of math programs, as well as similar programs called Females in the Workplace, all through the Junior Achievement Program.
McConkey also sits on the board of the faculty’s Alumni Association and is a member of the Fishermen & Scientists Research Society. She actively fundraises for the IWK, Canadian Cancer Society, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Colchester and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.
Her newest commitment is the deputy chair of the International Service Committee through the Rotary Club of Truro.