DARTMOUTH - A high-profile Truro businessman has been named Nova Scotia's recipient of the Canadian Red Cross, 2011 Humanitarian Award.
Lifelong Truro resident David Wilson, 82, has been named to receive this year's award for his longstanding community involvement and family legacy of giving.
His sister-in-law, Rose Wilson, who lives in Halifax, will also to receive the award when ceremonies are held in Halifax in November.
"I was very surprised to be selected," Dave Wilson said. "I've always tried to be a good citizen and considerate of others and I always enjoyed serving the community. It was just sort of a natural thing for me and I never expected to be singled out that's for sure ... I've always taken pride in the community and tried to do the right thing."
Despite his surprise at being selected, Wilson said it was an absolute honour to be recognized.
"You do it because you, I guess I've always liked to give back to the community," he said. "I've certainly been blessed."
And as both a "proud" Nova Scotian and Canadian, he believes it is only proper to give back where possible.
"If we all did that it would certainly make it a better country. I've always tried not to be a selfish individual and do the right thing for the community."
In announcing the award on Monday, John Byrne, director general of the Canadian Red Cross in Atlantic Canada, said both Wilsons are definitely worthy recipients.
"The Wilson family is a great example of how humanitarian actions by one family member can spur on others, even generations, to continue the tradition and make a significant contribution in their community," he said.
David Wilson is credited for his long-standing dedication to helping community-based organizations and having served as scout master for 16 years. As a member of the Nova Scotia Business Hall of Fame, he has served on numerous boards and led the way in developing sports organizations and promoting active living in the region.
Wilson is the owner and chairman of Ski Wentworth and Crabbe Mountain, founder and chairman of Kerr Controls and co-chairman of Wilson Fuel. He also organized the first ski instructor course in Nova Scotia, co-founded the Truro Bearcat rugby team in the late 1950s and was involved in the creation of the Truro Spartans Gymnastics Club in the 1970s.
Rose Wilson, who now lives in Halifax, is the wife of the David's brother, the late Peter Wilson, and current co-chairwoman of Wilson Fuel. She is dedicated to supporting youth, from scholarship programs and schools, to scouting and also contributed to fundraising campaigns for Symphony Nova Scotia, Cathedral Church of All Saints, the Citadel High Legacy Campaign, Tower Road School, United Way, Salvation Army and several other charities.
The Wilson family also established the George W. Wilson and Teresa Madelyn Merriam Wilson Foundation in 2003 and has contributed to many community projects in Nova Scotia.
Recipients of Canadian Red Cross Humanitarian and Young Humanitarian awards are selected among nominations received from the public. For more information, visit www.redcross.ca/humanitarian.