MOUNT UNIACKE: A volunteer for more than 30 years who has been involved with various sporting organizations in East Hants has been named the Volunteer of the Year for the Municipality of East Hants.
Doug Taylor, who has not only been a resident of East Hants but an avid volunteer, has spent his time as a volunteer coach for many sporting teams and was called on to assist with keeping the books for many local organizations.
A role model to many, he demonstrates what it means to be a true community member and how rewarding volunteering in your community can be.
Some of the sporting groups Taylor has been a part of over the years as a coach or board member include East Hants Minor Hockey; Soccer; East Hants Tennis Club; and helping with the introduction of pickleball to East Hants.
The Model Volunteer of the Year Award is presented to an individual who exemplifies extraordinary caring and commitment through volunteering their time and expertise on several projects to help make their community a better place in which to live.
Taylor will represent the Municipality of East Hants at the 2024 Provincial Awards Ceremony hosted by the province.
The award is based on the evaluation of the overall impact their contributions have had on their community.
Taylor also received a shining star volunteer award for his municipal community.
Honoured volunteers were Andy George; Art Burton; Cassandra McCormick; Ferry Patterson; Josie Thompson; Melissa Boutette; Kyle Andrews; Troy MacArthur; and Michael Norris. All photos by the Municipality of East Hants.
George is a well-known face at the community ball fields, as he has been a leader within Mount Uniacke and volunteer with Mount Uniacke Softball for over 20 years.
He alongside other volunteers, spent countless hours maintaining the Mount Uniacke community ball fields and has helped with many improvement projects over the years, including this year’s newly built storage building.
Burton has provided many years of service to his community and beyond.
He is a long-time volunteer with the Halifax Herald and St John’s Ambulance and spent many hours helping out his late wife with her volunteer pursuits.
Now enjoying retirement, one can find Burton spending many hours helping out the CHArt Society in Maitland, from writing plays to assisting with the setup of theatre seating and organizing community poetry reads or calling the winning numbers at dime auctions.
Dedication and enthusiasm are two words that come to mind when acknowledging the volunteer work of Cassandra McCormick. She began her volunteerism at a young age.
McCormick is a role model and encourages other young adults to engage in their communities and embrace leadership roles.
She has taken on significant responsibility by stepping into the contact guider position with the 1st Carter Embers unit. She is responsible for many important aspects as a Girl Guides leader and has thrived at not only the organization and administration portion but also connecting with the young members and their parents.
She is active in the basketball community playing with the MWBA Windsor Edge team and volunteering as a coach with the Jr. NBA program in Sackville.
Volunteering has been a lifelong commitment for Patterson. He has committed countless hours to his community through the Noel United church filling various roles there.
He is known as the “church handyman” who would be called on often to help with various projects around the church.
Starting at age 11, Thompson had completed all of the levels of Soccer Canada Coaching courses her age allows; she is 15 now.
She has also completed the Soccer Canada Referee Course, becoming the youngest referee in the East Hants Soccer Club to be invited as an official to U17AAA Games.
Thompson is a role model as a coach to the u5/u7 team she coaches as well as to her community as such a young volunteer devoted to lending a hand.
A newer resident to Maitland who jumped right in to volunteering in his community, Andrews has spent the past five years dedicated volunteering in East Hants.
He has been instrumental in organizing a series of concerts and performances by local, national, and international talent at the High Tides Community Centre in Maitland.
Andrews also helped to provide canteen service during events at the Centre. He provided and set up decorations in the community for the Winter Festival.
Over the past five years, Boutette has been secretary for the Milford Recreation Association.
In recent years, she has also taken on the oversite of the summer students and has been involved in the interview and hiring process which has been a huge help to the association.
She also contributes to the events hosted by the organization including Milford Meltdown all while being a busy mom of three.
There is no shortage of examples to illustrate Norris’ commitment to his community and encouraging youth involvement.
He is a guy you can always count on to help out when in need.
Norris is a valuable coach with East Hants Minor Hockey and assisted with the municipality’s summer drop-in program.
He has been volunteering for the East Hants Stingrays Swim Team, recently coaching the kids in the winter maintenance program.
MacArthur also helps at swim meets to setup tents and areas for the kids to relax between heats.
He coaches the three groups for six hours a week.
Besides the volunteers, local volunteer firefighters with long service to their community department were recognized:
Dan Gavel, Walton Shore Volunteer Fire Dept – 30 Years
Angus Orman, Enfield Volunteer Fire Department – 30 Years
Dwayne Spencer, Shubenacadie Fire & Emergency Services – 30 Years
Dallas Urquhart, Enfield & Milford Volunteer Fire Department – 30 Years
Glen Paul, Lantz Volunteer Fire Department – 35 Years
Darrell Hiltz, Uniacke & District Volunteer Fire Department – 40 Years
Raymond Ross, Walton Shore Volunteer Fire Dept – 45 Years.