Alumni Association celebrates volunteer commitment, contributions to Acadia’s Board of Governors


It’s likely that many in the Acadia community are unaware that the Acadia Alumni Association appoints 12 people to the University’s Board of Governors.

These appointments are well worth acknowledging and celebrating, especially since this diverse array of volunteers lend significant and valuable experience and expertise to the University, its leadership and members of the Acadia community. The Alumni Association Vice-President (appointed in their second year), President (for their two-year term) and Past-President (for their one-year term) hold two of the 12 appointments to the Board of Governors at any given time. Donalda MacBeath (’75) and Matt Rios (’14) currently fulfill these roles.

Over the years, appointees from the Alumni Association have taken leadership roles on the Board of Governors, with many going on to chair committees and become Chair of the Board. Mr. Henry Demone (’76) is the current Board Chair and an appointee of the Alumni Association.

We believe it’s fitting and appropriate to introduce you to and shine a light on these individuals who have given and continue to give so generously of their time and talent to help define the Acadia experience and make Acadia a destination of choice for prospective students here at home and around the world.


Clive Anderson ('89)

Clive Anderson is a graduate of Acadia University (‘89) and the Université d’Aix-en-Provence, France, from which combined he earned his first degree in French literature. He also earned minors in political science and Spanish from Acadia.

Throughout his high school and university years, Clive excelled in both academic pursuits and the athletic arena. He was captain of the nationally ranked Axemen basketball team as well as being at the top of his class in both French and Spanish. Upon graduation, he was the winner of several academic awards, including the Associated Alumni of Acadia University (AAAU) Student of the Year. Clive then went on to earn his second degree in law from Osgoode Hall Law School at York University in Toronto.

Clive believes in giving back to his school and community and, as such, he has been involved in the alumni affairs of Acadia since graduation. Funding from his first book, Uprising: Making the Invisible Visible, established an endowment, the Uprising Award, for the benefit of Black students in any undergraduate program. He has sat as a Board member of the Alumni Association as well as a committee member of the University for various initiatives. More recently, Clive has become a member of Acadia’s Board of Governors.

He has also gladly accepted numerous calls to be the motivational keynote speaker at various high school and community association events with the hope that he can inspire young people to be whatever they want to be, no matter where they are from. His desire to learn and his unquenchable thirst to experience lives and cultures unimagined as a child has taken him to destinations around the world. Clive currently works for AIA Group as one of their Regional General Counsels and is based in Singapore, where he lives with his wife, Athline (’91), while their boys, Cameron and Ethan, live in Toronto.

What’s your favourite thing about Acadia?

“Over my years as an Acadia student and visiting campus for varied reasons, there have been many moments that have left an indelible imprint, spreading across playing for the Axemen basketball team to spending time at the homes of amazing faculty and wonderful Wolfville residents who took me in and treated me as family. My favourite of all these was, however, taking our sons, Ethan and Cameron, when they were eight and five years old respectively, to visit campus and witnessing first-hand the awe with which they saw our Acadia as they climbed the University Hall steps and ran without a care across the lawn. They came back home with only one thing on their minds: they were returning to Acadia when their turn came to go to university. True to their word, Acadia was the only university to which they applied. Even at a tender age, they already knew it was where they belonged.”


Charles Coll (’84)

Charles Coll (’84) has been active as an alumnus since graduating from Acadia in 1984 with his Bachelor of Business Administration. First in Ottawa, and now living on Prince Edward Island, Charles has served in many Acadia-related roles. He was a member of the board of the Associated Alumni of Acadia University for many years, culminating in his term as President from 2010-12. He currently sits as a member of the F.C. Manning School of Business Advisory Board. Charles has been involved in his community through numerous arts, sports, and health-related groups, as a volunteer, coach, board member, and at the executive level. He is married to Kathryn (MacLeod) Coll (BBA ’84). They are the proud parents of Charlie (BBA ’15), and Hailee (BKIN ’17).


Henry Demone (’76)

Henry Demone (’76) has been involved in three turnarounds in his life. “One was as a very young man working in the south of France, turning around a company there,” he says. “And I was involved in a well-known turnaround of National Sea Products that became High Liner Foods. And then I joined the Acadia Board of Governors at a time when someone I know and respect well, Paul Jewer (’94), was the Chair, and Ray Ivany was President and Vice-Chancellor. Acadia in those days was in a very challenging position and under the leadership of Ray and Paul, I and many others helped to get Acadia back on track.”

His capacity to change direction and chart a better course was evident early. Although he had scored high on engineering aptitude tests at Lunenburg High School and made the Dean’s List in his first year in engineering at Acadia, Demone realized he was not cut out to be an engineer. He switched to mathematics and took a variety of undergraduate courses including sociology, psychology, economics, German, and physics. “It was a classic liberal arts degree with a math major; I took a little bit of everything,” he says. “I had no clue what I wanted to do, but it turned out to be a very useful degree.”

The first few years of his career were with National Sea Products in Lunenburg and Swedish company Franz Witte AB. In 1984, Demone rejoined National Sea Products as its VP International. In 1989, he was appointed President at a time when the company faced heavy debts, money-losing operations and the catastrophic decline of the East Coast fishery. During his tenure, the company was transformed. In 1999, it became High Liner Foods, North America’s leading value-added seafood company with a track record of profitable growth and innovation.

Demone served as President and CEO from 1992 until 2015. He was Chairman for two more years, then Chairman and CEO again during a transition time, and Chairman until he retired in 2019.

However, retired does not mean idle. He is now President of Demone Capital Inc. and Chairman of a clean tech company called Eosense. He is also Board Chair of Acadia University and a Director on the boards of Saputo Inc. and Emera Inc.

The winner of numerous awards, including Atlantic Canada CEO of the Year (2012), Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser in the Maritime Provinces (2008) and Nova Scotia Male Sailor of the Year (2015), Demone epitomizes a well-rounded approach to life. A recipient of the Acadia Alumni Association's Distinguished Alumni Award (2011), Demone also served as a Cabinet member for the most ambitious fundraising effort in Acadia's history, Campaign for Acadia. He is a keen sailor and cyclist. With his wife, Rena, he walked the entire Camino de Santiago in northern Spain in 2019, a distance of about 800 kilometres.


Bert Frizzell ('72)

Bert Frizzell (‘72) is Past President and Chief Executive Officer of the Shaw Group, joining the company in 1974. Bert earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from Acadia in 1972, graduated from the Harvard Business School’s Executive Development Program in 2005, and was awarded a FCGA (Fellow of the Certified General Accountants Association of Canada). He is a Director of The Shaw Group, Heritage Gas, LED Roadway Lighting, and Past Chair of Nova Scotia Business Inc.


Shanna Lespere, (’89, ’90)

Shanna Lespere (’89, ’90) was born and raised in Sydney River, Cape Breton, meeting her husband at Acadia in 1989. She moved to Bermuda permanently in 1990. She obtained her Bachelor of Science (Honours) at Acadia and continued her education in Bermuda by becoming a qualified accountant.

Presently as the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the Bermuda Monetary Authority, Mrs. Lespere is responsible for its operations function, including Communications, Document Management, Finance and Currency Operations, Human Resources, Facilities, Project Management, Cyber Risk and Information Technology.

Prior to joining the Authority, Mrs. Lespere was Vice-President at Aon Insurance Managers (Bermuda) Ltd., having joined the company in 1996. As Vice-President, she held joint responsibility for managing the daily activities of the financial services department within the Captive Management Group, which included maintaining existing client relations, developing new business opportunities and recruiting new staff. Additionally, she worked as a Senior Accountant in the audit and accounting departments of PriceWaterhouseCoopers (Bermuda) and is a Chartered Professional Accountant of Canada (CPA). In 2019, Mrs. Lespere was awarded the Fellowship Designation (FCPA) by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Bermuda for her outstanding contributions to the accounting profession and the community.

Mrs. Lespere joined the Authority in 2004, serving as Assistant Director of the Investment Group within the banking, trust and investment department. In this role, among other managerial duties, she was responsible for planning, directing and monitoring the Investment Group’s activities.

In May 2015, Mrs. Lespere was promoted to Chief Operating Officer after serving as the Director of Operations from May 2013. In 2008, she was promoted to Director of the Insurance Department after serving as Assistant Director. She was responsible for the day-to-day supervision of licensed insurance companies and the management of the Authority’s on-site programs for the insurance sector. During this time, Mrs. Lespere also held the position of Director of Licensing and Authorisations and was the Director of Supervision, Insurance-Complex Institutions, before taking on the role of Director, International Affairs. Preceding her promotion to COO, Mrs. Lespere held the Director of Operations position at the Authority.

Mrs. Lespere is current Vice-Chair of CPA Bermuda and is past Chair of CPA Atlantic School of Business. She holds a Diploma in Company Direction from the Institute of Directors and is a current candidate for the Chartered Director designation from the same institution. In addition, Mrs. Lespere is a Professionally Certified Coach (PCI) with the International Coaching and Leadership Institute and is working as well on her Gallup Global Strengths Coaching Certification. She has been married to Anthony Lespere (’91) for almost 32 years and has two children: a son, Khiari, 27 (Mt. A graduate 2018) and a daughter Kali, 25 (Acadia, 2020). Mrs. Lespere is active alumna with Acadia by supporting its recruitment function in Bermuda as well as alumni events both in Bermuda and at Acadia. She is very excited about the opportunity to give back to the Acadia University community in yet another way.

What’s your favourite thing about Acadia?

“First, reflecting on my time at Acadia and my favourite memory, I better say meeting my husband or risk hurting his feelings. In addition to my husband, my favourite thing about Acadia would be the feeling it gives me when I first see the Exit 10 sign on the highway. It might be a traffic sign to some, but it means I am almost home – a feeling of ease, contentment and belonging comes over me. What makes somewhere home is deeply personal, but Acadia nurtured my mind, body, and soul. As a young person, it made me feel safe and secure to explore who I was and wasn’t, not just from a physical perspective, but also emotionally. There were some character-building moments in there, but on the whole, I can reflect back on the experience and all the hard work with a sense of accomplishment and pride. The atmosphere made me feel and continues to make me feel like I belong and will forever belong. We have a commonality rooted more in why we are alike than different. When I see a student and/or alumni wearing Acadia clothing, I know they are my people.”


Stuart MacLean (’83)

In his 35 years with WCB Nova Scotia, Stuart MacLean (’83) has been driven by a passion to make a difference for the workers and employers of our province.

Appointed CEO in 2012, Stuart drives the WCB’s strategic vision while overseeing all aspects of its operations. He has guided the WCB through a major business transformation and toward financial sustainability. Under his watch, injury rates in the province have declined significantly, and are approaching half the number they once were.

Of all he does, Stuart says nothing is more important to him than his personal commitment to making workplaces safer, preventing workplace injury, and reducing its human impact on workers and their families. Together with partners in government and the private sector, Stuart continues the WCB’s mission to make Nova Scotia a leader in workplace safety. His safety leadership has inspired change in workplaces across the province.

Stuart has a business degree from Acadia University, an Executive MBA from Saint Mary’s University, an ICD designation from Rotman’s School of Business, and a Certified Executive Coach designation from Royal Roads University. He is an active volunteer in the community, having served as Chair and now Trustee of the Board of Directors for the YMCA of Greater Halifax, and has served in many committee roles with the Board of Governors for Acadia University (currently as Endowment Chair). He is the Past-Chair of the Board of the Association of Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada, and has served on the Board of the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS). He is also a member of the Nova Scotia Committee of the Maritime Chapter of the Institute of Corporate Directors ICD.

What’s your favourite thing about Acadia?

“On my first day at Acadia, I vividly remember the sounds, smells, feeling of fall, and the excitement of starting a new journey. Meeting new people, learning new things, and participation in varsity sports brought experiences I will cherish forever. I also remember the feeling after the last set of exams. ‘See you later’ didn’t feel guaranteed, and I knew I would miss the people and the place. Today, I understand that Acadia changed me for the better. I thank goodness for Homecoming and a chance to remember and touch base with the people and place that I love. Attending Acadia is a special experience that stays with you for life!”  


Tracey McGillivray (’87)

Tracey McGillivary (‘87) is a senior executive with over three decades of experience in global operations, business development and account management. She led two multinational IT companies to the top of the technology services industry as assessed by leading third-party market analysts. Upon retirement from the IT industry, Tracey obtained a Master of Economic Development and Innovation from the University of Waterloo, where she received the Economic Development Award and the School of Environment, Enterprise and Development Award of Excellence and Merit.

Tracey has successfully parlayed her experience and education into the entrepreneurial world as co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of an assistive devices company, Axtion Independence Mobility Inc., designing and producing affordable, assistive devices to enable seniors and others to remain living independently and with dignity.

Tracey is a highly effective communicator, internally and externally with customers, the media, as a public speaker, and is known for her straight talk. In 2017 through 2019, Tracey hosted a series of talk shows across the country known as “Rogers Talks” focusing on the Information Communications and Technology (ICT) industry in Canada, and was a regular host of topical panel discussions for the Information Technology Association of Canada (ITAC).

Tracey also spent several years in very gratifying public service-oriented roles: two as an adult educator with Lakeland College and five years with the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF). She is highly engaged with her undergraduate alma mater, Acadia University, through a combination of philanthropy and as a member of the Board of Governors, the Campaign for Acadia Cabinet, and the Women in Sport working group. Tracey is a regular guest lecturer in Acadia’s Leadership class and hosts several Athletics, student recruitment and fundraising events. Tracey was a varsity athlete at Acadia and, in October 2019, she was inducted into the Acadia University Sports Hall of Fame in the Builder category.

Tracey is bilingual (English and French), has functional capabilities in Spanish, is well travelled and has lived and worked in various parts of the world, including Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (2011-2012) and Falls Church, VA (2006-2011). She is also a pilot, a musician and fitness enthusiast.


Pam Mood (’82)

Pam Mood (’82) is currently serving her third term as Mayor of the Town of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. She is a professional speaker and leadership expert whose work on unleashing the potential of organizations, communities and individuals has taken her across North America.  

A recent graduate of MIT’s Regional Entrepreneurship Acceleration Program, Pam is a Nova Scotia team lead in this global initiative that strengthens innovation-driven entrepreneurship and thus strengthens our communities and province. She is Past-President of the Nova Scotia Federation of Municipalities, past board member of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, and currently serves on numerous local, provincial and federal boards and committees, focusing her work on good governance, problem-solving, community-building and engagement.  She is a relationship builder and out-of-the-box thinker intent on finding solutions and getting the job done.

She is mom to kinesiologist Haley (’11), PhD Bryan and entrepreneur/designer Julie, and proud Sitti (Arabic for Grandma) to two granddaughters.

A class of 1982 graduate, Saturday football games and making lifelong connections are the things about Acadia that make her stand up and cheer!


Martin Suter (’88)

Martin Suter recently retired to Main St., Wolfville after a global career, having spent the last six years building a portfolio of digital businesses for AB InBev, including Global VP, B2B eCommerce, VP, eCommerce (USA), and as the Head of China Digital eCommerce, based in Shanghai.

As a serial technology start-up guy, working for the world’s largest beverage company in this role is not intuitive at first glance. More used to raising venture capital, building high-growth businesses and sitting on the sell-side during M&A discussions, Martin has “start-up DNA”, but AB InBev offered the best of all worlds: the chance to work in a newly created group, ABI’s ZX Ventures organization, with the mandate to launch and build an eCommerce business in China with ABI as a single strategic investor. Treating the business as a high-growth start-up is a key part of the ZXV culture, with innovation, velocity and agility as key pillars.

Having started his career shortly after graduation in Beijing in 1989, this second tour of China brought Martin full circle. In between China stints, Martin has had front row seats at several technology inflection points, spending the mid-’90s in Silicon Valley involved in the early Internet, SaaS and Cloud; the late-’90s  in Redmond, deeply embedded in Microsoft as it transitioned from a work group to enterprise player; laid the groundwork for “du”, a telecom company in Dubai; spent 10 years at the forefront of mobile broadband; rode the front edge of the enterprise social media wave; launched an eCommerce business in China; acquired several marketplaces in Europe and LATAM; and finally helped the North American eCommerce team execute in a post-COVID-19 world.

During his years at Acadia, Martin was heavily involved in extracurricular activities, serving two terms on the SRC and playing men’s rugby. He is probably best remembered as the original founder of Cajun’s, which he proposed as a means of revenue diversification to the SRC his third year, and opened and managed during his last year. Martin was elected Life Vice-President of the Class of 1988 and received “Acadia Honours Society” recognition for his lasting contributions to Acadia. Martin was also a three-term Director of the Associated Alumni of Acadia University (AAAU) and currently serves on Acadia’s Board of Governors.

What’s your favourite thing about Acadia?

“Simply put, my favourite thing about Acadia has been the people I met (including my wife, Debbie, ’88) and the enduring friendships I’ve made. I attribute this to Acadia’s relatively small size and location, where it was easy to meet people and to bond over our shared Acadia experiences.”


Lana Wood (’82)

Lana received her Bachelor of Business Administration from Acadia in 1982. Since then, she has built her career in the Canadian Insurance Industry, holding leadership positions with RSA, Marsh, and as President and CEO of Western Financial Group.  Lana recently retired as Executive Vice-President at Northbridge Insurance, where she played an integral role in building the Northbridge Insurance brand presence, growing the business in the Western marketplace, and as a member of the Executive Management Team for Northbridge Financial.

Lana is a Fellow Chartered Insurance Professional and has been a member of the Acadia Board of Governors since 2015. She grew up in Halifax, and her career has taken her across Canada, living and working in Edmonton, Calgary, Toronto and Vancouver.

Lana and her husband Verne (’81) live in Calgary, and also in Fernie, BC. They have two sons, Mathew (USD ’16), San Diego, and Dexter (SMU ’18), Calgary.

What’s your favourite thing about Acadia?

Such a tough question to answer, since I have so many ‘favourites’ and good memories about life at Acadia! I love the campus - we are so fortunate to have a beautiful University that is in a small town, campus-based, and walkable.  So wonderful to be close to nature, the ocean and in the Valley.

Overall, the sense of community is one of the fondest memories that I have, with like-minded people. From the Business Club, Ski Club and many other group settings, and it was so nice to go through a program with the same people in my classes over four years.  Even though I left Nova Scotia 40 years ago, many of those classmates are still my very good friends.  Including my husband!


Call for Expression of Interest - Board of Governors

The Nominating Committee of the Acadia Alumni Association invites “Expressions of Interest” from members of the Association who might wish to be considered as candidates for the Acadia University Board of Governors. The Alumni Association appoints 12 people to the Board of Governors. Members can serve a maximum of two terms.

The Acadia Alumni Association derives strength from the diversity of our alumni community. As a result, the Alumni Association is committed to creating a culture of inclusion and equity in all the work we do. We encourage alumni of all races, colours, religions, genders, gender identities or expressions, sexual orientations, national origins, disabilities, or ages to consider this challenging but rewarding volunteer opportunity.

Your Expression of Interest should include a current curriculum vitae, as well as an introductory paragraph or two outlining: 1) your interest in serving on the Board of Governors of Acadia University and why you would like to do so; 2) what particular skills and perspectives you would bring to the post and; 3) any additional information that would serve to support your ability to represent the diverse alumni population of Acadia University.

All submissions will be reviewed by the Nominating Committee of the Alumni Association and a list of potential candidates developed. Please submit your Expression of Interest to Oonagh Proudfoot ('93, '06), Executive Director, Alumni Affairs at oonagh.proudfoot@acadiau.ca


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Contact

Office of Alumni Affairs
Wu Welcome Centre @ Alumni Hall
512 Main Street
Wolfville, NS B4P 2R6, Canada
Alumni Inquiries: 902.585.1459
Toll free in North America:
1.866.ACADIAU (1.866.222.3428)
Alumni Fax: 902.585.1069
acadia.alumni@acadiau.ca

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