Ninth Annual Acadia Alumni Gala Dinner to Honour Graduates

The Associated Alumni of Acadia University’s Ninth Annual Alumni Gala Dinner and Silent Auction will celebrate High Liner Foods’ CEO Henry Demone (’76) and award-winning author Joan Clark (’57), CM. The gala will be hosted by CBC radio news host Peter Armstrong (’95). It will be the first event attended by newly-appointed Chancellor Libby Burnham (’60), CM, QC, DCL.  The May 7 event will be held at the Lord Nelson Hotel in Halifax.

“This is one of my favourite nights of the year, when our Acadia community comes together to support students, to celebrate Acadia excellence, to honour outstanding alumni, and to enjoy the company of our many friends and family,” said AAAU President Charles Coll (’84). “Acadia has a rich history of academic, creative, and entrepreneurial accomplishment that begins with our wonderful an increasingly rare learning environment, and matures into long-term social, artistic and economic contributions that are renowned hallmarks of the Acadia experience. Our goal tonight is to raise funds to support student award programs, and to applaud extraordinary alumni achievement.”

Henry Demone was appointed president of High Liner Foods in 1989. During Henry’s tenure as president, the company has focused on brand marketing, value-added processing, and acquisitions. High Liner Foods today is North America’s leading value-added seafood company, with a track record of profitable growth and innovation. Henry has held leadership positions in many trade associations and volunteer organizations during his career, including the Young President’s Organization; Fisheries Council of Canada; National Fisheries Institute in Washington, DC; and Groundfish Forum, a global trade association whose members are the world’s leading seafood companies. Henry lives in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, with his wife, Rena. They have three adult children: Tiffanie, 27; Elliott, 24; and Andreas, 21. Elliott is a B.Kin. graduate from Acadia’s class of 2010 and Andreas is currently a second-year Business student at Acadia.

Joan Clark is a novelist and short story writer who was born in Liverpool, NS. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Acadia in 1957 and then attended Edmonton’s University of Alberta, where she studied education and later spent several years teaching. She married Jack Clark, an engineer with the Royal Canadian Air Force, and went with him to Winisk, Hudson Bay, which provided inspiration for her novel, The Victory of Geraldine Gull. She lived in Alberta for two decades before moving to St. John’s, NL, where she served as president of the Writers’ Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador. She has written numerous children’s books, short story collections, and adult fiction, and her work has been recognized by several literary awards: the Marian Engel Award; the Canadian Authors’ Association Award for The Victory of Geraldine Gull (1988) and for The Dream Carvers (1995), the Mr. Christie Award for best Canadian children’s book.

Peter Armstrong is the host of World Report, Canada’s most-listened-to radio news program. Prior to that, Peter was a foreign correspondent for CBC Television and CBC Newsworld, based in Jerusalem. An award-winning journalist, he has covered three wars and reported in French and English from four continents. He has covered the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, traveling throughout Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza Strip. He also reported live from Barack Obama’s ancestral village in Kenya the night of the American presidential election in 2008. Peter has worked in CBC locations across Canada, beginning in Quebec City with stops in Saint John, Toronto, Ottawa’s Parliamentary Bureau, and Vancouver. His coverage of news stories in Canada and the United States includes the SARS outbreak, three federal elections, and the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster. Originally from Oakville, ON, Peter is bilingual in French and English, and is now studying Arabic. Peter is married to Canadian journalist Piya Chattopadhyay.

This award recognizes the outstanding achievements of an Acadia alumnus whose endeavours in professional research, civic duty, business, athletics, the arts, the community, or other areas have made a significant contribution and have inherently brought honour to Acadia University. Past recipients include: Federal Cabinet Minister Peter MacKay, writer Sheree Fitch, comedian Ron James, Médecins Sans Frontières Canada President Dr. Joni Guptill and Olympic hockey player Stacy Wilson.

About Acadia
Acadia University, in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, has long been recognized as one of Canada’s premier post-secondary institutions. With its nationally and internationally recognized undergraduate and graduate research initiatives, small classes, and technology-rich teaching and learning environment, Acadia offers students an experience that includes academic achievement combined with personal growth and development. Acadia also offers distance learning, certificate programs, language training and other university extension programs through Open Acadia. For more information about Acadia University, visit our website at


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