Local Service Award Recipients - 2017

Colchester-East Hants

Gerry Alley

Gerry Alley has been involved in teaching for 35 years, with the last 22 years being with the Chignecto-Central Regional School Board. Gerry has been a dedicated member of the Colchester-East Hants Local of the NSTU for many years and has worn several hats at both the provincial and local levels.  While Gerry is often seen as “Union Guy” by his fellow staff members at his school he has been viewed as this persona by many outside members as well. Locally, Gerry has served as the VP of Public Affairs (2 years), President (3 years), Provincial Executive Member (4 years) and RRC Chair for the Chignecto Region (2 years), while provincially he has occupied the seat of 2nd Vice President as well as several committees.  Gerry has always been an informed, supportive, active and passionate union member and the Colchester-East Hants Local thanks him for his many years of service.


Joël Chiasson 

Diplômé de l'Université de Moncton en 1995, il a commencé sa carrière en faisant de la suppléance tout en poursuivant une carrière comme musicien.

C'est à l'été 2000 qu'il reçoit le poste d'enseignant de musique au Centre scolaire communautaire Étoile de l'Acadie à Sydney. Pendant ses dix-sept ans d'enseignement, il a enseigné les cours de musique aux élèves de la maternelle à la douzième année, ainsi que des cours de français aux élèves du secondaire.

Il est devenu représentant syndical au début de sa carrière et a participé au stage John Huntley au NSTU. Joël a travaillé comme secrétaire au CSANE pour 7 ans. Il a agi comme président du comité de programmation acadienne pour une durée de deux ans.

Lauren Currans

Avant de se retirer, Lauren Currans a eu l'opportunité d'enseigner pendant 32 ans pour les conseils en Nouvelle-Écosse. Pendant son temps comme membre du NSTU, elle a pris l'occasion d'apprendre beaucoup à ce sujet comme l'organisation, les articles, le contrat, nos droits et nos responsabilités. À travers ses années impliquées avec le CSANE, elle a rencontré de nouveaux amis, a été rep à l'École de Plymouth et à l'École de Pubnico-Ouest et a été trésorière pour son sous-local pendant les derniers cinq ans. Elle croit que chaque membre devrait avoir la chance de s'impliquer avec le syndicat au moins une fois dans leur carrière, car c'est une très belle expérience.

Sue Larivière- Jenkins

Sue Larivière- Jenkins est un membre actif au sein du syndicat depuis 2002. Elle a commencé son travail avec le syndicat comme membre associé et est présentement la représentante du Conseil Syndical Acadien de la Nouvelle-Écosse sur le comité exécutif provincial du NSTU. Elle est aussi toujours dévouée à siéger sur les comités syndicaux afin de représenter la voix des enseignants francophone de la Nouvelle- Écosse. Au niveau local, elle a travaillé sur le comité des communications et des affaires publiques, le comité des finances, le comité de développement professionnel (Article 60), le comité employé/employeur, le comité de nomination, le comité de programmation acadienne, le comité de grief, elle était trésorière de CSANE, est fini son premier terme de deux ans en tant que membre sur le comité exécutif provincial NSTU.  Elle est aussi toujours présente aux Conseil Annuel du NSTU. Le travail de Sue est apprécié de la part de membres de CSANE.

Virginie Latour

Virginie Latour est impliquée au syndicat depuis 2009, occupant une variété de poste avec la CSANE et à son école. Elle est représentante de son école depuis 2009 et elle a participé à John Huntley en 2009. Elle a été trésorière et VP de la sous-section pour la région centrale du CSANE de 2010 à 2015. Elle a été secrétaire de la CSANE de 2012 à 2014 et VP de DP de 2013-2015. Elle a aussi fait partie du comité de négociation pour le contrat local en 2014-2015, et partie du comité employé/employeur en 2015. Nous tenons à souligner son dévouement et son travail pour la CSANE et pour les membres de la CSANE. Merci Virginie!


Pamela Hoar

Pam’s professional goals lead her to become a school administrator.  She was an integral instructional leader at Parrsboro Regional Elementary and High School when they became the first accredited schools in Nova Scotia under the DOE’s NS School Accreditation Program.  She also took part in the Mike Rutherford Instructional Coaching and Feedback labs to further develop her leadership skills.  In addition, she embraced restorative approaches to help enhance her abilities as a school administrator.  Her leadership skills have been appreciated in other schools in the Cumberland Local including Amherst Regional High School and most recently West End Elementary School. Although not as personally active within the Cumberland Local as in her early career, Pam continues to follow and maintain an understanding and appreciation for union affairs.   As a true teacher, she encourages learning in all with whom she works.

Greg Nix

Greg Nix has been an educator for over 30 years and his commitment to NS schools has led him to various teaching positions and administrative roles throughout the CCRSB. He has taught many different subjects from grades 3 to 12, has mentored, and has held various administrative positions.  He currently is working as the Coordinator of Programs for CCRSB. He has been a life-long learner obtaining two master's degrees.  He is passionate about education and had played a role in creating systematic change through creating and leading professional learning opportunities for teachers and principals.  He has enjoyed coaching basketball, badminton, skiing, orienteering and other sports.  He has participated in the NSTU as a Rep, on many committees and representing schools on the NS Health Board.  He also shares his leadership within the community, playing an active role in multiple organizations, including various trail's associations, the NS boater's association, Friend's of the Pugwash Estuary, the Orienteering Association, and Search and Rescue.

Halifax City

Paulette O`Connor

Paulette O’Connor has been a longstanding and energetic fixture in the Halifax City Local.  She has taught at Saint Joseph’s-Alexander McKay Elementary School for most of her career.  She has taken her students to the Tim Horton’s Children’s Camp countless times – an opportunity that many of her students would never have if not for Paulette’s dedication.  She has partnered with a school in Kenya so her students have the chance to broaden their horizons and increase their global connections.  Paulette and her students have fundraised each year to ensure that the school’s community has access to clean drinking water. Paulette always has the best interest of her NSTU members at heart, and has been a thoughtful advocate for them over the years.  She has been a member of the Halifax City Local Social Committee, and has been instrumental in organizing our yearly Retiring Teachers’ Banquet.  Paulette always has a smile on her face, and her approachable demeanor has made her an incredible asset to our Local.

Carmel Rooney

Carmel Rooney has been a valued and longstanding member of the Halifax City Local.  She has taught at Joseph Howe Elementary school for many years.  Carmel is dedicated to the inner city and to the community of North-end Halifax and is well known outside the walls of her school.  Even towards the end of her career, Carmel has continued to evolve as an educator, attending conferences and always looking for new ways to engage and educate her students. Carmel has been a NSTU Rep, a member of the Halifax City Local Executive, and a member of countless local committees.  She’s served as VP of Professional Development and Treasurer on numerous occasions.  Carmel is a vocal advocate for the members of the NSTU, and always has their best interests at heart.  Because of Carmel’s longstanding involvement, she is able to remind our membership how far we’ve come, and the sacrifices that were made.  She has also been a member of our Local Social Committee, where she has taken pride in organizing our annual Retiring Teachers’ Banquet.

Halifax County

Jodie MacIlreith

Jodie has been involved in the NSTU since 1995, and has served in a number of capacities in that time, including local representative, local Finance Committee member and provincial Pension Committee member. She is a past recipient of the John Huntley Internship, a NSTU PDAF grant, and numerous teaching awards including the MSVU Senate Medal of Distinction, the EnCana Students’ Choice Awards, and was a finalist for the Progress Women of Excellence Awards.

Finally, not only has she contributed to several provincial student and teacher resources, she has found time to share her expertise as a course instructor at St. FX. Jodie exemplifies the guiding principles of the NSTU, and we hope you will accept her nomination.

Lisa Nearing

Lisa has been teaching since 1988 in the HRSB as a substitute then moving on to Colby Village, Fort Sackville Elementary, George Bissett, Waverley Road, and Joseph Giles Elementary.  She has taught grade primary and combined P/1. Lisa has been involved in the NSTU since 1994, and has served in a number of capacities in that time, including local representative, local Finance Committee member and local Economic Welfare Committee. She has served the local in many other capacities, including volunteering for an ad hoc Property Committee, ad hoc Committee on Grade Primary and as a representative for Annual Council. During the recent job action, she went above and beyond in her service of the local and the NSTU, spending countless hours ensuring that the members’ needs were met in one of our most troubling times.


Rosalie MacDonald

This double-Masters, hard-working woman is truly a beautiful soul. She has been quietly active in the NSTU for most of her career as a Resource teacher. Never one to be looking for recognition, she helps others with respect and confidentiality; she has an excellent rapport with her colleagues. Ro has been a school rep for many years, and has served on committees including Equity, and Women in Education. She is the driving force behind Diversity Day and Music Therapy activities at Wolfville School, and she encourages others to participate as well. She has attended Annual Council several times and is a strong advocate for members' rights.  Ro graduated from MSVU, and earned her Master of Education degrees from Acadia and MSVU; she is a true lifelong learner, who works continuously to improve professional practice and programs. Kings Local is proud of her and fortunate to have her as a friend and Union sister.


Shane MacRae

Shane MacRae has been an enthusiastic and strong voice on union matters, in our local, throughout his career. He began his career as a circuit physical education/science teacher in 1989 at Bay St. Lawrence Elementary, Dingwall Elementary, and Cabot High. Shane transferred to Memorial Composite High in 1992 to teach physical education/biology until he transferred to Seton Elementary in 2016 as a physical education teacher. In our local, Shane has assumed different roles at various points throughout his career. He has been a school representative and a member of the Regional Representative Committee and has been an avid participant in functions such as the Teachers’ Bowling Tournament, Teachers’ Hockey Tournament, Teachers’ Softball Tournament, Local Retirement Dinner, and more. Shane’s contribution is more than a list of volunteer roles, held over the years, in our local. He likes to lead by example but is always more than happy to share his experience and answer questions regarding both union and professional matters.

Susan Spurrell

Susan Spurrell graduated from Mount St. Vincent University with a Bachelor of Child Studies and a Bachelor of Education. She began her career teaching in Prince Edward Island where she taught for four years. In her 27 years of teaching, she has taught Special Education, Resource, Grades Primary, 1, 2 and 3.  Susan presently teaches Grade Primary. Susan has been employed by the Cape Breton Victoria Regional School Board for the last 23 years. She has been a member and involved with the Northside Victoria Local during those years, and has served on the following committees: Social Committee, PD Committee, Scholarship Committee, Resolutions, and Board Teacher.  For many years, Susan was actively involved with the Executive as an Area Rep, School Rep, and Chair of the Social Committee. When Susan attends meetings she arrives with an infectious laugh that makes others feel at ease and at home.


Nancy Doyle

Nancy is a very dedicated educator and member of the NSTU.  She has devoted countless hours to the Union at the local, regional and provincial levels. Nancy has had a long time affiliation with the Professional Association, ATYA (Association of Teachers of Young Adolescents).  She has served as the Secretary and President of ATYA. Locally, Nancy served as Treasurer and President.  She worked on several committees of the local including Social, Professional Development and Equity. At the regional level, Nancy has been a member of the CRRC for several years. She has served as the Secretary of the council.  She has been a member of the Employment Equity, Education Week Awards, Marking and Prep, Excellence in Teaching Award Committees and has participated on the Board/Teacher Committee. At the provincial level, Nancy has just completed her term as Provincial Executive Member.  She has worked on various committees including Finance, Member Services, Professional Development and PACC.

Cynthia MacKinnon

Cindy became involved with the NSTU as a member of the Local Executive in the early 2000's.  She has been serving our membership for almost 20 years. Cindy has held many positions locally, President of the Local, VP of Communications, VP of Professional Development and is currently the VP of Economic Welfare. She has also served on several committees. Regionally, Cindy has been a longstanding CRRC Member. She has been on committees, such as the Nominating, Negotiating, Time to Teach, Marking and Prep, Teacher Board and others. Currently she is the Regional Chair of the Economic Welfare Committee. Cindy has also gone onto serve at the Provincial level, where she was a Provincial Executive Member. She was also on the Provincial Development, Member Engagement, Contact Steering, Curriculum, Governance and Policy, the Provincial Associations Coordinating Committees. Nationally, Cindy served as a Nova Scotia delegate at the CTF AGM.

Ann Slater

Ann Slater has been an active member of the NSTU. Ann served on the first established Substitute Committee of the NSTU as the Chairperson for the first two years.  She served two terms on this committee.  After that, she continued to serve the interests of substitutes as the Substitute Liaison in Pictou Local. At the local level, Ann served as the V.P. of Communications then the Local Secretary.  She served on the Local's Social and Professional Development Committees both of which were very active committees of the local. This year, Ann has stepped back from her leadership duties in Pictou Local to concentrate her time and efforts as Principal of Walter Duggan Elementary School.  Even though she stepped down from her leadership roles, she continues to remain an active member supporting all our Local and provincial activities.  Ann's expertise, organizational skills and knowledge of the union have been greatly missed this year.