Order of Nova Scotia


Photo of 2008 recipients
Front Row Left to Right: Premier Rodney MacDonald; Lt.-Gov. Mayann Francis; William Dooks, Minister Responsible for the Order of Nova Scotia Act;
Back Row Left to Right: Jock Murray; Michael Dan MacNeil; Jason Bernard (on behalf of Nora Bernard); Mahmood Naqvi; Ruth Goldbloom.

  Nora Madeline Bernard, O.N.S. (Posthumous)
Millbrook First Nation

As a strong Mi'kmaq activist for her community of Millbrook First Nation and First Nations across the country, Nora Bernard was instrumental in ensuring justice, recognition and compensation for the Survivors of the Canadian Indian Residential School system. As a survivor of the residential school system herself, Ms. Bernard founded and became president of the Shubenacadie Indian Residential School Association in 1987, and launched a class-action lawsuit on its behalf. The action taken by Ms. Bernard inspired residential schools survivors across the country to file suits, and after the suits amalgamated, it became the largest class-action lawsuit in Canadian history, representing about 79,000 survivors. For 21 years, Ms. Bernard worked tirelessly to raise awareness and seek justice for Residential School Survivors. In 2007 the federal government settled the lawsuit for more than $5 billion. Ms. Bernard also worked as a counselor for the Native Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association and contributed to the United Church of Canada program "Toward Justice and Right Relationship: A Beginning" to foster reconciliation, justice and right the relationship between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples in Truro. She fought to rejoin her community when she lost her native status after marrying a non-native. In 2007, she was admitted to the Millbrook First Nation Band "her birth place". Ms. Bernard's home was a mere 38 feet from the Millbrook First Nation's Line and it took her 38 years to be admitted. Ms. Bernard was a kind and gentle woman whose inner strength allowed her to achieve the unimaginable for the survivors. Mr. Dick Cotterill, chairman, Council of Ministries United, said: "...every time I left Nora's home, it was with a beacon of hope and love and respect. She was a great person, well deserving of recognition in the Order of Nova Scotia."
Sidney Patrick Crosby, O.N.S.
Cole Harbour

Rarely has there been such a positive and influential role model for young people in Nova Scotia as Sidney Crosby. At 21 years old, he is the Captain of the Pittsburgh Penguins of the National Hockey League. He was the first pick of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, and was one of the most highly regarded draft picks in hockey history. His path to success was evident growing up in Cole Harbour, playing for Team Canada in the World Junior Hockey Championships at only 16 years of age. By his second season in the NHL, he led the league with 120 points (36 goals, 84 assists) to capture the Art Ross Trophy, and become the youngest player, and only teenager, to win a scoring title in any major North American sports league. That same season, he won the Hart Trophy as the league's most valuable player as determined by the Professional Hockey Writers Association, and the Lester B. Pearson Award as the most valuable player as determined by the NHL Players Association. On May 31, 2007, he made NHL history by becoming the youngest team captain. In that same year he was nominated by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people of the year. Sidney has been a positive role model to countless young people throughout Nova Scotia and North America. He has never forgotten his roots and returns often to offer encouragement and support to the youth of his community. Sidney Crosby has exemplified what we, as Nova Scotians, want for our young people. Looking beyond his outstanding athletic ability, performances, and achievements, there is a person of humble, honest, and hard-working qualities that epitomizes our great province, and the characteristics of our people. Sidney Crosby has made history in the hockey world. Today he makes history as the first youth recipient of the Order of Nova Scotia
Ruth Miriam Goldbloom, O.C., O.N.S. (Deceased)

Ruth Goldbloom has dedicated her life to enriching the lives of Nova Scotians. She is an exemplary volunteer who transcends social and religious boundaries to support various worthy causes and encourage others to break barriers through action and giving. She is well known for her commitment to preserve our rich heritage as the driving force between the restoration of Pier 21, the gateway to Canada for more than one million immigrants from 1928 to 1971. When she was informed of the building's decline, she started a $9-million campaign to ensure the preservation of a key piece of Canadian history. After the Prime Minister granted her request for $4.5 million, she raised an additional $50,000 in one afternoon and was able to approach the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency with proof of the venture's success to gain more funds for the project. She continued those efforts until she had completed the task and restored Pier 21 into a national symbol of hope for thousands of new Canadians. Dr. Goldbloom was also the first female chair of the annual Metro United Way Campaign for metro Halifax in 1989. Her dynamic leadership has rallied the community behind numerous fund-raising events, including Mount Saint Vincent's Futures for Women. Dr. Goldbloom is an Officer of the Order of Canada and she holds honourary degrees from five universities and two colleges. She has also received numerous local and national awards. Dr. Goldbloom's legacy will impact on our culture and people for generations to come.
Michael Dan MacNeil, O.N.S.

Michael Dan MacNeil has devoted his life's work to the enhancement of his Cape Breton community. At the age of 23, he started his own forestry company, Red Point Export Ltd., which has been a key contributor to the Cape Breton economy for the past 35 years. He is also known as a dedicated community leader, having served as a Municipal Councillor for nine years, and as a member of numerous community boards and organizations, such as Director of the Nova Scotia Highland Village, and the Iona Volunteer Fire Department. Mr. MacNeil is a strong supporter of youth in the community, giving many their first work experience and founding a scholarship to provide financial support for education. He has received numerous awards from organizations such as the Royal Canadian Legion, the Grand Narrows and District Board of Trade, and the Victoria County Recreation Department. Through his perseverance, drive and determination, and through his exceptional leadership in business, and as a community leader, he leaves his mark on our community where his contribution in life is a far greater benefit to his community than to himself. His proven record through his compassion and genuine regard for others helps make Cape Breton strong, proud and prosperous.
Thomas John "Jock" Murray, O.C., O.N.S., M.D., F.R.C.P.

An expertise in medicine, combined with dedication and compassion for patients, has led Thomas John "Jock" Murray to become one of Nova Scotia's most outstanding medical professionals. Dr. Murray was the Dean of Medicine at Dalhousie and had been the Director of its Multiple Sclerosis Research Unit for the past 23 years. He is widely respected as a teacher, administrator, neurologist and researcher. In the early 1990s, Dr. Murray launched a series of innovative programs that dramatically changed the face of Dalhousie Medical School. This included changes to the medical school curriculum to embrace a more respectful, ethical and holistic approached to practice. He opened medical school admissions to welcome students who wished to pursue medicine, regardless of their undergraduate major. He also founded the Medical Humanities Program and consequently fostered a cultural shift among faculty that recognized the contributions of women in medicine and valued diversity of perspectives in practice. He is the founder and first president of the Dalhousie Society for the History of Medicine, and in 2004, he was appointed Professor Emeritus in the Humanities at Dalhousie Medical School. Dr. Murray has more than 200 publications and given more than 800 presentations to audiences in many countries. He is a leader in his work in care for Multiple Sclerosis patients and research collection. He is an executive member of numerous national and international medical bodies and first Canadian appointed to the prestigious chair of the Boards of Governors and Regents of the American College of Physicians. His numerous awards and achievements include Officer of the Order of Canada, Professor of the Year award from medical students at Dalhousie, Master of the American College of Physicians, and honorary degrees from St. FX, Acadia and St. Thomas universities.
Mahmood Ali Naqvi, O.N.S., M.B.B.S., F.R.C.S.(C), F.A.C.S.

Since Mahmood Naqvi came to Cape Breton Island in 1962, his vision has been to improve the health care of the people of Cape Breton. From his early days of treating injured coal miners, to his instrumental role in the opening of the Cape Breton Cancer Centre, Dr. Naqvi continues to bring his vision to life. He pursued his residency in General Surgery and Vascular Surgery at New York's Mount Sinai Hospital, but returned to the Island as the area's resident surgeon and purchased basic vascular equipment and instruments to carry out surgeries throughout the area's hospitals. With the support of his fellow physicians and nursing colleagues, he developed an Intensive Care Unit at the Sydney City Hospital. Dr. Naqvi served as co-chair of the Cape Breton Regional Hospital Foundation and his goal of consolidating the services of Sydney City and St. Rita's Hospitals was realized when the Regional Hospital opened in February 1995. Dr. Naqvi pioneered the use of laparoscopic surgery at the New Waterford Consolidated Hospital and has travelled throughout Nova Scotia teaching surgeons hands-on laparoscopic procedures. Retiring from surgical practice in the mid 1990s, Dr. Naqvi took on a new challenge as Medical Director of the Cape Breton Healthcare Complex and, in this capacity, helped open the Cape Breton Cancer Centre. Dr. Naqvi has been honoured by the Medical Society, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons and many other organizations. In every activity that he has undertaken, Dr. Naqvi has demonstrated the rare quality of making his interest for the well being of others "contagious" -- making it the interest of many. His passion for doing good, and his quality of excellence, inspires others to carry on with his vision.