Augustine (Gus) Etchegary Portugal Cove-St. Philip’s Born in 1924, St. Lawrence native Augustine (Gus) Etchegary has witnessed and shared in a wealth of experiences, including the havoc of the 1929 tsunami and the efforts to rescue crew members from the USS Truxtun, which ran aground near St. Lawrence. Joining Fishery Products Ltd. in 1947, Etchegary had a distinguished 41-year career, retiring in 1988 as executive vice-president. A longtime fisheries advocate, Etchegary is a former Canadian commissioner to the International Commission of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries and the North Atlantic Fishery Organization. He participated in a number of fishery negotiations and was also responsible for the formation of the Save Our Fisheries Association in 1971. After retiring, Etchegary volunteered for a number of community activities, including adviser to the Coalition of Churches that highlighted the problems facing rural NL communities following the 1992 cod moratorium. Etchegary’s was also the first Newfoundlander to be inducted into the Canadian Soccer Association Hall of Fame in 2007. In 2008 he was awarded an honorary doctor of laws degree by Memorial University and, in 2013, published his first novel, “Empty Nets,” which recounts his historic attachment to and passion for the fishing industry, his love and respect for a way of life unique to NL communities, and his conviction for nature’s capacity to renew itself if given a chance.
Dermot (Derm) Flynn
Dermot (Derm) Flynn was born in Placentia Bay in 1947. Flynn has had a distinguished career on the Island and in Labrador. He spent 32 years in municipal government — eight years as mayor and deputy mayor of Wabush and 24 years as mayor and deputy mayor of Appleton, a position he still holds. Flynn moved to Appleton in 1991 and has been keen to find new ideas to benefit the town. The Appleton Winter Festival celebrated its 25th year in February and he has been a committee volunteer since its inception. Under his leadership, Appleton has improved the ecosystem of the Gander River with the successful construction and implementation of an Abydoz Wetland Treatment Facility in 2006-07 that won numerous awards for its treatment levels, innovative design and green method of treatment. Flynn has been involved with the Provincial Tidy Towns program that has garnered Appleton wins in 2006, 2009, 2011 and 2016. He is a life member of the Association of Kinsmen Clubs of Canada, was inducted into the Softball Newfoundland and Labrador Hall of Fame and, in 2012, was awarded the Queen’s Jubilee Medal. Because of the efforts of the people of Appleton, Flynn is portrayed in the Broadway musical “Come From Away.”
Leonard (Len) Simms
Leonard (Len) Simms was born in 1943 in Howley and raised in Corner Brook, but became a long-time resident of Grand Falls-Windsor before moving to St. John’s. His accolades and accomplishments include being president of the Kinsmen Club of Grand FallsWindsor, deputy governor of Kinsmen NL and governor of Kinsmen, Atlantic Provinces. Simms was the first Newfoundland Kinsman to be elected national president of the Kinsmen Clubs of Canada, in 1978-79. Simms has been involved with a number of charitable organizations, including the Lions Max Simms Memorial Camp since 1981, chair of the Children’s Wish Foundation advisory board and member of Stella’s Circle governance board. Simms is a well-known political figure, having served as an MHA for Grand Falls-Windsor, Speaker of the House of Assembly, a member of cabinet, leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of Newfoundland and Labrador, and Leader of the Opposition. Most recently, Simms served as CEO of the Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corp. and, as an affordable housing advocate, received the National Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corp. Award at the 2013 Canadian Housing Congress for outstanding contribution to advancing affordable housing solutions.