Four Algoma District School Board (ADSB) Trustees were recognized at Tuesday night’s Board Meeting for the many years they have dedicated to the Board. Trustees Gladys Wiggins, Robert McEachren, Karen Morin and Graham Lidstone will complete their terms with ADSB as of November 30, 2018. Collectively, they have given 72 years of their time and expertise to the students and staff of Algoma District School Board.
Gladys Wiggins became a Trustee with the Algoma District School Board in December 2006, serving the city of Elliot Lake for 12 years. Gladys was elected Vice Chair of the Board in 2012, a position she held for three years.
Gladys worked at Elliot Lake Secondary School, first as an occasional classroom supervisor and then as guidance secretary, a position she held for almost 28 years, retiring in 2005. She brought this invaluable experience to her role as school board Trustee.
She served on the Joint Health & Safety Committees of the North Shore Board of Education and the Algoma District School Board for almost twelve years, serving as co-chair for part of that time. Gladys sat on the Parent Involvement (PIC), Discipline, Audit and Supervised Alternative Learning (SAL) Committees. She also regularly attended Ontario Public School Board Association (OPSBA) events including the Annual General Meeting, the Public Symposium, as well as the Northern Region’s Annual General Meeting.
In her time as a Trustee, Gladys was known for her unwavering loyalty to the students, staff and schools of Elliot Lake, the city she has called home for over 56 years.
Bob McEachren has been North Shore’s representative at the ADSB for 15 years, having been elected in 2003. Prior to retirement, Bob was a special education teacher and Principal for 34 years, first with the North Shore Board of Education and, following amalgamation, with ADSB. It was his desire to remain involved in education which motivated Bob to run for school board Trustee in 2003. As both an educator and Trustee, Bob believed we must see each child as an individual and foster his/her growth to the maximum. He was a passionate advocate for students, believing firmly that every child is a special child. As an ADSB Trustee, Bob sat on many committees including the Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC). Bob served as the ADSB OPSBA Director or alternate director for a few years.
Bob has been committed to his community and loyal to northern Ontario. He sat on the Blind River Planning Board for 17 years and the Economic Board for 6 years. Bob was part of the Ontario Public School Teachers’ Federation (OPSTF) executive for 27 years, 7 of those years as President. He also sat on the Algoma Family Services Board. Bob was the co-founder of the North Shore Chapter of CEC (Community Engagement Council) and in 2003 was awarded the CEC Spirit Award.
Karen Morin has represented Ward 3 at the ADSB for 18 years. When first elected, Karen’s son was a high school student at Bawating C&VS. Karen has always maintained a strong belief in life-long learning and the importance of a good public education available to all. Karen sat on a variety of committees with ADSB, including the Annual General Meeting Planning Committee, School Council Coordinating Committee (SCCC) and selection committees to interview potential Principals, Vice Principals and Superintendents.
Outside of ADSB, Karen works as a health care aide at a SSM nursing home. She has acted as union steward for 12 years (6 of those years as Chief Steward). She also was co-chair of the Joint Health and Safety Committee for many years and sat on the Labour Management committee. For many years, Karen was actively involved in the Sault Recreation Hockey Association (SRHA) and STAC (Sault Trails Action Committee), a citizens committee dedicated to the development of a coordinated non-motorized public trail system.
Karen’s career and volunteer undertakings contributed to her ability to advocate for students and their families across our board.
Graham Lidstone dedicated 26 years to the Algoma District School Board representing Ward 2. For 20 years he served on OPSBA as the ADSB Director including several years as Northern Vice President and has been Chair of the ADSB Audit Committee since its inception and a member of the operations and budget committee. Outside of ADSB, Graham is Vice President and partner at Dawson & Keenan Insurance Ltd. He has served on the YMCA board including 3 years as President, has been an active volunteer at Camp Aush-Bik-Koong (a children’s camp) including several years on the board of directors, and is an active member of Bethel Bible Chapel.
Graham is the proud grandfather of 7 grandchildren, five who currently attend and two who are looking forward to attending ADSB schools. He has been very proud to be part of a team of trustees and administration that planned for and advocated to renew ADSB schools. He was excited to see the transformation over the past number of years of several school sites district wide. He was also pleased with the implementation of a new online tool for parents, as he has always recognized the importance of keeping parents informed about their children’s progress, new courses of study, homework assignments and upcoming tests.
Graham believed strongly that trustees must work together collaboratively with Board Administrators and his has been a valued voice at the board table.
Chair Jennifer Sarlo and Director Lucia Reece thanked the four trustees for their years of service and their dedication to the students, staff and families of the Algoma District School Board.