The Canadian Catholic School Trustees’ Association is pleased to announce Regis O’Connor as the 2012 Justice James Higgins Award recipient.
Involved in Catholic education his entire life, Mr. O’Connor is a most worthy candidate for the award presented annually to a person or group that has made an outstanding contribution to Catholic education in Canada.
Nominated by the Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board, Mr. O’Connor has made significant contributions to the Catholic education community.
“He has been involved in Catholic education for his entire life, first, as a student, then as teacher, a vice-principal, a trustee, and perhaps most importantly as a parent of four children who attended Catholic schools,” the nomination stated. “As a life-long learner, Regis has exhibited a passion for Catholic education.”
When it comes to Catholic education, Mr. O’Connor took on a number of roles, accomplishing many things during each tenure. From 1982 until 2010, he served as a trustee and/or chairperson for the Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board.
His passion for the history of Catholic education in his hometown region is evident as he is the chairperson for the school board’s history project and has been instrumental in the commissioning and supervising of a book written about Catholic education and its roots in Sault Ste. Marie and Algoma region.
“His involvement in Catholic education as demonstrated by his many years as a teacher and trustee is a testament to his beliefs as he has been, and continues to be, a strong proponent of Catholic education,” the nomination stated.
Mr. O’Connor continued his quest to promote Catholic education on both a provincial- and country-wide scale. Mr. O’Connor was elected as a director for the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association (OCSTA) in 1992, and later served as President from 1999-2001. In 2004, he was elected as the CCSTA Vice-President and later serving as President from 2006-2008.
“Regis O’Connor has made significant contributions to our system and also to Catholic education in our community,” wrote Mr. Stadnyk. “His leadership qualities and commitment to family, Church and Catholic education are exemplary.”
About the Award
In memory of a distinguished Canadian jurist and Catholic School Trustee, the Honourable Justice James Higgins (1913-1974) of St. John’s, Newfoundland, the Board of Directors of CCSTA annually presents an award to a person or group that has made an outstanding contribution to Catholic education in Canada. The Justice James Higgins Award is the highest honour provided by CCSTA. It reflects recognition of an exceptional contribution to Catholic education in this country.
CCSTA will present Mr. O’Connor with the Higgins Award in June at our 2012 Annual General Meeting in Sudbury.