WELLINGTON, PEI – Dec. 4, 2012 – A longtime co-operator, who even has the word “Co-op” in his nickname, has just been named the recipient of the 2012 Co-op Order of Merit Award because of his unrelenting devotion to this community-based movement.
It was during the “Let’s Make a Co-op Deal” evening of games in Wellington, Nov. 30, that the Conseil de développement coopératif de l’Î.-P.-É. (CDC) surprised the winner, Roger “Co-op” Arsenault of Wellington, by presenting him this well-deserved recognition.
Arsenault, who was serving as prize announcer for the game show evening, didn’t have the slightest clue what was in store for him. Even as he was hearing the winner’s list of accomplishments, he never suspected anything; he was instead trying to figure out who else the winner might be.
The president of the CDC, Angèle Arsenault, described the winner as “a remarkable, dedicated and well-respected man… who devotes himself in an exceptional way to the co-operative movement.”
She said Arsenault has been doing volunteer work both in the co-op movement and in the community at large for several decades and continually shows great passion for his co-operative efforts.
To name but a few of his involvements, he has served as president or chairman of the former St. Philippe and St. Jacques Credit Union, Wellington Co-op, Immaculate Conception Parish Council, Evangeline Funeral Co-op, Evangeline Health Centre, Wellington Firemen’s Club, Wellington Boys and Girls Club, the former Evangeline Co-op Housing and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Fundraising Committee.
He has also served as a board member with the Evangeline Credit Union, Evangeline Home and School, Le Chez-Nous Co-op, the Acadian Museum of PEI and Summerset Manor in Summerside.
“It seems as though this person has dedicated his career to co-operatives. In addition to his commitment to these numerous boards, he also worked for 14 years at Wellington Co-op and 23 years as general insurance representative for The Co-operators,” added the CDC chair.
She mentioned that the award hadn’t been presented since 2009 but that the CDC wanted to resurrect it in 2012 for International Year of Co-operatives, especially to honor such a deserving person.
The winner humbly accepted the award as he wiped a few tears from his eyes.
The Co-op Order of Merit was instituted in 1981 to honor people who have made an extraordinary contribution to the co-op movement in the Evangeline area. Over the years, the CDC has presented the award to the co-operators Léo J.T. Arsenault, Ulric Poirier, Dosithée Poirier, Marie-Anne Richard, Eddie Arsenault, Tilmon Arsenault, Ralph MacLellan, Léonce Bernard, Alphonse Gallant, Amand Arsenault, Father Éloi Arsenault, Augustin P. Arsenault, Joseph E. Gallant, Amand Bernard, Adélard Gallant, Eva Richard, Ida Gallant, Ronnie and Jeanne Durant, Anne-Marie Arsenault and Urbain Arsenault.
CUTLINE: Angèle Arsenault, right, president of the Conseil de développement coopératif de l’Î.-P.-É., presents the 2012 Co-op Order of Merit Award to Roger « Co-op » Arsenault of Wellington. His wife Lorraine also received a bouquet of flowers.
For more information:
Co-op development officer
Conseil de développement coopératif de l’Î.-P.-É.