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Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Wild Atlantic Salmon Conservation

2020/2021 Recipient: Debbie Norton

The New Brunswick Salmon Council Inc. is pleased to announce that Mrs. Debbie Norton has been selected as the recipient of the 2020/2021 Lieutenant Governor's Award for Wild Atlantic Salmon Conservation.

Born and raised along the Miramichi River, Mrs. Norton spent her early years shadowing her father on his treks along its shores and through its adjacent woodlands. In doing so she developed a deep appreciation for the beauty and importance of the Atlantic salmon. That appreciation has translated into a lifelong passion for the protection and conservation of salmon and the roles that they play in the region's ecology, culture and economy.

After receiving graduate and post graduate degrees in education Mrs. Norton returned to the Miramichi to pursue a career as a teacher. During her 30 year teaching career she had the opportunity to educate many young people on the greatness of the Miramichi and the importance of the Atlantic Salmon. She also had the opportunity to renew and pursue her passion for salmon conservation.

Mrs. Norton's energy and contributions to Atlantic salmon and resource conservation are numerable and too extensive to list in detail. She has been and / or still is a member, Director, or President of:
  • the New Brunswick Salmon Council,
  • the Northumberland Salmon Protection Association,
  • the Miramichi Watershed Management Committee,
  • the Miramichi Salmon Association,
  • the Atlantic Salmon Federation,
  • the New Brunswick Wildlife Trust Fund Council, and
  • the New Brunswick Professional Outfitters and Guides Association.
She has worked tirelessly with conservation organizations, indigenous interests and governments, politicians and departments across all levels of government, scientific and academic institutions, and industry to protect and conserve New Brunswick's Atlantic salmon; the habitats on which they depend; and the cultural and societal benefits they support.

In addition to the thousands of volunteer hours that she has provided, she has also directly contributed or fund-raised hundreds of thousands of dollars in support of Atlantic salmon conservation.

Kevin Davidson, President of the New Brunswick Salmon Council Inc. describes Mrs. Norton as “A driving force in the world of wild Atlantic salmon conservation and the protection of New Brunswick's natural resources. 

The Lieutenant Governor's Award for Wild Atlantic Salmon Conservation is the province's most prestigious and preeminent recognition of individual (s) whose efforts have contributed significantly to the conservation and protection of New Brunswick's Atlantic salmon. It is normally presented annually but due to Covid-19 restrictions on meetings and ceremonies, the current award covers the 2020/2021 period.

Mrs. Norton will receive her award on Friday, October 22 from the Honorable Brenda Murphy, New Brunswick's Lieutenant Governor at a ceremony beginning at 11:00 AM at Old Government House in Fredericton.