The 2021 recipients of the Order of PEI were announced by the Chancellor of the Order, Her Honour the Honourable Antoinette Perry, Lieutenant Governor of PEI and Mr. Gerard Greenan, Chair of the Order of PEI Advisory Council.
The three Islanders selected to receive the honour are Noreen Corrigan-Murphy of Ten Mile House, Maitland MacIssac of Charlottetown, and Dr. Heather Morrison of Charlottetown.These three individuals were selected from a total of 44 Islanders nominated to receive the award this year.
The honour was first conferred in 1996 as a means of recognizing those Islanders who have shown individual excellence or outstanding leadership in their community and in their chosen occupation or profession. It is the highest honour that can be accorded to a citizen of the Province. It is awarded annually following a public nomination process with recipients being selected by an independent nine-person Advisory Council each year. Insignia of the Order will be presented by the Lieutenant Governor at a special investiture ceremony in the fall at Government House in Charlottetown.
Born in Covehead, Noreen Corrigan-Murphy is a very successful business person and advocate for seniors. She exemplifies an Islander who attains great professional success and uses that success to help others.
After raising nine children, including two foster children, while working part-time as a cook, Corrigan-Murphy worked in provincial home care. At 49, she converted a house in Charlottetown to Corrigan Lodge, a resident care home. She expanded and later opened Corrigan Home.
An advocate for seniors, Noreen’s priority was always to provide a loving and caring environment that maximized the independence of the residents and their comfort and safety. This was achieved, in part, with the essential support of her children, late husband George, and many staff.
In 2013, when Noreen sold Corrigan Lodge, she made several charitable gifts to organizations such as the QEH Foundation. She donated $100,000 for the creation of the Noreen and George Corrigan Scholarship Fund, which supports PEI residents under the age of 30 who are either single mothers or individuals who have a learning disability, to enroll in post-secondary education. Noreen also established a $500,000 education fund for her 16 grandchildren and future great-grandchildren.
Maitland MacIssac has demonstrated a lifetime commitment to fostering wellness, promoting literacy and learning, and empowering and enriching the lives of individuals, families and communities.
For decades, MacIsaac took leadership roles in service organizations, spearheading humanitarian projects, and opening doors of hope and opportunity. A capacity-builder and visionary who sees people as a resource to themselves and others, MacIsaac inspires, encourages and believes that by working with others we can achieve a better world.
Whether as a founding board member of The Adventure Group following the passing of his son Shane in 1992, or creating the PEI Passport to Employment, helping mature workers re-enter the workforce, MacIsaac’s resume is impressive. In 1999 he was the Chair of the International Children’s Memorial Place where he developed and presented healing workshops, and developed Nature’s Hospital and a Path to Remembrance. He currently focuses his attention on wellness issues faced often by seniors.
MacIsaac received many awards, including, to name a few, the Senate 150th Anniversary Medal, the Rotary Paul Harris Fellow Awards, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Award, and the Provincial Health for Life Award.
Dr. Heather Morrison
Dr. Heather Morrison has set the standard for grace, calmness, professionalism and excellence and has become a role model as a woman in a non-traditional role, as well as an inspirational and caring leader.
She developed a deep respect for hard work growing up on the family farm in York Point. As a leader in high school, she successfully established the first SADD Chapter for PEI and Atlantic Canada, and received many awards over the years, including the Atlantic Canada James Bayer Memorial Scholarship, the Hattie Prize for the highest standing in internal medicine, and UPEI’s 2016 Alumna of the Year.
As PEI’s first female Rhodes Scholar, she completed both a Doctor of Philosophy and Masters Degree at Oxford University. Academically brilliant, bilingual and athletic, Dr. Morrison returned to Canada for her medicine training at Dalhousie University, followed by a residency at the University of Toronto.
She was appointed Chief Public Health Officer for PEI in July 2007. Her every day job to take care of and protect the public health of Islanders. At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of PEI delegated that responsibility to Dr. Morrison and she continues to deliver her messages bilingually in an empathetic, people-focused way.
In addition to her full-time role, Dr. Morrison continued to practice emergency medicine for 18 years. She has served nationally in leadership roles including, to name a few, Chair of the Canadian Council of Chief Medical Officers of Health, as PEI’s representative on the Public Health Network Council of Canada, and on the National Special Advisory Committee on H1N1, Ebola and the national opioid crisis.
Dr. Morrison has shown that her exemplary leadership and commitment to community happens when we all come together (while staying apart). She relishes the joy that comes with balancing her work with a passion for spending time with her husband and four young children.
Learn more about the Order of PEI and its recipients at assembly.pe.ca/opei.