Survivor of Haitian Earthquake among Honorees at UNBC’s 4th Annual Homecoming

September 3, 2010

A geoscientist who first survived, and then helped with relief and rebuilding efforts after the earthquake in Haiti will be among those honored as University of Northern British Columbia Alumni of the Year at the 4th Annual Homecoming later this month. James Adamson (BSc. Geography '04) was selected among all graduates for the award by the UNBC Alumni Association. The award will be presented on September 24 in the Bentley Centre during Homecoming, which will be held September 22-25.
Adamson has been working on water supply and hydrogeology projects in Haiti since 2006. He survived the devastating earthquake that shook the country in January and is travelling to UNBC to share his experiences. He will give a presentation about his time in Haiti and the relief and rebuilding efforts on September 22 at UNBC in the Weldwood Theatre.

"During the time of the Earthquake, we were blessed with our in-country experience, expertise, and ability to handle logistics.  This experience was applied to immediately assist with water supply relief and the importing of medical teams,” says Adamson.  “I’ll do whatever I can to help Haiti.”

The Alumni of the Year awards also include an award for a member of the current graduating class as well as an honorary member of the Alumni Association. Marguerite Kolié (BA International Studies and Political Science) has been selected among the Class of 2010. Her many achievements as a student and citizen include work with the Immigrant and Multicultural Services Society and the Canadian Red Cross, and establishing a bursary for African students at UNBC. "When I came to Canada from the Republic of Guinea twelve years ago, I had to depend on bursaries until I got on my feet," says Kolié. "This is just my way of paying it forward!"

Janine North, the founding CEO of the Northern Development Initiative Trust, will be named an honorary member of the Alumni Association for her leadership role in northern economic development and her support of the University’s northern mandate. Northern Development was established to stimulate economic diversification and job creation in central and northern British Columbia. 

North is passionate about BC’s rural and resource economy and has committed her career in private and public sector management to ensuring northern communities and industry reach their economic potential.  “The University of Northern BC is a game-changer in growing the capacity and the economy of our region,” says North.  “UNBC’s success is our shared success”.  In addition, Northern Development has created several internships to provide UNBC Commerce students with experience in northern economic development. Ms. North also has two daughters attending UNBC.

Everyone is welcome to attend the 4th Annual Homecoming on September 22-25 to celebrate the accomplishments, talents, and achievements of UNBC grads. For more information or to register, visit or phone 250.960.5873.

Ms. Kolié and Ms. North currently reside in Prince George. James Adamson lives in Chicago and will be available for media interviews on Friday September 24, from 1-4pm. Contact Stacey Pickering at 250.961.3859 to set up an interview.
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James Adamson

Marguerite Kolié
Janine North

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