Category Archives: News releases

The March 11-17, 2019, edition of Brian Cormier’s Weekly Update is out!

Click here for this week’s newsletter. To subscribe, please fill out the form in the upper right-hand corner of my website. In this week’s edition:
– Never mind chocolate! This year, people are giving up plastic for Lent
– CBC Radio’s Under the Influence: Distress purchases
– New Zealand using shocking photos to urge men to wear seatbelts
– Saint Patrick’s Day is around the corner!
– Ganong peppermints gone after 130 years
– A store brand of olive oil is lauded for its taste and authenticity. Who knew?
– Pilot project: Hospitals putting Amazon Alexa smart speakers in patient rooms
– Smart garbage cans coming to littered San Francisco streets
– Yet another reboot: Let’s all welcome back Atari Pong!
– Adult Canadian fans of animation rejoice!
– Barbie turns 60 and continues to evolve with the times
– Sick of the twice-yearly time change? Hope is on the way!
– And then there was one… one Blockbuster left in the world, that is
– Next Rotary Trivia Night: Monday, March 11
– Looking for a beautiful condo in Dieppe?
– March book giveaway: You Are a Badass at Making Money by Jen Sincero
… and quotes of the week, photo of the week, trivia, links to interesting articles and more!

NEWS RELEASE: Association and campaign launched by private sector business leaders to promote NB businesses

For immediate release

Research shows by shifting 5% of purchases to NB products, you will help to create 5,000 jobs and millions in revenue for the province

Association and campaign launched by private sector business leaders to promote NB businesses

(NEW BRUNSWICK – Monday, February 26, 2018) — An educational campaign to encourage individuals, businesses and public entities in the province to buy more New Brunswick products, services and experiences was launched today across the province.

Driven by a private-sector-led association called Excellence NB, which was also announced today, the initiative has the goal of empowering New Brunswickers to power up their own economy.

Jon and Leslie Manship, well-known leaders, philanthropists and lifelong New Brunswickers, are the founders of the entire initiative. They identified the fact that shifting even a small percentage of New Brunswickers’ purchases toward New Brunswick products, services and experiences could have a significantly positive and meaningful impact on the provincial economy.

“We feel there is an important opportunity here that all New Brunswickers can contribute to and that will help our province to realize its full potential,” said Jon Manship. “Leslie and I love New Brunswick. We believe in this province and its people. We know in our hearts that working together, as New Brunswickers, we can make this happen.”

From there, the Manships commissioned research from Dr. Pierre-Marcel Desjardins, an economist with the Université de Moncton. The research showed that just a 5% shift in purchasing NB products, services and experience would create roughly 5,000 jobs and tens of millions of dollars in tax revenue annually for education, health care, roads and infrastructure, and social services. These results can start to flow immediately and would snowball more noticeably with time.

The Manships also commissioned research by Corporate Research Associates (CRA) on the buying patterns, thoughts, attitudes and perspectives of New Brunswickers both on the consumer side and business-to-business side.

CRA’s research shows that New Brunswickers are proud of products and services made in NB. It also concluded NB residents have some recognition of the benefits of buying locally made products and services. However, in many cases, there is only moderate awareness of which companies, products and services are from New Brunswick. This often applies to the billions of dollars of purchasing done annually by governments at all levels and by businesses.

Based on that information, Excellence NB was established and the campaign titled “For the love of New Brunswick” created. Among other things, the campaign aims to promote and educate New Brunswickers on which products, services and experiences are “made in NB” with in-store signage as well as other tools for retailers and other businesses.

“There are zero new or extras costs to doing this and, you can start today with no new money – no government grants, no handouts. Just shift your spending a little toward New Brunswick goods, services and experiences. That’s all. It really is that easy and will make a major difference,” said David Hawkins, CEO of BrainWorks Razor Marketing as well as a founding member and one of the principal architects of Excellence NB, and its creative director. “We encourage all citizens to support NB companies, products and services when it makes sense to you. Often, they will offer you the best value.”

Another founding member is Thomas Raffy, President and CEO of the Conseil économique du Nouveau-Brunswick, representing the province’s francophone business organization. “We are very enthusiastic about this initiative and excited to be a part of it and to help it succeed, for the benefit of our members and ultimately New Brunswick’s economy.”

A number of videos were played at the news conference showcasing the beauty, quality, depth and overall value of New Brunswick’s offerings. They also depicted a variety of New Brunswickers from across the province who have already jumped on board to support the initiative.

Though the announcement was physically held in Moncton, the event was live streamed across the province via Facebook Live to truly make it province-wide.

Please note, Excellence NB is a 100% private-sector conceived, led, driven and funded initiative.

For more information please visit,
En français:


Media contacts:

David Hawkins

Chanelle Doiron

Elsipogtog First Nation congratulates Elder Joe John Sanipass on prestigious Pioneer Award from TIANB


For immediate release
May 25, 2017

Elsipogtog First Nation congratulates Elder Joe John Sanipass on prestigious Pioneer Award from Tourism Industry Association of New Brunswick (TIANB)

ELSIPOGTOG, N.B. – The Elsipogtog First Nation is honoured that one of its most respected members – Elder Joe John Sanipass – has received the prestigious 2017 Pioneer Award from the Tourism Industry Association of New Brunswick (TIANB). The presentation took place at TIANB’s Annual Tourism Summit in Fredericton on May 24.

Joe John Sanipass, 80, is an elder and artisan who has been making baskets for 70 years. He also holds numerous workshops where participants learn the basic techniques of the art. He has his own sweat lodge and hosts those who are striving for greater meaning in life through this very spiritual tradition. The TIANB Pioneer Award is given to those who have demonstrated their commitment and outstanding contribution to the promotion of tourism and the province of New Brunswick.

Elder Joe John Sanipass, Elsipogtog First Nation
Elder Joe John Sanipass, Elsipogtog First Nation

“Our knowledge-keepers like Joe keep our culture going for generation after generation,” said Elsipogtog First Nation Chief Arren Sock. “His baskets are in high demand both inside and outside our community throughout the Maritimes.”

Elsipogtog First Nations Administrator Derwin J. Joseph was also very pleased to learn of the recognition. “Congratulations to Joe John Sanipass on this award. Our hopes for future generations to retain vital cultural wisdom rest on such recognition of our people and the skill they possess to pass it on,” he said. “This will serve well our goal of establishing more than just a tourism product from Elsipogtog, but a means by which our culture will continue forward for our own people – and the people we share our land with.”

“This is a proud moment for the community of Elsipogtog,” said Lynn Francis, Director of Economic Development, Elsipogtog First Nation. “Our elder has dedicated many years to maintain and share the art of traditional Mi’kmaq basket-making with the people of Elsipogtog. Elder Joe John Sanipass has also been teaching basket-making techniques to a group of participants from the Heritage Interpreter Certification Program. We are creating a path through capacity building to reach our goal of developing a self-sustaining indigenous tourism product.”

In addition to his work as an artisan, Elder Joe John Sanipass also uses his wisdom to counsel and mentor others who may have fallen on hard times. He works uses his life knowledge and experience to help provide guidance to those needing a helping hand and elder support. As well, he conducts traditional ceremonies and has been privileged provide to personal and spiritual marriage ceremonies for those have requested his knowledge and wisdom for such important traditions.


For more information, please contact:

Derwin J. (D.J.) Joseph
Nation Administrator

NEWS RELEASE: MH Renaissance Inc. continues work to attract tenants to MH35 project to rejuvenate former Moncton High School


March 17, 2017
For immediate release

The group of community business leaders behind the MH35 proposal to redevelop the former Moncton High School at the corner of Church Street and Mountain Road in Moncton remains very optimistic and enthusiastic that their project will move forward.

“We continue to receive a number of inquiries from potential tenants for all floors and the arts centre side on a weekly basis,” said Dennis Cochrane, President of MH Renaissance Inc. “While much has been said about moving the Moncton Public Library to MH35, we want to make it abundantly clear that we intend to move forward with or without the library. There is a lot of private-sector interest in the property.”

“We have always said that our preference for the City of Moncton’s contribution to the project would be relocating the library,” Mr. Cochrane said. “We have also consistently indicated that it is not a deal-breaker. We have indicated to members of Moncton City Council that their support for the project would show vision and leadership and was crucial to the redevelopment of the site, and – if they were not prepared to relocate the library – then what were they prepared to contribute to the project so that it could move forward and continue to serve the Greater Moncton community for another 82 years? We have been working with the City of Moncton for more than two years.”

The group working on the MH35 proposal includes Mr. Cochrane, a former Moncton city councillor, mayor, MP and MLA, as well as Jim Lockyer, a former provincial cabinet minister, city councillor and currently a law professor at the Université de Moncton, and well-respected property developers and construction industry leaders John Corazza and Joe Tippett. The proposal would see the former Moncton High School undergo significant internal expansion and renovations, including a renovated auditorium and space for arts groups and artists, including the Atlantic Ballet Theatre of Canada and others.

“It’s our full intention to make the former Moncton High School a beautiful example of what can be done with a heritage building,” Mr. Cochrane says. “Our proposal is to save the entire building and enhance it. Unlike another proposal on the table, we have no intention of demolishing most of it for a parking lot and leaving the auditorium to fall into disrepair. This would be a huge tragedy for our city’s heritage. Moncton deserves better than that.”

“We have been open and honest with Monctonians since day one,” he says. “We have not worked under a cloak of secrecy. We’ve presented to public sessions of council, met with a number of community groups and stakeholders – including the Moncton Public Library Board on a number of occasions – produced videos and architectural drawings, done media interviews and been active on social media. As well, last spring, we held public information sessions. We have been open and transparent. We think Monctonians deserve nothing less.”

Currently, MH Renaissance continues to meet regularly with prospective tenants in the private sector and the arts community. It is also the intent to have the rejuvenated complex be Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design® (LEED) certified, a rating system recognized as the international mark of excellence for green building in more than 160 countries. LEED recognizes that sustainability should be at the heart of all buildings – in their design, construction and operation. Green buildings create a healthier indoor environment for occupants through better indoor air quality, less harmful products, and more natural daylight. They also reduce waste, conserve energy, decrease water consumption, and drive innovation.

“At this time, we want to sincerely thank our many supporters, including the public and many local politicians who are passionate about preserving and enhancing this heritage building. We recognize the love people have for this majestic structure,” Mr. Cochrane said. “It is heartening to know that they share our vision of the former Moncton High School.”


Media contact:

Dennis Cochrane