SUNY Canton added 25 remarkable individuals to the College’s Hall of Fame at an induction ceremony on Friday, Feb 24 in the College’s Chaney Dining Center.
“Our College would not be where it is today without the hard work, dedication and thoughtfulness of these wonderful people,” said SUNY Canton President Dr. Joseph L. Kennedy. “They laid the foundation for our many successes and we’re looking forward to celebrating their numerous contributions and accomplishments.”
Those eligible for induction into the Hall of Fame include, but are not limited to, alumni, founders, community members, and retired faculty and staff members. The recent inductees also include past presidents, distinguished faculty members, and numerous individuals who have significantly impacted SUNY Canton and the North Country.
The class is the second installment of the Hall of Fame’s Century Club, which will include the College’s first 100 inductees. The first class was inducted during SUNY Canton’s Alumni Weekend in June 2011.
“So many people have impacted our College in significant ways, but we could not appropriately induct them all at once,” Kennedy noted. “We wanted to make sure we took the time to honor each individual in the way they deserve to be recognized and thank them for all they have done for SUNY Canton and our students.”
The second installment of the Hall of Fame Century Club includes:
Dr. Adelord S. and Sylvia H. Blanchard – Dr. Adelord “Doc” Blanchard was a driving force in the secretarial science department for 22 years. He was admired as a professional who was deeply committed to his work and dedicated to his students. To perpetuate the high standards of excellence for which he was known, the Dr. Adelord S. Blanchard Endowment was established by the Student Cooperative Alliance and enlarged by Doc’s colleagues and friends. Sylvia H. Blanchard taught secretarial science and business at SUNY Canton for 25 years, from 1970 until her retirement in 1995. She was past president of ATC Women and a member of the Canton-Potsdam Zonta Club. Following her death in 1999, her family requested that this endowment fund be renamed to recognize her outstanding contributions to the College and thus the Dr. Adelord S. and Sylvia H. Blanchard Memorial Endowed Scholarship was named in honor of nearly fifty years of their combined service to the college.
Joel M. Canino ’59 – After graduating from SUNY Canton in 1959, Joel M. Canino worked as an industrial purchasing agent for Inland Supply Company in Syracuse. A year later he was offered a position at the Syracuse construction contracting firm of H.H. and F.E. Bean, Inc., where he eventually became executive vice president. In 1973, he moved to Orlando, Florida to work for the Pittsburgh-based mechanical contracting firm of Sauer Industries, where he served as president of various subsidiaries. In 1984, he became president of C.N.F. Industries in Meriden, Connecticut. Mr. Canino and his partner began Gemma Power Systems, one of the largest design/construct power plant builders in New England and one of the best in the nation, in 1997. His passion for the College was evident in his many gifts, which totaled more than $3 million and included the largest gift in SUNY Canton’s history. The College dedicated its School of Engineering Technology in his honor and renamed it the Canino School of Engineering Technology in 2005.
Mary Adele Chaney – A former professor of domestic science and academic subjects, Mary Adele Chaney was among the first group of women to graduate from the Agriculture School in 1910. After furthering her education at institutions such as Columbia University, Simmons College, Connecticut and later Providence, Ms. Chaney returned to teach at her alma mater in 1914 where she was hired as second assistant in domestic science and eventually became first assistant. Two years later she became the head of the domestic science program. For over two decades, she graced the institution with her youthful spirit, understanding, and patience, propelling her adaptation to changing times during her devoted time to higher education. She was also instrumental in starting the Pi Nu Epsilon, the first sorority for women. The Chaney Dining Center is named in her honor.
D. Edgar Cloce ’59 – D. Edgar Cloce is a 1959 graduate of the automotive technology program and is president of T.J. Toyota in Potsdam, one of the most successful automotive dealerships in the North Country. He was the 2009 recipient of the College’s Distinguished Alumni Award. In 1989, he and his wife, Clare, established the Ed and Clara Cloce Scholarship. He is a member of the Canton College Foundation Board of Directors and SUNY Canton’s Automotive Technology Advisory Committee and is also a regular supporter of the SUNY Canton College Foundation.
Dr. Solomon Cook – Dr. Solomon Cook was named to the SUNY Canton College Council by then-Governor Hugh Carey in December 1978 and served in that capacity until retiring in February 1989. In the later years of his Council term, he served as a Council representative on the Canton College Foundation Board of Directors. As chief of the tribal council, he played a crucial role in helping his community recover from a period of unrest. Dr. Cook dedicated his skills to improve the quality of life in his community. He served in the U.S. Navy in World War II; was elected chief of the St. Regis Mohawk Tribal Council; served as president of his church parish council and as an officer of the Knights of Columbus; is active in Farm Bureau and the 4-H Advisory Committee in program development; and donated land for a library in Hogansburg.
Henry and Macy Davis – In the 1930s and 40s, Henry and Macy Davis worked in a greenhouse at the College for more than a dozen years. Mr. Davis started working in the greenhouse as a newlywed with Macy. Mr. Davis began taking evening classes in 1941, which served as preparation for World War II and eventually led to his career in electrical construction. After he retired, he left $250,000 to the College but wanted no attention surrounding the gift until after he passed away.
William D. Demo ’57 – William D. Demo owned the Demo Auctioneering and Appraisal Service and retired from the St. Lawrence Central School after teaching for 27 years. Mr. Demo is a member of the Canton College Foundation Board of Directors and has been a volunteer fireman for 58 years and town councilman for 51 years. He has been a generous benefactor to the College Foundation creating the Bill and Kathleen Demo and Family Endowed Scholarship. Mr. Demo is a leader in St. Lawrence County and is a behind the scenes supporter for many significant projects at the College.
Dr. Robert Fraser – Dr. Robert Fraser served as vice president of academic affairs at the College. He arrived at Canton in 1973 as dean of instruction and was appointed to his vice presidential role in 1976, which he served until retiring in 1991. Dr. Fraser also served as the interim president between Dr. Earl W. MacArthur and Dr. Kennedy. During his 18-year tenure, he was a member of the New York State Association of Junior Colleges and the SUNY Association of Two-Year College Academic Officers, and took part in several local organizations.
Dr. Albert E. French – Dr. Albert E. French became the sixth director and the first President of the College in April 1948. Along with his arrival came the name change of the College for the third time, it became the State University of New York Agricultural and Technical Institute. During his 24 years of service, Dr. French was involved with two major building projects, including the College’s move across the village of Canton. French Hall was the administrative building during the years that Dr. French and Dr. MacArthur served as president. The Albert E. French Scholarship was established in 1972 by the Canton Alumni Association and was endowed and enlarged in 1989 by alumni and the French family in honor of, and in tribute to, Dr. French.
Walter Kingston – Walter Kingston taught at the College from 1946 through 1979. After graduating high school, he served as Chief in the Canadian Navy prior to teaching at SUNY Canton. He subsequently obtained his bachelor’s and master’s degrees after more than 20 years of summer school and night school. Mr. Kingston began teaching industrial technology in 1946 and started the automotive technology department in 1949 and served as director until 1977. An endowment was established in his honor by his son Dr. William Kingston and his wife, Dr. Anne Moss. The scholarship is awarded annually to an incoming freshman who has been accepted into the automotive technology program.
Ernest C. Krag – Ernest C. Krag was a beloved professor of sociology and founder of the College’s Native American Club. He was a member of the Board of Directors of College Association, Inc. and played a critical role in the advising of the Pi Nu Epsilon sorority at SUNY Canton. He was appointed to the faculty at the College in 1965 and became a full professor in 1972. Mr. Krag was the recipient of the College’s Distinguished Faculty Award in 1980. He dedicated his professional and personal life to the College and was known for his high standards of honesty and unselfish service to students, the College and the community. The Ernest C. Krag Scholarship was established in 1991 on the occasion of his retirement as a tribute to him and the impact he had on students, faculty, staff and the College.
Edson A. Martin – Edson A. Martin donated the land that SUNY Canton was built upon. When talks surfaced of the possibility of moving the College out of Canton, Martin gave the farm property in the northwest edge of the village to ensure the College didn’t leave the community. His gift provided the space for the campus to evolve into a leading college in the North Country and assured its future. He was one of the original members of the College Council, which came together for the first time in 1954. Mr. Martin was the recipient of SUNY Canton’s first ever Distinguished Citizen Award in 1976 and he was recognized again in 1991 when the College named the athletic fields in his honor.
Catherine Newell – Catherine Barnett Newell represents the fifth generation of her family to make her home in St. Lawrence County. She was an elementary school teacher and founding member of the environmental organization Save the River, North Country Citizens for Responsible Land Use, and the Hammond History and Folk Art Museum. She is also a former board member of the St. Lawrence Aquarium and Ecological Center, Ogdensburg Command Performances, and North Country Public Radio’s Community Advisory Board. She has also served in various other leadership roles throughout the North Country. Ms. Newell co-founded the Sweetgrass Foundation, a private charitable institution which provides financial support to local non-profit organizations, with an ultimate mission to improve the quality of life in Northern New York. Her efforts resulted in the College’s Newell Veterinary Technology Center, a much-needed space on campus as the veterinary technology programs have grown significantly in recent years.
Allan Newell – Allan Newell represents the fifth generation of his family to reside in St. Lawrence County. He served in the U.S. Navy for four years and on the Newell Rubbermaid Inc. Board of Directors. As co-founder of the Sweetgrass Foundation, Mr. Newell has served as its President and Treasurer. Hundreds of grants have been awarded to numerous regional organizations, including the private funding required to secure the matching state funds for the construction of SUNY Canton’s Newell Veterinary Technology Center. At the time, the gift was the largest in SUNY Canton’s history. Many North Country students also continue to benefit from the Allan P. and Catherine B. Newell Endowed Scholarship established by them with a personal gift to the College in 2003. Catherine Newell and Allan Newell were awarded the College’s Distinguished Citizen award in 2007.
John P. Ouderkirk – A Malone native, Mr. Ouderkirk graduated from SUNY Canton in 1952 and from St. Lawrence University in 1958. He served in the Army from 1953 to 1955. Mr. Ouderkirk taught Physics at SUNY Canton from 1958 until his death in 1987. A truly outstanding teacher, he was known on campus and throughout SUNY for his contributions to the field. Mr. Ouderkirk was a gifted lecturer, a wise mentor, a caring counselor, and a quietly inspiring taskmaster. The prestigious SUNY Chancellor’s Award particularly recognized his skills for Excellence in Teaching in 1975. While he insisted on high standards, he gave unselfishly of his time to anyone who needed it; he gave students opportunities to develop their full potentials; and he always gave students the benefit of the doubt.
Ronald M. O’Neill ’63 – Ronald O’Neill, class of 1963, began serving on the College Council in 1984 and was appointed as chair in 1992 by former New York State Governor Mario M. Cuomo. Mr. O’Neill continued to serve as a board member until 1999 and was reappointed as Chair of the SUNY Canton College Council by former Governor David A. Paterson in 2008 and is currently serving in that role. He was named to the State University of New York’s Alumni Honor Roll in 2000 because of his extensive contributions to the community and SUNY Canton. That same year, he received the SUNY Canton Distinguished Alumnus Award. O’Neill was the youngest Democratic Chairman for the Town of Canton, was a Morley Library Trustee and was a member of the Morley Volunteer Fire Company. While working for the Social Security Administration, he was also an alternate and on-site union representative for the American Federation of Government Employees.
James M. Payson – Dr. James Payson served the College for 22 years and was one of the most beloved figures from the School of Agriculture. Many referred to him as a “founding father,” prolific educator, and an amicable friend. He documented the early years of the School of Agriculture in a typescript work entitled, “A Brief History of the State School of Agriculture.” For over two decades of conscientious work, Dr. Payson shaped many lives and was a strong advocate for the school he took pride great in, as he was dedicated to providing a promising future to his students and the College.
Gerald Roselle – A dedicated educator and benefactor of the College for over 24 years, Gerald Roselle was a member of the English department where he served as chair from 1977 until 1982. In 1992, he established a significant bequest to the Foundation that funds scholarships and paid assistantships. One of the scholarships is presented annually to a freshman humanities student. The College’s academic plaza is named in his honor and is located between Cook Hall and Southworth Library and marked by a plaque.
Dr. Edwin Smith – Dr. Edwin Smith created the veterinary science technology curriculum at SUNY Canton and was named the College’s 2003 Distinguished Citizen. He was known for his enthusiasm and professionalism while serving as a faculty member and his colleagues were impressed with his ability to educate as well as motivate and support students. He invented lab facilities and equipment that helped students learn the necessary techniques required in the field. The veterinary science technology program has evolved into one of the most successful in the state, with the addition of bachelor’s degrees and the Newell Veterinary Technology Center. Dr. Smith had his own veterinary practice in Canton that served many community members and was an outstanding addition to the North Country.
William Stalder – Former College Council Chair and member and former chairman of the Canton College Council since 1962, William Stalder was a charter member and past chairman of the Association of College Trustees (ACT). He is one of the few College Council chairmen to have been appointed by both Republican and Democratic governors of New York State. He retired in 1991 as the managing partner of Witherbee and Whalen, Inc.
Jay F. Stone ’62 – Jay Stone graduated from the Air Conditioning program in 1962 and owns Hyde-Stone Mechanical Contractors, Inc., which has one of two offices in Potsdam. Mr. Stone has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Canton College Foundation, Inc. since 1989, and is a member of the college’s Air Conditioning Engineering Technology Curricular Advisory Committee. The Jay F. Stone Scholarship was established in 1996 by his wife and children to honor his dedication and service. The scholarship is awarded annually to an entering freshman student who enrolls in the Air Conditioning Engineering Technology curriculum.
Josephine P. Swift – Josephine P. Swift was the first recipient of Dr. Joseph L. Kennedy’s President’s Meritorious Award, one of the most coveted awards presented to a faculty or staff member each year at the College’s Recognition Day. She worked at the College for more than 25 years and was the coordinator of conference services and director of continuing education and community service before becoming assistant to the president. She was the founder of many of the College’s institutional traditions, and chaired committees of major events such as the Honor’s Convocation, the President’s Gala, Commencement and Recognition Day, among others. She authored a book, “Academic Protocol: Doing it Right,” that assisted the College in its future coordination of events following her departure. She played a key role in keeping the College open in the 1990s through reaching out to community members and political personnel that she had gotten to know through her involvement with the Republican Party.
Dr. Rollo E. Wicks – Wicks Hall was named after Dr. Rollo E. Wicks, who led the general education department for many years. Dr. Wicks was a graduate of Syracuse University with a Ph.D. from Cornell. He had a long experience as a secondary school teacher and administrator before joining the College’s faculty. As chairman of the Division of General Education, he helped significantly expand and broaden the liberal arts offerings of the College. He served as the College’s representative in State and National Junior College organizations. Dr. Wicks also authored a textbook and was on several committees on campus that worked to ensure the College’s accreditation.
Ronald L. ’59 & Blanche K. ’06 Woodcock – Ronald L. Woodcock is a benefactor from the class of 1959. In 1990, the Woodcocks established the Woodcock Family Scholarship Endowment. Mr. and Mrs. Woodcock co-chaired the Canton College Foundation’s Centennial Campaign alongside his wife, Blanche. A group of rooms in the Richard W. Miller Campus Center are named in honor of him and his wife. Mr. Woodcock was recognized by SUNY Canton as the 1989 Distinguished Alumnus Award recipient and in 1990 was the recipient of the New York State Alumni Confederation Distinguished Alumni Service Award. Mrs. Woodcock oversaw the renovations at the College’s Alumni House located at 8 Stillman Drive, Canton, and the home is named in her honor. She was also the 2006 recipient of the College’s prestigious Honorary Alumna award.
Glenn E. Wright – A North Country native, Glenn E. Wright joined the College faculty as an instructor of social science and part-time administrative officer and eventually became a professor in 1948. As the College grew, Mr. Wright’s role moved from out of the classroom and served in a more administrative role, including serving as acting director in Dr. Albert E. French’s eighteen month absence from the College. During that period, Mr. Wright secured the gift from fellow inductee Edson A. Martin that moved the College to its current location. Mr. Wright and Dr. French worked closely together, as Wright served as acting director and president several more times during French’s 24-year tenure. He also served as vice president for student affairs and was a vice president during part of Dr. Earl W. MacArthur’s presidency. He resigned in 1976 after 28 years of service that included administrative duties that dealt with student affairs and admissions, among others.
View the entire ceremony:
The College is seeking nominations for future classes of the college-wide Hall of Fame. Information on criteria for induction and the nomination form can be found at http://www.canton.edu/hof/nomination.html.