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Recognizing National Volunteer Week 2023 - Volunteering Weaves us Together

At JDI, volunteering is recognized and celebrated every year. The National Volunteer Week theme for 2023 is "Volunteering Weaves Us Together." This speaks to the importance of volunteering and the vibrancy it brings to our communities. By sharing our time, talent and energy, we are strengthening the fabric of the communities where we live and work.

Meet some of JDI’s dedicated volunteers who inspire us with their passion for learning and giving back.


Ben Webster, Team Leader, Mechanical Fibreline at Irving Pulp & Paper 

Coach of the Fundy Region Special Olympics Floor Hockey Team

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"Having a family member with an intellectual disability, I knew that I wanted to get involved with the Special Olympics,” says Ben.

"I started volunteering with the Special Olympics in 2015 to make an effort to give back to my community, but I find every day I step into the gym I get back more than I ever could give. The athletes have an amazing ability to show perseverance, be models of what inclusion can be and support one another, even in competition.”

Special Olympics Motto is “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.” and that is something I see every time I am with my team."


Denise Nauffts, Marine Documentation Coordinator, Kent Line Limited in T&L

New Brunswick Black History Society Treasurer

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Denise is one of the founding members of the New Brunswick Black History Society. She held the position of Executive Treasurer since its incorporation in 2013.

She has always had a particular interest in Black History, making her role with the board more satisfying. 

“Volunteering and active continued learning allows me to both give back to the community and continue to put my favorite personal motto “when you know better, you do better” into action,” says Denise. “I am incredibly proud of being a part of the success of New Brunswick Black History Society’s efforts to educate and inform NB Community and beyond.”


Sarah Gowlett, Internal Audit Team

Long Reach Fire Department

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Sarah has been a Volunteer Firefighter with Long Reach Fire Department for six years on the Kingston Peninsula. She grew up at the fire station, her father has been a firefighter with Long Reach Fire for 27 years and Fire Chief for 14 of those years. 

“The commitment and leadership that he provides to the community inspired and motivated me to follow in his footsteps and join the fire service,” says Sarah. 

“Volunteering is an opportunity to give back and show support to the community that has helped me become who I am. Volunteering has also given me a strong sense of community as it has provided me with a group of like-minded people that I have built relationships with and can count on for anything.”


Nuala Reilly, Health, Safety and Compliance Specialist with Harbor Development in T&L

Women’s Equity and Tech Day – St. Andrew’s

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“Last week I had the chance to volunteer as a Mentor at the Government of New Brunswick's Women’s Equality Branch,” says Nuala. 

The trades and tech events are designed to introduce students to the wide variety of career opportunities in the skilled trades and technology sectors. Many of the students who attend these are unaware of the options or have been actively persuaded to lean toward more ‘traditional’ options. 

“The opportunity to speak to young women at this stage of their lives about my professional journey and how it is never too late to find something that moves and drives you, to heck with perceived stereotypes.”


Brenda Zinkiewich, Director, Process Management and Facilitation

Next Up Board Member

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Brenda has volunteered with Next Up since 2010. She is on the Board of Directors and leads the Partnership and Mentoring Platform. Next Up is an empowered network of women, men, allies and corporate partners working together to eliminate barriers for women in the workplace.

Next Up strives to eliminate barriers and champions diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging in the workforce. At Next Up’s 2021 Leadership Summit, Brenda and her team were recognized with a Powering the Partnership Award.

“I am passionate about advancing all women forward! We provide the education, tools and mentoring needed for participants to reach their highest potential. I am grateful that I am on a team that strives to inspire a new generation of leaders to help women in their careers.”


Joe Forestell, Trucking Supervisor, Southern NB Woodlands

Kennebecasis Valley Minor Hockey Association as a hockey coach

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“I had the opportunity to begin volunteering with the KVMHA with a few friends as we decided to take on a U18 team and stay involved in the sport,” says Joe. “I continued into this year with another U18 team to continue to develop both new and returning players. The most memorable experience is watching the team come together during big games and really work well together as a team. Volunteering for me is an opportunity to give back to the community. My past coaches had a large impact on my development both as a person and a player. I wanted to give back in a similar way and try my best to have a positive impact on my team."


Bobby Hurley, Safety Advisor

Halifax Steps for Life committee

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Bobby is a member of the Halifax Steps for Life committee. Steps for Life is Threads of Life’s signature fundraising event taking place from coast-to-coast each spring. Threads of Life is dedicated to supporting families after a workplace fatality, life-altering injury, or occupational disease. They believe traumatic workplace injuries, occupational diseases and deaths are preventable.


Kaitlyn Young, Planermill area of the Doaktown Sawmill

Upper Miramichi Fire Department 

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Kaitlyn is a volunteer fire fighter with the Upper Miramichi Fire Department. She is second generation fire fighter following in her dad’s foots steps. From a young age Kaitlyn visited the fire station with her dad, so it was no surprise that she also joined as soon as she could. Kaitlyn has been a volunteer firefighter for nine years.


Dan Quinn, Supervisor at the Doaktown Sawmill

Boiestown and Doaktown Minor Hockey Association Hockey Coach

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Dan currently volunteers with the Boiestown and Doaktown Minor Hockey Association. He has been coaching U7 and U9 levels for approximately five years now.  Pictured with his son in the above photo, it is easy to see why Dan is so passionate about the sport.


Debbie Munn, Shipping Department in Doaktown

Normandy Branch #78 Legion in Boiestown

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Debbie is the president of the Normandy Branch #78 Legion in Boiestown, a position she has held for the last 14 years! She spends countless hours volunteering her time at bingos, dart shoots and other events to keep the local Legion afloat. Most recently she has been instrumental in organizing fund raisers and helping to secure government grants to complete some much-needed work on the building. Covid hit the Legion hard as it had to close its doors, but bills kept coming in, she can be seen above receiving a donation from Ambulance New Brunswick to help keep things running.


Dixfield: Derek Bryant, Abe Bradeen, Jeremy Bellegarde, Leo Jolin, Roger Berry, Sr. & Frank Knauer

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A group of employees from the Dixfield sawmills volunteer with Operation Reboot Outdoors. This is a 501c3 non-profit organization that concentrates on getting Veterans, Law Enforcement Officers and Active-Duty Service Members out of the house and into nature, providing healing through hunting, fishing and other outdoor recreational activities.

Our employees have been volunteering over the last three years, guiding participants on hunting and fishing trips throughout the state of Maine or helping to coordinate fundraisers and cooking at special events in support of Reboot.   

Since Reboot’s inception in 2019, they have served 593 Veterans, Law Enforcement Officers and Active-Duty Service Members. It’s our way of saying thank you to those who have protected and served us in some way.