Today I had the honour of celebrating our friend and Farm Radio’s chair Doug Ward at the official ceremony for his appointment as a member of the Order of Canada. His appointment is fitting recognition for his lifelong contribution to using radio broadcasting to build a better world.
Doug always had a penchant for improving people’s lives.
From organizing student marches in the '60s to empowering northern indigenous communities to create radio programming in their own languages — it’s never been about Doug, but always about helping as many people as possible.
As I’m sure you have heard Doug say, that’s why he loves radio so much — the reach and impact are virtually boundless.
Now retired from the CBC, Doug is as active as ever in public service radio, helping to build Farm Radio International to what it is is today: a voice for rural communities in Africa, serving over 20 million people with life-changing communication services.
To say that Doug is a dream board chair is a tremendous understatement. Doug is involved in so many aspects of our work, yet always the last one to take the credit for a project well done.
He continues to write broadcaster training materials daily. He personally calls and knows most of our supporters. He comes up with new ideas and new ways to improve radio services for African farmers.
And he employs his impressive skills as our chairperson, running board affairs smoothly and productively. He often starts working at 4:30 in the morning so he can connect with our African offices to learn more about the needs of the broadcasters and farmers we serve.
For his service here in Canada and abroad, please join me in saying congratulations to Doug on his appointment to the Order of Canada — we can’t think of someone who deserves it more.
Click here to send your congratulatory note to Doug now.
Executive Director, Farm Radio International
James Achanyi-Fontem, is a Senior Health Journalist and Communication Consultant. He worked as a health journalist and broadcaster for 30 years with Radio Cameroon and later Cameroon Radio Television, CRTV before retiring in 2005 to engage fully with Cameroon Link (Human Assistance Programme). Cameroon Link is a registered charity, not-for-profit organisation involved in the promotion of community health, humanitarian assistance, promotion of women and child rights through involvement of communities in Cameroon for mother and child health care. Cameroon Link is a partner to Commonwealth of Learning (COL), Farm Radio International (FRI), International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN Africa), World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA). As the intermediary of Commonwealth of Learning (COL), Cameroon Link is engaged to implement a Cameroon Rural Radio story design Programming through an investigative research, which aims to discover through interviewing beneficiaries of health programmes on their interests, documenting and disseminating new ideas about how radio stations produce and air Healthy Communities Radio Programs in Cameroon.