For Immediate Release
June 4, 2018 – North Bay, Ontario – A North Bay man with a distinguished military career has been awarded the prestigious Sovereign’s Medal for his volunteer efforts with the air cadets and a veterans’ organization.
Brigadier-General (Ret’d) Ron Button received the honour largely for his work with the Royal Canadian Air Force Association Trust, the RCAFA’s charitable arm. Gen. Button served as the Trust’s chair for 17 years.
Anthony Rota, Member of Parliament for Nipissing–Timiskaming, presented Gen. Button with the medal and a certificate signed by Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, at a ceremony Monday hosted by the Rotary Club of North Bay.
Gen. Button is also a longtime Rotarian.
The Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers recognizes Canadians for their remarkable achievements and outstanding community service in a wide range of fields. Nominations are reviewed by an advisory committee, which recommends potential recipients to the Governor General. The process is non-partisan and selection is based on merit.
The official honour was created in 1995 by then Governor General Roméo Leblanc and first launched as the Caring Canadian Award. It became known as the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers in 2016.
Gen. Button served a distinguished 35-year career with the Canadian military that included postings across the country and the United States, as well as senior roles with NORAD and National Defence Headquarters in Ottawa. Before his retirement in 1983, he was Commandant of the Canadian Forces’ training system for new recruits and Commander of the Forces’ Central (Ontario) Region.
His duty and dedication didn’t stop there, and he has continued to work on behalf of military-related causes and organizations in the years since.
He was recognized by the Royal Canadian Air Force Association for his role as chair of its charitable trust and ensuring it “became the prime supporters of air cadets, air museums and memorial commemorative sites and events.”
During his years at the helm from 1989 to 2006, the Trust disbursed more than $1 million to dozens of organizations. Locally, it was involved with Project Flanders, the committee behind the North Bay Memorial Wall. The monument was unveiled in 2000.
Gen. Button is also past national president of the Royal Canadian Air Force Association, a member of the RCAFA’s advisory council, an honorary director of the Air Cadet League of Canada, a past trustee for the Air Cadet 50th Anniversary Trust Fund and a life member of the Air Cadet League/Ontario Provincial Committee.
He is a member of 422 Wing (Nipissing) RCAFA, Royal Canadian Legion Branch 23 North Bay, the Rotary Club of North Bay and St. Brice’s Anglican Church.
He previously received the Golden Jubilee Medal and Diamond Jubilee Medal, which honoured the 50th and 60th anniversary of the Queen’s ascension to the throne.
General Button and Janet, his wife of 65 years, have five daughters, 17 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.
“I have had the pleasure of knowing Gen. Button for many years. It was a great privilege to be able to present him with this official honour today. He has commanded and, equally important, he has served. I would like to personally thank him for the extraordinary contributions he has made to his causes, to his community, and to our country.”
- Anthony Rota, Member of Parliament for Nipissing-Timiskaming
- To find out more about the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers, please visit: https://caring.gg.ca
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Office of Anthony Rota, MP (Nipissing–Timiskaming)