{President's Report 2003}
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Melvin Woodward

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{Melvin Woodward}
Melvin Woodward

For his distinguished public service and for his outstanding contributions to the development of business and the economy of Newfoundland and Labrador, Melvin Woodward was awarded an honorary doctor of laws degree at the 10 a.m. session of convocation on May 29.

Mr. Woodward, CEO of the Woodward Group of companies, was born in Boat Harbour, Newfoundland. He founded Woodward's Oil Ltd. in 1960 and was appointed Imperial Oil Ltd. agent for all fuel distribution and aircraft refueling in Labrador. Over the next four decades, Mr. Woodward built a number of enterprises encompassing fuel, trucking, stevedoring, transportation of petroleum and chemical products and automotive sales. The roster of companies he has created includes Coastal Shipping Ltd., Woodward Motors Ltd., and Coastal Labrador Marine Services.

His long business career has many significant highlights. In 1981 he initiated container service to the Port of Goose Bay with the purchase of the roll-on-roll-off container vessel, M.V. Astron. In 1996 he established the first petroleum products supply and delivery contract with Voisey's Bay Nickel Company Limited in Voisey's Bay, Labrador. In 1998 his newly formed company, Coastal Labrador Marine Services, was contracted to take over marine delivery services from Lewisporte to coastal Labrador locations. That same year he was awarded a contract for supply and delivery of petroleum products for the Nunavut Power Corporation to various Nunavut communities.

Mr. Woodward has a distinguished career in public and community service. Having served one term in the house of assembly as minister of Labrador Affairs and a further term on the Liberal opposition bench (1971-76), he has also served on a number of boards: director, Bank of Canada, 1981-1987; founding member and president, the Labrador North Chamber of Commerce; president of Liberal Association; chairman of Enterprise Development Board for Industry, Trade and Commerce; member of the Board of Regents, Memorial University; and chairman, St. John's Port Corporation. He was inducted into Newfoundland and Labrador Business Hall of Fame in 2001.

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