John Magill and  John Rafferty standing with Louise Gillis, recipient of the Arthur Napier Magill Distinguished Service Award

Cape Breton's Louise Gillis presented CNIB's highest honour

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(HALIFAX – OCT. 8, 2019) CNIB presented Sydney's Louise Gillis with its highest honour – The Arthur Napier Magill Distinguished Service Award – at its annual community meeting in Halifax today.

The award was named after CNIB's second CEO, Arthur Napier Magill, upon his retirement. His son, John Magill, was on hand to present the distinguished award to Ms. Gillis, along with The Honourable Derek Mombourquette, MLA for Sydney-Whitney Pier.

"Louise Gillis exemplifies what it is to be a passionate, dedicated volunteer – in Cape Breton, throughout Nova Scotia, across Canada and internationally," says The Honourable Derek Mombourquette, MLA for Sydney-Whitney Pier. “Ms. Gillis sets an exceptional example of how people across the province can give back to their community, and make Nova Scotia a better place to live.”

For more than 25 years, Louise Gillis has been a volunteer for CNIB and the Canadian Council of the Blind, where she focused on improving the lives of Canadians with sight loss. She has been a peer mentor, an advocate, an educator and motivational speaker. Louise recently returned from China where she advised staff at the Norman Bethune International Peace Hospital about the delivery of sustainable, ongoing, mobile eye care to individuals in outlying communities.

“Louise inspires others simply by the way she lives her life,” says John Rafferty, president and CEO of the CNIB Foundation and Vision Loss Rehabilitation Canada. “The work that she has done and continues to do impacts all those living with vision loss.”

About CNIB Foundation

CNIB is a non-profit organization driven to change what it is to be blind today. We deliver innovative programs and powerful advocacy that empower people impacted by blindness to live their dreams while tearing down barriers to inclusion. Our work is powered by a network of volunteers, donors and partners from coast to coast to coast. To learn more or get involved, visit

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