Aquaculture entrepreneur Gifford Cooke dies

Gifford Cooke co-founded Cooke Aquaculture in 1985. (File photo)

ST. GEORGE — Cooke Aquaculture co-founder Gifford Cooke died on March 3, said his family in a statement to media, adding that they are “deeply saddened.”

In 1985, Cooke founded the company with his sons Glenn and Michael.

“On behalf of the Cooke family and our employees, I would like to express our gratitude for the immense contributions Gifford has made to rural coastal communities in Eastern Charlotte, New Brunswick, and throughout Atlantic Canada and the globe,” said Joel Richardson, the company’s vice-president of public relations. “Gifford and his children, Glenn, Michael and Debbie built a local family acompany into a global seafood leader with fully integrated facilities, product lines and distribution networks. Cooke provides careers to nearly 13,000 employees in 15 countries and is passionate about supporting community and conservation projects.”

The company said Gifford was a marine mechanic for much of his career in Blacks Harbour. At Cooke Aquaculture, he toiled alongside the workers to modernize the company’s freshwater salmon hatcheries and vessel fleet, and led countless construction projects.

The loss of Gifford’s outgoing personality, robust work ethic, friendly humour and steadfast faith will leave a void not easily filled, the statement said, adding that the “global Cooke family will miss him greatly … Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Marjorie, family, and his many friends.”

Jake Boudrot

A graduate of St. Francis Xavier University and a resident of Arichat, Jake Boudrot is an award-winning journalist with decades of experience as a freelancer, reporter and editor representing media outlets across the Maritimes.