My Franco-American email news alerts this week contained the timely notice about next month’s annual “Keeping the Dream Alive” celebration, in recognition of Martin Luther King Jr., hosted by the National Cultural Diversity Awareness Council, in Manchester NH..
At the group’s January 15, 2018 program, in recognition of Dr. King, the annual celebration will highlight New Hampshire’s Franco-American history. In fact, the keynote speaker will be Canada’s minister of heritage, the Honorable Mélanie Joly.
Among this year’s special guests will be Adele Boufford Baker, a second-generation Franco-American and the former executive director for the Manchester-based Franco-American Centre.
(By the way, I checked out the Manchester Franco-American Centre website – https://www.facnh.com/ – and enjoyed the banner invitation: “More than 50 nations in the world speak French. So, shouldn’t you?” Très bon!)
An interesting biography about special guest Boufford Baker, is published on the website of CASA New Hampshire, where she is highlighted as a member of the organization’s board of directors.
Boufford Baker has an impressive Franco-American heritage and French education. She was educated in local schools and attended Rivier University and the University of New Hampshire She is also a member of PI DELTA PHI, the French National Honor Society at St Anselm College. Raised in a bi-lingual family, her love for the French language continued at the Berlitz School of Languages in Boston, where she became the Director of The Translation Services.
After returning to Manchester, she substituted in French and Spanish in local high schools and teaching English as a foreign language to newly arrived French Canadians. She was a partner in Baker, Pappas & Dastin, Marketing and Public Relations. From 1994 to 2004, Adele served as Executive Director of The Centre Franco-Américain, a French cultural and heritage organization promoting the talents of Francophone artists from around the world. In 1997 she was named Franco American of the Year.
In 2001, she became Honorary Consul of France and has been proud to represent the French government in New Hampshire,. In 2004, she collaborated on the Quebec 400 (1604-2004) the founding of Quebec and served on The Champlain Committee to erect a commemorative plaque on the banks of the St Lawrence River, in Quebec, depicting the cities and towns in New England where the French Canadians settled at the turn of the 20th Century. Manchester, NH played a prominent during that migration event.
She is an active volunteer serving on the Boards of Directors of Catholic Medical Center, Make-a- Wish, The Manchester City Library, The Manchester Community Music School, The Gilbert French Language Foundation and The Holy Cross Family Learning Center. She is on the The Palace Theatre Advisory Board. In fact, I found her biography on the CASA-NH website.
It’s an honor to report that Boufford Baker is a Paul Harris Fellow of the Queen City Rotary Club. (Likewise, I am humbled by this honor, as well, gratefully received from the Rotary Club of Portland Maine.)
In 2008, President Sarkozy of France, named her Knight of the National Order of Mérit, France’s second highest honor.
“Keeping the Dream Alive” is an annual program hosted by the Council (NCDAC). The event is scheduled for January 15, 2018, at the Manchester NH, Radisson Hotel, beginning at 5 PM, including a $45-a-plate dinner.
NCDAC ‘s mission is to increase awareness of the need for communication, understanding and respect among people of diverse backgrounds.
More information about this program is available at this Facebook link.
Congratulations to Adele Boufford Baker!
(Another Martin Luther King Community Celebration is also organized in Manchester NH, scheduled at the St. George Greek Orthodox Church, on January 15, 2018.)