Major will be among the award recipients selected to speak to the 2008 graduating class at SUNY Canton’s 100th Commencement Ceremony at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 17, outdoors across from SUNY Canton’s French Hall.
“This quiet, intelligent, hard-working individual is well deserving of the recognition associated with the Distinguished Alumnus award,” said William F. Peters, SUNY Canton Alumni Association Board Member (class of 1959). “Dale and his wife Sharon are highly active in the college’s continuing growth and development.”
Several of Major’s numerous qualities were continually highlighted in his letters of recommendation for this esteemed accolade. Among his traits were his unassuming character, his steadfast dedication, and his continuing volunteerism. “Many times a neighbor needs help, either with a small job or big one, and Dale is there,” noted Major’s neighbor, Sandy Reader. “He volunteers his time and energies whenever needed with no regard to the time required. He never complains or hesitates. He puts all he has into the tasks put forth and makes things happen.”
As a youth, he went through the ranks of the Boy Scouts of America earning the coveted Eagle Scout title. “I was fortunate enough to have a wonderful scoutmaster when I was in the scouts,” Major recalled. “As an adult I wanted to give back a little bit.”
Throughout his life, he has remained involved with the Boy Scouts. He earned the Silver Beaver Award in 2006, the highest honor bestowed upon an adult scout. “Dale has been an active registered Scouter for the last 22 years,” said Nathan Boguhn, Mohawk Cayuga District Executive of the Boy Scouts of America. “He has served in the leadership position of Assistant Scoutmaster and received The District Award of Merit in 2002.”
Major is a retired healthcare professional, who worked for 33 years with the Central New York Disabilities Service Office. He won the W.T. Wheeler Award in 1991 for his outstanding professionalism. “He always showed a great deal of concern and respect for everyone that he worked with,” noted Sharon A. Hosey, Major’s former supervisor. “Dale is known for the many different ideas and approaches he employed to provide the best services to those within our care.”
Fred C. Liebi, 2006 Distinguished Alumnus Award recipient, who graduated in 1966, said that he was highly pleased that Major will be receiving this award. He too mentioned Major’s unstoppable work ethic and quiet power, noting that Major never complains no matter what task he is assigned. “Dale is always the first one to ask what he can do to help you and the last to ask for any help himself,” Liebi said.
Major and his wife reside in Rome. They are both active in the McConnellsville Community Church. They actively attend alumni gatherings and are frequent guests at SUNY Canton’s annual Alumni Weekend celebration.
SUNY Canton offers a wide variety of career-driven bachelor’s, associate, and certificate programs, as well as three master’s degrees in conjunction with SUNYIT, Utica. Most of SUNY Canton’s new four-year programs are designed so students can take them on-campus, online, or both. SUNY Canton OnLine features more than 65 courses online each semester. The college’s athletic teams have joined the NAIA’s Sunrise Conference, enabling students to compete in their respective sports for four years.
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