(Class of '60)
Distinguished Alumnus 2011
Early on, Arch Cook mastered the traits that would later be the key to success throughout his career – a sense of responsibility and appreciation of the importance of hard work. At the age of 10, following the untimely death of his father, Arch was tasked with assuming the role of “man of the house”, looking out for his mother, younger brother and two sisters at their South Ohio, N.S. home.
Shortly after taking on this role, Arch also began to develop his business and entrepreneurial instincts. He acquired a cow and cared for it to help support the family. Perhaps it was this cow that led Arch to an agricultural education and a life-long career in the dairy industry.
Arch attended NSAC before going on to complete his degree in Dairy Administration from OAC. While at NSAC, Arch excelled as a guard on the basketball team, was actively involved with the Students’ Council, as well as other clubs and had a strong academic performance.
Arch’s career with the dairy industry began with Amalgamated Dairies in P.E.I. and then Farmer’s Dairy in NS. Arch played a leadership role with the development of Farmer’s Cheese Division in Salmon River, selecting the plant site, leading plant design, supervising construction, selecting equipment for the plant, as well as hiring and training staff to run the cheddar cheese operation.
After leaving a big mark at Farmer’s, Arch took a position with Baxter Dairies Ltd. Here he spent the rest of his career in leadership roles, furthering their portfolio and eventually earning the title, vice president, operations.
In this role, Arch was responsible for operations of four large plants, a hefty vehicle fleet and an ice cream novelty operation. Arch’s title of vice president, operations eventually shifted to the Baxter’s owned, Kelly Tire (later Coast Tire and Automotive Services). Arch made a huge impact, growing the operation and turning it into a huge success.
Arch’s sense of responsibility, business instincts and capacity for hard work are qualities which Arch has retained and reinforced throughout his career. To those he has added strong management skills, which he has used effectively both at work and in the community at large.
Arch is a “no nonsense” performer who likes to get things done quickly. When he is criticized by colleagues for being demanding and impatient, when he feels that a project is going too slowly, he has been heard to reply, “I know that Rome was not built in a day, but then, I was not the foreman either!”
In his spare time, Arch served as director and president of the Atlantic Dairy Council and been involved with the Technical Committee of the National Dairy Council and the Board of Directors for Junior Achievement in Saint John.
Along with his life partner, Marg, Arch has always been actively involved with their local church, serving a number of roles. In retirement, Arch and Marg are dedicated volunteers with the Sower Ministry (Servants on Wheels Ever Ready to Serve) in Southern U.S. During the winter months they work in Christian camps, orphanages, senior residences and colleges.
Arch has truly distinguished himself in his area of expertise, bringing honour to NSAC and the Alumni Association. It is with great pride that we name Arch Cook NSAC’s Distinguished Alumnus of 2011. Arch’s younger brother, Harold, was named NSAC’s Distinguished Alumnus in 2007. This is the first time that an NSAC alumni award has been shared by family members.