Charlie Embree

(Class of ’61)
Distinguished Alumni Award

It’s not hard to agree that Charlie Embree has made a great impact on the agriculture industry, both locally and abroad. His mark, without a doubt, will be long lasting.
Growing up in Springhill, Charlie studied at NSAC, graduating in 1961 and went on to complete his degree at the University of Guelph.

Working in a number of capacities throughout his career, Charlie served agriculture in Nova Scotia for over 40 years.  He began as an extension specialist in the tree fruit sector before moving to administration as director of horticulture and biology services for the Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture and also as a research scientist with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.

In addition, Charlie has been extensively involved in international agricultural efforts, relating to tree fruit. For this he has received a medal of recognition from the International Society of Horticultural Science for co-organizing the first symposium on organic apples and pears. His other international involvement includes filling the role of reference co-coordinator for the US regional research committee, known as North Central Regional Research, as well as a member of the CGC United States Germplasm Committee and the North East Plant Growth Regulator working group.

Throughout his career, Charlie has always maintained his ties to NSAC. Serving as an adjunct professor since 1988, he has given many lectures on propagation and apple production technologies.  On top of this, Charlie has mentored many NSAC students and a number of grad students. 

Charlie’s work has positioned him as a recognized leader and educator, to several generations of fruit growers, to improve the tree fruit industry. While he sharpens the science of fruit growing as a professional, he is not afraid to get his hands dirty doing the actual work. Growers in Nova Scotia have benefitted from Charlie’s expertise, as have growers in NB, PEI, Maine and other areas.

Charlie has been active in a number of professional and industry organizations including Director and President of NSIA, Director of Agricultural Institute of Canada, Director of Canadian Society of Horticultural Science and Director of NSFGA. He has also received a number of recognitions for his efforts. These awards have included Distinguished Life Member from the Nova Scotia Institute of Agrologists, NSFGA Honorary Life Member and NSFGA Golden Apple Award. 

Most recently Charlie was appointed to the Nova Scotia Food Council - a committee to develop food issues which encompasses production, health, security, research, environment and international employees, as well as other issues.

Because of this great work, Charlie 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 Charlie Embree NSAC’s Distinguished Alumnus of 2009.