With more than 11,500 volunteer hours under his belt, Adam Carter (BPhEd ’97) is no stranger to community service.
On Saturday, Sept. 16, Carter was recognized by the Brock University Alumni Association (BUAA) with the prestigious Community Engagement Award for his tireless commitment to community service — a journey that started early in his undergraduate studies at Brock.
In 1994, the former Brock Division of St. John Ambulance was recruiting volunteers outside of the Brock University Students’ Union during orientation week by offering free CPR certification to students in exchange for volunteer service.
Carter’s certification, a requirement of his Physical Education program at the time, was about to expire. He seized the opportunity, not realizing it would be the start of a fulfilling and impactful decades-long volunteer career with the national organization.
“When I reflect on my early years with the Brock Division, I remember covering cross-country events on campus and concerts in the Bob Davis gymnasium,” he says. “I was instantly hooked.”
Nearly 30 years later, Carter continues to volunteer his time with St. John Ambulance and has served as the Honorary Commissioner for Niagara since 2019. Some of Carter’s most impactful experiences with the organization involved humanitarian service during unprecedented emergencies.
During the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Carter was appointed Incident Commander and led a team of more than 80 volunteers helping to run a 24-7 quarantine shelter for immigrants in the Niagara region.
Carter has always been open to exploring new challenges and opportunities to expand his knowledge and skill set, a trait that has earned him leadership roles at the local, regional and provincial level throughout his years of volunteer service.
“Adam Carter’s dedication to supporting his community throughout his life is emblematic of the tenacious Badger spirit,” says BUAA President Chris Ventura. “His story is an inspiring example of how fulfilling community engagement can be, not only for the people who are directly impacted by acts of service, but also in one’s personal and professional life, too.”
Carter was formally knighted in the Senate of Canada this past June for his exceptional leadership, commendable service and outstanding contribution of volunteer service.
In addition to his service with St. John Ambulance, Adam has volunteered with several other charitable organizations including Ontario Special Olympics, Operation Christmas Child, Niagara Region Children’s Safety Village, Cops for Cancer, National Police Memorial Ride to Remember, several local soccer clubs and, more recently, the 87 Eagle Royal Canadian Air Cadet Squadron.
He is also an internationally licensed soccer coach and has spent more than two decades mentoring youth through sport, including serving as the former Goalkeeper Coach for Brock men’s soccer team under the mentorship of Coach Bill Millar.
“My time at Brock as a student and a coach were both significant life experiences. It’s where I learned many life lessons, made lifelong friends and met the love of my life,” says Carter.
Carter accepted his award in absentia while he celebrated more than 25 years of marriage with his wife, Lisa Carter (BA ’94), whom he met in residence at Brock.