Well-known actor, singer and humanitarian Tom Jackson could live anywhere in the world, but the Cochrane area is where he chooses to call home.
When I first came to the area from Winnipeg, I was on my way to Vancouver, Jackson said.
"My dad said to me once, 'Son, never stop your wagon in the middle of a mud puddle.' Well, I stopped my wagon and it was stuck, so there it was. But I found out in very short order that there was a DNA here that was built and based on kindness."
Jackson has been nominated for both Juno Awards and Gemini Awards over his decades-long career.
He was made an officer of the Order of Canada in 2000 and is a former member of the Order of Canada Advisory Council.
"I really got a sense of what greatness there is in being Canadian, seeing what people do. I reviewed 600 files a year for four years or so. Just to see the makeup, the DNA of people who live in this country. Yeah, we don't always get along, but I don't always get along with my brother either, but when it's his birthday, we celebrate his birthday."
He was most recently Invested as a Companion of the Order of Canada in late 2022.
Something Jackson said is an incredible honour.
Jackson received the Community Builder Award in October, 2022 to a sold-out Cochrane crowd which raised thousands of dollars for local worthy causes.
He visited nearly 20 cities with his “Stories Songs and Santa Causes” before Christmas, a project that supports the Alpha House in Calgary and the Downtown Outreach Addictions Partnership or DOAP Team.
Over the last two decades Jackson has worked with a national sponsor, Canada Life, and the collaboration has raised over $260 million dollars for social services and in particular food banks.
Jackson continues to keep busy acting and can be seen in season 6 of Outlander and Sullivan's Crossing.