MR. CHANCELLOR, as one of Canada’s foremost Indigenous intellectual and literary figures, Jeannette Armstrong has been a tireless advocate for Indigenous rights and freedoms.

Ms. Armstrong is a writer, teacher, artist, and activist and is considered to be North America’s first Aboriginal woman novelist.

In 1979, Ms. Armstrong helped found the En’owkin Centre in Penticton, an Indigenous cultural, educational, ecological and creative arts post-secondary institution that practices and implements Indigenous knowledge and systems. In partnership with Okanagan University College and later, UBC Okanagan, she helped create and implement the Indigenous Studies program which offers perspectives of Indigenous people from the Okanagan, Canada and the world.

Her educational background includes a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Victoria and a diploma of Fine Arts from Okanagan College. Ms. Armstrong received an Honorary Doctor of Letters from St. Thomas University and in 2003 was presented with the Buffet Award for Indigenous Leadership from Ecotrust, an organization based in Portland, Oregon.

While Ms. Armstrong serves her local community in so many ways, she is also known throughout the world as an advocate of justice for Indigenous people. She was appointed as one of seven Indigenous judges to the First Nations Court of Justice called by the Chiefs of Ontario and was appointed to the Council of Listeners in the International Testimonials on Violations of Indigenous Sovereignty for the United Nations. Ms. Armstrong currently serves on the Canadian Commission for UNESCO.

MR CHANCELLOR, for her outstanding contributions as a teacher, artist, and advocate for indigenous people around the world, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, to Jeannette Armstrong.


MR. CHANCELLOR, the current opportunities for post secondary education that exist in the Okanagan Valley are due to the vision and passion of a few individuals who saw the possibilities of what could truly be.

William Bowering is one such visionary. He is considered by many to be the architect of post-secondary education in the Okanagan Valley.

A UBC alumnus and former president of Okanagan University College, Dr. Bowering has been an instrumental figure in expanding and developing post-secondary education in the Okanagan during the past 28 years.

He played a key role in the transition of Okanagan College to Okanagan University College and was involved in introducing baccalaureate programs, expanding trades and technologies programs and building five regional campuses throughout the Valley. Dr. Bowering also initiated and successfully led OUC’s Bold Horizons Development campaign, raising $4.2 million for the construction of the North Kelowna Campus, now home to UBC Okanagan.

During his academic studies at UBC, Dr. Bowering completed a BA with First Class Honours in Chemistry and a Master of Science degree in Chemistry. He later earned Ph.D.’s in Chemistry from both McGill and Cambridge. In 1993, Dr. Bowering received an honorary degree from Ritsumeikan University in Japan.

Throughout his career, Dr. Bowering was considered a dedicated scholar, a gentleman, a patron of the arts, a visionary leader and a friend to the communities he served. Now retired, he is still very active in his community. He has served as the President of the Okanagan Symphony and is currently working on ensuring the preservation of Knox Mountain Park.

MR. CHANCELLOR, for his leadership and service to post secondary education and the people of the Okanagan Valley, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon William Bowering.



MR. CHANCELLOR, as an accomplished minister of the Crown, academic researcher and teacher, and science innovator, the Honorable Thomas Edward Siddon, P.C., has served Canada with distinction in public and private life.

Dr. Siddon earned Bachelor of Science degree with distinction in mechanical engineering from the University of Alberta. He went on to earn a Master of Applied Science degree and a Ph.D. in aeronautical noise, turbulence and acoustics from the University of Toronto. He conducted research and was a professor of mechanical engineering at UBC between 1969 and 1978.

First elected to Parliament in 1978, Dr. Siddon was a Member of Parliament for 15 years, with nine years' service as Minister of State for Science and Technology, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, and Minister of National Defence.

His achievements in public office are many. They include establishing the foundation for the Canadian Space Agency and signing the International Space Station Agreement with the United States in 1984, as Minister of State for Science and Technology.

As Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Dr. Siddon negotiated and signed the Nunavut Agreement-in-Principle and later the Nunavut Final Agreement which provided for the creation of that Canadian territory.

After leaving elected office, he volunteered his time and expertise with the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business, the Atlantic Council of Canada, and the Canadian Council for Service Organization.

Now semi-retired, Dr. Siddon continues to serve his community as Chair of the Okanagan Water Stewardship Committee, and as a director of the Okanagan Partnership.

MR. CHANCELLOR, for his leadership and service to the people of the Okanagan, British Columbia, and Canada, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon Thomas Edward Siddon.

Read his acceptance speech



MR. VICE-CHANCELLOR: Dr. Bryan Kolb is a Canadian pioneer in the world of neuroscience. A founding researcher with the Canadian Centre for Behavioural Neuroscience, Dr. Kolb has become one of the most influential neuroscientists, and his work is studied around the world.

Among his many discoveries and achievements, Dr. Kolb was the first to show how the growth of new brain cells can restore psychological and behavioural function. He and his team have discovered that we have the power to grow new brain cells. His research has spurred new treatments to help victims of stroke, those living with Alzheimer’s Disease, or afflicted by drug abuse or head injuries.

He developed one of the first courses in human neuropsychology in Canada, and co-authored the premier academic text in that field. Prior to the 1970s, Canadian neuroscience focused on animal physiology. As a young post-doctoral fellow, Dr. Kolb offered to develop and teach a course in human neuropsychology. His colleagues at the Montreal Neurological Institute suggested the course would not be very popular – and if fewer than 12 students enrolled, the new course would be cancelled.The future of neuropsychology and behavioural neuroscience was changed when 275 students enrolled in that first course.

Dr. Kolb received his Ph.D. from Pennsylvania State University in 1973. He conducted post-doctoral work at the University of Western Ontario and the Montreal Neurological Institute. He moved to the University of Lethbridge in 1976, where he is currently a Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience.

Dr. Kolb is a Killam Fellow, and a Fellow of the Canadian Psychological Association, the American Psychological Association, the American Psychological Society, and the Royal Society of Canada. He is a recipient of the Hebb Prize from the Canadian Psychological Association, and is a former president of the Canadian Society for Brain, Behaviour, and Cognitive Science.

Mr. Vice-Chancellor, for his leadership in unlocking the secrets of the brain, and in recognition of his unmatched contributions to the advancement of neuroscience, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon DR. BRYAN KOLB.



MADAME CHANCELLOR: Lisa Steele and Kim Tomczak are two of Canada’s foremost video and new media artists.

Both are professors at the University of Toronto, and are recognized around the world for innovative artistic achievements spanning more than three decades. Through their art and their work together, they have made an enormous contribution to Canadian art, and are applauded here at home for their commitment to art education and Canada’s video art community. Among their many major awards, in 2005 they received the Governor General's Award for Visual and Media Arts.

Their work can be found in the National Gallery of Canada, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, and many more of the world's great art collections.

Among their influential endeavours, in 1980 they founded Vtape, an artist-run distribution centre for video art to promote the growth of the video medium as a recognized art form.

The expansion of visual arts programs at universities across Canada to include video and new media is, in large part, due to their pioneering activities with video art and their long-time commitment to arts education.

Their ongoing commitment to their artistic practice has established them as international artists of the highest regard and leaders in the field. Through their efforts as curators, they have advanced the work of emerging and established video and new media artists, and through their substantial critical writing in the field, they have contributed to the development of video and new media in Canada and around the world.

Madame Chancellor, for their contributions to arts education and efforts in raising the profile of video art at the national and international levels, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Letters, honoris causa, upon LISA STEELE AND KIM TOMCZAK.



MADAME CHANCELLOR: Dr. J. Peter Meekison has served his province and his country with great distinction. He has enjoyed a diverse and esteemed career in law, as a university professor, government administrator, and a leader in public service.

He is a pre-eminent political scientist, constitutional scholar and public administrator and is widely known as the dean of Canadian federalism. An expert on Canadian federal-provincial relations and constitutional policy, he was the author of a proposal for the constitutional amending formula that was incorporated into Canada’s Constitution Act of 1981.

Among his many major awards, he was made an Officer in the Order of Canada in 1986, and is a recipient of the Lieutenant Governor's Medal for Excellence in Public Administration from the Province of Alberta.

He served as Vice President, Academic, at the University of Alberta in the mid-1980s, and was involved on behalf of the Alberta government in both the 1987 Meech Lake Accord discussions and the 1992 Charlottetown Accord process.

In 1993, Dr. Meekison was appointed to the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples. The five-volume report prepared by the commission is considered one of the most significant and extensive studies ever undertaken of the issues, challenges and opportunities facing Canada’s Aboriginal population.

Appointed to serve as public administrator for Okanagan University College, in 2004 and 2005 he oversaw the transition of that institution into two new post-secondary institutions -- Okanagan College and UBC Okanagan.

He is an adjunct professor at the University of Victoria, and continues to make outstanding contributions to the advancement of public policy in Alberta and Canada, and is truly a great Canadian.

Madame Chancellor, for his contributions to Canadian federalism and dedicated service in the advancement of post-secondary education in Canada, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon J. PETER MEEKISON.

Read his acceptance speech



MADAM CHANCELLOR: Dr. Samantha Nutt is the founder and executive director of the humanitarian organization War Child Canada, and a medical doctor specializing in maternal and child health in zones of armed conflict, family medicine, public health, refugee health and women's health.

Over the course of her professional career and through her work with War Child Canada, Dr. Nutt has spearheaded efforts to provide direct humanitarian support for the world's war-affected children.

Her passion for advocacy emerged from her years living and working in areas of conflict, such as Somalia, Liberia, Burundi and Iraq. Even as a 24-year-old experiencing a war zone for the first time in Somalia, Dr. Nutt realized the need for an organization that would advocate and create change for children, and that could move beyond the normal concept of charity.

By the time she was 28 she had brought together the partners and resources necessary to establish War Child Canada. This organization has effected change directly, immediately and without compromise, providing long-term programming for war-affected children and their families, and promoting greater awareness in Canada concerning the rights of children everywhere.

Dr. Nutt graduated Summa Cum Laude from McMaster University, earned a Master of Science degree with distinction from London University, and holds a Fellowship in Community Medicine from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. She is on staff at Sunnybrook and Women's Health Science Centre and is an assistant professor at the University of Toronto in the Department of Family and Community Medicine.

Known for inspiring others to make a difference in the lives of those affected by war, she works with the United Nations and non-governmental organizations around the world.

Madam Chancellor, for her humanitarian leadership in Canada and around the world, and in particular her dedication to the plight of children in the world's war zones, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon SAMANTHA JOAN NUTT.



Madam Chancellor,

Brad Bennett has earned a distinguished place in UBC's long and proud history.

The University of British Columbia created the Okanagan campus in 2005. This historic and transformative expansion -- just six short years ago -- was made possible by the thoughtful and steadfast leadership provided by Mr. Bennett, who chaired UBC's Board of Governors for half a decade, from 2005 to 2010, through some of the most challenging economic turbulence -- and exciting eras of growth and opportunity -- we have known.

Mr. Bennett has a long and distinguished record of leadership in business and higher education in British Columbia, and has continued a strong family tradition by serving his community and his province in many capacities.

Since 1990, Mr. Bennett has been the president of McIntosh Properties Ltd., a real estate investment and holding company. He is a director of the Premier’s Technology Council, UBC Properties Trust Board, a trustee and member of the Executive Advisory Board of the Fraser Institute, and a member of the BC Business Laureates Hall of Fame Cabinet.

Truly a visionary leader and community builder, Mr. Bennett is a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal, and the Honorary Alumni Award from UBC. In October 2010, Mr. Bennett was awarded the Order of British Columbia.

Madam Chancellor, for his commitment to British Columbia in business and community service, and in particular for his outstanding dedication to post-secondary education and leadership at the University of British Columbia, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon BRAD BENNETT.



Madam Chancellor,

From California gold to extraordinary Okanagan wine, there simply isn't much that the Honourable D. Ross Fitzpatrick has not pursued with a passion in his incomparable career as an entrepreneur.

He is a visionary business leader, a champion of agriculture and the environment, and a pioneer in British Columbia's burgeoning wine industry. In addition to these extraordinary accomplishments, he served our nation on the Senate of Canada, representing the Okanagan-Similkameen from 1998 to 2008.

Ross Fitzpatrick was born to a pioneer Okanagan agricultural family, and he and his family continue to reside in the Okanagan. We are extremely proud to point out -- often -- that Mr. Fitzpatrick is one of our own: a distinguished alumnus of UBC.

Upon graduation from UBC in 1958 with a Bachelor of Commerce and Business Administration degree, he served as researcher to the Royal Commission on the Tree Fruit Industry of British Columbia. He later pursued graduate studies at the University of Maryland and Columbia University in New York, and embarked on what would become a celebrated career founding companies in North America's aerospace, oil and gas, and mining industries.

And that's where California gold comes in. Mr. Fitzpatrick was instrumental in developing California's Castle Mountain Mine, which earned the prestigious "Health of the Land" award for its commitment to protecting environmental resources. This is just one illustration of the extraordinary commitment to the environment for which Mr. Fitzpatrick has been so deservedly recognized throughout his career. He has worked tirelessly to protect the environment, promote green economic development and to contribute to the public and community's well-being.

In 1986, he returned to the Okanagan to promote value-added agriculture and founded CedarCreek Estate Winery. He pioneered the planting of vinifera grapes to produce premium quality wines in the Okanagan.

He has received numerous awards for his work, including the Order of British Columbia in 2009, Freedom of the City of Kelowna, the Queen Elizabeth the Second Golden Jubilee Medal, Freedom of the City of Oliver, and the Canadian Confederation Medal.

Madam Chancellor, for his extraordinary contributions to this county, his leadership in industry and economic development, and his commitment to environmental stewardship, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon D. Ross Fitzpatrick.

Read his acceptance speech



MADAM CHANCELLOR: It is in the context of this university's highest values -- the pursuit of excellence, free inquiry and the enhancement of society -- that I am honoured to cite the contributions of Patrick Lane, one of Canada's finest poets. Mr. Lane's career over the past 50 years has been a deeply personal journey, but one he has shared widely through his prolific and profound work.

Mr. Lane brings to the page an extremely rare combination of incisive observation, bold honesty, and an extraordinary facility with language that gives readers new, sometimes humbling and often challenging, ways to appreciate the human condition and the natural world around us.

Mr. Lane has published more than 27 books of poetry, a book of short stories, and a memoir about his fight with alcohol and drug addiction. Among his great achievements is the highly acclaimed novel Red Dog, Red Dog, set right here in the Okanagan.

After graduating from high school in Vernon, BC, Mr. Lane tried his hand at several jobs -- including logging and truck driving -- before he chose a career in poetry. He has travelled extensively, and lived in various parts of Canada, finally settling on Vancouver Island with his wife Lorna Crozier, also an award-winning Canadian poet.

He has earned many of Canada’s major literary awards for poetry, including the Governor General’s Award, the Canadian Authors’ Association Award, and the CBC National Prize for Poetry. In 2007 he received British Columbia’s highest literary honour, the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Literary Excellence.

Mr. Lane is known as a brilliant teacher and a tireless mentor, nurturing new writers. For the past 20 years, he has offered master classes for poets, led writing workshops, and he has taught or served as writer-in-residence at many universities across Canada.

Madam Chancellor, for his significant contributions to the literary life of Canada, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Letters, honoris causa, upon PATRICK LANE.

Read his acceptance speech



MADAM CHANCELLOR: This university engages in reflection and action to build understanding across cultures, and to enrich our intellectual and social lives. Edward Burtynsky does this in full measure through his extraordinary photography. It is an honour to cite the works of a gifted photographer who has given us such unique, indelible images that remind us of the impact our human existence has on the world.

Mr. Burtynsky's photography explores the intricate link between industry and nature, combining the raw elements of mining, manufacturing, shipping, oil production and recycling into eloquent, highly expressive visions that find beauty and humanity in the most unlikely of places.

Born in 1955 in St. Catharine’s, Ontario, a town dependent on auto assembly, he grew up in a heavily industrial yet picturesque part of the country. He started taking pictures at age 11, shortly after his father purchased a used camera and some darkroom equipment.

He earned his degree in photography from Ryerson University, and studied graphic art at Niagara College. He has taken his photography skills around the world, winning international acclaim for his imagery of manufacturing processes and industrial activities.

His remarkable large-format photographic depictions of global industrial landscapes are included in the collections of over fifty major museums around the world, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Guggenheim Museum in New York.

In 2006, Mr. Burtynsky became an Officer of the Order of Canada. In 2010, he received the Award in Contemporary Art from the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art in Toronto. And he has been active since the mid-1980s in helping others refine and advance their art through Toronto Image Works, and is an active supporter of the Toronto International Photography Festival, the Ryerson Gallery and Research Centre, and
numerous other organizations.

Madam Chancellor, for his extraordinary contributions to Canada and the world through the art of photography, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Letters, honoris causa, upon EDWARD BURTYNSKY.



MISTER VICE-CHANCELLOR: Long, long before he received a Nobel Prize, and before he earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry, and even before he started university at the age of 15, Jack Szostak was a curious kid with a chemistry set.

The University of British Columbia values lifelong learning and the pursuit of our passions -- particularly when that pursuit can have a transformative impact on the world. That must have been one remarkable chemistry set. And we know that inquisitive lad was one remarkable and eager young learner.

His ground-breaking explorations in cell biology and genetics have had a profound effect across the life sciences. Indeed, they have changed our understanding of life itself.

Among his many achievements is the discovery that cells build and maintain telomeres, the protective caps at the tips of chromosomes, by using a special DNA synthesizing enzyme now known as telomerase.

Understanding telomerase is one key to understanding how cells and organisms age. It’s critical to understanding the biology of cancer cells, for example, and has given us a more complete view of the processes that affect our lifespans.

In 2009, recognizing his exceptional work in this field, Dr. Szostak received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, along with research colleagues Elizabeth Blackburn and Carol Greider.

Dr. Szostak was born in 1952 in the United Kingdom and grew up in Canada. He studied at McGill University in Montreal and at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, where he received his PhD in 1977.

He has been at Harvard Medical School since 1979 and is currently professor of genetics there, and professor of chemistry and chemical biology at Harvard University. He is also affiliated with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

His contributions at the forefront of science continue as he and his research team today explore the molecular origins of life -- seeking to understand how complex chemicals on a very young planet Earth were able to self-assemble and combine to form simple organisms capable of reproducing and evolving.

Mister Vice-Chancellor, for his extraordinary contributions to our understanding of life, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon JACK W. SZOSTAK.



MISTER CHANCELLOR, Sara Seager is a Canadian-American astronomer and planetary scientist whose research focuses on theory, computation, and data analysis of planets orbiting stars far from our own solar system.

She has introduced many new ideas to the field of exoplanet characterization, including work that led to the first detection of an exoplanet atmosphere.

Dr. Seager was also part of a team that co-discovered the first detection of light emitted from an exoplanet and she introduced many of the concepts on which the field of exoplanet atmospheres is now based. She is the author of two textbooks on these topics.

Born in Toronto, she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics and physics from the University of Toronto and a Ph.D. in astronomy from Harvard University in 1999. She held a post-doctoral research fellow position at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, and was a senior research staff member at the Carnegie Institution of Washington through 2006. She joined the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2007 where she is now Professor of Physics and the Class of 1941 Professor of Planetary Science.

In 2013, Dr. Seager was awarded a prestigious MacArthur Fellowship, sometimes referred to as a “genius grant,” for her work on detecting chemical signatures in exoplanet atmospheres and developing low-cost space observatories to observe planetary transits.

Other awards and honours include election to the US National Academy of Sciences in 2015, the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Prize in the Physical Sciences, the American Astronomical Society's Helen B. Warner Prize, and a lifetime honorary membership in the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada.

Mister Chancellor, in recognition of her significant contributions to science and our understanding of planets across interstellar space, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon SARA SEAGER.



MISTER CHANCELLOR, Philip John Currie has served as a seminal force in developing Canada’s reputation for excellence in palaeontology and is an inspiring mentor for up-and-coming Canadian scientists.

His accomplishments have led to a greater understanding of dinosaurs, particularly Therapods such as Tyrannasaurids and their scientific significance, and did much to establish the link between birds and dinosaurs. Dr. Currie helped found the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology in Drumheller, Alberta. He also served as Co-director of the Canada-China Dinosaur Project in 1986 and was Curator of Earth Sciences at the Provincial Museum of Alberta.

Dr. Currie received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Toronto, a Master of Science from McGill University, followed by a Ph.D. in Biology (with distinction) in 1981. He is currently Professor and Canada Research Chair in Dinosaur Paleobiology at the University of Alberta.

Over the past 25 years he has worked on fossil recovery projects in Mongolia, Argentina, Australia, Dinosaur Provincial Park, and many other locations. Together with colleagues he has named 25 new dinosaurs and other fossil reptiles, and three have been named in his honour.

Dr. Currie has received many honours and awards, including the Outstanding Leadership in Alberta Science Award, the Canadian Museums Association Award for Distinguished Service, and the Michael Smith Award for Science Promotion from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada. He is a Fellow of both the Royal Canadian Geographic Society and the Royal Society of Canada.

In 2010, he was awarded the Alberta Order of Excellence, and in 2012, the Royal Canadian Geographical Society's Gold Medal.

Mister Chancellor, in recognition of his outstanding contributions to the field of paleontology, I ask that you confer the degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon PHILIP J. CURRIE.



MISTER CHANCELLOR, as an astronaut aboard NASA’s Space Shuttle Discovery in 1992, Dr. Roberta Lynn Bondar orbited Earth 129 times in eight days and travelled more than 4.7 million kilometers. During that mission, she conducted over 40 investigations from 13 countries, including Space Physiology Experiments from UBC, and made history as the first Canadian female astronaut and the world’s first neurologist in space.

Dr. Bondar has inspired generations of future scientists, doctors, teachers and people who dare to dream, train and achieve great things. She is a creative thinker, physician and scientist, photographer and author, environmental interpreter, an educator and pioneering astronaut, and a truly “passionate Earthling.”

A Canadian board-certified neurologist with a subspecialty in neuro-ophthalmology, Dr. Bondar has made ground-breaking discoveries in space medicine. For more than a decade she headed an international research team studying the effects on astronauts of spaceflight and re-adaptation back to Earth's gravity.

One of the most academically distinguished astronauts to have flown in space, Dr. Bondar is also an acclaimed photographer of the environment whose in-flight role as part of NASA’s Earth Observation Team included photographing planet Earth.

She is the author of three best-selling photo essay books featuring her photography of the surface of Earth, and her photographic works are in private, corporate and institutional collections in Canada, the United States and England. She co-founded The Roberta Bondar Foundation, a not-for-profit charitable organization, to reconnect us to the natural environment.

Dr. Bondar was born in Sault Sainte Marie, Ontario, and studied zoology and agriculture at the University of Guelph. She completed a Master of Science in experimental pathology at the University of Western Ontario before earning a Ph.D. in neurobiology from the University of Toronto, and an M.D. from McMaster University.

An Officer of the Order of Canada and holder of the NASA Space Medal, Dr. Bondar was inducted into the International Women’s Forum Hall of Fame and Canadian Medical Hall of Fame for her research. She is also a fellow of both the Royal Society of Canada and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of her extraordinary and inspiring contributions to science, and lifelong passion for learning and sharing knowledge, I ask that you confer the degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon Dr. ROBERTA LYNN BONDAR.



MISTER CHANCELLOR, Dr. David William Schindler is a scientist known internationally as a leader in protecting freshwater resources here in Canada and around the world.

His research on the environmental effects of pollutants and climate change have shaped freshwater management policies, including the regulation of nutrients and addressing acid rain in North America and Europe.

Dr. Schindler earned a degree in zoology from North Dakota State University in 1962 then studied aquatic ecology at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar. Working under Charles Sutherland Elton -- one of the founders of ecology and founder of Oxford University’s Bureau of Animal Population -- Dr. Schindler began formulating an interdisciplinary ecosystem approach to limnology and ecology.

After earning his doctorate he took a position as Assistant Professor at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario.  In 1968, he was made founding project leader of the Fisheries Research Board of Canada’s Experimental Lakes Project and began innovative large-scale experiments that would reveal serious changes taking place in Canada’s lakes.

Dr. Schindler has received numerous prestigious international awards including the first Stockholm Water Prize, the Volvo International Environmental Prize, the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement, and the G.E. Hutchinson Medal of the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography.

He has also received several national awards, including Canada’s highest honour for Science and Engineering, the Gerhard Herzberg Gold Medal of Science and Engineering, the Manning Award of Distinction for Innovation in Science and the Killam Prize from the Canada Council for the Arts.

He is an Officer of the Order of Canada, a Fellow of the Royal Societies of Canada and London, a foreign fellow of the Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences, and a member of the U. S. National Academy of Sciences.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of his extraordinary contributions to science and his work to care for the world’s most precious natural resources, I ask that you confer the degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon Dr. DAVID WILLIAM SCHINDLER.



MISTER VICE-CHANCELLOR, Alex Janvier is one of Canada’s most acclaimed contemporary artists, recognized nationally and internationally as a modern indigenous master and leader in the arts.

Over the past year, 150 of his paintings and drawings were featured in a major retrospective at the National Gallery of Canada. His work is described as “universal in appeal” and the National Gallery noted that “his paintings on paper, canvas and linen reference Indigenous culture and history and explore his experience of residential school and the effects of colonization.”

Mr. Janvier was born on the Le Goff Reserve of the Cold Lake First Nation in Northern Alberta and is of Dene Suline and Saulteaux descent.

At the age of eight, he was sent to a residential school near St. Paul, Alberta, where the school principal recognized remarkable artistic talent. He went on to receive formal art training at the Alberta Institute of Art and Technology, graduating with honours in 1960, before taking up a position as art instructor at the University of Alberta’s Department of Extension.

In 1966, he was awarded a major commission from the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs to produce a series of 80 paintings and a year later he gathered a group of Canada’s foremost Indigenous artists for the Indians of Canada Pavilion at Expo ’67.

Mr. Janvier is a member of the Order of Canada and the Alberta Order of Excellence. He is a recipient of the Governor-General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts as well as the Centennial Medal of the Province of Alberta. He has been artist-in-residence within the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies at UBC’s Okanagan campus and is one of the last members of the acclaimed artist collective known as the Indian Group of Seven.

Mr. Vice-Chancellor, in recognition of his outstanding contributions to the visuals arts in Canada and to Indigenous culture and history, I ask that you confer the degree of Doctor of Letters, honoris causa, upon ALEX SIMEON JANVIER.



MISTER CHANCELLOR, Victoria Kaspi is a remarkable astrophysicist of global renown. Her professional life has been devoted to the study of pulsars – rapidly rotating, highly magnetized neutron stars left behind after a massive star explodes as a super nova.

Using the most powerful radio and X-ray telescopes in the world, she observes these relatively tiny yet dense stellar remnants as they rotate, emitting bursts of radiation. Her current work includes the development of algorithms and the implementation of instrumentation for the Fast Radio Burst project on the new Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment – or CHIME – telescope in Penticton, British Columbia.

Born in Austin, Texas, and raised in Montreal, Quebec, as a youth her passions tended toward hockey rather than astronomy, but she was keen on mathematics and logic. Her interest in neutron stars was sparked at Princeton University, where she earned her Ph.D. under the supervision of luminary astrophysicist Joe Taylor, who later won the Nobel Prize in Physics.

Today she is professor of physics at McGill University, director of the McGill Space Institute, a member of the McGill Pulsar Group, and has served as Associate Dean of Research and Graduate Education with McGill University’s Faculty of Science.

She was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2010 and has received many prestigious awards and distinctions including the Gerhard Herzberg Canada Gold Medal for Science and Engineering in 2016 – the same year she was appointed as a Companion of the Order of Canada. Her work was also recognized with the NSERC John C. Polanyi Award in 2010 and the Rutherford Memorial Medal in Physics in 2007.

Mister Chancellor, in recognition of her remarkable contributions to our understanding of the universe and her instrumental role in advancing the fields of astronomy and physics, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon VICTORIA MICHELLE KASPI.



MISTER CHANCELLOR, Rosalind Williams is an Elder and Kia7a in the Splatsin First Nation and has long been a steadfast advocate for its people, language and culture. Born in Enderby, BC, she is a respected artist known for her accomplishments as songwriter, archivist and playwright. She is a leader, a community visionary and an academic with untraditional training.

Rosalind is her community’s traditional historian and has worked tirelessly to preserve and promote the Splatsin culture and language, becoming a leader in the documentation and conservation of the language.

In 2000, she created the Splatsin Teaching Society, a community childcare and teaching centre, where she works actively to research the language and ensure that it and Splatsin culture are passed on to future generations.

She was the first woman to be elected Chief of the community in 1972, and was one of the first woman Chiefs in all of British Columbia. She has been a consultant, negotiator, land claims researcher, and has conducted significant historical and genealogical research for her community, working to document her community’s history and traditional stories in new forms, such as plays and songs.

It has been said that everything she does is for her community of the Splatsin First Nation and to build relationships with neighbouring communities, including the Okanagan Nation and settler societies. The community plays she has helped develop over the decades are cited as extraordinary examples of how the arts can contribute to intercultural understanding on personal, community, and institutional levels.

Mister Chancellor, in recognition of her inspiring leadership, artistic contributions and decades of commitment to the preservation of Splatsin language and culture, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Letters, honoris causa, upon ROSALIND WILLIAMS.



MISTER CHANCELLOR, an acclaimed business leader and visionary entrepreneur, Anthony von Mandl has dedicated his life’s work to placing British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley on the international wine map.

As Proprietor of Mission Hill Family Estates, and Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Mark Anthony Group of Companies and Chairman of the von Mandl Family Foundation, he is a true Canadian success story.

In pursuing his vision, he has created some of the most dramatic destination wineries anywhere in the world. This collection of prestige wineries and Estate vineyards includes some of the most prominent names in the Okanagan Valley: CedarCreek Estate Winery, CheckMate Artisanal Winery, Martin’s Lane Winery and the iconic Mission Hill Family Estate. Each winery meticulously crafts a distinct portfolio of luxury wines that are a true reflection of the terroir of the valley, and are synonymous with unparalleled quality and sustained excellence.

With over 180,000 visitors annually, his wineries have been instrumental in developing a substantial agro-tourism industry in British Columbia which now boasts more than 270 wineries and employs more than 10,000 people.

Among his many honours, awards and distinctions, he is a recipient of the Order of British Columbia and was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2016. He is also a humanitarian and philanthropist, a champion for the environment, and is renowned for his support of the visual and performing arts.

Mister Chancellor, in recognition of his extraordinary leadership in business and the arts, and his instrumental role in establishing British Columbia’s thriving wine industry, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon ANTHONY VON MANDL.



MR. CHANCELLOR, UBC alumnus Dr. William Carpentier is a distinguished medical researcher who is best known for his extraordinary contributions to the field of space life science.

Born in Edmonton and raised on Vancouver Island, he graduated from the University of British Columbia’s Faculty of Medicine in 1961. With a keen interest in aviation he moved to Ohio to pursue additional studies in aviation medicine at Ohio State University.

He was selected as a flight surgeon trainee by the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration in 1965 and was made a staff flight surgeon later that year, responsible for the health and welfare of astronauts.

At the time, operational space medicine was a new field and research about the effects of microgravity on humans was limited. Dr. Carpentier thought the clinical tests and evaluations being advocated for NASA’s Apollo space program were incomplete. He therefore requested that comprehensive quantitative biomedical measurements be taken to ensure the welfare of the astronauts and to gain a better understanding of human health in weightlessness.

His expertise and commitment were put to good use as flight surgeon for several history-making NASA missions, including Apollo 11, the first manned lunar landing.

When the Apollo program ended, he completed a fellowship program in nuclear medicine and then joined the Nuclear Medicine Division at Scott and White Healthcare in Texas, where he contributed to important advancements in radiology, diagnostics and cancer treatment.

He returned to NASA in 2003, where he is again working with research colleagues to study changes in the cardiovascular system in microgravity.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of extraordinary and historical achievements in medicine and space life science, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon WILLIAM CARPENTIER.


MR. CHANCELLOR, Lewis Kay is widely known for his pioneering research in biochemistry and for his role in developing modern nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy.

After completing his Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Alberta, he went on to obtain his Ph.D. in Molecular Biophysics from Yale University in 1988, followed by post-doctoral studies at the National Institutes of Health.

He returned to Canada in 1990 to accept a faculty position at the University of Toronto, where today he is a professor of Molecular Genetics, Biochemistry and Chemistry and a senior scientist in the Molecular Medicine research program at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children.

His methods allow researchers to see how the shapes of molecules change over time, which has provided new insight into protein structure and functions that are closely tied to human health and disease.

It is essential to note that his open source approach to research has allowed hundreds of scientists in academia and industry to use the methods developed by his team. Not surprisingly, his scientific papers are amongst the most highly cited in chemistry.

His numerous awards include the Steacie Prize from the National Research Council of Canada and the Favelle Medal from the Royal Society of Canada.

A member of both the Royal Society and the Royal Society of Canada, he was recently named a Canada Gairdner International Award laureate, and is a Gerhard Herzberg Gold Medal recipient in Science and Engineering, as well as an Officer of the Order of Canada.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of his vast achievements and contributions to medical research, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon LEWIS E. KAY.



MR. CHANCELLOR, Beckie Scott was an 11-year member of Canada’s national cross-country ski team, retiring in 2006 as Canada’s most decorated athlete in her sport. A three-time Olympian, she is also internationally recognized for her advocacy for clean, fair, doping-free sport.

She won her first World Cup medal in 2001.  A year later she won a gold medal in the combined pursuit event at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. She originally finished third in the event but was upgraded to the gold medal when both the winner and runner-up were disqualified for using performance-enhancing drugs.

The incident validated her previous efforts to maintain integrity in sport, beginning with her work in 2001 to help circulate an athletes' petition requesting the establishment of an independent drug-testing body for all World Cup and Olympic cross-country skiing competitions.

At the 2006 Winter Olympic Games, she and partner Sara Renner won silver medals in the team sprint. She retired in 2006 with 17 career World Cup medals, ranked 2nd in the overall World Cup standings.

Even though her racing career is over, she continues her tireless efforts for clean competition, as Chair of the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Athlete Committee.

In recognition of her achievements she been inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame, the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame, the Canadian Ski Hall of Fame, and was recently appointed as an Officer of the Order of Canada.

Beckie Scott is also the founder and CEO of Spirit North, a sport-for-development organization working to improve the lives of Indigenous children and youth through the transformative power of sport and play.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of her extraordinary achievements in sport,  for her tireless advocacy for fair play among athletes of all nations, and for her innovative commitment to Indigenous children and youth, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon REBECCA SCOTT.



Mr. Chancellor,

Professor Martha Crago is one of Canada’s most influential leaders in research and academic administration, and the extent and breadth of her activities are truly remarkable.

Currently the Vice-Principal, Research and Innovation at McGill University, she has played a significant leadership role in the advancement of research and education through her participation on an extraordinary number of government, industry and academic organizations.

To cite only a few examples, she has served as Chair of the Research Committee of the U15 group of Canada’s research-intensive universities; as President of the Canadian Association of Graduate Studies; as a board member of the Council of Graduate Schools in the United States, and she currently serves as Chair of the Governing Council of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.

Concurrent with her administrative activities, Professor Crago has had an active research career, specializing in language acquisition across a variety of languages and learners, and her work has been published extensively.

But what is particularly striking is her knowledge capability within an eclectic range of research disciplines. Again, by way of example, she is a member of the Research Partnership Committee of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council; has been a member of the Boards of the Consortium for Aerospace Research and Innovation in Canada, the Canadian Light Source, and Ocean Network Canada. She has also served as a member of the University Advisory Group of Industry Canada.

Not surprisingly, her awards and distinctions are many in number, and include her appointment as a Member of the Order of Canada in 2017.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of her tireless and influential work to advance university research and learning in Canada and beyond, I ask you to confer the degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon Professor MARTHA CRAGO.


Mr. Chancellor,

The pioneers of British Columbia’s wine industry include several UBC alumni, but few have contributed in greater measure to both the art and the science of winemaking in this province than Howard Soon.

A graduate of the Faculty of Science in biochemistry, he spent five years in the brewing industry before steering his creativity in a new direction. For the next 37 years – from 1980 to 2017 - he was involved in winemaking at Calona Vineyards of Kelowna, including as the founding winemaker of the award-winning Sandhill Wines.

Renowned among growers for his collaborative and non-interventionist approach, he was the first British Columbia winemaker to release exclusively single-vineyard wines, a practise that subsequently became central to the production of many of the province’s most distinct award-winning wines. Indeed, he continues to do so today, creating small-lot wines of notable distinction in hands-on fashion as master winemaker at Vanessa Vineyards.

His commitment to the industry is highlighted by his volunteer work on various industry and government boards, including the Scientific Advisory Board for Grape and Wine Genomics, a research project involving Genome BC and Genome Canada. I am pleased to also note that he has also served on the Dean’s Advisory Board for the UBC Faculty of Land and Food Systems.

He has received numerous industry awards, but perhaps none more prestigious than when in 1999 he became the first B.C. winemaker to receive a gold medal at the Chardonnay du Monde competition in Burgundy, France.

It should also be noted that 2019 turned out to be a particularly fine vintage year for him personally, one in which he was appointed as a Member of the Order of Canada.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of his contributions to his profession and to the economy, culture and lifestyle of this province, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon HOWARD TIMOTHY LEE SOON.


Mr. Chancellor,

Professor Ian Whishaw is one of Canada’s most cited neuroscientists whose research addresses the neural basis of skilled movement and of brain disease.

He received his Ph.D. from Western University and subsequently moved to the University of Lethbridge, where he is currently a professor of psychology and neuroscience and holds a Board of Governors Chair in neuroscience.

A prolific researcher, he is the author of over 450 scientific papers and five books on neuroscience subjects that include a wide range of mammalian species. He has had visiting appointments at the University of Texas, University of Michigan, University of Cambridge, and the University of Strasbourg.

Professor Whishaw is a fellow of the Canadian Psychological Association, the American Psychological Association, the Royal Society of Canada, and Clare Hall at Cambridge.

He is also a recipient of the University of Lethbridge’s Ingrid Speaker Medal for Research and Alberta Science and Technology’s 2009 Outstanding Leader in Alberta Science Award.

His record of achievement has been further recognized through honorary degrees from Thompson Rivers University and the University of Lethbridge.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of his prolific research and contributions within wide-ranging fields of neuroscience, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Science, honoris causa, upon IAN Q. WHISHAW.



Mr. Chancellor,

Dick Fletcher has led a long and distinguished career as a professional civil engineer and as a leadership volunteer within a wide range of public and professional service.

After graduating from the University of Saskatchewan in 1969, he went to work for the City of Whitehorse as its first city engineer. He moved to the Okanagan Valley in 1984 to begin work with Urban Systems Ltd, providing services to municipalities, regional governments, Indigenous communities, irrigation districts, and private sector organizations throughout Western Canada.

Universally respected within his profession, he is particularly well-known for his skilled and collaborative work to build capacity and fulfill infrastructure and economic development opportunities for Indigenous communities, highlighted by over 25 years of service to Westbank First Nation.

Additionally, his role as a key influencer in the formative years of UBC Okanagan must also be highlighted. In 2004, he co-chaired an Okanagan Partnership group of regional engineering and IT industry professionals who successfully made the case for the establishment of an engineering school at UBCO. I am pleased to add that he continues to serve UBC today in the Faculty of Applied Science as a member of the Dean’s Advisory Committee.

His record of leadership within his profession is particularly extensive. The highlights include leading Engineers Canada’s NAFTA implementation initiative meeting with the Mexican Government and USA National Engineering Bodies. He also represented Engineers Canada at international boards and negotiated reciprocal agreements with other economies.

His many distinctions include Fellowships in the country’s leading professional organizations, including the Canadian Academy of Engineers.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of his extraordinary achievements and contributions to both his profession and community, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon RICHARD ALLAN FLETCHER.


Mr. Chancellor,

Over the course of forty years, Jim Hamilton’s commitment to collaborative academic leadership has contributed to the transformation of lives and communities in the Okanagan and beyond.

He is best known for his work as president of Okanagan College, a role he has fulfilled since 2004. Under his tenure the College enrolment has increased 70 per cent, including a four-fold increase in Indigenous students. He has also led the establishment of numerous strategic partnerships, served on countless academic boards and councils, and oversaw the completion of $127 million in capital projects.

His career began in 1980 as a professor of English literature at the Vernon campus of Okanagan College. Since that time, he has worked for School District 22 as an administrator, served as an elected school trustee and as a member of the Board of Governors of Okanagan University College.

Before becoming president, he served as the regional principal of the North Okanagan Region of Okanagan University College. He was also the transition team leader for the College during a critical period that culminated in the creation of UBC Okanagan and Okanagan College in 2005.

Numerous volunteer commitments include serving as co-chair of the BC Council of Admission and Transfer, chair of the British Columbia Council for International Education; chair of the BC College Presidents Group; president of the Trades Training Consortium of BC, and vice chair of the Irving K. Barber BC Scholarship Society. In 2016, he was awarded the Presidents Distinguished Service Award by Colleges and Institutes Canada, where he served as a Board member for many years.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of his service and contributions as one of this province’s longest-serving academic leaders, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon JAMES STUART HAMILTON.


Mr. Chancellor,

Elder Chris Marchand and Elder Eric Mitchell are life partners, members of the Okanagan Indian Band and of the Okanagan-Syilx Nation. They are both survivors, with Elder Chris of the Sixties Scoop experience and Elder Eric of the residential school system. Together, their experiences, insight and determination have enabled them to make pioneering contributions to Indigenous student learning and to cultural-based education practises at UBC Okanagan.

And together, they are central contributors to the fulfillment of UBC’s commitment to collaborate with Indigenous peoples to address the legacy of colonialism.

For more than a decade they have been particularly influential as co-creators and adjunct professors of cultural safety programs for students in the School of Nursing, and more recently, in the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies.

In this capacity they have taken significant strides to educate students, faculty members and staff of the truth of Indigenous stories and of the colonial narrative, and to foster higher levels of shared understanding of where we all stand in our path of reconciliation.

As Elders in Residence at the Aboriginal Centre at UBC Okanagan, they also provide comfort and encouragement to Indigenous students through regular and supportive interactions.

In more recent times they have generously extended their reach into the wider community through presentations on cultural safety to teachers and administrators at school district 22 and to members of Trinity United Church in Vernon.

Mr. Chancellor, we are indeed grateful for the thoughtful presence of Elder Chris and Elder Eric, for their support of Indigenous students, and indeed, for their contributions to an essential learning process for all members of the campus community.

It is in this spirit that I ask you to confer upon Elder CHRISTINA ELAINE MARCHAND and Elder ERIC STANLEY MITCHELL – together – the degrees of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa.



Mr. Chancellor,

Theresa Arsenault is a double UBC alumna and one of the most respected business lawyers in the Okanagan Valley. She began practising law shortly after her graduation from the UBC Faculty of Law in 1981 and eventually joined the Kelowna firm of Pushor Mitchell. As a partner with the added distinction of Queen’s Counsel, she specializes in business and estate law, and is particularly well regarded for her expertise in First Nations transactions.

But it is her role in the community that has earned even greater distinction. In particular, she has long demonstrated a deep conviction to improving access to higher education and has devoted much of her volunteer time to that end. Indeed, it must be said that she is one of the pioneers of UBC Okanagan, beginning with her work as chair of the Getting There by Degrees campaign to bring university degrees to the Okanagan in 1989.

Following the establishment of the UBC Okanagan campus, she served as a member and later chair of the UBC Board of Governors and as Co-Chair of UBCO’s External Community Advisory Committee. I wish to also highlight her contributions to Indigenous engagement at UBC, as exemplified by her role as Co-Chair of the Okanagan Partnership, and by her generosity in establishing an Aboriginal Access Award at UBCO to help Aboriginal students who encounter financial roadblocks.

Beyond UBC, she has established an extraordinary record of service as a Director of the Canada West Foundation; as Vice-president of the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce, and on the boards of the United Way, the KGH Foundation, the B.C. Cancer Agency and Okanagan University College. She was recognized for her community leadership by the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce with the Business Leader of the Year Award in 2015.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of her leadership within her community, and for her contributions to the growth and evolution of her university, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon THERESA MARIE ARSENAULT.


Mr. Chancellor,

After his graduation from the UBC Faculty of Arts, Peter Dhillon set out on a long and remarkable journey as a proud second-generation farmer, entrepreneur, and community leader.

He is best known as a driving force behind Canada’s thriving cranberry industry, most notably as President and CEO of the Richberry Group of Companies, an agribusiness enterprise with operations in British Columbia and Quebec, and as Chair of the Board of Directors of Ocean Spray Cranberries Inc, a global food and beverage business that has products in over a hundred countries.

He also gives generously of his time and resources to support a diverse range of initiatives to enrich and sustain the agricultural industry in Canada. To that end, he has supported the Institute for Sustainable Horticulture at Kwantlen Polytechnical University, and established the Peter P. Dhillon Centre for Business Ethics at UBC.

He has also focused his philanthropy upon health care, humanitarian child support, education and sport, including the Canadian Red Cross, Canadian Olympic Committee, Arts Umbrella and Right to Play Canada. In his father’s memory, he established the Rashpal Dhillon Fund in Idiopathic Pulmonary Research and the Rashpal Dhillon Fund in Cranberry Research at UBC, as well as the Rashpal Dhillon UBC Track and Field Oval.

He has also provided volunteer leadership on varied and numerous governance boards, including BC Ferry Corporation; BC Agricultural Land Commission; Vancouver Airport Authority; VGH and UBC Hospital Foundation; the Bank of Canada and the Vancouver 2010 Organizing Committee. Not surprisingly, he has received numerous awards and honours, including the Order of British Columbia.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of his visionary leadership, and for his tireless efforts in support of his country, his community and his university, I ask you to confer the degree, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon PETER P. DHILLON.


Mr. Chancellor,

Al Hildebrandt is a Kelowna-based technology entrepreneur with an extraordinary record of community and humanitarian service. He founded his first tech company in 1990, which served Canadian and international healthcare markets and was named three times to the 100 fastest growing companies list in Canada. He started a second company in 1997, which became QHR Technologies, and again oversaw its growth into a Canadian medical records market leader.

His numerous volunteer contributions to advance social and economic development are highlighted by his leadership of the U-2000 movement to bring a university to Kelowna, as well as ongoing leadership and philanthropy in support of critically important regional and international initiatives.

In particular, he has been a tireless worker and financial supporter of projects involving youth health, beginning in 1974 when he and his wife Irene began supporting World Vision child sponsorships. In 2016, they sponsored World Vision international projects, including projects in micro finance in Guatemala; health care facilities in Africa; sanitation facilities and water-well projects in Africa, and child protection programs in Asia.

Al and Irene supported Operation Smile Canada’s April 2016 medical missions’ trip to Nicaragua where over 200 children were given life changing palate surgeries provided by healthcare providers from 17 countries.

Since his retirement in June 2015, he has been involved in several local community projects led by Kelowna General Hospital Foundation, including Foundry-Kelowna and JoeAnna’s House. In 2017 following a personal family tragedy, he led the build-out of the Child Advocacy Centre of Kelowna, and he continues his philanthropic work today through Impact Tomorrow Foundation.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of his remarkable contributions to the social and economic development of his community, and his record of humanitarian service in the developing world, I ask you to confer the degree, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon ALVIN NEAL HILDEBRANDT.


Mr. Chancellor,

Clarence Louie was just 24 years-old when he was first elected as Chief of the Osoyoos Indian Band of the Okanagan Nation. For more than 34 years he has consistently emphasized economic development as a means to improve his people’s standard of living. Under his direction, the Band has become a multi‐faceted corporation that owns and manages eleven businesses and five joint ventures, employing approximately one thousand people. The business enterprises include a well-known winery and vineyards, retail stores, an RV campground, a forestry company and a championship golf course.

At the same time, he has also demonstrated an equally strong conviction that First Nations leaders have a responsibility to incorporate First Nations language and culture in all socio‐economic initiatives as a means to preserve Indigenous heritage. The establishment of the Nk’Mip Desert and Cultural Center is a compelling testament to the Chief and Council’s commitment to balancing business while investing time and money in the Okanagan language and culture.

His efforts have been widely recognized in Canada and the United States and he has shared his simple and direct business approach with Native people and with government and corporate entities across Canada and in several countries, including the United States, Australia and New Zealand.

I am pleased to note that he is also a proponent of education for Indigenous people and provided a meaningful endorsement of UBC Okanagan as a signatory of the Memorandum of Understanding with Okanagan Nation.

Chief Louie has been formally recognized through numerous honours including his induction into the Aboriginal Business Hall of Fame, the BC and Canadian Business Halls of Fame, and his membership in the Order of British Columbia and the Order of Canada.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of his leadership to achieve both economic self determination and the cultural preservation of his people, I ask you to confer the degree, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon CLARENCE JOSEPH LOUIE.


Mr. Chancellor,

A member of the Canoe Creek Band of the Shuswap Nation, Elder Jessie Nyberg has been described as a Traditional Indigenous and academic scholar, a visionary leader, an educator and community builder.

Elder Jessie earned her Registered Nurse Diploma from Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops in 1963 and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Chapman College in California in 1981. Over her 45‐year career, she has held numerous professional positions as an Indigenous nurse in British Columbia, Alberta, California, and Hawaii. Her practice included acute and community care, specializing in urban, rural and remote Indigenous health.

In BC, her professional activities included leading Indigenous children’s health initiatives within the BC Ministry of Children and Family Development. In 2002 she began her work to develop the first Interior Health Aboriginal Health and Wellness Strategic Plan, working with all 72 Bands and Aboriginal organizations in the Interior Health region.

Since that time, she has facilitated various Indigenous cultural safety training programs. She currently serves as an Elder Advisor and Community Research Liaison for the UBC Okanagan Faculty of Health and Social Development where she co-founded a cultural safety curriculum and leads Indigenous community-led research projects. She has also shown outstanding commitment to the education of future nurses, and her students speak earnestly of her dedication, integrity and kindness.

She has received numerous honours including an Indigenous Honouring Blanket Ceremony within the Human Early Learning Program at UBC Vancouver; an Indigenous Honouring Blanket Ceremony within the Aboriginal Head Start Association of British Columbia, and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of her lengthy record of service and wide-ranging contributions to Indigenous healthcare, education and cultural safety, I ask you to confer the degree, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon Elder JESSIE CAROL NYBERG.


Mr. Chancellor,

At just 18 years of age, Greta Thunberg has gained international recognition for challenging world leaders to take immediate, science-based action against climate change, and for prompting climate-change activism among youth in many countries.

She began garnering attention in 2018 when she challenged students in Sweden to join her in a school strike for the climate, and ultimately inspired hundreds of thousands of students from around the world to participate in weekly strikes, sparking the international youth-led movement known as Fridays for Future.

The movement grew as global citizens of all ages joined, exemplified most famously in September of 2019 when she led a massive march of protesters to demand climate action at the New York City Global Climate Strike, and inspired what became the largest climate protest in history with an estimated four million people marching in 150 countries.

She also gave speeches at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland; at the European Parliament; in front of the legislatures of Italy, France, the United Kingdom and the United States; at the 2019 UN Climate Change Conference in Madrid, and at the 2019 UN Youth Climate Summit in New York, to which she famously traveled on an emissions-free yacht.

She has received numerous awards and honours including the Royal Scottish Geographical Society Geddes Environment Medal, the Amnesty International Ambassador of Conscience Award, an honorary doctorate from the University of Mons and is a three-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee. In 2019, Time magazine named her “Person of the Year” - she was just 16 years old.

Mr. Chancellor, in recognition of her courageous determination to alter the course of human history, and for inspiring the youth of the world to lead responses to climate change, I ask you to confer the degree Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, upon GRETA TINTIN ELEONORA ERNMAN THUNBERG.