Celebrating McGill’s unsung heroes

As part of McGill's Bicentennial celebrations, contemporary faculty and staff members are honoured by colleagues for their role as unsung heroes of the University
The first cohort of Unsung Heroes of McGill includes (from left to right): Ingrid Birker, Honora Shaughnessy, Gladys Chan, Leo Kerklaan and Jennifer Stephenson

Today begins our Unsung Heroes of McGill series.

It was conceived in the context of McGill’s Bicentennial celebrations to honour contemporary faculty and staff members who were not conspicuously feted in their time and whose achievements may not have received the notoriety they deserved.

The submission tender noted that “understandably, most of the kudos at universities go to renowned researchers and superstar students.” So the call went out for “people whose dedication and hard work keep this institution running each day, but who may not always get the spotlight they deserve.”

The people profiled have demonstrated a panoply of qualities that have served the University well, sometimes over decades: compassion, originality, collegiality efficiency – and humour. They generally seek consensus and collaboration. It can designate someone who shepherded McGill’s IT service from infancy or someone who fielded – and solved – hundreds of queries from students and faculty.

In short, they are individuals whose work generally benefited McGill’s workplace culture.

The Bicentennial project will unveil between two and five contemporary heroes each week between now and the wrap-up of McGill’s Bicentennial celebrations at the end of 2022.

A new group of roughly 300 people will be portrayed in brief sketches, written by a colleague, with pictures and information about their department and years of service.

The McGill community was solicited to submit the names of persons deemed deserving of the appellation.

Gérald Cadet, director of Bicentennial planning in the Office of the Principal & Vice-Chancellor, said that each week, “we will invite people to come and discover who the heroes of that week are.”

They will be highlighted weekly in their own section in the faculty and staff What’s New e-newsletter published twice a week by McGill’s Institutional Communications team that keeps readers informed about all things McGill-related.

Read more about the first cohort of the Unsung Heroes of McGill.

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Anne Farray
2 years ago

Congratulations to all the winners. To those who are first “out the gate” in this category – hats off. Thank you for your service and contribution to McGill and the community.