By McGill Reporter Staff
It is an Honorary Doctorate list that is as illustrious as it is eclectic, including, among others, one Nobel Prize winner, Harvard’s Dean of Law, a Canadian jazz legend, an aboriginal leader and an award-winning poet and playwright.
McGill alumnus Jack Szostak, who went on to share the 2009 Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology, is among a stellar list of scholars and renowned individuals who will be awarded honorary degrees at McGill’s 2011 Spring Convocation ceremonies.
Others on this year’s list (in order of presentation) include Julian Davies, a world leader in antibiotics; neuroscientist, McGill alumnus and Rhodes Scholar Marc Tessier-Lavigne, who is now president of Rockefeller University; Herménégilde Chiasson, a leading Acadian poet and educator and former Lieutenant Governor of New Brunswick; Norman R. Augustine, retired chairman and CEO of Lockheed Martin Corp.; groundbreaking aboriginal leader Roberta L. Jamieson; Vivienne Poy, the first Canadian of Asian descent to be appointed to the Senate of Canada; Martha L. Minow, Dean and Jeremiah Smith Jr. Professor of Law, Harvard Law School; and Phil Nimmons, whose spectacular career as a bandleader, jazz teacher and composer has spanned six decades. Noted philanthropists Rosalind and Morris Goodman are also among this year’s recipients (see above).
“This is a remarkable list of individuals who have accomplished extraordinary things in their various fields throughout their lives,” said McGill’s Secretary-General Stephen Strople, whose office co-ordinates the honorary degree process. “We seek to honour those who have made significant contributions to society, to the expansion of knowledge and to the support of education and research. The people we are honouring this year have certainly fulfilled those criteria in so many fascinating ways. It is a truly impressive group.”
Other honorary degree recipients will be announced in the coming weeks.
These notable individuals join a pantheon of McGill honorary degree recipients that includes, among others: British Prime Minister Winston Churchill (1944); President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1944); Mayor Jean Drapeau (1965); painter Jean-Paul Riopelle (1968), writer and human rights activist Elie Wiesel (1994), linguist and intellectual Noam Chomsky (1998), writer Mordecai Richler (2000), director Atom Egoyan (2003), singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell (2004); former Governor-General Michaëlle Jean (2006), and President Bill Clinton (2009).
Convocation ceremonies will be held on the lower campus the week of May 30 – June 3, with the exception of the Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences ceremonies, which will be held Friday, May 27, at the Macdonald Campus in Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue.