Meet Dal's honorary degree recipients for Fall Convocation 2013
Staff - October 1, 2013
It's time for Dal's newest graduates to cross the stage.
Fall Convocation takes place at the Dalhousie Arts Centre from October 7-9, with four ceremonies across the three days. Dal's newest alumni will be joined by three outstanding individuals receiving honorary doctorates. (These are in addition to the honorary doctorates being presented during Installation ceremonies on October 4. Learn more about those here.)
David S. Precious (October 7)
David S. Precious, Dean Emeritus of Dalhousie University’s Faculty of Dentistry, is an internationally recognized leader in the field of oral and maxillofacial surgery with a focus on helping patients with congenital cleft lip and palate. His association with Dalhousie stretches back to his student days, when he obtained his Doctor of Dental Surgery and his Master of Science here. He went on to teach at the university, eventually chairing the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Sciences before being appointed Dean of the Faculty of Dentistry in 2003, a position he held until 2008.
As a result of his stature as a world leader in his field, he has been asked to serve on the editorial boards of scholarly journals and has authored more than 200 peer-reviewed publications and abstracts, 15 book chapters and eight books. Based on his research, surgical procedures have been developed that result in dramatic functional improvements for patients with cleft palate or dental facial deformities.
Over the past two decades, Dr. Precious has applied his considerable skills to humanitarian work, leading surgical delegations to Japan, Vietnam, Tunisia and elsewhere to perform cleft lip and palate surgeries, and train local doctors in partnership with the Japanese Cleft Palate Foundation. His professional and humanitarian efforts have been recognized with numerous awards, including the Order of Canada.
Daniel N. Paul (October 8)
A Mi’kmaq Elder, Daniel N. Paul has committed his life to promoting a better understanding of Mi’kmaq and Maliseet history and culture. He is the author of the landmark book We Were Not the Savages, considered the most reliable text on the story of Aboriginal Peoples history in the Atlantic provinces. The website he created alongside the book is an archival research resource for scholars and Mi’kmaq peoples alike.
Dr. Paul has dedicated his life to fighting racial discrimination, and credits his own family’s history with influencing his human rights work. Largely self-educated, he embarked on a lifetime of community activism, including acting as the founding executive director of the Confederacy of Mainland Micmacs, initiating fundraising for a new community centre for the Indian Brook Reserve, and working to resolve land and treaty claims. He has served on the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission, among many other commissions, committees and councils.
When awarding Dr. Paul the Order of Nova Scotia, the provincial government lauded him for bringing new understanding and perspective to the past. One significant public expression of that shift in perspective has involved the efforts of Dr. Paul and others to have us rethink the naming of public buildings and landmarks. In his own words: “The accomplishment that I’m most proud of is that I’ve lobbied successfully to have the names of buildings, roads and so on named in honour of colonial officials that brutalized the Mi’kmaq, changed.” His most recent success was the groundbreaking decision to rename Cornwallis Junior High School in Halifax.
The Honourable Howard I. Wetston, Q.C. (October 9 - afternoon ceremony)
The Honourable Howard I. Wetston’s connections to Nova Scotia run deep. He spent his formative years here, arriving with his parents in Sydney as a very young child (in 1949) and growing up there as a student at Sydney Academy. He obtained his law degree from Dalhousie in 1974 and was called to the Nova Scotia Bar in 1975.
Throughout his career, he has distinguished himself as an economic regulator, leading the Competition Bureau, Ontario Energy Board and Ontario Securities Commission. Along with his tenure as a federal court judge and Crown Counsel in Nova Scotia and at the federal Department of Justice, it is an impressive resumé.
But even more impressive is Mr. Wetston’s track record as a transformational leader. He is committed to innovation, transparency and accountability. This commitment, along with his skill at managing and transforming complex organizations during times of flux and transition, has earned him a reputation as a thought leader. He challenges the organizations he leads to rethink regulation and encourages them to take an innovative and outcomes-based approach. His goal? To achieve clearer expectations for market participants and better accountability and responsibility by the regulator. Through this, he fosters an attitude of service to market participants, stakeholders and the public.
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