Leaders with passion and purpose to be recognized at Fall Convocation

November 2, 2016
RRU Communications
Fall Convocation will be held Nov. 15, 2016

Royal Roads University will honour three leaders who exemplify passion and purpose, qualities which also shine throughout the university’s graduating class, at Fall Convocation on Nov. 15, 2016.

Jurist and child advocate Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, poet and philosopher David Whyte and businessman and arts supporter Eric Charman will join graduates at the Royal Theatre to celebrate the power of determination to change lives.

“Recognizing outstanding individuals from a variety of practices, professions and experiences and bestowing on them our highest honours is a responsibility we take thoughtfully,” observes President and Vice-Chancellor Allan Cahoon. “They are held up to our graduates as role models to emulate in their own careers and professions and in the contributions they make to their communities.”

This fall’s convocation ceremonies will recognize the achievements of 800 graduates who have earned degrees, certificates or diplomas in the Faculty of Management or in the Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences. They join more than 24,000 alumni of Royal Roads University in more than 60 countries worldwide.

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree for her outstanding leadership and service to the children and youth of British Columbia and Canada, especially to Indigenous children and their families. Turpel-Lafond’s career includes serving as British Columbia’s first Representative for Children and Youth, as well as the first Indigenous person to sit on the judicial bench of the Provincial Court of Saskatchewan. As a criminal law judge in youth and adult courts, she focused on better serving the needs of young people in the justice system.

David Whyte, a poet who brings his verse and ideas into the world of business, will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree in recognition of his work to increase creativity and adaptability in the workplace. An associate fellow at the Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford and author of eight books, his poetry and thoughtful commentary illustrates what he calls “conversational leadership.”  

The Chancellor’s Community Recognition Award will be presented to Eric Charman for his championship of the arts in the capital region. Charman has dedicated his life to supporting the arts through fundraising and awareness events. During and beyond his career in financial services and real estate, he has organized hundreds of charity events and raised millions of dollars. Notable recipients of his efforts include the Victoria Art Gallery, the Victoria Symphony, the Victoria Conservatory of Music, Kaleidoscope Children’s Theatre and Pacific Opera Victoria.

Royal Roads University Fall 2016 Convocation Ceremonies
Royal Theatre, 805 Broughton St., Victoria B.C.
Nov. 15, 2016

9:30 a.m.            Conferral of honorary degree on David Whyte
                            Presentation of Chancellor’s Community Recognition Award to Eric Charman
                            Ceremony for the Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences graduates
                             (excluding the School of Communication and Culture)       

2:00 p.m.            Conferral of honorary degree on Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond
                            Ceremony for the Faculty of Management graduates
                            and graduates of the School of Communication and Culture

Both morning and afternoon ceremonies will be available to view live on Royal Roads University’s broadcast channel.