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2008 Honourees

Chalmers Doane
Music Educator

John Chalmers Doane. Educator, administrator, ukulele player, string bassist, b Truro, NS, 3 Nov 1938; B MUS ED (Boston) 1967. He graduated in 1961 from Nova Scotia Teachers' College and later studied string methods with George Bornoff at Boston U. Bornoff's educational ideas have greatly influenced him. During Doane's tenure as supervisor of music for the Halifax School Board (1967-84), he changed school music programs dramatically, using the ukulele as an inexpensive and practical teaching instrument for children and adults. His unconventional approach, vindicated by the success of Halifax school bands and orchestras in concerts and competitions across Canada, has produced a model of public music education worthy of study by educational jurisdictions elsewhere. In 1984 Doane became associate professor at Nova Scotia Teachers College. He is much in demand as a consultant and leader of workshops across Canada and in the USA.
Dr. John R. Evans, C.C., O.Ont.
Chair, Board of Directors, MaRS Discovery District

Dr. Evans is a medical graduate of the University of Toronto, Founding Dean of the McMaster University Faculty of Medicine, President emeritus of the University of Toronto, founding Director of the Population, Health and Nutrition Department of the World Bank and founding Chair of Allelix Inc., a biotechnical company. Dr. Evans is the founding Chairman of the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) and the founding Chairman of the MaRS Discovery District.
Gordon M. Nixon, O.Ont.
President & CEO, RBC Royal Bank

Gordon Nixon is president and chief executive officer of RBC, the brand name for Royal Bank of Canada and its subsidiaries. He is also a director of Royal Bank of Canada and chairman of RBC’s Group Executive.

Mr. Nixon is chairman of MaRS, a not-for-profit organization that connects science, business and capital and co-chairs The Toronto Region Immigrant Council. He is past chairman of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives and is on the Board of Directors of The Hospital for Sick Children, The International Monetary Conference and the Advisory Board of Mercedes-Benz Canada, Catalyst Canada and Queen’s University School of Business.

In 2007 Mr. Nixon was invested into the Order of Ontario and was the recipient of Canada’s Outstanding CEO of the Year Award. He has an Honorary Doctor of Laws from both Queen’s University and Dalhousie University, and is a recipient of the CIJA/UJA Words and Deeds Leadership Award, the Rotary Foundation’s Paul Harris Fellowship, a Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal, a Learning Partnership Champion of Public Education Tribute and an American Banker Innovator of the Year Award.
Dr. Indira V. Samarasekera, O.C.
President & Vice-Chancellor, University of Alberta

Dr. Indira V. Samarasekera, O.C., is the 12th President of the University of Alberta, one of Canada’s most respected research-intensive universities. Over a professional career spanning three decades, Dr. Samarasekera has distinguished herself as one of Canada’s leading metallurgical engineers. As a Fulbright-Hays Scholar, she earned an MSc from the University of California in 1976, and, in 1980, she was granted a PhD in metallurgical engineering from the University of British Columbia. Dr. Samarasekera received the E.W. R. Steacie Memorial fellowship in 1991, awarded by NSERC to the top 4 researchers in Canada under 40. She was awarded the Order of Canada in 2002 in recognition of outstanding contributions to steel process engineering. Dr. Samarasekera has been a consultant to steel companies around the world.
Dr. Samarasekera holds two honorary degrees and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering and a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIMM). She has received honorary degrees from the University of British Columbia and Queen’s University Belfast.