University of Calgary

Western Legacy Awards and honorary degree recipients

UToday HomeJanuary 16, 2013

The Western Legacy Awards are prestigious annual honours recognizing a who’s who of illustrious Albertans. More than a quarter of the 100 Top Albertans honoured in 2012 have a connection to the University of Calgary.

Here is a list of Western Legacy Award 2012 recipients, listed alphabetically, who in the past have been given honorary degrees from the University of Calgary.

Dermot Baldwin [honorary degree (HD) 2002]: A selfless advocate for Calgary’s homeless and poor, Baldwin was at the helm of the Calgary Drop-In and Rehab Centre for 16 years until his retirement in 2010. The university has a scholarship in his name.

Alexander Calhoun (1879-1979) (HD prior to 1965): Alberta’s first library opened in 1911 and Calhoun became its first chief librarian. He held the position until retiring in 1945, and library was dedicated to him in 1953.

Martha Cohen (HD 1982): Cohen was a civic-minded and multi-award-winning Calgarian for whom a theatre is named after in the city. Cohen chaired many boards, including the Calgary Centre for the Performing Arts. She was also chair of Mount Royal College Board of Governors, making her the first woman to head a higher education institution in Alberta.

Donald S. Ethell (HD 2012): Distinguished soldier, peacekeeper, humanitarian, and volunteer for many humanitarian causes, the Honourable Donald S. Ethell, became the 17th lieutenant governor of Alberta in May 2010.

James H. Gray (1906-1998) (HD 1975): Gray was a pioneer in publishing western Canada’s social history and pushing for its inclusion in school curriculums. He was a founder of the Alberta Heritage Resources Education Project and donor to the University of Calgary’s History Department.

Tom Jackson (HD 2003): Jackson is an award-winning singer, television and film actor known for his roles on shows such as North of 60. He is recognized for his humanitarian work helping the less fortunate.

Lanny McDonald (HD 2008): McDonald is noted for his illustrious hockey career and his humanitarianism, including a long association with the Special Olympics. McDonald has also been inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame and Alberta Sports Hall of Fame.

Andy Russell (1915-2005) (HD 1977): Russell was a highly regarded Canadian guide, outfitter, author, photographer, filmmaker, rancher, conservationist and environmentalist. His passion was the protection of wildlife and wildlife habitat.

Ralph G. Steinhauer (1905-1987) (HD 1979): Steinhauer was the first person of aboriginal heritage to become lieutenant governor of a Canadian province. He was actively involved in aboriginal community affairs, and founded the Alberta Wheat Pool.

Catharine Robb Whyte (1906-1979) (HD 1969): Along with her husband, Peter, Whyte left a legacy of Alberta heritage with beautiful western Canadian landscapes. The work of the two artists became the impetus for the Whyte Museum in Banff.