Honorary Degree Recipients


Fall Convocation Honorary Degree Recipients
October 6 & 7, 2016


Evan Tlesla II Adams, Doctor of Science, honoris causa

A Coast Salish physician and actor. He is the chief medical officer for the First Nations Health Authority and was B.C.’s first Aboriginal health physician advisor. He has won many awards for his acting roles in film and television.


Vivienne Poy, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa

Former Senator of Canada and a champion of intercultural understanding. Renowned for her extraordinary commitment to community, she is an honorary patron and/or chair of many organizations, including the SFU David Lam Centre’s Chinese-Canadian history public-education project.


Tamara Vrooman, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa

A business leader committed to equality, inclusion and empowerment. Under her leadership as president and CEO of Vancity, the credit union is now the largest community-based credit union in Canada.


Lorna Wanosts’a7 Williams, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa

A renowned B.C. educator and former Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Knowledge and Learning, she has devoted her career to enhancing education for Aboriginal learners and promoting Indigenous language revitalization.

Spring Convocation Honorary Degree Recipients
June 7-10, 2016


Izzeldin Abuelaish, Doctor of Science, honoris causa

An inspirational Palestinian physician. Despite tremendous hardships and the tragic loss of three daughters during the 2009 Gaza War, he has devoted his life to promoting hope, human rights and peace between Palestinians and Israelis, and the world.


Keith Beedie, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa

A visionary business leader and philanthropist. As the founder of Beedie Development Group, he has helped shape the landscape of Vancouver and beyond. His business integrity, innovation and commitment to give back to his community make him a role model for SFU’s emerging leaders and entrepreneurs. 


Robert Bringhurst, Doctor of Letters, honoris causa  

A celebrated author and poet who has written more than 40 books of prose and poetry. He is renowned for translating and interpreting Native American oral literature. 


David Gillespie, Doctor of Science, honoris causa

An award-winning SFU adjunct professor and research scientist with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, recognized for his groundbreaking scientific achievements in the field of entomology.  


Evaleen Jaager Roy, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa

A business and community leader whose work has created a lasting legacy. During her tenure as SFU board chair, the University expanded to downtown Vancouver and laid the plans for future development at the Burnaby campus.


Nigel Lockyer, Doctor of Science, honoris causa

An internationally recognized experimental particle physicist and transformative leader. He is a former director of TRIUMF, Canada’s national laboratory for nuclear and particle physics, and now leads the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in the U.S.  


Geoffrey Massey, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa

Along with his business partner Arthur Erickson, he helped design, create and realize the SFU Burnaby campus’ distinctive, innovative and world renowned architecture.   


Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa

A lawyer, scholar, humanitarian and strong advocate for Aboriginal people, children and youth. A judge currently on leave from the Saskatchewan Provincial Court, she is B.C.’s first representative for children and youth. She is a member of the Muskeg Lake Cree Nation. 



For more information, contact Ceremonies and Events at invite@sfu.ca

Last update: Monday, July 18, 2016