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Alumni Tribute Awards

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At the Alumni Tribute Awards 2003, five Memorial alumni were recognized for their outstanding contributions

Lifetime Achievement Award  
The Honourable T. Alexander Hickman, OC, QC, MUC'44, LLB, LLD

Former chief justice T. Alex Hickman, is modest about his accomplishments but fortunately others are not. Recognition for his service to the people of the province was enshrined permanently on Nov. 6, 2001, when the Grand Bank Courthouse was declared “The Honourable T. Alex Hickman Courthouse.” He was appointed as Officer of the Order of Canada in 2003 was also the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003. This is the highest honour the Alumni Association of Memorial University of Newfoundland can bestow and any of its members.

Horizon Award for Lifetime Achievement (under age 35 years)
Stephen Kent, BBA’01

He may be young but there is no such thing as a brief biography for Steve Kent. He has jammed as much education and community service into his 25 years as most people can hope to achieve in a lifetime: from student council president at O’Donel High School to mayor of Mount Pearl (and the youngest elected councilor in the city’s history); from a bachelor’s degree in business administration to a master’s degree (McGill, 2003) in management for volunteer sector leader. For this dedication to his community and to his province, Mr. Kent has received numerous service awards. In 1999 MacLeans’s magazine named Steve Kent one of the top 100 young Canadians to watch in the 21st century. In this past year the Memorial Alumni Association recognized him for his accomplishments with the Horizon Award for Lifetime Achievement

J.D. Eaton Award for outstanding (volunteer service) to Memorial University
Wayne Thistle, QC, B.Ed '68, B.Sc.(Hons)'68, MA '71

Memorial University’s position as a leading comprehensive university is due in no small measure to the foresight and efforts of Mr. Wayne Thistle. Over the last 34 years he dedicated much of his professional and volunteer life to the university. From 1968, when he began as assistant registrar, to 2003 when he retired as vice-president (administration and finance) and legal counsel, Mr. Thistle demonstrated his commitment to Memorial both as a professional and as a volunteer. He constantly strove to be at the forefront of developments in higher education, serving as a volunteer and senior member on many boards and national committees. Because of this service he was selected to receive the 2003-04 J.D. Eaton Award for outstanding (volunteer service) to Memorial University

Outstanding Community Service Award
Maj. Dr. G. Dawn Howse, B.Med.Sc.’76, MD’78

In one of her letters home from what her father Dom Howse likens to the “dark side of the moon,” Dr. Dawn Howse included the quote “I don’t believe in miracles, I depend on them every day.” Seventeen years earlier, in 1986, after seven years of medicine in rural Newfoundland, Dr. Howse made a life changing decision. She became a Salvation Army Officer, studied tropical medicine in Britain and moved to Zimbabwe to begin her life’s work. As Chief Medical Officer at the 101-bed Salvation Army Tshelanyemba Hospital she faces daily the human impact of living in a war-torn country devastated by HIV/AIDS and TB. But she still finds time to visit outlying clinics and volunteer for community and national organizations. It is this selfless service and dedication that led to her selection as the 2003-04 recipient of the Memorial University Alumni association’s Outstanding Community Service Award.

Outstanding Professional Achievement Award
Lieutenant-General Rick Hillier, B.Sc.’76

Lt.-Gen. Rick Hillier took command of the NATO-lead International Security Assistance Force based in Kabul, Afghanistan Feb 1, 2004. As member of the Royal Canadian Dragoons Regiment, Lt.-Gen. Hillier has commanded troops from platoon to division. In 1998 Lt.-Gen. Hillier was appointed as the Canadian deputy commanding general of III Armoured Corps, US Army in Fort Hood, Texas and following that, in 2000, as commander, Multinational Division (Southwest) in Bosnia. On returning to Canada he assumed the duties of assistant chief of Land Staff until his recent promotion. It is this outstanding record of achievement that led his fellow alumni to select him as the recipient of the Outstanding Professional Achievement Award.

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