AUCC congratulates David L. Johnston

Canada's next Governor General is a passionate champion for Canada

OTTAWA, July 8 /CNW Telbec/ - Canada's universities join Canadians from coast to coast in congratulating Professor David L. Johnston, a pre-eminent Canadian and academic leader, on his appointment as the 28th Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada.

Professor Johnston has devoted his life to the pursuit of excellence. Throughout his distinguished career, he has provided energetic and transformative leadership and wholehearted service to the academic community, the private sector, governments, and to Canada as a whole.

"The Prime Minister has chosen a person of outstanding accomplishment, deep integrity, with a profound faith in Canada's future," says Paul Davidson, president of AUCC. "David Johnston has been tireless in promoting the values and institutions that build a strong society, and is a passionate champion for Canada."

Professor Johnston has headed two outstanding Canadian universities, serving as president and vice-chancellor of the University of Waterloo since 1999, and as principal and vice-chancellor of McGill University from 1979 to 1994. At the University of Waterloo, Professor Johnston's vision and energy have been fundamental to further building the innovative spirit and entrepreneurial culture of Waterloo.

"David Johnston's aspirations for Canada are global, and at the same time he understands the importance of building strong local communities," Mr. Davidson adds.

Professor Johnston's inspiration and vision also made its mark on AUCC. He served as a member of the association's Board of Directors from 1981 to 1988, and chaired the Board from 1985 to 1987. His wisdom and exceptional leadership strengthened all of Canada's universities. He has continued to make an important contribution to the future of Canadian universities through his current service as a member of AUCC's Standing Advisory Committee on International Relations, and in providing advice on Canada's digital economy. He has also been a mentor to many university presidents across the country.

His academic career reflects the depth of his scholarship and his outstanding contributions to research and innovation: a specialist in securities regulation, corporation law, public policy and information technology law, his own research and teaching have been exceptional and groundbreaking. He has received more than a dozen honorary degrees from universities across the country, and was the founding chair of the National Round Table on the Environment and Economy, chair of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, and in the mid-1990s when Canada was first beginning to understand the implications of the new knowledge economy, chaired the advisory council to the federal government on the information highway. He later also served as chair of Canada's National Task Force on High Speed Broadband Access.

Warm, engaging, inspiring, personable and authentic are just some of the words used to describe Professor Johnston, who has shaped Canada's universities for the past four decades. "Professor Johnston exhibits a profound faith in the future, as he motivates generations of students, researchers and faculty to help create a more prosperous and healthy society," says Mr. Davidson.

Professor Johnston and his wife Sharon are proud and devoted grandparents and parents of five daughters: Deborah, Alexandra, Sharon, Jenifer and Catherine. Among them, his daughters hold more than 14 degrees from universities in Canada, the United States, Mexico and China.

"On behalf of his colleagues at AUCC, we wish Professor Johnston and his family well on this important next step in their service to Canada," Davidson said.

AUCC is the national voice for Canada's universities. It represents 95 Canadian public and private not-for-profit universities.

SOURCE Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada

For further information: For further information: Mélanie Béchard, Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, Email:, Telephone: 613-563-3961, ext. 306

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