Two alumni appointed to Senate
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appointed seven new senators to the upper chamber on March 18. Two of the seven new legislators, Justice Murray Sinclair [LL.B./1979, LL.D./2002] and Raymonde Gagné [B.esA/1976, Cert.en Ed/1977] are University of Manitoba alumni.
According to Trudeau, these new appointments are the beginning of a non-partisan Senate where appointees are not representatives of any political party.
In 1979, Murray Sinclair graduated from the Faculty of Law. In 1988, he was appointed Associate Chief Judge of the Provincial Court of Manitoba, becoming Manitoba’s first Aboriginal judge and Canada’s second Aboriginal judge.
Justice Sinclair served as the Chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada and oversaw the Commission’s report and its 94 calls to action. He received Honorary Degrees from the University of Manitoba, the University of Ottawa, and St. John’s College (University of Manitoba) for his dedication and work with respect to Aboriginal issues. He has been recognized for his representation of Aboriginal people and his knowledge of Aboriginal legal issues. In 2014 he delivered the University of Manitoba’s Sol Kanee Lecture on Peace and Justice.
Raymonde Gagné stepped down as the President of Université de Saint-Boniface (USB) in 2014 after 11 years in the role. During her tenure Gagné was credited with increasing enrolment, improving the importance of research, and oversaw the school’s first physical expansion in more than thirty years.
Gagné was also a finalist for the YMCA-YWCA Women of Distinction Award in the Education, Training and Mentorship category in 2011. In 2012, she received the prestigious Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal recognizing her exemplary service to her community and country.