2018 USask Alumni Achievement Awards

Their legacies are incomparable, their stories impactful and their influence unwavering. From a legendary athlete to an international research expert, a philanthropic pair of doctors to a provincial court judge, this year’s diverse group of Alumni Achievement Award winners embody what it means to be dedicated and committed to one’s profession and community.

Nominated by their peers from a group of more than 152,000 alumni, recipients of the USask Alumni Achievement Awards represent alumni who are changing the world one idea at a time.  On September 20, USask recognized these eight extraordinary alumni for their contributions to their community, professions, and the university. The Alumni Association is proud to present the 2018 Alumni Achievement Award winners:

Gary Carlson, BSA’61, MSc’64


A community volunteer for more than 50 years, Gary Carlson has lived a life of thoughtful contribution, supporting and giving back to the agricultural community in Saskatchewan.

Among his many accomplishments, Gary was the lead organizer in the formation of the Saskatchewan Agricultural Hall of Fame, Saskatchewan Farm Vacations Association and Nuffield Canada.

Gary’s love for the University of Saskatchewan shines through his ongoing dedication and involvement. He was a member of both the Senate and Board of Governors. He and his wife have also established the annual Carlson College of Agriculture Scholarship.

David Christensen, BSA’58


David is internationally recognized for his research in dairy nutrition and feed development. His research has involved cattle mineral nutrition, forage and other feed evaluation.

David has also demonstrated strong support for and interest in international development, working in Uganda in the early 1970s to develop a graduate program, teach undergraduates, establish an analytical nutrition laboratory and advise on government dairy policy.

He received the Order of Canada in 2002, and was inducted into the Saskatchewan Agricultural Hall of Fame in 2011. As professor emeritus, he continues to teach, supervise and consult for several companies and organizations. He and his wife recently established the Christensen Family Award Fund for Animal Science.

Kathryn J. Ford, Q.C., BA’71


Kathryn Ford has practiced law in Saskatoon for over 40 years and specialized in family law and mediation, specializing in ‘conflict resolution.’

Along with her career in the legal world, Kathy is widely known for her broad-ranging commitment to community. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, she was a board member and president of the YWCA during the organization’s very successful Capital Fundraising Campaign and new building construction. She was also a board member of the Saskatoon City Hospital Foundation, Saskatoon City Hospital, the Saskatoon Health Services Authority, Saskatoon Community Foundation, USask Board of Governors, Riverside Country Club, and LutherCare Communities, among many others.

In 2017, Kathy was awarded the YWCA of Saskatoon Women of Distinction Lifetime Achievement Award.

Tim Hodgson, LLB’83


Tim played for the USask's men’s Huskie hockey team from 1979 to 1983, being fortunate enough to be part of a hockey program that evolved from obscurity to prominence in those years.

The Men’s Huskie hockey team won three CWUAA Championships in his four years on the team, culminating with a national championship at the 1983 CIAU National finals.

Most recently, Tim readily accepted the role as the volunteer Saskatoon chairperson for the Home Ice Campaign, which was the fundraising campaign to build Merlis Belsher Place. Tim was unwavering in his passion to see the successful attainment of the fundraising target so the university and community could reap the benefits of this facility as soon as possible.

Dr. Suzanne Yip, BA’58, MD’60 and Dr. Ivan Jen, BA’57, MD’60


Drs. Ivan Jen and Suzanne Yip are an exceptional couple who have made outstanding contributions to the medical profession, the artistic community and more broadly as generous philanthropists.

As newcomers to Canada from Hong Kong, Ivan and Suzanne overcame significant obstacles to attend the University of Saskatchewan. They met while attending medical school and were the first two Chinese-born immigrants to graduate from the College of Medicine in their respective specialties of dermatology and radiology.

Today, their philanthropic endeavors reach many supporters of the hospital foundations, University of Saskatchewan, Remai Modern, Saskatoon Community Foundation, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Saskatchewan, Meewasin Valley Authority, and others.

Patricia Lawson, BA’50, BEd’53


Pat Lawson was the most distinguished female athlete in Canada during the 1950s with an unmatched athletic legacy. As a student-athlete, she represented the university on 13 teams over four years including basketball, swimming, tennis, and track and field.

Pat was a member of the Canadian women’s basketball team at the 1959 Pan American Games, a seven-time member of the Saskatchewan amateur golf team, and claimed Canadian titles in basketball, speed skating and golf.

It’s a good thing there is no limit to the number of Halls of Fame one can be in, because Pat would’ve exceeded that number a long time ago. She earned her inductions in the University of Saskatchewan Athletic Wall of Fame, the Saskatoon Sports Hall of Fame and the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame to name a few.

Hon. Gerald M. Morin, JD’87


The Honourable Judge Gerald M. Morin has dedicated his life to the Canadian justice system for the past 45 years, travelling around Canada and lecturing on law, the Cree Court, criminal law, self-government and First Nation political issues and the human condition.

He is nêhiyow (Cree) from Peter Ballantyne Cree Nation and grew up traditionally in Cumberland House, SK. In 1999, he was the first Indigenous person in Saskatchewan to receive the Attorney General’s Queen’s Counsel designation and by 2001 was appointed to the Provincial Court of Saskatchewan where he led the introduction of the Cree language into the court process.

Judge Morin continues to sit in many communities, most in the northern regions of Canada. He has also worked with the College of Law to initiate the Wunusweh annual lecture series on Indigenous law. In 2007, he was awarded the Willy Hodgson Award from the Law Society of Saskatchewan.

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