Huntington University Presents Honorary Degree To The Honourable John R. Baird, P.C.

The Honourable John R. Baird, Privy Councilor, a distinguished politician and business leader, is the recipient of Huntington University’s highest honour for achievement – an Honorary Doctorate of Sacred Letters.


The award was presented March 23rd during a convocation ceremony held in Greater Sudbury, in recognition of Dr. Baird’s many accomplishments and contributions.  Dr. Baird spent three terms as a Member of Parliament in the House of Commons, most recently as Minister of Foreign Affairs (2011 – 2015). Previously, Dr. Baird held a variety of government posts, including President of the Treasury Board (2006 – 2007), Minister of the Environment (2007 – 2008, and 2010 – 2011), Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities (2008 – 2010), and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons (2010 – 2011).


Prior to entering federal politics, Dr. Baird spent ten years in the Ontario Legislature. From 1995 to 2005 he served as Minister of Community and Social Services, Minister of Energy, and Government House Leader.

Today, Dr. Baird serves as a Senior Business Advisor with Bennett Jones LLP. In addition, Dr. Baird currently sits on the advisory board of Barrick Gold Corp., the corporate boards of Canadian Pacific, FWD Group and PineBridge Investments, is a Global Strategic Advisor to Hatch Ltd, a global multidisciplinary management, engineering and development consultancy, and is a Senior Advisor at Eurasia Group, a global political risk consultancy.


Dr. Baird also volunteers his time with Community Living Ontario, an organization that supports individuals with developmental disabilities, the Prince’s Charities, the charitable office of His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, and is a board member of the Friends of Israel Initiative.


“I would like to thank the Board of Huntington University for the honour bestowed upon me,” said Dr. Baird. “It is a privilege to be associated with Huntington University, a nationally recognized institution for innovation in teaching and community outreach.  I commend Dr. Kevin McCormick, President and Vice-Chancellor, for his vision and outstanding leadership which has resulted in raising the level of attention for post-secondary education in Northern Ontario, and beyond.”


“Huntington University has a tradition of bestowing an honorary degree upon distinguished individuals who merit special recognition for genuine achievement consonant with the mission of the university.  Tonight we are proud and honoured to bestow the Honourable John. R. Baird, P.C., with an Honorary Doctorate of Sacred Letters and establish a scholarship in his name,” said Dr. Kevin McCormick, President and Vice-Chancellor of Huntington University.  “Dr. Baird’s noteworthy career and his countless contributions and achievements at the provincial, national and international level, are noble examples for all Huntington University students, past and present, to aspire to.”


“Prior to the convocation ceremony this evening, Dr. Baird met with some of our Communications students to discuss mass media and democracy,” stated Professor Kristeen McKee, Department Chair of Communications Studies at Huntington University.  “Introducing our students to someone like Dr. Baird, provides them with an invaluable educational experience that brings what they are learning in the classroom to life.”


In addition to the bestowment of an honorary doctorate, Huntington University also presented scholarships to students who were chosen for the awards based on academic achievement and community service. Jennifer Amyotte, a career paramedic with the City of Greater Sudbury, also received the Teaching and Learning Centre’s annual Leadership in Northern Education Award in recognition of her leadership in education, collaboration, and community research.  Amyotte has played a lead role in establishing two Community Paramedic Pilot Projects that are making a difference in the lives of older adults with complex or chronic medical conditions, and the vulnerable population within our city.


Click here to see photos from Huntington University’s 2016 Spring Convocation.

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