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UBC Publications

Trek [2001-03]

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 The Magazine of the University of British Columbia   |  Spring 2001
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C R^^arch Awareness Week, March 3-9, 2001
"/■? ^.V 5  |   Research News
12   |  The Great Trek
They walked, they talked, they had a good
time. And they defined a university.
By Chris Hives
Italian Revue
21   '  The Striptease Project
A revealing look at the history of BC's sex
trade workers.
By Ellen Schwartz
19  |   Interview: David Suzuki
The bad boy of genetics talks about his
work and his motivations.
By Don Wells
27  |  Seeing China Again
An historian revisits China 60 years later
and reports on the change.
By John Howes
29  |   Escape into Reality
Educators are using art to teach the sciences. The kids like it.
By Silver Donald Cameron
33   |   Battling the Bugs
Learning how the microbes kill will lead
us to victory. We hope.
By Anne Mullins
2   Trek   Spring 2001 Trek
SPRING   2001
37 Chronicle
Alumni news keeps you in touch.
38 The Arts
40      Books
42 |   Alumni News
47 |   Board of Directors Election
48 |   Class Acts
51 I   In Memoriam
The Magazine ofthe University of British Columbia
Editor Christopher Petty, mfa'86
Assistant Editor Shari Ackerman
Designer Chris Dahl
Advertising Gord Smart /The Keegan Group
Board of Directors
President Linda Thorstad, bsc'77, msc'84
Senior VP Gregory Clark, bcom'86, llb'89
Past President Haig Farris, ba'60,lld'97
Treasurer Thomas Hasker, ba'86
Members at Large '99 - '01
Peter Ladner, ba'70
Don Wells, ba'89
Members at Large '00 - '02
John Grunau, ba'67
Jane Knott Hungerford, bed'67
Darlene Marzari, msw'68
Executive Director
Agnes Papke, bsc(agr)'66
Editorial Committee
Don Wells, Chair
Shari Ackerman
Janet Ansell
Barbara Drysdale
Sid Katz
Christopher Petty
Herbert Rosengarten
Trek (formerly the UBC Alumni Chronicle) is
published three times a year by the UBC Alumni
Association and distributed free of charge to UBC alumni
and friends. Opinions expressed in the magazine do not
necessarily reflect the views of the Alumni Association or
the university. Letters to the editor are welcome. Address
correspondence to:
Christopher Petty, Editor
UBC Alumni Association,
6251 Cecil Green Park Road,
Vancouver, be, Canada  v6t lzl
or send e-mail to cpetty©alumni.ubc.ca.
Letters will be published at the editor's discretion
and may be edited for space.
For advertising rates and information, contact
the editor at 604-822-8914.
Contact Numbers at UBC
Address Changes
Alumni Association
toll free 800-883-3088
Trek Editor
ubc Info Line
Alma Mater Society
Campus Tours
Continuing Studies
Development Office
Belkin Gallery
Chan Centre
Freddie Wood Theatre
Museum of Anthropology
Cover photograph: Photonics
Volume 55, Number 1
Printed in Canada by Mitchell Press issn 0824-1279
ian Publications Mail Product Sales Agreement No. 1463357
Spring 2001   Trek   3 [
Why does a human being look up to the
night sky and wonder what makes the
stars bright and the earth spin? What
causes someone to watch another at work,
then go off and build a tool to make the
task easier? What moves someone else to
gather together pigments and sit outside at
dusk to capture images of the fading light?
Where do ideas come from?
The thing that separates us from other
creatures on earth is our ability to invent.
Some creatures use sticks as tools, and
some build amazingly complex structures
to store food or defend their homes. Many
seem to have societies altogether as
complex as our own, and others display
subtleties within relationships that we
humans can only envy.
But we are the only creatures who
seem capable of spontaneous invention, of
making something from nothing, of
thinking something up and making it so.
It's our glory as a species; it may, as well,
lead to our destruction. Such is the power
of creativity.
During the last millennium of human
society the university emerged as the great
bastion of creative energy, at least in the
western world. Even now, in an era when
industry produces newer, brighter and more
amazing gadgets daily, the university is still
the place that finds great value in allowing
someone to look up at the night sky and
Our university has become one of the
best places in the country to conduct
for-the-sake-of-it research. It has also
become one of the best in Canada at the
kind of research that aims to build better
mousetraps. As a result, some of the finest students, researchers and teachers from
Canada and abroad have gravitated to this
university. UBC, according to President
Martha Piper, is destined to become the top
university in the country.
So, we've taken up the challenge to
present you with the best university
it this issue
magazine in Canada. Trek is the result.
Our job is to show UBC as Canada's
premier research and teaching university.
That means we will take an in-depth look
at some of the projects, researchers,
teachers and students that define UBC.
Trek will also continue to provide
information about the university's most
valuable assets, its grads, your classmates.
Trek will be a fuller read. We've built
the magazine around the idea that you, as
an educated reader, will be interested in
finding out a little more about some topics
than you would have in the old magazine.
We hope to produce articles that challenge
you, push you to ask questions, and make
you proud of your alma mater.
Welcome to the first edition of Trek,
the magazine of the University of British
Columbia. Your comments are welcome.
Chris Petty, Editor
Silver Donald Cameron, BA'60, MA, PhD is the
award-winning author of 15 books, many TV and radio
scripts, and countless magazine articles. He currently
writes a weekly column for the Halifax Sunday Herald.
Dr. Cameron was also the first dean of the School of
Community Studies at the University College of Cape
Breton, and has served as writer-in-residence at three
Anne Mullens is a Victoria-based journalist and author.
She has won numerous awards for her writing,
including a National Magazine Award, two Canadian
Science Writers'Awards and the Edna Staebler Award
for Creative Non-Fiction. In her own personal battles
with bacteria over the years, she has remained
Ellen Schwartz, MFA'88, is the author of Born a
Woman, a book about Canadian women singers; the
Starshine series of books for children; Mr. Belinski's
Bagles; and, most recently, Jesse's Star. She and her
husband, Bill, live in Burnaby.
Christopher Hives has been University Archivist at UBC
since 1988. Prior to that appointment, he completed
masters degrees in Canadian History at Western and
Archival Studies at UBC. He is interested in using the
Internet to enhance access to archival holdings and
participating in the management ofthe university's
recorded information in all formats.
John Howes is one of the founding members of the
Asian Studies department where he taught for twenty-
nine years. His interest in Asia began with family
involvement that went back three generations. World
War II turned his interest to Japan, and experience
in the occupation of Japan under General Douglas
MacArthur led to graduate work in Japanese history.
Following a failed career as a ski racer and sporadic
brilliance as a professional drummer, Don Wells
completed a BA at UBC. He later became manager,
Marketing and Communications in the athletic department. Now, as principal of Archer Strategies, he is a
communications strategist and freelance writer, and a
member of the Alumni Association Board of Directors.
He has an altogether unhealthy obsession with golf.
4   Trek   Spring 2001 RESEARCH NEWS
Asthma Triggers Start at Home
What do breast-feeding, dust mites and
second-hand smoke have in common?
They all play a part in infant asthma,
according to a study lead by Prof. Moira
"The prevalence of asthma has
increased in developed countries in the last
20 years, but methods to prevent it have
not been well studied," says Chan-Yeung,
a professor of Respiratory Medicine who
specializes in asthma. She assessed study
participants' homes for a variety of asthma
triggers, such as water damage, leaks and
dampness, type of heating and air-conditioning, pets and tobacco smokers.
"The results of the study suggest that
asthma can be prevented, not just
managed," she says.
The research team studied 545 babies
closely related to people with asthma or
similar allergic disease from birth to age
one. They found that fewer babies developed asthma in homes where appropriate
environmental change had been made.
Researchers asked the test group to
make such changes as protecting mattresses and box springs in bedrooms with
special covers, washing all bedding in hot
water weekly, and keeping pets outdoors.
Mothers were encouraged to breast feed
for at least the first four months. During
the last trimester of pregnancy and while
nursing, the mothers' diet excluded some
nuts, including peanuts, fish and other
seafood. The same foods and cows' milk
were eliminated from the infant's diet for
the first year.
Symptoms of possible asthma included
at least two episodes of cough each lasting
for two or more weeks or at least two episodes of wheeze each lasting one or more
Asthma is the most common chronic
SMILES at the ready. Annie Dufour and Rola
Khalil-Priatel look for answers.
respiratory disease of childhood. It affects
about seven to ten per cent of Canadian
children, according to the Canadian Lung
Association. Approximately 20 children
and 500 adults die from asthma each year
in Canada.
Get Your Drug Answers with a SMILE
■ Now everyone from nursing mothers to
old folks with ailing memories can find out
more about their prescription drugs.
Those pills, patches, capsules, sprays,
herbs, ointments, syrups and vitamins your
doctor prescribes — just what do they do,
how effective are they and what can you
expect from side effects? Rola Khalil-Priatel
BSc(Pharm)'94 says the answer is often
just a phone call away. She co-ordinates
BC SMILE, the Service for Medication
Information Learning and Education in BC,
operated from Pharmaceutical Sciences. The
program researches and answers
people's questions, something that community pharmacists may not have time to do.
"Most want unbiased information
about the latest therapies for the most
common chronic illnesses," says Khalil-
Priatel. "We also get many calls about new
natural products." Questions focus on
herbal medicines, hormone replacement
therapy and medications for osteoporosis.
The centre handles 4,000 enquiries
"Our callers are looking for best
evidence data, even for herbal treatments,"
says Khalil-Priatel. The staff keeps up with
the volume of drug information by taking
20 credits of Continuing Pharmacy
education every year, maintaining their
own clinical practices and reading weekly
updates in pharmaceutical journals.
For more info on BC SMILE, visit:
www.ubcpharmacy.org/SMILE, or call
(604) 822-1330, toll-free in BC:
(800) 668-6233.
Holocaust Survivor Combats Racism
in Schools
■ A Holocaust survivor is fighting back
with an unbeatable weapon: education.
Ruth Sigal, a psychologist and
program director of the UBC Women's
Resources Centre, experienced the horrors of the Holocaust first hand. While in
a Jewish ghetto in Lithuania, Sigal, then
seven years old, and her younger sister
were put on a truck bound for Auschwitz,
one of the most notorious of the Nazi
concentration camps. Sigal was saved,
however, through the efforts of a distant
relative. A German commandant who
owed the relative a favour, released her
because she was old enough to work. Her
parents smuggled her out of the ghetto to a
Christian Lithuanian family. Her sister
perished in Auschwitz. After the war, Sigal
Spring 2001   Trek   5 RESEARCH DRIVES UBC
THE UNIVERSITY is one of the most
dynamic institutions in our society.
It champions change, rewards
ingenuity, fosters questions,
demands answers. No other
institution encourages the search
for knowledge for its own sake; no
other disseminates that knowledge
so freely, so eagerly. And, perhaps
most importantly, no other
institution is geared so completely
to preparing new generations of
leaders to sustain and enrich our society.
UBC's reputation as a first-class research institution has
grown steadily over the past few years. We attract more
funding, both public and private, than any other university
in Western Canada, and we are competitive with larger, older
eastern universities such as the University of Toronto and
McGill. Last year, for instance, UBC was awarded $68
million in research infrastructure funding from the Canada
Foundation for Innovation, the largest amount awarded to
any university in the country. We have been awarded 163
Canada Research Chairs funded by the federal government, second only in number to the University ofToronto.
And, our social scientists and humanists lead the country in
terms of the funding we receive from the Social Sciences and
Humanities Research Council. All of these indicators
demonstrate the excellence of our faculty and the depth and
scope of our research capacity.
Research is the keystone of UBC's effectiveness in all
areas. Because we can boast some of the best people and
research facilities in the country, we can continue to attract
some of the best researchers and the best teachers. Teaching
and research are inextricably linked at UBC: researchers are
expected to use their research as tools in their teaching, and
teachers transfer the learning that occurs in the classroom to
their research laboratories. As a result, we are able to provide
an outstanding learning environment, thereby attracting some
of the best students here and abroad, to our campus. The synergy created produces a dynamic, evolving university geared
for change and growth.
Trek Magazine promises to focus on the best in research
and teaching at UBC. I welcome this addition to our
university, and hope you enjoy the premier issue.
Martha Piper, President, University of British Columbia
was reunited with her parents and moved to Canada.
In BC's schools, Sigal alerts young people to the price of discrimination and intolerance by describing the fearful events of
her early life. She, along with 54 other Holocaust survivors, were
recently honoured in Ottawa for contributions to Canadian society
by the federal government and Zachor, an umbrella group which
includes such organizations as B'nai Brith Canada and the Canadian
Jewish Congress.
She was nominated for her work at the Women's Resources
Centre, a downtown community-based service of UBC Continuing
Studies that offers personal and career planning and development.
New Guns for Arthritis
Arthritis sufferers will soon get some new weapons in their
pain-fighting arsenal thanks to two major discoveries by UBC
The first may pave the way for new treatments of chronic
inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, gingivitis, and lung disease.
A research team uncovered the workings of the protein MCP-3, one
of the natural signals the human body uses to turn off inflammation. "MCP-3 is like a traffic signal with a green and red light. It
tells the white blood cells that rid the body of damaged tissue when
and where to go," says professor of Dentistry Chris Overall, leader
of the UBC team.
In chronic diseases such as gingivitis or arthritis something goes
wrong with the signals, he says, and the flow of white blood cells
continues, leading to chronic inflammation and long-term tissue
damage. Biochemistry doctoral student, Angus McQuibban, who
works in Overall's lab, discovered a new form of MCP-3 that stops
the flow of the white blood cells. Gelatinase, an enzyme made
during inflammation, trimmed the end of MCP-3 molecules and led
to the new form of the protein. "There is now no more signal," he
says. "But we had a bigger surprise: not only was the green light
removed, but the red light came on. Now the movement of these
cells was stopped." Tests revealed a 40 per cent reduction in inflammation when the new form of MCP-3 is administered.
Another helping hand for arthritis sufferers is the discovery of
a gene that can predict the severity of rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
"This gene controls the degree of joint inflammation. It is the
most powerful indicator currently recognized for predicting the
severity of RA," says Abbas Khani-Hanjani of the Immunology
Laboratory at Vancouver General Hospital.
Paul Keown, a professor of Nephrology and director of the
VGH Immunology Laboratory, supervised the research, which
started in 1995. The study analysed blood samples of 137 BC
patients: 48 with very severe RA, 39 with mild symptoms; and
50 random samples. Diane Lacaille, an assistant professor of
6   Trek   Spring 2001 Inflammation investigators Chris Overall and
Angus McQuibban look for natural switches to
turn off inflamation.
Rheumatology, and associate professor of
Rheumatology Andrew Chalmers, reviewed
patients to see if they had mild or severe
disease. Khani-Hanjani then analysed the
blood's genetic makeup. Research focused
on the interferon gamma gene, which
plays a role in the immune system. Results
showed that differences within the gene
appear to predict the progression and the
severity of RA. "This means we can choose
treatment according to the risk of each
patient and can select appropriate treatment before joint damage has occurred,"
says Lacaille.
RA is a disorder which causes the
immune system to attack the lining of the
joints. The damage results in destruction of
cartilage, bone, tendons and ligaments and
can lead to permanent deformity and disability.
Professor Helps Veterans Tell Their
■ Soldiers on combat or peacekeeping
missions often undergo horrifying experiences. They see friends blown apart by
landmines, children injured in cross-fire
and other acts of enormous violence. When
they return home, they have no way to
deal with the shocking memories. UBC
Education professor Marvin Westwood is
helping Canada's soldiers regain their lives
by sharing their stories. After working with
veterans of the Second World War and the
Korean War, he is turning his attention to
Canada's current military
Peacekeepers are actually peacemakers, Westwood points out. Not really at
war, they can only return fire under direct
threat. They get killed, are held hostage at
gunpoint, witness atrocities or have their
lives threatened. When they return home,
some are unable to work or maintain
relationships with their families.
Westwood estimates that 30 to 40 per
cent of soldiers in war suffer from posttraumatic stress symptoms. "Often it is
worse than losing a limb," he says. "It's as
if their souls have been damaged. They follow the unwritten code of silence and
Michael Smith, Science-phobic teachers and a beer under the stairs
One of the earliest memories I have of Michael Smith occurred
shortly after I arrived at UBC. I had started a science and health
column on the CBC early morning show and was nervous about
what my colleagues thought of my attempts to bring science
to the public. For the most part, the response was a deafening
I bumped into Mike one day, a few months after I had met
him socially. He said he'd been listening to my columns and
thought what I was doing was very important and to 'keep up
the good work.' I was impressed that a scientist of his stature
would feel that my attempts had a positive function and go out
of his way to tell me so. His encouragement kept me going.
I would occasionally join him on Friday nights at the old
Faculty Club, sitting under the stairs, drinking beer with his
mates. One week he caught me out on a mistake that I had
made on air, and told me so in no uncertain terms!
Years, later, when I'd heard that he won the Nobel Prize,
I called him from out of town to congratulate him. It was a
Friday, so I knew exactly where he would be, under the stairs of
the old Faculty Club drinking beer with his mates. It was an
enjoyable tradition he was loathe to break in spite of how
his world had been turned upside down. After we spoke for a
while, he told me that he had something important to discuss
when I got home.
A few days later he arrived in my office. He felt that the
science education work I was doing was key to a better public understanding of science. He wanted to donate part of his
Nobel Prize to science education activities.
Through his efforts, the Society of Canadian Women in
Science established an important presence in BC and Science
World still runs a summer program for science-phobic
elementary school teachers.
I have a lot to thank Michael Smith for. He made a young
scientist feel good about the work he was doing and put his
influence and support behind many efforts to improve science
education in Canada.
I miss his spirit, his love of life and ,of course, those Friday
night beers under the stairs of the old Faculty Club.
- By Sid Katz, associate vice president, Research at UBC.
Spring 2001   Trek   7 Thank you.. <
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suffer the pain of living in a society that
doesn't seem to care."
The Royal Canadian Legion and
Veterans Affairs, which funds Westwood's
program, has provided more funding for a
pilot project. There are 12 three-hour
sessions once a week, where people talk
about their experiences and how they
impact their lives today. Participants
explore ways of coping and resolving the
trauma, so they can make a more
successful return to family life and work.
"We have a moral and social
obligation to provide programs in which
peacekeepers can make a complete
transition and re-entry to inactive duty or
civilian life and society," he says.
Computers Challenge BC's Weather
■ Size matters. At least it does when
it comes to computers and predicting
weather, according to a group of research-
Trek   Spring 2001 ers at the department of Earth and Ocean
While meteorologists depend on ships,
buoys, aircraft, balloons, surface weather
stations, weather radars and satellites
in their task, they can only give the current weather. Forecasts are made through
numerical weather prediction which uses
computers to solve equations for atmospheric flow. The greater the computing
power, the more accurate the weather
forecast, says Atmospheric Science Prof.
Roland Stull.
BC's weather is more difficult to
forecast than that of any other province
in Canada, according to Stull. Complex
mountainous terrain and few weather
observations over the northeast Pacific are
to blame, he says. Stull leads a team of 15
UBC researchers who received a $1.3-mil-
lion Canada Foundation for Innovation
grant last year to purchase computers. One
they are considering is a Beowulf cluster
with 288 processors - ample computing
power to churn through the complex
Larger computers can also better measure clouds and turbulence, and
predict multiple forecasts, says Stull.
Resulting forecasts can help predict
avalanches, forest fire propagation,
precipitation and flooding, wind storms,
cyclones, blizzards and other weather-
related disasters. Research into natural
disasters such as these is also easier with
the aid of a powerful computer.
Geers Go Up
Mike Georgallis' passion isn't just helicopters, but human-powered helicopters.
For a couple of years now, the
MechEng graduate research assistant has
devoted himself to designing and building
a helicopter that can fly by humanpower
"The Thunderbird Project" should be
ready to enter the Igor I. Sikorsky Human-
Powered Helicopter Competition this summer. A US$20,000 prize goes to the team
that can design, build and fly a rotary
Celebrate ™H Research
Research Awareness Week,
March 3 - 9, 2001
Research is one of this university's core
activities. Our goal is to become a world
leader in discovery-driven research, scholarly
and creative research work, applied and
targeted research. Our success in those areas
serves two functions: it fosters the intellectual
growth ofthe research leaders and scholars of
tomorrow, and contributes to the development
of our world.
Research Awareness Week, held March
3-9 this year, will become an annual event
held to expose the length and breadth of the
knowledge-generation activities done at UBC.
It includes Faculty Research Days, interdisciplinary research forums and keynote presentations. It all culminates with an evening of
celebration held at the Chan Centre on March
This, the premier issue of TREK
magazine, is dedicated to the research and
researchers of UBC.
Some research facts:
• UBC received $166 in research funding
during the 1999 - 2000 fiscal year.
• UBC conducts more than 4,000 research
projects every year.
• UBC ranked first among Canadian
universities in federal research funding from
the Social Sciences and Humanities
Research Council in 1999.
• UBC and its affiliated teaching hospitals
ranked first in Canada for the amount of
research funding received from the Canada
Foundation for Innovation.
• UBC ranks second in Canada with 142
fellows in the Royal Society of Canada.
• UBC ranks second in Canada for the
number of Steacie Fellowships, Canada's
top award for outstanding scientists and
• UBC ranks first in Canada for the number of
faculty who received Fulbright fellowships
from 1991 to 1999.
• UBC ranks among the top ten North
American universities in spin-off companies
created from research projects. Research
aircraft able to achieve a momentary
height of three metres during a one-minute hover.
The UBC Human-Powered
Helicopter group (UBC-HPH) was
established two years ago, and since then
nearly 100 UBC students have worked on
the project. Georgallis' baby is a 32-metre
diameter, 40-kilogram machine with twin
rotor wings.
Although human-powered, fixed-
wing aircrafts have successfully flown,
this has not been the case for rotary-
driven aircrafts, which have routinely
failed. Since the competition began in
1980, only two out of 18 machines have
flown successfully. The world record is a
19-second, six-inch hover by a Japanese
team at Nihon University in March 1994.
The team is searching for potential
pilots. For more information about UBC-
HPH or to try out as a pilot, contact
Geers Go Down
■ From building submarines to flying
helicopters, UBC engineers have been
busy the past year. Last summer, a group
of UBC engineering students bested the
field in an international submarine design
UBC's entry in the annual Human
Powered Submarine Design Contest in
San Diego, Calif, won with the fastest
speed in the two-person, propeller-driven
class with a winning time of 3.066 knots
(5.7 kilometres per hour). The contest,
sponsored by the American Society of
Mechanical Engineers, encourages
students to apply engineering theory to
practice. Nine teams from across the US
and Canada took part.
The design and manufacturing took
a total of nine months, about 50 hours a
month for each member. "We supervise
them, but everything is their brainchild.
They go from step zero to step 100, they
organize the travel, the budget, everything. They do all the work and they
deserve all the credit," says Mechanical
Spring 2001   Trek  9 RESEARCH NEWS
Engineering Prof. Sander Calisal, the
team's faculty adviser.
The team's winning design is a 3.6-
metre fibreglass and resin hull enclosing an
aluminum space frame. An operator pedals
in the rear of the submarine while another
steers the boat, all while submerged in
water and wearing scuba gear.
Completely computer-designed, the
sub was manufactured by the students
with $1,500 from the Society of Naval
Architects and Marine Engineers, the
Mechanical Engineering Dept. and the
Engineering Undergraduate Society.
More MDs Head North
■ Increased government funding means
that the faculty of Medicine can now train
more doctors in BC's north. Many hospitals around the province are affiliated with
UBC to train physicians on site, but the
number of doctors needed far outstrips the
number graduated. The funding means 14
new residency positions in rural hospitals
will be created immediately, while 17 more
will open up in July. Eight new undergrad
positions have also been created.
British Columbia needs about 300
new physicians every year to replace those
who retire or leave. UBC's faculty of
Medicine, the third largest in Canada,
currently graduates 120 new physicians
A Jug of Wine, a Loaf of Bread ...
■ With a wine collection crowned by a
$450 bottle of Chateau Ducru Beaucaillou
Saint Julien Medoc, the faculty of
Agriculture may well be fielding applications from students whose motives are less
than, well, academic.
The 30,000-bottle collection has been
donated by private donors and by BC
winemakers to help create the BC Wine
Research Centre at UBC. Like similar
centres in California, Europe and other
wine-producing areas worldwide, the
centre will analyze vintages from various
regions to discover what makes an
excellent wine, and help develop those
characteristics in the local product.
The wine industry is financing the
centre, which is being built in the
basement of the Food and Nutritional
Sciences building on East Mall. It should
open this summer.
While the centre has no interest in
recruiting volunteer tasters, it does provide
tax receipts for wines donated by oeno-
philes for the betterment of BC wines.
For more information, e-mail the director,
Hennie van Vuuren, at hjjv@interchange.
Cosmos Book Tops Amazon
■ The Book of the Cosmos, edited by
English professor Dennis Danielson, has
been selected as one of Amazon.corn's top
10 science books of 2000. The book
contains excerpts from the writings of
philosophers, scientists, philosophers and
poets from Heraclitus to Hawking, along
with commentary by the professor.
Danielson put together the anthology
to capture humankind's evolving vision
of the universe and to showcase some
of history's most exceptional thinkers in
their own words. Scientists from around
the world are responding to his unique
and penetrating glimpses of scientific subject matter funneled, as Danielson says,
through the brain of a non-scientist.
"I wanted to combine serious scholarship with wide popular appeal among
a curious, literate general readership," he
says. "Mainly, it's a celebration of beauty
and inspiration as well as science." The
book is available in most book stores.
Japan Prize for UBC Oceanographer
■ Timothy Parsons, oceanography
professor emeritus, has been named
laureate of the 2001 Japan Prize. Dr.
Parsons is the first Canadian to be so
recognized. The prize is Japan's equivalent
of the Nobel Prize and is worth more than
half a million dollars to the winner.
Former Liberal cabinet minister Lloyd
Axworthy has been named director and
chief executive officer of the Lui Centre for
the Study of Global Issues.
Axworthy will develop research, policies
and partnerships to address such global
issues as environmental change, sustain
ability and human security. Projects include
work on the issues of arms control and
human security.
During his time as Canada's Minister of
Foreign Affairs, Axworthy observed that the
notions of national security and diplomatic
relations went through a radical change.
"Now, foreign ministers deal with human
security, terrorism, drug trafficking and
public health, among others. I am
particularly interested in disarmament,
threats of violence to societies, humanitarian intervention in conflict situations and
protection of children. I am also involved in
broader issues of nuclear security in North
America and Asia, and I hope to pull
together a team from inside and outside the
university to look at this."
The Liu Centre has established a 15-
member, senior-level International Advisory
Council. The centre focuses on the expertise
of its members: everything from global environmental change to international relations,
sustainable development, human rights,
health issues, soil and water pollution and
international regulatory regimes. It is based
within the faculty of Graduate Studies.
10   Trek   Spring 2001 Dr. Parsons has spent his career
examining the relationships between
marine life and their physical, chemical
and biological environments. His work,
which shows how accurate measurements
of environmental factors leads to a better
understanding of ecosystem structure and,
therefore, a more productive fishery, has
influenced a new school of holistic ocean
UBC Goes Downtown
■ It's a strange reversal, one that would
doubtless leave the Great Trekkers of 1922
scratching their collective heads. UBC,
or at least a branch of it, is moving back
Establishing a downtown location for
UBC has been a key element of Martha
Piper's plan for the expansion of the
university. Says Dr. Piper, "It will enhance
access to UBC for those who live or work
downtown, and will position us closer
to many organizations we serve. We will
bring new programs, knowledge and
innovation right to their doorsteps."
The downtown campus, to be located
at Robson Square, will feature high-tech
training, management development
seminars and lectures in the arts and
public affairs.
The facility, called UBC at Robson
Square, will occupy a 7,200 square metre
space and open in September, 2001.
Medicare is Healthier Than We Think
■ Contrary to public perception, Medicare
in Canada is not on its deathbed.
According to a recent report written
for the Tommy Douglas Research Institute,
it has become popular sport to take pot
shots at the Medicare system in Canada
because of the political or personal gain
that would result from its demise. Much
of the alarmist rhetoric, it claims, comes
from the same element that fought public
healthcare in the first place: those who see
healthcare as a business opportunity.
The report agrees that our healthcare
system, along with most other systems in
the west, is in trouble because of reduced
funding and increasing demand. But the
fixes needed are much easier for us to
make because we have a public system.
Improving a system like that in the US
would be impossible because of the
competing business interests involved.
One of the report's authors, UBC
professor of Economics, Robert Evans
says, "Fifty years ago . . . Canada and the
United States spent about the same
proportions of their national income on
healthcare and had similar health status.
Now the US spends 50% more, has 42
million uninsured, and in poorer health.
Americans are deeply dissatisfied with their
healthcare system, yet can see no way out.
We made the better choice."
The report was prepared by Evans,
Morris Barer, director of the Centre for
Health Services and Policy Analysis at
UBC, Patrick Lewis, social policy
consultant, and Michael Rachlis, professor
of health administration at the University
of Toronto.
White Coat Blood Pressure
■ Some patients with high blood pressure
appear to have normal blood pressure
during a medical examination, a phenomenon that can be a huge risk to patients,
says psychology Prof. Wolfgang Linden. To
avoid this type of misdiagnosis, patients
should arrive early for a medical appointment and be hooked up to an automatic
blood pressure-taking device, or start taking their own blood pressure at home.
Archie, Veronica and the Meaning of Life
■ The machinations of the Riverdale gang have
fascinated young readers for generations. Why
doesn't Jughead weigh more than 100 k from
eating all those burgers and sundaes? Why does
Midge hang around with that dough-head Moose
all the time? And, more importantly, why hasn't
Betty told Archie to take a hike?
Bonny Norton, an associate professor in the
department of Language and Literacy Education, works with
the Archie comics and groups of grade 5, 6 and 7 students in a
Vancouver elementary school. She's found out that Archie comics still ring a bell with today's kids.
"Kids are passionate about comics," says Norton. "They
read them for fun, for the humour and safety of Archie's world,
and out of curiosity for their own future." Many
parents, Norton says, feel ambivalent about their
kids reading comics, but the kids quickly differentiate
between good and less worthy ones.
The Archie comics create a diverse response that
crosses gender lines. Girls and boys both applaud
strong female characters, but both also have an
overriding sense that female strength can compromise
the pursuit of romance and happiness. For Norton,
"Archie comics open a window on contemporary pre-teen
identity, gender, literacy practices and popular culture."
The Archie Web site has 13 million hits a month, and the
comics sell 1 million a month. Betty remains the most popular
with girls, who see her as a positive role model, while Jughead
is still tops with the boys. They identify with the fact that "he
eats too much, doesn't get fat and does weird stuff."
Spring 2001   Trek   11 tive/beginnings
September 22, 2000 marked a significant
anniversary for UBC. On that day in 1925
the university held its first classes at the
new Point Grey campus. The move from
the site of what is now the Vancouver
General Hospital to Point Grey was an
important part of UBC's history, but that
was not in and of itself the story. The real
story was the massive student-conceived
and executed publicity campaign that
convinced the government to provide
funds to build the university and move
it from its overcrowded facilities at the
Fairview site. The campaign culminated in
the Pilgrimage, or what we now call the
Great Trek.
The student pilgrimage that came to define a university
Serious discussions about establishing a
provincial university for British Columbia
began in the 1890s. But political squabbles
stalled those talks and discussions turned
to establishing a college in BC to be
administered by another Canadian
university. In 1899, Vancouver College, in
affiliation with McGill University, offered
first year Arts courses. The program
expanded to include second year Arts
courses in 1902, but BC students had to
travel to McGill to complete their degrees.
In 1906 a new McGill University College
of British Columbia (mucbc) opened and
operated between 1906 and 1915.
Mucbc allowed students to complete
their undergraduate degrees in BC, it did
little to diminish interest in developing a
provincial university. In 1908, the
provincial government introduced
legislation to establish a University of
British Columbia. Two years later, after
considering several cities and rural areas,
a special commission selected Point Grey
as the most suitable location. The government agreed and granted a 175-acre site at
Point Grey to the university.
Dhotographs courtesy of the UBC Photo Archives
12   Trek   Spring 2001 ■^^^k!*_tJ
^H                                                                                                                                                  ^V^^ .,19
C2r fir
Marchers stream along the path of the future
University Boulevard at the end of their
pilgrimage. The Barn and poultry pens can be
seen in the distance.
Spring 2001   Trek   13 >THE GREATTREK
Frank Wesbrook became the university's
first president in 1913 following a
distinguished medical and administrative
career at the University of Minnesota. He
developed a grand vision of what UBC
might become beyond the scope of a provincial university. Wesbrook began organizing the new university and was determined to see it opened in the fall of 1913
as originally scheduled. The
immensity of the task, however, prompted
Wesbrook to ask McGill to continue
operations in BC for two more years.
In 1913, the Legislature approved
funds to clear the Point Grey campus and
work began on the Science Building the
following summer. However, World War
I began soon after the concrete and steel
framework began to take shape, and with
the diversion of resources to the war effort,
the government stopped construction. The
bare girders of the Science Building would
serve as a monument to the unrealized
vision of the Point Grey campus for almost
a decade.
The provincial government did
provide funds to open UBC on the
Fairview site in 1915. Many of the faculty,
staff and students, as well as the assets of
McGill University College were transferred
to the new provincial university. Everyone
viewed the use of the shacks at Fairview
as an exigency measure and hoped that
work would soon resume at Point Grey.
But with a depleted treasury, the provincial
government did not consider the university
a high priority. UBC spent its first decade
at Fairview. Unfortunately, President
Wesbrook died shortly before the armistice in 1918. He was replaced by Dean of
Agriculture Leonard Klinck.
The inadequacy of the Fairview
facilities became increasingly apparent
with each passing year. Between 1916 and
1922 UBC enrolment expanded by 211%
(378-1,178) while the capacity of the
buildings grew by only 25%. The wards of
a small three-floor former hospital
building made reasonably good classrooms
while the rest of the facilities, including the auditorium, offices and lecture
rooms, were housed in old army shacks.
Additional space had to be found as
the number of students grew. Professors
held agriculture classes in a private residence, French classes in the basement of
a church unused by its congregation during the week, and chemistry classes in the
famous chemistry tent erected on the site.
Professors often had to repeat their
lectures several times because not enough
adequate classroom space existed and
neither students nor faculty members
had proper laboratory facilities. The
Auditorium, used for general assemblies,
held only 650 people.
But the close quarters and relatively
small student numbers produced a
cohesive and united student body, and a
strong sense of community between
The President's Office President Leonard Klinck outside the dynamite shack,
his makeshift office (left). Above: marchers parade along Granville at Georgia.
Right: students form 'UBC in front of the Science Building.
14   Trek   Spring 2001 '^"^ft*!^
students and faculty. This spirit set the
stage for the events of 1922.
By the spring of 1922, students began
organizing a campaign to generate support
for the resumption of construction at Point
Grey. Returned war veteran and ams
president-elect Albert "Ab" Richards (Class
of '23) became leader of the "Build the
University" campaign. As a first step in
what would become a massive and well-
organized undertaking, students were
asked to take petitions back to their hometowns in the summer and collect at least
25 signatures.
The petition read, in part: "... we
the undersigned humbly petition the
Government of the Province of British
Columbia to institute a definite and
progressive policy toward the University of
British Columbia, and to take immediate
action toward the erection of permanent
buildings on the chosen University site at
Point Grey."
While students collected signatures at
home, the Publicity Campaign Committee
consisting of Richards, Marjorie Agnew,
Percy Barr, J.V. Clyne, Allan H. Finlay, Jack
Grant, and Aubrey Roberts co-ordinated
activities in Vancouver and
organized meetings with service clubs and
business leaders to promote their cause.
Students returned in the fall with
17,000 signatures on their petitions.
Leaders felt that the numbers, though
impressive, were not enough to convince
the government to take action. As part of
Varsity Week (October 22nd-28th), the
students conducted a door-to-door canvas
in Vancouver to increase the number of
signatures. They divided the city with each
class responsible for canvassing in specific
sections. Just prior to the Vancouver
canvas, a special edition of the Ubyssey
provided students with facts and figures
they could use in promoting the cause. The
instructions also made clear that the
success of this exercise depended on every
student doing his or her part, and
Spring 2001   Trek   15 >THE GREATTREK
reminded them that as representatives of
the university their behaviour would have
an effect on public opinion. At the end of
the organized petition blitz, students had
collected 56,000 signatures.
Students also solicited support from
service agencies and other organizations.
During Varsity Week many store windows
included displays and posters supporting
the campaign. Newspapers, too, carried
stories about the campaign as the students
established their own news service to send
regular campaign updates throughout the
province. President Klinck observed:
No effort on the part of the authorities has
ever attracted the attention of the
public as has the campaign now being
carried on by the students for removal of
the University to Point Grey. Their
enthusiasm is contagious. Everywhere one
goes questions are asked as to the progress
of the campaign and the best wishes are
expressed for the success of the movement.
The initiative, resource and energy with
which the canvas is being prosecuted has
caught and fired the imagination of men
and women in all parts of the province."
(Ubyssey, 17 October 1922)
As the student campaign neared its end,
only one critical event remained.
The Pilgrimage (the term Great Trek
would be coined some 25 years later)
was set to end Varsity Week on Saturday
October 28th. Nearly 1,200 students
showed up, along with banners and
placards, floats and a marching band. The
procession began at the east end of the
Georgia viaduct and made its way through
downtown Vancouver along Main,
Hastings and Granville. At Granville and
Davie the students boarded trolley buses
provided by BC Electric Railway and rode
to the end of the line at 10th Avenue and
Sasamat. They continued on foot along
what was little more than a wagon trail to
the Point Grey campus. Along the way
students continued to sing and chant.
Lyrics for one of the official marching
songs composed for the event conveyed
their sentiments.
We're through with tents and hovels,
We're done with shingle stain,
That's why we want you to join us
And carry our Campaign.
The Government can't refuse us,
No matter what they say,
For we'll get the people voting
For our new home at Point Grey.
The students gathered on the west side of
the skeleton of the Science Building and
then climbed the concrete stairs to take
their place. That symbolic occupation and
the familiar formation of the letters "UBC"
with student bodies were staged so they
could be recorded for posterity by newsreel
cameramen conveniently attending the
The Pilgrimage ended with the
dedication of the cairn that still stands
on Main Mall in front of the Chemistry
Building. Students threw stones in the
hollow centre of the structure that had
been designed by the university architects
and built from rocks gathered on the
campus site. It was fitting that the students
completed the first structure at Point Grey.
Richards expressed the hope that "very
soon around our Cairn of rock buildings
will rise and a university will be established which will bring honour and glory
Fairview Labs were set up wherever space was
available. Here, students work on physics
projects in the basement of a Baptist church.
16   Trek   Spring 2001 J7^St -H
c-.:r   i
to our Alma Mater and renown to our
Province and Dominion."
In the week following the Pilgrimage,
a student delegation of Richards, Grant,
Clyne and Barr packed the 56,000-
name petition in seven suitcases and on
November 1st met with the cabinet and
the Legislature in Victoria. Captain Ian
Mackenzie, a Vancouver mla and an active
supporter of the campaign
introduced the delegation, and six page
boys hauled the petition roles into the
House. Then Richards addressed the
Legislature. This persuasive presentation
and obvious public support helped
convince the provincial government to
resume work on the Point Grey campus
and within a week the premier announced
that the government would secure a
$1,500,00 loan to proceed.
These funds completed the Science
Building and built the Library and powerhouse according to the original plans.
Science Building occupied. Students pose on the
girders of the building. Newsreel cameras were
onhand to record the moment.
Completed in 1923 and 1925 respectively,
the Science Building and Library stood as
impressive but isolated structures on the
stark campus. In the spring of 1924, work
began on six new frame and stucco
"semi-permanent" buildings (which are
still in use in 2001) to house agriculture,
applied science, arts, the auditorium, and
the administration.
On September 22, 1925, 1,400
students crowded into the auditorium and
stood for the university's first inaugural
general assembly. The campus to which the
students travelled on that day was
significantly less grandiose than that
envisaged in the original 1914 plans. Only
a few modest buildings dotted the
landscape, there were no trees or grass and
roads and sidewalks were still under
construction. Students had no playing
fields or gymnasium, piles of construction
debris littered the campus and mud and
dust were everywhere. Despite these shortcomings this was the university campus
that the students had, with single-minded
determination, worked so hard to achieve.
Student involvement in the Great Trek
and the entire publicity campaign
represents a remarkable, but not isolated,
chapter in UBC's history. The events of
1922 should be viewed as the beginning
of a trend. Subsequent student initiatives
led to the construction of several campus
buildings including the Gymnasium (1929),
Brock Hall (1940), Armoury (1941), War
Memorial Gymnasium (1951) and the
Student Union Building (1968). Although
perhaps not on the scale of the Great Trek,
these initiatives too, helped define the university ->
Spring 2001   Trek   17 profile
James Dungate
James Dungate's ba'90 great passion is skiing. During his last winter as a student, he
finished exams early, took a ski
instructors' and taught all levels in the
UBC Ski Club.
After he graduted, he decided to carry
on with his ski instruction, but in a more
exotic locale. As an international relations
major, it only made sense to him to go to
Europe, so he chose Switzerland.
Eleven years later, James is regional sales
manager for Spectrum United Mutual
Funds in Vancouver. He deals with financial planners and investors.
His European adventure adds a little
spice to his relationship with clients. "I've
had clients call me up on their way to
Europe and ask me where the best ski hills
are," he says. "It adds a personal touch."
James grew up in Vancouver, and developed a love of the outdoors. While a
member of the FIJI fraternity at UBC, took
up bike road racing. "I made a lot of good
friends there," he says. "We still get together once in a while for lattes."
After Switzerland, he headed for
Toronto, where he immersed himself in a
youth program called Generation 2000.
He and 40 others traveled across Canada
to talk to people and get them more
involved in youth issues. He also joined the
Evergreen Foundation, whose aim was to
bring nature back to the cities by
planting trees and gardens. James
drummed up some funds and opened an
office in Vancouver.
His career took another turn when he
moved to Ottawa with his wife Heather,
who he met in a history course on 20th
Century international relations. "I wanted
a change, to integrate myself more into the
business world," he says. He made a
documentary on Canada's financial crisis
from the perspective of young people.
Called "Days of Reckoning," the project explored public spending and policy
issues. "It scared me into taking charge of
my own financial future." So he took the
Canadian Securities course, and pursued
financial planning as a career.
After working for an investor relations
company in New York, James came back
to the West Coast as an investment advisor
for Nesbitt Burns. "Nesbitt Burns was very
enjoyable," he says, "I went from from
non-profit to completely for profit," he
laughs. It was there where James became
part of the Young Alumni Club and began
the YA Investment Club, a group of mostly
UBC grads who educate people on their
finances. He is past president of the Young
Alumni Club. He also dabbled in a bit of
group mentoring. "People would come by
Cecil Green and chat about careers, investing, even about skiing in Europe," he says.
Although James works full time, he
continues to be active in the community,
most recently as director for the Dragon
Boat Festival, and on the executive of the
Canadian Institute of International Affairs,
which hosts international journalists, business people and diplomats. He also devotes
much of his time to raising his two wonderful kids, Carter, and Alexander.
It sounds like more of the same for the
time to come. "There is so much change
in the business I'm in," he says. "I do not
sleep, but I know Curious George and
Green Eggs and Ham by heart."
- By Shari Ackerman On the occasion of being named a co-recipient of the
UBC Alumni Association's Lifetime Achievement Award
in 2000, David Suzuki reveals some surprising details
about his motivation and reflects on his career and his
future aspirations in an exclusive interview with Trek
COntriDUtOr  [ If ever there was an event to illustrate time's
relentless march, the news of David Suzuki's
imminent retirement will provide a startling
reality check. Even the youngest of the Baby
Boomers may find it hard to believe: the
geneticist who emerged in the '60s appearing to have more affinity for the Grateful
Dead than the diversity of life, and who is
now widely credited for having done more
than anyone to popularize science, is on
final approach to mandatory retirement.
Probably best known as the host of CBC
Television's The Nature of Things, David
Suzuki also served as a professor of zoology
from the time he arrived at UBC in 1963
until his official retirement on March 24.
He has received 13 honorary degrees in
Canada, the United States and Australia,
as well as countless awards, including
the Order of Canada. And throughout
bis simultaneous 38 year career as a
compelling communicator, he has endured
criticism and opposition from various
circles, including colleagues from the
scientific community and this university. His
only regret is that much of it - too much
- occurred behind his back. At the same
time, there can be no discounting his lifetime contribution to awareness of
environmental issues. For this, he has
garnered worldwide respect and popularity.
We can love him, or we can hate him. But
one thing is clear: we can't ignore him.
leave taking
Spring 2001   Trek   19 THE DAVID SUZUKI INTERVIEW
C  Everyone knows what you do, but
they don't know why you do it. What is
behind it all?
S  I'm embarrassed to say that what lies
behind my drive is deeply rooted in the
Japanese-Canadian evacuation. I'm a third
generation Canadian. My parents were
both born in Vancouver, I was born in
Vancouver, and Canada was the only home
that we knew. To be called an enemy alien,
a danger to Canada, and shipped out to
camps for three years and then expelled
from BC at the end of the war was a
profound experience for me. I hated myself,
and the way I looked in the mirror, and I've
spent all of my life trying to do whatever
I do as best as I can to get approval. And
when you're 64 years old it's a
sickness! It's a sickness that says, 'for God's
sake, why at this age do you still feel compelled to do things?' It's not about fame,
it's not about money, but it's about a need
to show people that I'm a worthwhile
human being and that I can make a
contribution to Canada.
C Why did you chose the subject
area you did? What led you to be an
j  The year I did my first television
program was 1962, the same year Rachel
Carson published Silent Spring and I think
anyone who read that book couldn't have
looked at the world in the same way. And
so I changed my focus from wanting to
popularize science to get more (financial)
support, to realizing that here was a
profound message that said we, as human
beings, are still embedded in the natural
world, and if we go out and spray
pesticides, it's a mistake to think we can
kill insects and not feel the impact on
ourselves. So I give Rachel Carson all the
credit, or the blame depending on how
you want to look at it, for having got me
focused more upon the broader issues of
how we interact with our environment.
C When you consider current attitudes
and responses toward global environmental
issues, are you pessimistic or optimistic?
S  I'm neither. Optimists believe good
things will happen; pessimists believe
bad things will happen. I operate on the
assumption of hope. I have hope that
things will change, I'm empowered to
feel that way because twenty years ago,
if I had said to you, "I think that soon
apartheid will disappear, and Nelson
Mandela will become the president of
South Africa." "I think the Cold War is
going to end, the Berlin Wall will come
down, Germany will be one, the Soviet
Union will disappear," you would have
said "lock this guy up. He's nuts!" And
yet all of that and more have come to
pass, so I don't think that anyone has the
right to say that it's too late. However, in
the time that I've been heavily involved
in delivering an environmental message,
we've been going right down the chute.
The indications are that we are on a very,
very destructive path and I haven't seen
the signs that we're trying to slow down
or deviate.
C What does the future hold for
I've wanted to leave television for
many years but I keep being blackmailed
because they say that if I leave, the Nature
of Things will be dropped and I think the
series is too important to for that. I don't
believe that any one person is indispensable to any movement or any activity. I'm
insignificant. I'm just one person, and I
hope there are millions of other people
doing their best.
When I leave, it's no big deal. I want
time for myself. I want to think, and I'll
still share those ideas with people, but I'm
an old man! I want to be an elder, I want
to be able to sit and talk with young
people and share my experiences and
ideas ... do it the way native people do.
C What do you hope your legacy will
S  I hope in the end that if people
remember me - and they won't: after two
or three generations, like everybody else,
I'll disappear - but I want them to think
first and foremost that as a parent, I did
the best I could. The proudest achievement
of my life is that each of my children is
a very worthwhile human being that I'm
very proud to have on the planet. I hope
that my wife will be able to look at my life
and say "I respect him for what he did".
I hope that if my parents are anywhere
around that they will continue to be proud
of what I did in my life as a human being.
C  How big a chapter has UBC been in
your life?
5  UBC is a very big chapter in my life.
UBC was what attracted me back to
Vancouver after we'd been kicked out of
the province. I remember when I called my
father and said "Dad, I've taken a job at
UBC!" This was twenty years after we had
left the province, and he had never talked
about that episode of incarceration during
the war. The first thing he said was,
"why are you doing that? They kicked us
out of there!" So it was still there for my
But people at UBC were very protective
of me. The department of Zoology tolerated my antics all through the sixties and
seventies when I was perceived by many
to be this hippy scientist. And certainly
my teaching of students at UBC was one
of the great memories of my life. I have
friends that I'm still proud to maintain
who were once my students. In spite of all
the problems of the lack of financial
support for scientists, UBC allowed me
to do what I did in science and I'm very
proud of that chapter as well.
C What is your reaction to being
named a recipient of the UBC Alumni
Association's Lifetime Achievement
I never won the Master Teacher's
Award; I was a runner-up for it and I've
always had a tinge of regret about that,
because I felt that I was a very good teacher. So getting this from the UBC Alumni
- it tickles me pink! It's not that I think
that I'm some super guy; I'm just delighted
to have that acknowledgement from that
group of people ->
20   Trek   Spring 2001 THE
Uncovering the Bare Truth about Vancouver's Past
Spring 2001   Trek   21 THE STRIPTEASE PROJECT
Tuesday night, the Cecil Hotel on
Vancouver's Granville strip. At the back
door, a puzzled-looking doorman stops me.
"You know this is a strip club?"
"You want to see the show?"
"Male or female strippers?"
A perplexed shrug. "All right." As I
pass, with a grin: "Enjoy the show."
Inside, loud, pulsing music. A semicircular stage behind which blinking white
lights trace a pattern of continuous
raindrops. The place is two-thirds full, all
men - except me. Young to middle-aged,
all races, working class guys and professionals, a few T-shirts, a few suits. Some
friendly way with the men. She wiggles,
pumping her hips from side to side. The
whole time she's smiling. Not leering.
Smiling, as if she's having fun, as if she
knows she's sexy and likes it, as if it's all a
good romp on the playful side of lust.
I have a confession to make. Until last
Tuesday night, I had never seen a strip
show. Never set foot in a strip club. Never
seen a woman - or a man - disrobe in
public, for money.
Never particularly wanted to.
But when you are assigned to write a
piece on UBC Professor Becki Ross, who
is doing a study on erotic entertainment,
it makes sense that you do field research.
Just for background, of course.
What did I expect? More sleaze, more
platinum-dyed hair frames an intelligent,
attentive face.
The apartment, too, is stylish, with
bold lines, expanses of black and white,
contemporary, quirky artwork. We settle at
an aluminum kitchen table adorned with
woven placemats and fresh flowers, a panorama of rain-washed lights and Stanley
Park at Ross's back. She sips coffee from
an oversized mug decorated in bright red,
blue and yellow zigzags. I was
expecting feminist frump. I get Nuvo
Magazine chic.
Back on stage, the dancer is still smiling,
strutting, performing gymnastic feats on
the poles, kibitzing with the audience. She
removes her vest, flings it to the rear of the
stage. Cheers and whistles. More strutting,
/ realized that women in the sex trade were workers, and that others, feminists included, had no right to
chat companionably, waiting for the show
to begin. Some sit in silent anticipation,
eyes on the stage.
Drumroll. Flashing blue, red and
green lights. Applause, cheers, whistles.
A young woman, mid-twenties, strides
onto the stage. Tall, slim, blonde, pretty,
impossibly long-legged in vinyl, canary-
yellow short-shorts, matching push-up bra,
vest with long white fringe that swishes at
her waist, seven-inch, spike-heeled
platform shoes.
She struts back and forth, back and
forth, in time with the pounding beat.
Wrapping herself around one of four poles
that dot the stage, she extends a long
graceful leg. She pushes up her breasts so
they threaten to spill out of the bra cups,
squeezes them playfully. She climbs a pole,
hangs upside-down in a gymnastic tangle.
Every so often she stops and banters in a
tawdriness. Dimmer lights. More tease.
More pathos: poor, misguided women,
reduced to enacting men's sexist fantasies.
But, just as with every other aspect
of this assignment, my expectations were
Starting with Becki Ross herself.
Before we meet, I have read some of
her work. I have viewed striptease through
the lens of her feminist, lesbian, Marxist
analysis, and I am aware of her focus on
issues of gender, race, class and sexuality.
I am prepared for, well, someone a little
more formidable. The Becki Ross who
greets me at the door of her West End
high-rise apartment is young, stylish and
hip. She is tall and slim - sleek is a better
word. Fine-boned. Fashionably dressed in
a long black parachute-style jumper over a
boldly striped turtleneck. Ultra-short,
sashaying. She unhooks the bra, lets it fall
off, then wiggles out of the shorts, revealing a yellow thong. Stroking her breasts,
she raises each in turn and tongues the
nipple. Grinning, she shakes her finger, as
if to say, "Naughty boys, you can't touch."
One spectator, obviously wise in the ways
of strip-club tipping, folds a bill and holds
it in his teeth. The dancer sits in front
of him, legs dangling over the stage. He
thrusts his face between her breasts and
she removes the bill by squeezing them
together, then flourishes the tip to cheers
and applause.
Becki Ross is an associate professor in
the faculty of Arts, cross-appointed in the
departments of Anthropology / Sociology
and Women's Studies. Calling herself a
historical sociologist, she teaches such
22   Trek   Spring 2001 courses as Historical Methods
in Sociology, Researching
Bodies, Identities and
Nation-making, and
the Sociology of
Sexualities, a course
she originated and that
is part of the new Critical
Studies in Sexuality program.
Ross was educated at Western,
where she earned her ba in Physical and
Health Education and Sport and Culture;
at Queen's, where she completed an MA
in Physical and Health Education and the
Sociology of Sport and Gender Relations;
and at the Ontario Institute for Studies in
Education (OISE) at the U ofT, where she
received her doctorate in Sociology and
Feminist Theory and Methodology. She
expound truths about their lives and the effects of their work
came to UBC in 1995, following teaching
stints at Lakehead, Ryerson, OISE, New
College at the U of T and the University
College of the Cariboo in Kamloops.
What has recently pushed her into the
spotlight is her three-year research project,
funded by a $51,000 grant from the
federal Social Sciences and Humanities
Research Council (SSHRC), into the
history of burlesque and stripping in postwar Vancouver. With the help of research
assistants Michelle Swann and Kim
Greenwell, Ross is interviewing dozens of
former strippers, as well as club owners,
musicians, booking agents and patrons.
Tempest Storm struts her stuff at lsy"s Supper
Club. In the 1950s, Vancouver was home to the
hottest nightclubs north of San Francisco.
Her goal is to write a hitherto unrecorded
and unrecognized chapter of British
Columbia's history, a chapter that has been
shrouded in shame and secrecy. "The
history of burlesque and striptease is as
important and rich and valid as
that of any other human endeavour," she says with quiet passion.
What a history it is. Ross's study
focuses on the years 1945 to 1980, a time
when, according to local historian Chuck
Davis, Vancouver was home to the hottest
nightclubs north of San Francisco. World-
renowned performers such as Lili St. Cyr,
Gypsy Rose Lee, Sally Rand, Josephine
Baker and Tempest Storm entertained at a
host of venues including The Cave, Isy's
Supper Club, the Kobenhavn, the
Zanzibar and the still-extant
Penthouse Cabaret.
In those glory years,
shows were elaborately choreographed and performed to
live music. Costumes incorporated ostrich feathers, long gloves,
sequined gowns, and jewelled pasties and
G-strings. Gimmicks abounded: Yvette
Dare had a trained parrot that stripped
away her costume, garment by garment;
Jane Jones used a tiger in her act; Mitzi
Dupre sprayed ping pong balls and played
the flute with her vagina; and Bonnie
Scott, after removing her beaded gown,
climbed into a plexiglass champagne flute
and struck sexy poses amid the bubbles.
Such goings-on shocked community
standards and catalyzed moral crusaders
such as a Reverend Cook, who complained
about "immoral conduct highly suggestive
of Sodom and Gomorrah." Police
delegations of religious and temperance
eaders toured the city's night spots,
ooking for liquor and vice. The Penthouse
Spring 2001   Trek   23 THE STRIPTEASE PROJECT
took to posting a lookout on the roof, who
buzzed a waiter downstairs when he
spotted the "dry squad." Clothes flew back
on and bottles were quickly stashed in
built-in ledges under the tables.
Becki Ross hopes to uncover more of
these fascinating tales in the course of her
research. She speaks of the "courageous
unconventionality" of the women who
performed in everything from fancy cabarets and glamorous nightclubs to PNE tent
shows and Hogan's Alley "chicken clubs."
Her study, she says, has three main
areas of focus. "The first is the working
conditions the women faced: their pay,
benefits and hours of work; what kinds of
stages they performed on; what their travel
the floor, keeping up the same easy-going
banter with the audience, wearing the
same open smile. There is the occasional
burst of applause, the odd cheer, but for
the most part the men now watch quietly,
mesmerized, it seems, by the full nudity
they have paid to see.
My first question is obvious: how did
you get interested in the subject? What
drew you to it? Why this story? Why this
slice of history?
Becki Ross doesn't answer directly.
She meanders, telling me about her childhood, about formative moments that
shaped her perceptions and beliefs as a
woman and an academic.
tion, even though it was perfectly legal,"
she says. With the help of an underground
women's collective, she arranged for a private abortion in Buffalo, New York.
The experience, Ross says, politicized
her. "I saw it as a simple issue of my right
to have access to a health service. But
because that service was denied me, it
made me think about the conditions under
which women get pregnant and decide if
they want to stay pregnant. After that, I
never looked at the world the same way
Thus began Ross's involvement in
a wide range of women's issues - pornography and sexual assault, feminist
publishing and abortion rights, AIDS and
Erotic dancers have been worshipped and stigmatized, desired and condemned, envied and criminalized. They
was like; their attempts to form labour
unions. The second is moral regulation: the
practices of clergy, civic politicians, police,
women's groups and moral reformers in
patrolling the business. And third is the
production and consumption of spectacle:
what musical, aesthetic and cultural
influences affected the shows, how the
women saw themselves as performers, how
the patrons saw themselves and the
strippers, what role the club owners,
musicians and others played in the enterprise."
The dancer unfolds a plush, leopard-
printed blanket and spreads it on the stage.
She sinks to her hands and knees and
stretches provocatively. She slips off the
yellow thong, revealing a bare pink pubis,
which she strokes briefly, with only the
faintest suggestion of naughty pleasure.
Cat-like, she rolls, arches, poses. Clad
only in her stilt-like shoes, she gyrates on
She grew up in Sudbury, Ontario, the
eldest of five children in a middle-class
family. As a child, she excelled in athletics
and competed in ten different sports, from
basketball and golf to cross-country skiing
and curling: "Curling was what one did
to stay out of trouble in the North," she
says dryly. Named her high school's female
athlete of the year in grade 12, Ross says
athletics helped her develop a strong sense
of herself. "I got immense joy, satisfaction
and confidence from my athletic experiences, from travelling, competing and performing in front of people."
Politics would soon impinge on what
she could or could not do with her body,
however. At 17, Ross became pregnant.
Certain that she did not want to have the
child, she found herself at the mercy of a
health system that required the consent of
two physicians for a publicly-funded
abortion. "There was no one in Sudbury
who would have performed the opera-
safe sex - which she pursued through her
undergraduate and graduate years, both on
campus and off. One of her interests was
sex trade workers and the way they were
viewed and treated. Ross was aware that
strippers, pornography models and actors,
and prostitutes had traditionally been seen
as immoral, hypersexual sinners. In the
women's movement, she saw a different
kind of hostility on the part of radical
feminists, who viewed sex trade workers
as objectified victims of patriarchy and
sexism, women who had been coerced,
pimped, demeaned and dehumanized.
Initially, Ross accepted this view. Then
she met Gwendolyn, a sex trade worker,
erotic dancer and safe sex organizer, with
whom she developed a close friendship.
A strong, independent, talented woman,
Gwendolyn fit none of the prevailing
descriptions of victimhood. In fact, seeing
Gwendolyn perform as a stripteaser kindled Ross's interest in the subject - she'd
24   Trek   Spring 2001 been fascinated by exotic
performances she'd seen at
the Moulin Rouge and Folies
Bergere in Paris as a teenager
- and
planted a seed: "I knew
someday I'd come back and
investigate this."
Then there was Ross's
attitude towards pornography. She'd come to believe,
as a feminist, that pornography was "the most heinous
expression of men's hatred
of women," that women
who participated in pornography and the sex trade put
all women at risk of men's
violence and were themselves
participating in misogynist
But in 1984 Ross came out as a lesbian. She soon became involved in an
anti-censorship crusade, battling Canada
Customs' efforts to seize gay, so-called
pornographic material, which, she asserts,
"has been and is vital to the sexual life of
our community." Suddenly she found herself questioning the received wisdom about
pornography and women's involvement in
the sex trade.
"I had an about-face," she says. "I
realized that women in the sex trade were
workers, and that others, feminists
included, had no right to expound truths
about their lives and the effects of their
work. I wanted to bust the myths and stereotypes about sex trade workers in general and stripteasers in particular as lewd
have been blamed for every social ill, and yet their allure has never waned.
Gypsy Rose Lee and Vancouver choreographer
Jack Card, Isy's Supper Club circa 1 950s.
temptresses, on the one hand, or as abused
victims of patriarchal control, on the other.
I wanted to explore these women's lives as
workers engaged in sex-related enterprise,
and to get the story from their own point
of view."
Getting the story has led her back to
the erotic dancers who graced Vancouver's
stages in the past, and has led her into the
clubs themselves, to see what has become
of the art of striptease today. Becki Ross,
the aesthete, the lover of beauty and spectacle, expresses both delight and dismay.
"One of the reasons I cut off the
study at 1980 is that a
number of changes started
coming in at that time,
including full nudity, table
dancing and lap dancing,
live Internet shows, and so
on, which have resulted in a
decline in artistry. Gone are
the elaborate costumes and
props, the lavishly choreographed routines, the live
music - the elements that
gave the shows such glamour and mystery."
Still, Ross admits she
enjoys watching striptease
acts, even if they lack the
dazzle of the post-war era.
"Striptease culture taps
into my continuing interest
in fashion, music, dance,
design and performance."
And, too, watching the
shows provides a dose of
sexual liberation. "I have
never done striptease - for
pay," she says with a sly smile. "I don't
feel turned on by the women on stage,
but I identify with their sexual courage
and confidence, their humour and savvy. I
feel apprenticed in terms of sexual moves
and skills. The dancers have something to
teach about the possibilities of inhabiting a body in a liberated way, without
It is, perhaps, Becki Ross's role as a
sociologist and historian that impels her
most strongly. "I want to contribute to the
history of Vancouver's cultural past," she
says. "We know the history of Vancouver's
cannery workers, miners, mill workers,
loggers, business owners, retail workers,
but almost nothing of the contribution
that erotic dancers made to our economy
Spring 2001   Trek   25 THE STRIPTEASE PROJECT
and culture."
That they made a significant
economic contribution cannot be denied.
Headlined strippers in the 1950s and 60s
earned up to $4,000 a weekend, more
than women in any other job category. As
well, they enjoyed more freedom, worked
fewer hours and had greater control over
their work than many nurses, teachers and
Ross recounts a recent radio interview
she gave, during which several callers
complained that she should investigate the
history of BC's loggers or miners, not its
strippers. "The history of resource
extraction in this province is the history of
the sex trade," she says. "Wherever men
gathered to work, women also worked,
selling sexual favours and arousal."
Yet it is precisely this confluence of
labour and sexuality that has been overlooked by scholars in both the women's
studies and labour studies fields. "Because
sex-related work has been ignored as valid
work, as a labour relation, it has not been
much studied by historians, economists,
cultural scholars and others," Ross says.
That is beginning to change. Some sex
trade workers are telling their own stories.
Scholarship is beginning to acknowledge
new areas of inquiry. And research like
Ross's will fill in a chunk of Vancouver's
Fifteen minutes and four songs after
making her appearance, the dancer,
entirely naked except for her heels, finishes
to a flourish of applause, cheers and whistles. Wrapping the blanket around herself
with an affecting modesty, she gathers up
her discarded garments - the vest, the bra,
the shorts and thong - and departs the
stage, casting one last delighted smile over
her tanned shoulder.
One final question, though I hesitate
to ask: What good is your research? Why
should it be funded? Why is it important?
Ross is not the least bit offended;
she's been through this before. Her project,
she admits, has provoked outrage, sshrc
received 35 letters of protest for funding
the study, and it was attacked in the House
of Commons by the Reform Party, now
the Canadian Alliance.
"People have demanded that I justify
spending taxpayers' dollars on studying
strippers; others have been incensed that
the government would 'waste their money'
on such a 'useless, disgusting project.'"
She smiles. "But let's face it - erotic entertainment has always played a key role in
people's lives. Despite vigorous efforts to
stamp it out or suppress it, it has been a
consistent feature of human sexual
behaviour. So we should try to understand
the role of erotic entertainment in society,
not dismiss it. In doing so, we may come
to understand ourselves better as sexual
and social beings."
Ross also argues that the economic
impact of erotic entertainment makes it
worthy of consideration. For one thing,
she says, burlesque has provided
employment to hundreds of women in
Vancouver, and this type of work is as
deserving of study as any other. For
another, this area of popular culture
has made, and continues to make, a significant contribution to the economy.
Eric Schlosser, writing in the U.S. News
and World Report, says Canadians and
Americans spend more money in strip
clubs than on theatre, opera, jazz, ballet
and classical music combined.  "And in the
United States," says Ross, "the
number of strip clubs has doubled in the
past decade."
Notwithstanding attacks and
dismissals from critics, the women at the
centre have been extremely supportive,
Ross says. Miss Lovie, a former Vancouver
dancer, has invited Ross to view her
collection of costumes, dating back to the
1960s. All of the stripteasers are eager
to show her their scrapbooks and photo
albums. Some are exhilarated after telling
their stories. In some cases, they have never
told anyone about their past lives, not even
their children.
"Their lives as strippers meant something to them and they don't want to feel
ashamed," Ross says. "They want the truth
to get out there."
That is exactly what Ross intends
to do. Once the research is complete, she
plans to produce a book, and she hopes a
documentary will result as well. She has
been approached by half a dozen
In the end, it is the paradox that
fascinates Becki Ross. "Erotic dancers have
been worshipped and stigmatized, desired
and condemned, envied and criminalized.
They have been blamed for every social ill,
and yet their allure has never waned. That
is what makes this project so compelling."
After the show, I see the dancer, now
fully dressed, make her way through the
crowded room. Dressed in worn jeans,
turtleneck, padded vest and hiking boots,
makeup scrubbed off, she could be a
college student, a young mother, the girl
next door, someone simply paying the bills.
Former dancers, club staff, vice officers and others involved in the trade
from the L945-L980 era can contact the
Striptease Project. Phone: (604) 822-
E-mail: becki@interchange.ubc.ca
26   Trek   Spring 2001 The unexpected phone call in 1998 enlivened a dreary February afternoon. I had
won a round trip for two to any place
served by Canadian Airlines International
in a lottery from among those who had
contributed to the United Way through
UBC. Me, who never wins anything.
We chose to see China. I had visited it
only once, a half century earlier, almost to
the month. Recollections of this trip had
informed my classroom discussions in Asia
105 for a third of a century. Now, I would
test my memories.
My wife, her sister and I formed a party
After 50 years,
an historian
retraces his
steps to a new
to revisit my earlier route through Beijing,
Shanghai, the gorges of the Yangtze,
Chongqing, and Chengtu. We followed the
route of international tourism. In Beijing,
we took the superhighway to the Great
Wall and stumbled up its steep steps and
walked along it. We climbed more steps to
the Temple of Heaven and visited its park
with family picnics and practicing amateur
musical groups. Everywhere crowds of
happy Chinese jostled us to enjoy the
fall sunshine. And everywhere this
prosperity contrasted with what I had seen
earlier. Like Rip Van Winkle, I returned to
a familiar countryside peopled by strang-
My brother Harry and I had visited
these sites late in 1948. Harry was off
to teach in Western China, and I
accompanied him to learn about the
country. No buses filled with sleek tourists
impeded traffic. No well-fed and well-
dressed Chinese drove their family cars on
the road. No one visited the Great Wall,
for Communists controlled it. On another
glorious fall day Harry and I, along with a
foreign-affairs officer, admired the Temple
of Heaven alone. Despair dogged everyone.
A huge flood had drowned out
ripening crops in China's heartland. Skinny
men wrapped in rags fought to haul our
"Do you have any ginseng?" was all the
customs officer asked when Harry and I
arrived  in Shanghai. From there a converted American destroyer escort bore us
to Tianjin where we enjoyed moonlit dining on the rooftop restaurant of the Astor
Hotel. We took the train the next day to
Beijing. Communists controlled the
countryside we viewed in luxury.
Long-time residents had warned us not
to take the first train of the day: no one
could tell when it might arrive. This first
train did two things beside carry
passengers. It took out the Kuomintang
troops who would guard the bridges
during the day and return on the last train
to protect the city at night. At the same
time, this first train discovered whether
Old China mixes with
the new. Outside the
tomb of the founder
of the Han Dynasty in
Xian, 1998. This group
of older woman all have
bound feet. Bound feet
were outlawed early in
the 20th century, but
the practice prevailed in
the countryside for some
time after.
Dhotograph by John Howes
Spring 2001   Trek   27 SEEING CHINA AGAIN
Communist guerillas had removed a
section of track during the night. If they
had, everyone waited until a new section
filled the void. Communists surrounded
cities and strangled them. The railroad
frustrated their attempt to isolate Tianjin
and Beijing. That railroad was one of the
best in China, but it was the only Chinese
railroad we saw.
For several days we lived in the home
built by the Beijing branch of the colonial
Bank of Hanoi for its manager. We enjoyed
its swimming pool and service. Westerners
fleeing the city rented their homes cheaply,
and we stayed with a cousin, a junior foreign service officer who lived in luxury.
We had other cousins who lived in Jinan,
the capital of Shantung, and the foreign
service officer urged us to get them out.
Jinan was surrounded by Communists, he
said, and would soon fall. We flew to Jinan
on a battered dc3, its door held partly shut
by thick twine. We observed the farmers at
work below who didn't even look up at us.
Once in Jinan, we boated with our cousins
on a beautiful lake in a park, within the
high city walls. We failed to persuade them
to leave.
Harry and I left on the last flight to return
to Shanghai. The commanding general,
his wife and their parrot joined us on the
plane but no one else got out. One month
to the day later, Jinan became the first
major city to fall to the Communists. It
took three years for our cousins to
get out.
After a few days in Shanghai we left,
traveling through the gorges to Chongqing
on a boat that had been built in Victoria,
BC. In the gorges, we passed swarms of
men dragging large junks upstream to load
coal. The raging current and sails would
then deliver the coal to eastern markets.
The boat we traveled in was new, on its
maiden voyage, and the captain feared that
the Kuomintang army would requisition
it to take troops inland. We passed the
Kuomintang capital, Nanjing, just at dusk
when the captain could still navigate, so
we escaped notice.
The steep mountains on either side
of the gorges had frustrated Japanese
attempts to get to Chonqing. Once there,
trucks provided the only modern land
transport, and they ran on roads built
after Pearl Harbor to deliver supplies from
Allied bases in India to help the Chinese
fight the Japanese. A friend bargained with
the driver of a truck carrying cigarettes
to take us to Chengtu, where Harry was
going to teach, but we were soon stopped
by a river in flood. Whereas the little ferry
usually made many round trips in an
hour, under these conditions it could make
only four, with two trucks on each trip.
Military trucks got preference, for fighting
raged ahead. We slept under the truck for
two nights, surveying surrounding
kaoliang fields. Nearby stood massive
bridge piers, obviously built to support a
railroad, but no railroad existed.
In Chengtu, we enjoyed Thanksgiving
dinner at the home of a missionary teacher
at West China Union University. The
Canadian university housed the second-
best medical school in China. Everything,
including dental chairs and grand pianos,
had arrived at the campus borne by porters with carrying poles. The missionary's
house would have looked at home in
Toronto, yet, save for two planes a week,
he lived in peril like our cousins in Jinan.
I left Harry to his teaching in Chengtu
and took another battered old dc3 back to
Chongqing. My missionary host informed
me that the bridge piers I'd seen had
indeed been built for a railroad. I hunted
up the American-trained engineers, who
oversaw construction. They said the whole
roadbed was prepared, but they did not
lay the bridge girders or the rails because
the Communists would steal them. How
low could morale get?
I wanted to go on to Kunming, so I
arranged transport with a truck belonging
to English Quakers carrying medical
supplies to missionary clinics. The English
driver could not leave until he got new
tires and gasoline for the trip. The local
warlord helped him find those items on the
black market, but it took 11 days to get
I rode on a bedboard, a pallet attached
above the cab of a truck. The driver slept
on it to protect his vehicle and cargo from
thieves. The bedboard afforded a fine view
of the road winding through the steep
mountains. On the way we saw a feebleminded young man dressed in a dirty
loincloth with his legs shackled so he could
walk only a few inches each step. His short
stride kept him out of danger, but he could
not get to a hospital for help.
One evening we were able to listen to
the international bbc news broadcast on
the driver's battery-operated short wave
radio. He could only run it a few minutes a
day, for he never knew when he might get
more batteries. Another day we observed a
pitiful handful of Kuomintang troops retiring their colors at sunset. The enveloping
mountains swallowed up their plaintive
rendition of the national anthem. Finally
after ten days, we reached Kunming. From
there I got a China Airlines plane on the
last leg of its flight from San Francisco
to Shanghai, Kunming and Yangon, then
called Rangoon.
These memories were very present as our
party of three retraced my 1948 route. On
my first visit to the mountainous West, I
had observed a countryside hardly changed
in centuries. Yet when the three of us
toured Kunming in 1998, our guide spoke
excellent English and told us she planned a
visit to North America.
I am an historian. Historians study the
past in terms of their present. We often find
ourselves wishing we could devise research
projects like those in the sciences. I
occasionally imagine one I might have
planned in 1948. I would study change in
a nation with no apparent future to discover what happened in five decades. Lots
of assistants would help test the hypothesis. But, of course, history has no control
groups, no double-blind procedures, no
test-tube experiments. We can't throw out a
batch that didn't quite jell. History
doesn't work that way ->
Trek   Spring 2001 n / constructing knowledge
Does Art provide children with a passion for understanding?
In the Halfmoon Bay Community
School, on BC's Sunshine Coast, the
grade 6 and 7 students are making a
map. It is not an ordinary paper map,
but a huge painted ceramic mural of
their community, seven feet wide and five
feet high, composed of four-inch tiles. Each
of the thirty children is creating six tiles:
researching their contents, sculpting them,
painting, glazing and mounting them on
plywood. The finished mural will hang
in the building's foyer, a permanent
adornment to the school.
The map shows whatever features the
students think important. To find those
features, the students have gone out on
research trips with biologists, local
historians, teachers, artists, officials from
the BC Ministry of Forests and from
Environment Canada. The football field,
which is very important, is marked on the
map by a huge soccer ball and a boot.
Stores, homes and symbols of native
culture are on the map. So are the "daddy
boats," the long-vanished steamships
which once carried commuting fathers to
Vancouver for the work-week. Sea life,
family dogs, bald eagles, bear paw-prints
and bike trails are on the map.
"What's important to them is their
environment," says Kez Sherwood, the
young ceramic artist who conceived the
project, guided the students through
workshops on research and design, and
fired the tiles in seven mammoth ten-hour
sessions. "The bike trails, the animals, the
woods, the school. I find it really amazing
what they've done. I'm so proud of them."
All of which raises the question of the
nature of maps. One could define a map as
a representation of the important
features in a given stretch of terrain. The
question is, what features are important,
and who decides? Maps differ according to
their purposes and the perspective of the
cartographer. A geological map is
different from a highway map, or a tax
assessor's map, or a map designed for
aerial navigation.
A school curriculum is also a map,
says Ken Robinson, professor of art
education at the University of Warwick
and chairman of the British National
Advisory Committee on Creative and
Cultural Education. The curriculum is a
map of knowledge which says to young
people, "This is how knowledge is
organized." In most Western industrial
nations, says Robinson, the curriculum is
dominated by three messages which stand
like mountains on the map. One: there are
ten subjects in the world. Two: language,
mathematics and science are the really
important subjects. The other seven are
secondary. Three: the arts and sciences are
completely different things. I would add
a fourth: knowledge comes in tidy, hermetically-sealed containers.
All these messages are, at best,
obsolete. The curriculum which rests on
them is reminiscent of the map which
confused the great economist E.F.
Schumacher in Soviet Leningrad. He saw
four large churches nearby, but only one
appeared on the official map in his hand.
Ah, said his guide, "we don't show
churches on our maps." Schumacher pointed at the one church which was prominently displayed on the map.
"That is a museum, not what we call
Spring 2001   Trek   29 ESCAPE into REALITY
a living church," said the guide. "It is only
the living churches that we don't show."
This Orwellian moment led
Schumacher to a great insight, namely that
"all through school and university I had
been given maps of life and knowledge on
which there was hardly a trace of many of
the things that I most cared about and that
seemed to me to be of the greatest possible
importance to the conduct of my life."
Among the most prominent omissions was
art, which appeared "only as self-expression or as escape from reality."
But the ceramic map in Halfmoon Bay
seems more like an escape into reality: an
knowledge and intelligence. Not long ago,
teachers, schools, publications and libraries
were the acknowledged gate
keepers of information. But the gates have
burst. The world has become an ocean of
information, and when we try to hold the
processes of learning inside the schools, we
restrict the prospects of education. What
we require from the educational system
now is not information, but tools for
navigation: methods of analysis, standards
of judgement, instruments for critical
thinking. We need help in sifting through
the torrent of information, assessing it,
organizing it, applying it.
A project like the student map
provides an organizing principle for
knowledge. We learn what we need to
ics. To determine its contents, they had to
accumulate masses of data from history,
geography, ecology, economics, biology,
sociology. To complete it, they had to learn
about the physical and chemical properties
of paints, clays and glazes. Much of what
they learned was thoroughly conventional
knowledge. But the way they learned it
was exploratory, grounded and active.
Their map project was structured by the
dynamic, associative logic of creativity.
This is the way that creativity works,
in pre-schoolers and painters, in physicists
and financiers. And it is creativity which is
fuelling the most powerful and protracted
economic boom we have ever seen,
transforming every aspect of our lives.
Our economy is driven by creative people:
The traditional curriculum seems stale and archaic because
it was designed to produce the work force needed for a vanished industrial economy:
80% manual labourers, 20% managers and professionals
escape from the airless abstractions of the
traditional schoolroom into the green, fluid
reality of natural and social life. An escape
from passive absorption to active exploration. An escape from a stale,
archaic curriculum into a joyful,
impassioned quest for understanding.
From time to time, said the novelist Margaret Laurence, "the world, like
a snake, sheds its skin." It is a shock for
older people to realize that the world
which formed them has passed into
history, and that they are now, in
Laurence's phrase, "inhabiting the cast-off
skin of the world." The traditional
curriculum seems stale and archaic because
it was designed to produce the work force
needed for a vanished industrial economy:
80% manual labourers, 20% managers
and professionals. It assumes that intelligence is shown primarily by verbal and
mathematical reasoning. It is a map which
portrays the cast-off skin of the world.
The sweeping shift to an information
society has changed our perceptions, our
economy and our understanding of
know in order to complete the project.
Oddly enough, this approach echoes the
structure of the phd program I enjoyed at
the University of London 35 years ago.
The London phd had no course requirements, no language competency tests, no
meaningless hurdles to leap. My tutor
expected that I would learn what was
necessary to complete the major research
project I had set for myself. If the project
required an understanding of Old Norse,
I should learn Old Norse. If not, not. The
university assumed that doctoral students
were bright enough to execute their own
projects. The program was based on
respect for the learner.
The evolving post-industrial
curriculum is also based on respect for the
learner. The news from Halfmoon Bay is
not that the familiar disciplines are
irrelevant, but that they are best absorbed
and most valued when they are integrated
and given a context. To lay out their map,
the students in Halfmoon Bay needed to
understand concepts of ratio, scale, and
geometry, otherwise known as mathemat-
entrepreneurs, Web designers, entertainers,
educators and trainers, industrial researchers, artists, self-employed
professionals, imaginative managers. Of all
school subjects, however, only the arts are
focussed on the development of creativity.
And that makes the arts central to post-
industrial education, whose objective has
to be the development of human resources
and natural creativity.
Just at the moment that the arts have
become crucial to the educational enterprise, governments everywhere have been
fighting deficits by slashing education budgets. And when school budgets are cut, the
first subjects to suffer are the arts, which
are still widely seen not as core
subjects but as self-expression or escapism. But the educational system evidently
doesn't understand any of this. The arts
are returning to the schools not because
the system has suddenly seen their value,
but because artists, parents and a corps of
visionary educators are insisting on their
importance, and working together in
vigorous, unexpected coalitions to embed
30   Trek   Spring 2001 the arts in the classrooms of the future.
"We're interested in integrating the
arts across the curriculum with artists and
teachers, both of whom have been quite
isolated," says Wendy Newman, Executive
Director of ArtStarts in Schools, a
four-year-old non-profit organization
headquartered on East Pender Street in
Vancouver's Chinatown. ArtStarts' staff
of five includes a recent ubc graduate in
opera, Hussein Janmohamed, and a
part-time UBC student, My Anh Duong.
Its function is to "provide services and
programs to educators and artists, for the
benefit of young people."
ArtStarts runs projects all
over BC, from Atlin and Haida
Gwaii to Fernie and Saanich. It
books artists into schools,
provides professional development
for artist-educators, produces a
range of publications and
co-ordinates school and
community events for BC Arts and
Culture Week. It rents float planes
to fly musicians into nearly-
inaccessible schools. In partnership with the Royal Conservatory
of Music, ArtStarts produces
"Learning Through the Arts,"
which annually
presents hundreds of arts events to
elementary school children.
One ArtStarts program, "Art as a
Catalyst for Change," currently focusses
on anti-racism projects. In a project
in Burnaby called "The Chemistry of
Discrimination," Japanese-Canadian artist Haruko Okano led students in creating
sculptures using a fungus called kombucha
The fungus grows in a stinky vinegar solution and dries to resemble skin. Hmm. So
what is skin? Why do we react to it (and
to smells) as we do? What is its function?
Is it a boundary, a
container, a membrane, a symbol?
In addition to generating its own
programs, ArtStarts administers three
granting programs funded by other organizations. "Artists in Education," which
is funded by the BC Arts Council and the
Vancouver Foundation, provides matching grants to school districts which bring
artists into their schools. Cherniavsky's
"Mr. Music" Fund, founded by the
late, renowned Vancouver pianist Jan
Cherniavsky, pays for students to attend
music, opera and dance performances.
The third granting program is ArtsSmarts,
a national initiative sponsored by the J.W.
McConnell Family Foundation, which
supports innovative classroom-based
integrated arts activities in partnership with
local artists, arts groups and community
organizations. The ArtStarts organization
administers the ArtsSmarts program in BC.
Since the names are maddeningly confusing,
I will refer to the McConnell Foundation
program hereafter by its French name,
Genie Arts.
Through ArtStarts, GenieArts funded
the Halfmoon Bay project, along with 16
others in BC, touching more than 175
schools in 18 school districts thus far. In a
school in the Kootenays, students created a
puppet theatre based on stories of aboriginal people. In Gabriola Island, students
apprenticed in the local ateliers of working
artists. In North Vancouver, students
produced an industrial-quality short video.
In Smithers, the local high school
responded to an outbreak of racist graffiti
by bringing master carvers and students
together to create a full-sized totem pole
expressing the unity of the people of
the Bulkley Valley, and erecting it at the
entrance to the school.
GenieArts "is designed to bring
the arts into the curriculum as a vehicle
through which all subjects can be taught,"
says Stephanie Miller, the McConnell
Foundation program officer who oversees
the national initiative. Working with local
partners like provincial arts councils,
community foundations and school boards,
the Foundation hoped to reach right into
individual classrooms in order "to introduce the arts to
students in new ways, and also
to build lasting partnerships
between local artists and local
schools. There's lots of evidence
that when the arts are integrated into the curriculum in
that way, learning outcomes are
Dr. Kit Grauer, who
teaches in UBC's Curriculum
Studies department, is currently
researching the effects of such
innovative art education
programs. She also believes that
their impact on students is
profound, though difficult to
"Frankly, I'd be surprised if we saw
the effects in standardized tests in subject
fields like, say, mathematics," she says,
"but that may just mean we're looking in
the wrong place. There probably are
substantial cognitive gains, but we're more
likely to see them by noticing that kids
who've been through those programs make
connections differently, or look at life
differently. It's very difficult to measure
their understanding of multiculturalism or
the environment, for example, but there
are major attitudinal changes happening
there - really deep, thoughtful things. As
one of my own teachers liked to say, "Just
because it can't be counted doesn't mean it
doesn't count."
In short, there is a danger of getting
the facts and missing the truth. But the
Spring 2001   Trek   31 ESCAPE into REALITY
projects associated with ArtStarts in BC,
or funded by GenieArts across the country,
do seem to draw students and teachers
towards large themes derived from the
character of global society. As futurist
John Naisbitt has pointed out, globalization and technology also breed their
opposites. High-tech fosters high-touch,
as people surrounded by cold technology
seek out warm human experience. The
global stimulates the local, as people
discern global trends in their own
Rising global concern about the
environment is reflected in Pius X School
in St. John's, Newfoundland, where
GenieArts projects have helped the
students to participate in the rehabilitation
of the Rennie's Mill River, a once-polluted
urban stream which runs along the edge of
their schoolyard. The revival of the river is
the theme of student poetry, dance,
puppetry, sculpture, song-writing and
cartoons. A dozen artists have already
worked in the school, where painter Don
Short is currently helping students to
depict river ecology in murals which will
eventually cover the hallways and stairwells of the entire school.
Again, in a fluid, interconnected
world, cross-cultural understanding
and respect is essential. The alternative
is Palestine, Ulster, Kashmir, Rwanda.
Multiculturalism is also a pressing matter
in Canadian classrooms, which often
contain students from 10 or 15 different
countries. As a result, many school art
projects have targetted racism, bigotry and
fear by exposing students to a variety of
cultures. Some draw on the cultural
background of immigrants, while others
explore aboriginal culture and values.
"These themes aren't prominent just
in Canada," says Kit Grauer. "I was in
Thailand last year, and they were asking
questions like, Who are we, and how do
we fit in among all the other cultures of
the world? And I was in New Zealand and
Australia, where the things that are going
on with aboriginal culture are exactly
parallel to what's happening here - a
growing awareness of what the aboriginal
peoples have given us, and how those
cultures are evolving.
"Here in BC the educational system
has articulated three fundamental
principles of learning. First, learning is an
active process. Second, learning happens
both individually and in groups. Third,
there are many different ways of learning
and many different kinds of competence."
Ultimately, Dr. Grauer notes, these
ideas rest on a new philosophy of
knowledge. Since the days of Isaac
Newton, knowledge has been viewed as
objective and autonomous; it was out
there, independent of the knower, and it
was the same for everyone. Science
developed by reducing objective
phenomena into ever-smaller component
parts which could conveniently be
examined and measured.
Modern physics blew that notion
apart. The ideas of science, wrote
Einstein, do not describe the physical
world, but rather our experience of that
world, which means that scientific
findings are essentially "free creations
of the human mind." That perspective
changes the whole way we look at
learning and knowing.
"There's a really strong constructiv-
ist philosophy right across Canada now,"
says Dr. Grauer, "the idea that knowledge
and meaning don't occur in some objective and abstract form. You construct
knowledge, you construct meaning. So of
course it's really important to deal with
who you are, and where you are in the
world. Constructivism is creating a sense
that kids are real individual human beings
with their own understandings, and that
it's in building on those understandings
that learning occurs. It's very different
from the way we looked at things when
you and I went to school."
These changes imply a radically new
map of knowledge, just as the transformation of the economy implies a radically
new economic function for the schools.
In the post-industrial economy, says
Professor Robinson, the great adventures
- new media, telemedicine, biotechnology,
entertainment, software, dozens more -
are "built on a fusion of art, science and
technology." The people who undertake
these adventures are "people who can
adapt to change, who can innovate, who
can communicate, who can work in teams
and roll with the changes."
The use of the arts as an organizing
principle in the curriculum trains students
to work that way, and brings the intellectual disciplines together in ingenious and
startling conjunctions. It shows how
different streams of knowledge interact
with one another, and how permeable are
the boundaries between them. It rewards
not only the traditional intellectual
proficiencies of verbal and mathematical
reasoning, but also the more elusive skills
of imagination, intuition, judgement and
The most intense educational
experiences integrate learning into the
fabric of life itself. The learner is transformed forever; s/he cannot help
constructing linkages and meanings and
ideas, and finding vehicles to express
them. This creative fusion is an artist's
way of being, and it generates sparkling
pedagogy. Organizations like ArtStarts
and programs like GenieArts strive to
inject that energy and engagement and
imagination into classrooms in every
discipline. They are not fundamentally about the arts. They are about the
improvement of education in every field.
Ultimately they are about the
formation of new people, equipped to
build and benefit from a new world.
Two generations ago, a map of a BC
coastal community might have shown
paper mills, fish canneries, trap-lines and
power dams. But not today. The kids in
Halfmoon Bay are mapping their world
as it appears now. They are truly seeing
it for the first time. And, in a profound
sense, they are the first people ever to
have seen it ->
32   Trek   Spring 2001 health
our war against the universe of deadly bacteria was won. It was a bright and
shining moment lasting about 40 years when, for once, humans had the upper hand.
We were so confident in our victory that no one flinched in 1969 when the u.s.
Surgeon General proclaimed: "It is time to close the book on infectious diseases."
But the empire has struck back. In the last
few decades we've seen growing evidence
that we have underestimated our wily
opponents. Now, drug-resistant bacteria
are showing up in force, and previously
tamed foes like tuberculosis are turning
ugly once more. Formerly harmless bugs
like e.coli are evolving in new deadly
strains to sicken and kill.
"The confidence we felt about the
defeat of infectious disease was totally
inappropriate," says Dr. Robert Brunham,
director of UBC's Centre for Disease
Control and medical director of the BC
Centre for Disease Control. "Now we
know that infectious organisms are going
to be with us always. We need to understand the mechanisms of how they work
and how they cause disease . . . and how
they continue to evolve and evade our
control strategies."
Fortunately, at the University of
British Columbia, world-class research
is doing just that: tackling the problem
of pathogenic bacteria from a multitude
of angles. And as a string of discoveries and publications in the pre-eminent
journals Nature and Cell attest, considerable progress is being made, particularly
through work by members of the Centre
for Disease and Host Defense Research
(CMDR). Three of those UBC professors
are Brett Finlay, a cellular microbiologist
who is a professor in the Biotechnology
Laboratory, and is a Howard Hughes
Medical Institute International Scholar;
Natalie Strynadka, assistant professor
in the department of Biochemistry and
Molecular Biology and also a Howard
Hughes Medical Institute International
Scholar; and Robert Hancock, a professor
in the department of Microbiology and
Immunology, the director of the cmdr, and
a recent Canada Research chair
Their work is extremely important,
notes Sid Katz, associate vice president,
Research, and head of Research Awareness
at ubc. "The bugs are getting ahead of
the drugs, but these researchers are going
E.coli at work
Adhering firmly to the
human cell, the bacterium
conscripts the human
protein, actin, and uses it
to build a tall throne-like
pedestal, upon which the
e.coli bacterium sits,
excreting a potent toxin
and avoiding capture
or defeat by the human
immune system.
Researchers are finding out how the killers kill
Spring 2001   Trek   33 > BATTLING THE BUGS
to help turn the tide. Through their work
they are showing that we have to look at
this problem in a much more organized
and pragmatic way so that we can move
In short, in the ongoing war against
deadly bugs, it's a good thing we have
some ringers on our side.
On the color screen of Brett Finlay's laptop
computer, an animated alien
invasion is unfolding to the strains of
Strauss' Thus Spake Zarathustra. It's as
dramatic and thrilling as anything
produced in Hollywood. The story line is
familiar: an evil and deadly foe invades
and overcomes the forces of good, then
commandeers the victim's resources and
machinery to work towards its own wicked ends.
Only this drama is not fiction. It is an
animated representation of how the
potentially deadly bacteria e.coli 0157:h7
infects us and makes us sick. This deadly
strain of e.coli, which lives harmlessly
in the gut of cattle, emerged as a new
pathogen a mere 20 years ago and has
since spread around the world, tainting at
various times radish sprouts, undercooked
hamburger, unpasteurized apple juice and,
of course, the water supply in Walkerton,
"It is an extremely serious disease that
seems to affect only humans,"  says Finlay,
who also studies the minute processes of
how salmonella and Campylobacter make
us sick, joking that "diarrhea is our lab's
bread and butter."
It was Finlay and his lab of some
20 graduate students and post-docs who
delineated the step-by-step process of
how e.coli 0157:h7 works. The lab has
had a string of discoveries. In one of its
most important, the group discovered
and named a new bacterial protein that
0157:h7 shoots into the host cell like a
harpoon. The protein is called Tir, and its
discovery shook the world of microbial
pathology in 1997.
"It forced us to rethink how these
creatures really work," Finlay says. "It was
the first time that any bacteria had been
proven to manufacture and then inject its
own protein to create its own receptor
Finlay is a born communicator, a fact
that was acknowledged in 1999 when he
was honored as the first non-American
to deliver the Howard Hughes Medical
Institute Holiday Lectures (which can be
viewed at www.holidaylectures.org). He
talked about "Confronting the Microbe
Menace" to thousands of high school
students across the us. Since 1990 Finlay
has been an international scholar with
hhmi, which has a good record for
spotting talent. To date, seven hhmi
scientists have won Nobel Prizes.
The dramatic animation of e.coli
infecting a cell was produced by hhmi for
the holiday lectures (and can be viewed at
www.biotech.ubc.ca/faculty/finlay/). Finlay
narrates as we watch a purple, Zeppelinlike 0157:h7 bacterium attach itself to the
human intestinal wall with what looks
like a grappling hook. Then a syringe-like
appendage protrudes from the bacterium
and shoots its own protein, Tir, into the
human cell. Maneuvering through the
human cell, Tir pops through the surface
of the cell like tiny velcro hooks that latch
back on to receptors on the bacterium.
Now adhering firmly to the human cell, the
bacterium conscripts the human
protein, actin, and uses it to build a tall
throne-like pedestal, upon which the e.coli
bacterium sits, excreting a potent toxin and
avoiding capture or defeat by the human
immune system. In essence, it builds its
own highly secure landing pad. The pedestal formation seems to be
important for preventing the bacteria being
devoured by macrophages from the human
immune system.
"Isn't that a thing of beauty?" says
Finlay, with infectious enthusiasm as we
watch the drama unfold. "If that doesn't
make you want to be a microbiologist . . ."
It is, indeed, astounding to watch. The
discovery of Tir has opened a number of
promising avenues researchers can follow
to obstruct or neutralize the bacteria, and
sparked ideas for other ways to muck up
the bacterial processes in 0157:h7 and
other bacteria with similar syringe injection systems.
One of the most encouraging projects
is using Tir, and other pieces of the
bacterium, as the basis for a vaccine, both
in children and in cattle. Developing a
vaccine that can be used in humans is a
slow process. "You don't want to give anything to a child that could have any
potentially serious consequences," says
Finlay. But the progress on the cow vaccine
is racing along. Early results show that it
prevents cows from carrying the organism,
eliminating the nasty e.coli strain from
the cow's guts, but leaving other flora
"There are huge advantages to getting
a vaccine for cattle. It is faster, cheaper,
and if you happen to kill a cow from
an adverse reaction it is not that big a
deal," Finlay says. Working in collaboration with Andy Potter at the University
of Saskatchewan, who makes agricultural
vaccines, as well as the Alberta Research
Council and the Ontario biotech company
Vetrapharm, Finlay says some 75,000
cattle (including some cattle in Walkerton)
are now being tested in a medium-scale
trial. Then it will move to a larger study
involving three million cattle. No downsides or adverse reactions have so far been
"Surprisingly, when you vaccinate
cows, they need just a tiny dose - about as
much protein as you would give to
vaccinate a mouse. We just tickle the
immune system and it seems to completely
block the carriage of 0157."
Finlay's lab is also pursuing the idea
of interfering with the syringe process in
bacteria. Most antibiotics kill bacteria by
attacking the bug's cell wall or by
interfering with the bacteria's protein
synthesis. But the discovery by Finlay's lab
of the proteins that make up the bacteria's
syringe system gives a new potential target
34   Trek   Spring 2001 to attack. Called "Type iii secretion
systems," the syringe system is found in a
number of pathogenic bacteria including
salmonella, pseudomonas, yersinia (the
cause of Bubonic plague) and chlamydia
and in a number of bacteria that cause
plant disease. While the syringe system is
similar in each of those organisms, what is
different is the substance they inject into
the cell.
"We have been trying to come up with
a broad spectrum anti-infective that will
stop the syringe action. The great thing
about this avenue is that since humans
don't have any system like it, we won't
have to worry about drug toxicity." he
says. Working with Ray Andersen, a professor of chemistry and earth and ocean
sciences at UBC, they have been using
extracts from Mediterranean sponges and
starfish to block the syringe process.
"It is a really neat angle that could
have a lot of applications," Finlay says.
And coming up with more ways to
battle bacteria won't come a moment too
soon, considering how fast new resistant
strains of bacteria are emerging.
"We want to find new therapeutic
options against these diseases and impose
new barriers for these bacteria to
The walls of Natalie Strynadka's small
office in the basement of the D.H. Copp
building are covered with pictures and
posters. Some depict famous paintings by
Van Gogh and Vermeer. Others are
pictures of famous scientists, like Marie
Curie, Dorothy Hodgkin who won the
Nobel for determining the structure of
vitamin bl2 and insulin, and Rosalind
Franklin who helped Watson and Crick
discover the structure of dna but died
before being recognized with the Nobel.
Still other pictures are graphic depictions
of how nitrogen, oxygen, carbon and other
atoms link together to make certain
protein molecules.
In a sense, Strynadka's walls reflect
beautifully the combination of art and
science that encompasses what she does.
Strynadka is a crystallographer. She
determines the structure of proteins and
compounds by analyzing the diffraction
patterns their crystals throw off when
bombarded with x-rays. It is like
determining how carbon atoms line up
by analyzing the pattern of light and dark
when an x-ray is fired at a diamond. But
the crystals Strynadka analyzes are usually
those of bacterial proteins and enzymes
coaxed to grow into crystal lattices in the
Crystallography is a fusion of
mathematics, physics, and chemistry, with
the art of growing the crystals tying it all
together. Its closest analogy is trying to
solve an enormous three-dimensional
jig-saw puzzle by the shadow it casts. It
took Dorothy Hodgkin many years to
solve one of the first protein structures,
insulin, and these days, even with
molecular biology and high tech
computers to help
things along, it can
still take three or
four years to
determine the
molecular structure
of more challenging
protein complexes,
especially if they
happen to be
membrane proteins,
says Strynadka.
"I just love it.
It is such a visual
medium and I love art," she says nodding
to her walls. "While it is a really challenging field, it provides so much information."
She moved to BC from Alberta in
1997, in a large part because of the high
calibre of research going on at UBC
and the individuals here, like Finlay and
Hancock, with whom she could work.
In collaboration with Finlay's lab,
Strynadka's lab recently solved the atomic
structure of the e.coli protein Tir and how
it binds with the protein intimin to link
e.coli to the human cell. It was published
to acclaim in June, 2000 in the prestigious
journal Nature. In the last eight years since
her phd thesis at the University of Alberta,
Strynadka has had a string of publications
in Nature as she delineates the structure of
various bacterial proteins and enzymes.
Some of her work has been in the area
of understanding the structure and
function of a family of destructive
enzymes, called beta-lactamases. These
enzymes are produced by bacteria that are
resistant to penicillin and other drugs like
the cephalosporins in the penicillin family
of antibiotics. These destructive enzymes
have evolved in the last 30 years and work
by breaking up a molecular ring, called a
beta-lactam ring, found in this family of
drugs. It's as if the enzymes take a pair of
scissors to an essential part of the antibiotic, rendering it useless. By understanding
this mechanisms of antibiotic resistance at
a molecular level, Strynadka and her lab
can use that information to design novel
new drugs or therapeutic agents that can
The invasion begins.
E-coli bacteria collect on the
intestinal wall. Investigation
into the mechanics of the
bacteria will help researchers
develop the means to defeat it.
inhibit or block the enzymes.
"It could revive this whole family of
cheap, but once very effective antibiotics,"
she says.
Strynadka's lab is also analysing the
molecular structures of other key bacterial
components to find other potential targets
for new drugs or inhibitors. "When you
know what a piece of the bacteria looks
like, then you can design new structures
that interfere with it."
One such target would be a bacterial
enzyme that helps build a strong protective
cell wall around a whole class of pathogenic bacteria, in a sense working to clad
Spring 2001   Trek   35 [
the bacteria in a suit of armor. By designing compounds that interfere with the
enzyme, the bacteria would lose this armor
and go into battle naked, becoming easier
to wound by the body's immune
"The goal is to find critical molecules
for the bacteria that don't have a counterpart in the human host, and then design
specific therapeutic agents that block
them," she says.
Once, when Bob Hancock went to a local
elementary school to talk about what it's
like to be a scientist, a little boy looked
up at him and asked, "Are you Einstein?"
Perhaps it was the slightly wild hair, or the
kindly face with expressive eyes. Hancock
responded, unfortunately no,
but the boy was not disappointed. In fact when he
grows up he may tell his kids
that he once met a scientists
who developed a whole new class of antibiotics.
Hancock, director of the Centre
for Microbial Disease and Host Defense
Research, is a highly regarded scientist, the
sort of person who draws other talented
scientists around him. He has a reputation
for being an all-around great guy and a
consummate collaborator. He's not bad as
a science communicator either, able to turn
on even elementary school students to the
joys and wonders of scientific discovery.
"I think we have a duty as scientists
to be able to communicate what we are
doing. Society is providing the money, and
they have a right to know. I have always
had the attitude that if you can't explain
something, then you don't really understand it." he says.
Like Strynadka and Finlay, one of
Hancock's research interests is to
understand the basic mechanisms of how
antibiotic resistance works and to find
novel ways to combat it. While delving
into this line of inquiry, he started using
a line of naturally occurring substances
called cationic peptides. Peptides are
groups of amino acids linked together, usually ranging in size from two to 100 amino
acids. And "cationic" simply means these
molecules carry a positive electrical charge.
"They are found throughout nature
- in insects, crustaceans, amphibians, fish,
birds, mammals, humans, even other
bacteria. They are Nature's antibiotics."
At one time scientists thought they
worked by punching holes in the bacterial
membranes, allowing the bacteria's guts
to leak out. But now Hancock believes
instead that the positive charge of the
peptide perturbs the bacterial membrane
and crosses it to foul up interior processes.
The bacterium acts almost like a magnet
that sucks up the peptides, then binds
negatively charged molecules inside the
bacterium, such as dna, rna and other pro
of both gram negative and gram positive
pathogenic bacteria.
Hancock is also very excited about the
role of genomics - the study of the entire
gene sequence of an organism - to reveal
new ways to combat pathogenic bacteria.
"It's moving away from what was
done in the past, which was looking at one
single gene at a time and how it works, to
looking at all the genes at once and how
they work together," he says. "Now if we
know every single gene in a bacteria, we
can follow which genes are expressed at
which time and find out what they do and
how they function."
In this way, scientists can find out
which genes are absolutely essential to the
bacteria. This will provide a whole host
of potential new targets for antibacterial
"It is a brave new world of biology
The genomic approach could reveal several hundred Achilles' heels in bacteria.
teins, and neutralizes the bacteria's functioning like an on-off switch.
The only problem with these cationic
peptides is that they exist in such minute
quantities in nature, a real obstacle when
vast amounts are needed to make drugs or
therapeutics that can fight bacterial disease
in humans. Hancock's lab, however,
developed a way to mass-produce various
peptides through recombinant dna
technology. Hancock has eight patents
issued and several pending for different
types of cationic peptides, based on
templates from the horseshoe crab, silk
moth, cattle and flounder, among others.
The recombinant technology has been
licensed to Micrologix Biotechs Inc., a
Vancouver-based company, which now has
compounds in advanced clinical trials to
battle catheter associated infections.
Hancock says one of beauties of these
peptides is that they are so broad in their
action that they don't need to be targeted
against specific actions in specific bacteria.
They appear to work against a wide range
36   Trek   Spring 2001
that involves not just microbiologists and
cellular biologists, but computer experts
and mathematicians. We have to analyse
relationships between as many as 360,000
pieces of information. We have to develop
methods for handling all that information."
Hancock estimates that rather than
just the dozen or so vulnerable bacterial
targets that our current arsenal of antibiotics attack, the genomic approach could
reveal several hundred Achilles' heels in
"Then we can use a variety of genetic
strategies to start finding compounds from
nature, or synthetic compounds we design,
that we can use to attack these particular
In the end, says Finlay, we won't
ever have as much hubris as we did in the
1960s to believe that we have finally
vanquished our tiny foes forever. What we
will have is enough information about
how they work so that we can always
counteract their latest maneuverings and
"What we are hoping for is a permanent stalemate," he says The Univers
ish Columbia Alumni News       Spring 2001
Panel Exhibit: A Rare Flower:
A Century of Cantonese Opera in Canada
January 12 through March 31, 2001
Theatre Gallery
■ Based on a much larger exhibition of
the same name (shown at moa and across
Canada) this exhibit of 15 laminated
panels was prepared in 1994 by the
moa for Canada Week in Guangzhou,
China. The costumes shown are from the
Museum's collection, which comprises
more than 500 pieces preserved and
presented to moa by the Jin Wah Sing
Musical Association.
Anthropology 432 Student Projects
April 3 through December 31, 2001
Throughout the galleries
■ One group is installing mini-exhibitions that address the question "What is
Missing?" in the Visible Storage area; the
second is rethinking labels, graphics and
signage in the ceramics gallery. The third
is considering questions raised by images
used in the Colors of Benetton posters.
Echoes 2001
April 10 through May 13, 2001
■ As part of their coursework at the Emily
Carr Institute of Art and Design, students
in moa curator Dr. Carol Mayer's
ceramics class are creating and installing
original works inspired by the Museum's
Dhotographs courtesy: Museum of Anthropology
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A Rare Flower: A Century of Cantonese
Opera in Canada. Cantonese opera costumes in
the collection of the Museum of Anthropology.
Continuing Traditions
April 17 through April 30, 2002
Gallery 3
■ A new exhibit module featuring
Coast Salish baskets. Prepared by UBC
Anthropology ma candidate Sharon
Fortney, in collaboration with Museum
staff and representatives from the
Squamish, Klahoose, Stl'atl'imx, and
Laka'pamux First Nations, this exhibit
focuses on the evolution of Coast Salish
basketry over the past 50 years.
Early Chinese Ceramics from the Victor
Shaw Gift
May 9 through October 30, 2001
Gallery 5
■ More than 70 ceramics are featured
38   Trek   Spring 2001
Chronicle cover photograph by Alex Waterhouse-Haywarc in this unique exhibition drawn from a
much larger collection of Chinese antiquities recently donated to the Museum by
Victor Shaw. Spanning the Neolithic period
through the Yuan dynasty (1279-1368),
the selected pieces illustrate significant
moments in the early history of ceramics
and place them in context.
Conversations: The Teeson Philippine
Through September 3, 2001
Gallery 10
■ As part of their coursework at UBC,
students in Anthropology 432, The
Anthropology of Public Representation
(2000), present an exhibition of
Philippine pottery, textiles, and other
materials collected and donated to
the Museum by Dr. Miguel and Mrs. Julia
Two Case Studies
Through August 31, 2001
Stephen Andrews
(detail) First Half ofthe Second Part, 2000
nk on mylar 243.8 x 1 5.2 cm
Dhotograph courtesy: Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery
■ Two cases, each highlighting a different
aspect of Northwest Coast art. One
features several turn-of-the-century
paddles; another offers selections from a
remarkable recent bequest of Northwest
materials collected by Tom and Frances
Attributed to Edenshaw: Identifying the
Hand of the Artist
Through August 31, 2001
Corridor Case
■ This exhibit features basketry as well
as gold, silver, argillite and wood carvings by Haida artists Charles and Isabella
Stephen Andrews
March 23 through May 13, 2001
■ Guest curated by Annette Hurtig.
Mar 23-12:30 pm, Recital Hall
UBC Korean Ensemble*
Mar 23 & 24-8 pm, The Chan
Operatic Excerpts*
UBC Opera Ensemble & UBC
Choral Union
Mar 25-27
25: 2 pm,The Chan Centre
26: 8 pm, Recital Hall
27: 8 pm,The Chan Centre
CBC Young Composers Celebration
Laureates Concert
Mar 29 - 12:30 pm,The Gessler Hall
UBC Contemporary Players*
12:30 pm, Recital Hall
Collegium Musicum Ensembles*
Mar 30 - 12:30 pm,The Gessler Hall
Collegium Musicum Ensembles*
8 pm, The Chan Centre
University Singers*
Mar 31-8 pm,The Chan Centre
University Singers*
Apr 1 - 2 pm, Recital Hall
Pacific Spirit Concerts
The Future is Now
Apr 4-12:30 pm, Recital Hall
Gamelan Ensemble
Apr 5 - 12:30 pm, The Chan Centre
UBC Symphony Orchestra*
Apr 6-8 pm, The Chan Centre
UBC Symphony Orchestra*
Apr 12 - 12-2 pm, The Chan Centre
Masterclass with Dawn Upshaw
: free admission
See UBC School of Music for some listings.
Mar 25-8 pmAndras Schiff, piano
Apr 5 - 8 pm Renee Fleming, Soprano, & Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Piano
Apr 6-8 pm UBC Symphony Orchestra
Apr 7 - 8 pm Pacific Baroque Orchestra
Apr 8-2 pm Vancouver Philharmonic Orchestra Performance
Apr 11 - 8 pm Dawn Upshaw, Soprano & Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Piano
Apr 22-8 pm Braziliana
Apr 27 & 28 - 8 pm Focus on the Flute
Apr 29 - Pacific Spotlight Concert
May 6 - 3 pm Jon Kimura Parker, Piano
May 12 - 8 pm Pandora's Vox
May 13 - 8 pm Classic Concerts International
May 18 & 19 - 8 pm Vancouver Symphony Orchestra
May 21-8 pm Glenn Miller Orchestra
Spring 2001   Trek   39 [
I      "
The Great Years
Gold Mining
In the;
BrIJge River VaIIcj
T.enis (Tram
A Whole Little City By Itself, Tranquille
and Tuberculosis
by Wayne Norton, ma'88.
Plateau Press $21.95
■ This book reveals the struggles of the
British Columbia Anti-Tuberculosis Society
to establish and operate BC's first
sanatorium. Financial problems and a
difficult relationship with the community
of Kamloops made the task more
challenging. Against the background of
politics and changing medical theory,
under both private and public ownership, the institution treated thousands of
patients before its closure in 1958.
Bridge River Valley
by Lewis Green basc'49
Tricouni Press Ltd.
■ From 1933 to 1941, the Bridge River
Valley was an economic bright spot, sharply contrasting with the gloom
pervading much of Canada. Job seekers
flocked to the mines. For many men,
finding that job meant living in the bush
and standing in line each morning as the
shifts started, in the hope that the mine
superintendent would give them the nod.
This book tells of the towns and the
people in the mines who, through their
labours, made it all come to pass.
by Kate Braid, mfa'97
xyz Publishing $15.95
■ Emily Carr gave the world a precious
legacy of paintings and books, yet she lived
at a time when, to be considered a serious
artist, one had to be a man. She rebelled
against conventional attitudes and devoted
her life to her art. In this book, Kate Braid
shows how important
encounters with the First Nations figure of
D'Sonoqua (the wild woman of the woods)
and later with the Group of Seven artists
led Emily Carr to explore the
spiritual aspects of the landscape she loved.
Listening to her own inner voice, Carr created an art unique to Western Canada.
The Feel-Good Curriculum
by Maureen Stout, ba'85
Perseus Books $39.50
■ The so-called self-esteem movement,
which is a radically child-centered,
therapeutic model of schooling, has
transformed schools into clinics and
teachers into counselors, creating a
generation of self-righteous, self-absorbed,
underachieving children. This book
provides devastating evidence that our
belief in the power and importance of
self-esteem in education is misplaced and
The Great Years: Gold Mining in the
40   Trek   Spring 2001
Bialystok to Birkenau, The Holocaust
Journey of Michel Mielnicki
by John Munro ba'62, ma'65.
Ronsdale Press $19.95
■ The testimony of survivors is the
ultimate refutation of claims that the
Holocaust did not occur. In this profoundly honest memoir, Michel Mielnicki takes
us from the pleasures and charms of
pre-war Polish Jewry (now entirely lost)
into some of the darkest places of the
twentieth century. One of the few
survivors of Birkenau - not a
concentration camp, but an actual death
camp - Mielnicki tells his story with great
courage and attention to detail.
Emily Carr, Rebel Artist
The Duet
by Brenda Silsbe, bed'77
Illustrated by Galan Akin.
Hodgepog Books $5.95
■ Maggie has been having nightmares
about the music competition. Everyone
is expecting too much, especially Sister
Bernadette. Maggie wishes she had
the courage to say no. But now Sister
Bernadette has paired her up with a new
girl, Kathleen, who seems even morener-
vous than Maggie. As the day of the music
festival draws closer, the tension grows. A
heart-warming story of competition and
Litany in Time of Plague
by K.D. Miller mfa'78 The Duet
;A^:-A Litany
in Time of Plague
An Introduction to
The Porcupine's Quill $12.95
■ The 'plague' is a reference not only to
aids but also to its ironic companion, loneliness. Each of the characters in the ten
linked stories comes to the end of his or
her spiritual rope. One attends a Requiem
Mass where she adds her and her ex-husband's names to a list of the dead. Another
pursues a dangerous fantasy down one
dark alley after another. Still another learns
that his inability to love is exactly matched
by his need to do just that.
An Introduction to World Cinema
by Aristides Gazetas ma'92, phd'97
McFarland & Company, Inc., $29.95
■ It began with a kiss: Images like the
Rice-Irwin embrace, filmed in 1896 for
Thomas Edison's Kinetoscope, captured
the popular imagination and gave rise to
both an industry and an art form. This
book traces the history of film as both an
art form and a tool for social and political
change. Featuring numerous rare
photographs and supplemental critical
essays, the book serves as an invaluable
interpreter to the cinematic language as it
is spoken around the world.
The Cutting Edge, Reminiscences of
Surgery at VGH and UBC 1915-1985
by Frank Porter Patterson dsc'90
Hatzic Publishing $44
■ In this memoir Patterson describes his
medical training, the evolution of surgery
in Vancouver before 1950, and its
development at the UBC faculty of
Medicine until his retirement in 1985.
This book will captivate and entertain
anyone involved in the surgical scene in
Vancouver, and will be a valuable source
for historians wishing to record the
evolution of surgery in this community
Chances and Choices
by John B. Macdonald
Gordon Soules, Publishers
■ The time was the tumultuous '60s, made
exciting by student activism, faculty struggles for democratic reform, and crises in
government relations, government funding
and university governance. UBC's president
John Macdonald (1962-1967) faced these
crises and led the battle to elevate academic standards in British
These memoirs cover Macdonald's life from his origins in
Toronto, to his academic career at the University of Toronto
and Harvard, his years at UBC, and his subsequent career in
Students at the time were involved in the "Back Mac"
campaign in which Macdonald confronted the government of
W.A.C. Bennett to secure the necessary funds for UBC's
development. In his earliest months at ubc, Macdonald
spearheaded a report that charted the future of post secondary education in be, resulting in the creation of Simon Fraser
University, the University of Victoria and a system of two-year
This book will provide the thousands of graduates who
lurched through UBC during this time a clear understanding of
what really happened. It is an articulate, personal and
fascinating account of the events which shaped their education
and their university.
Call the Alumni Association offices, 822-3313 (toll free
800-883-3088) for purchase information or visit www.gordon-
soules.com for direct ordering.
Spring 2001   Trek  41 JBC
Alumni Reunion Weekend, 2001
The weekend of September 28 and 29 has been
declared Reunion Weekend. Classes celebrating
their 10, 25 & 50th Anniversaries will be
gathering on campus to visit old haunts, trade
tales with old classmates, and see the university
again for the first time. If you would like to be
part of your class's reunion organizing committee, please contact Jane Merling by e-mail,
merling@alumni.ubc.ca, or call 822-8918.
55th VOC Oldtimers Reunion
On Wednesday, Sept. 6, 2000, 94 members of
the Varsity Outdoor Club from the 1920's to
the 50's met for a luncheon at Cecil Green Park.
The next day, more than 60 members gathered
together and headed up to Cypress Bowl Black
Mountain Lodge in the rain. The ones that
ventured out to hike returned rather soaked.
Our next hike is scheduled for Wednesday,
September 5, 2001, Cypress Bowl downhill
parking lot, at 10 am. Bring a lunch. After the
hike, we will gather together at the home of
Scippio & Margaret Merler to swap stories over
For further information, call Ingrid Blomfield,
926-1156, Iola Knight, 922-7358, or Margaret
Merler, 922-8973.
Young Alumni
The crowd gathers to interview suspects at
the annual Young Alumni Murder Mystery
night. The fun, mayhem and murder (staged, of
course) happened on Friday, October 13, 2000
at Cecil Green Park. Special thanks again to
Roger Haskett, ba'86, bfa'91, ma'92, and his
detectives at Murder Unlimited for staging and
sponsoring the murder mystery for the past six
years.To host one of your own contact Murder
Unlimited at 649-guns.
Make the connection and get involved!   For
Alumni Day, 2000. Visitors relax behind the
Museum of Anthropology just before the raising ofthe Spirit Pole by Bill Reid. Reunion
Weekend, 2001, will be held September 28 and
29th, 2001.
more information on the Young Alumni group,
contact Tanya Walker at 822-8643 or e-mail
Medicine Class of 1960
Thirty of the surviving 51 members of the
class met to celebrate their 40th anniversary
at Harrison Hot Springs this past September.
Standing: Paul Shatzko, Jack Clark, Bruce
Taylor, Jerry Pearl, Clayt Davis, Mary Alice
Sutter, Maynard Shapiro, Bert Puskas, John
Booth, Bev Tamboline, Pat Johnston, Jack
Lederman, Aki Horii, Ewart Woolley, Ernie
Ledgerwood, Keith MacDonald, Bob McGraw,
Bob Miyagishima, Bill Martin. Front Row: Bill
Irvine, Al Grant, Ken McGill, June Whaun, Joy
Longley, Granny daCosta. Missing from picture:
Stan Sunshine, Kurt Gottschling, Phil Ney, Leigh
Cornelius, Glen Carlson.
Fort Camp Reunion
Did you live in Fort Camp? If so, we are
planning a reunion for Saturday September 28,
2001. Please contact Jane Merling for more
What IS a branch, anyway?
Branches are UBC's extended family. They are
made up of graduates and friends of UBC who
live outside the Lower Mainland, whether in
Sydney, BC or Singapore.
We currently have 40 UBC alumni
branches, located around the world. Join fellow
UBC grads in your city for networking, mentoring and, of course, fun. For more information
on branch activities in your area, contact Janis
Connolly, branches manager, janisc@alumni.ubc.
ca. Look at the branch
segment of the Alumni Association's website at
www.alumni.ubc.ca for a list of our worldwide
branch contacts.
Upcoming Events:
Hong Kong - Monthly happy hours and
business lunches. See the UBC Hong Kong
alumni website at www.ubcalumni.com.hk.
Toronto - Brunches at various places on the last
Sunday of every month. Watch for announce-
42   Trek   Spring 2001 UPCOMING REUNIONS 2001
Law '90
March 31, Vancouver Law Courts Restaurant.
Pharm '52
April 28-29, Tigh-Na-Mara Resort
Home Ec. '70
May 1, brunch at Capilano Golf Club
Pharmacy '53 Mini Reunion
May 3-4, Penticton, BC. For more info, contact RB Alexander at
May 18-20, Cecil Green Park dinner on the 19th, brunch at University Golf
Club on the 20th.
Rehab Medicine
May 25-27, UBC Campus
Law '71
June 1-2
Medicine '56
June 7, 8 & 9, Harrison Hot Springs Hotel Contact Jack McGregor,
596-3434 or Peter Prasloski 526-8434.
Rehab Medicine '81
June 2
Forestry '91
June 30-July 2, Silverlake Forestry Educational Society Camp
Elec Eng '70-'90
July 26, Museum of Anthropology Barbeque and social
Elec Eng '91-'00
August 11, University Golf Club for lunch
Forestry '71
August 17-19, Coast Whistler Hotel
BASc '51
September 28 & 29, Lunch on the 28th, Reunion Weekend Reception on
the 29th.
Civil Eng '61
September 29, Dinner at Cecil Green Park.
Medicine '81
September, Manteo Resort
October 1, Cecil Green Park reception
October 5, reception at Cecil Green Park.
Nursing '71
November 1. Club Med.
Class of 1941
For up-to-date information on all our reunions, call Jane Merling at
(604) 822-8918 or, toll free, 800 883-3088, or check our website for
reunions still in the works, www.alumni.ubc.ca
THE LAUNCH of our new magazine
signals a step forward in our efforts
to enhance communication with you,
our alumni, and to keep you better
informed about your university. UBC
is now ranked number two overall in
Canadian universities by Maclean's
Magazine and is a leading research
institute. Our alumni are now
influencing the social, economic and
environmental framework in almost
every part of the globe.
The launch of this magazine coincides with the launch of
Research Awareness Week (March 3-9) at UBC. Intended to be an
annual, campus-wide event, the week will include Faculty Research
Days, interdisciplinary research forums and keynote
presentations from researchers.
Our association was formed in 1917 with the intent of
creating an independent body to further the interests of the
university and its alumni. In 1946, the Association was
incorporated under the Societies Act as a non-profit society with
a volunteer board of directors, a constitution and an operating
budget. This budget was, in part, supported by a university grant
in exchange for maintaining the graduate database and conducting
annual fund raising. Today, the university grant covers 45% of our
annual budget with the university managing the alumni database
and fundraising while the Association provides the majority of
alumni services.
While this independent, yet linked structure has served us
well over the years, certain limitations are becoming increasingly
apparent. In particular, it is difficult to design and deliver
programs without a direct line to faculties, schools and
administrators. Because our service-providing arm is not an
integrated part of the university structure, many faculties are
developing their own alumni offices resulting in duplication in
many service areas. The Association is also challenged with raising
funds to maintain its own balanced budget.
Over the past year, we have worked with university
representatives to explore a closer administrative relationship with
the university while maintaining an independent board that has a
more strategic role to play in alumni and university matters. We
have made progress, but with many concerns expressed, require
more discussion in order to satisfy our members that this is the
appropriate approach. We look forward to keeping you informed
of progress in this area and hope that you enjoy our new
Linda Thorstad, President, UBC Alumni Association
Spring 2001   Trek  43 ALUMNI NEWS
ments about alumni outings to Mama Mia, Open Mike and the Royal
Canadian Air Farce on the TO website at www.geocities.com/ubctoralum.
One of our largest branches is in Toronto. Executive members take on
responsibilities like website design, newsletter drafting and social coordination. The executives are pictured below. Clockwise from top left are
Michelle Fischer ba'91, Yvonne Yuan bsc'87 msc'90, phd'95 (president),
Gillian Smith ba'87, Ed Ng bcom'94 (past president), Elaine Chong bsc'00
and Patrick Lim bcom'87.
Southern California - At an organizational meeting held in Santa Monica
on December 8th, alumni expressed interest in a Getty Museum visit and
a Canucks-Kings game in April. Contact Michael Chang at mcachang®
yahoo.com or (949) 651-8729. Or visit the Southern California Branch
website at www.ecircles.com/magic/d. cgi?k=7ViTMGxuBcC.
San Jose - Digital Moose Lounge events are monthly gatherings of techie
Canadians living in the Silicon Valley and are proving popular with UBC
alumni in the region. Visit the DML's informational website at www.digi-
Singapore - Watch for a networking event in late March. Visit the Singapore
website, www.UBCAlumniSg.com.
Calling all Aggie Grads Get in the "Who's Who"
Dr. Bob Blair, Professor Emeritus of Animal Science, is writing a History
of the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences at UBC. One section will contain an
Alumni Who's Who. He needs biographies of UBC Aggie grads, and stories
of student life at UBC during your time here.
Send Dr. Blair your information, including date and place of birth,
IS THIS YOU? Volunteer into your
drfcarn job!
graduates have
entered th ei r rel ated
job fields this way,
Tot: 435-1937
www.gradvate2work. com name of spouse /
children, address and contact info, career highlights, and any honours/awards. Please include a
Send it to: Dr. Blair, Faculty of Ag Sciences,
MacMillan Bldg, 2357 Main Mall, UBC,
Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z4.
Or e-mail: blair@interchange.ubc.ca,
fax: 822-2184.
Korea Alumni Reunion
The Westin Seoul hotel fashioned a spectacular
ice harp for the UBC alumni and friends reception in Korea in October. On the left is Oliver
Ormrod, a UBC exchange student at Korea
University. Centre is Dr. Kwang Soon Moon
masc'76, founding governor of the UBC Alumni
Association in Korea. Left of him is Mrs. Peron,
wife of the Canadian Ambassador to Korea.
Larry Sproul, director of UBC's International
Liaison Office, has his back to the camera.
Wine With Martha
Last September, UBC alumnus Anthony von
Mandl ba'72 opened the doors to his Mission
Hill Winery in Kelowna for a reception hosted
by president Martha Piper. The vintages were
wonderful and the reserve Chardonnay served
to more than  100 local alumni jumped off
the winery shop shelves. Pictured at right are
Agricultural Sciences Dean Moura Quayle (r),
Don King basc'75 (c) and Isabel Chen ba'79
Young Alumni ad
Graduate Diploma
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Spring 2001   Trek  45 A special thanks to our sponsors
6th Annual Alumni Recognition and Sports Hall of Fame Dinner
More than 600 friends of UBC came out to cheer the accomplishments of alumni and athletes and helped fill the coffers of our student scholarship funds. The UBC Alumni Association and the UBC
Department of Athletics would like to express special thanks to our
corporate sponsors who donated to this worthy cause.
Clark, Wilson
BC Hydro
Manulife Financial
MBNA Canada Bank
Wesbild Holdings, Ltd.
Citizens Bank of Canada
Ericsson Canada Inc.
Selectica Inc.
Sierra Systems
Significant Impact
Slide Farm
Vancouver Grizzlies
Allied Holdings
Business in Vancouver
HSBC Bank Canada
and a special thanks to TELUS for supporting this and
other Alumni Association programs
Proudly Supports
The UBC Alumni
Visit us at our Web site if you are interested in working in
any of the following areas;
Geospatial Information • Enterprise Resource
Systems (GIS) Management Package
E-Business Implementation
Client/Server Development    ' Systems Analysis,
Development &
Data Warehouse & Management
Data Management
To apply, visit our Web site and click on ''careers.'
I7.v two most beautiful words in ike English language: I ean.
At Alcan, we believe in sharing our success with our community.
As a champion of worthy education programs, scholarships
and bursaries throughout the province, we're an element
of B.C.'s learning-one that proudly supports people ALCAN
seeking to realize their potential. An Element Of B.C.
Returning Board Members, 2001-2002
President: Gregory Clark BCom'86, LLB'89
Senior VP, 1999-2001
Member-at-Large, 1996-1999
Past President, UBC Commerce/MBA Alumni
Member, Academic Plan Advisory Committee, 1998-present
Occupation: General Counsel, Academic Systems, Inc. and
Academic Systems (USA), Inc.
John Grunau BA'67 Occupation: Principal of ENEC Associates,
Director at EmW Productions.
Darlene Marzari MSW'68
Volunteer with Fraser Basin Council and the Katherine Sanford Housing Society.
Board of Directors, 2001-2002
Honorary President  Martha C. Piper
Chancellor William Sauder, BCom'48, LLD'90
President Greg Clark
Senior VP Jane Knott Hungerford, BEd'67
Treasurer Tammie Mark, BCom'88
Members-at-Large, '00-'02 John Grunau, Darlene Marzari
Members-at-Large, '01-'03  Martin Ertl, BSc'93, Billy Wan,
BCom'82, Paul Rosenau, MA'87, BLA'87
Executive Director (ex-officio) Agnes Papke, BSc(Agr)'66
Board Appointments, 2000-2001
Administration Rep  Byron Hender, BCom'68
AMS President  Maryann Adamec
Awards  Haig Farris, BA'60, LLD'97
Branches Greg Clark
Communications/Marketing  Don Wells, BA'89
Convocation Senator  Gerry Podersky-Cannon, BA'70,
Alumni Day  Darlene Marzari
Faculty Rep  Heather Keate, BSc'66, BLS'67
Nominating, Recruitment & Membership Greg Clark
Elected Board Members
Senior Vice President Jane Knott Hungerford, BEd'67
Community Service BC Cancer Foundation Millennium Campaign 1997-pres-
ent; board member of the BC Cancer Foundation Board of Directors since 1993,
chair since 1997; member of the Board of Trustees for the BC Cancer Agency since
1994; part of the Research Management Committee of the BC Cancer Research
Centre 1996-present; member, Crofton House School Foundation Board of Directors;
involved in the establishment of Science World, sat on the Board of Directors for
seven years, named Patron for Science World in 1995 in recognition of significant
Treasurer Tammie Mark, BCom'88
Alumni Activities Executive, UBC Commerce Alumni, 1989-present; Volunteer for
Alumni Day, Homecoming, Graduation.
University Activities Member, AMS Student Administrative Commission; Co-
Editor, 1988 Commerce Undergraduate Society Employment Brochure/Yearbook;
Member at Large, Commerce Undergraduate Society General Council; Volunteer,
UBC Open House.
Community Service Director, Acting Community Services Co-ordinator and
Member-at-Large, Trident Enrichment Society; Volunteer, various charitable organizations and sports events.
Occupation Senior Consultant with Westech Information Systems, a subsidiary of
BC Hydro. Member, Certified Management Accountants of BC.
Members-at-Large 2001-2003
Martin Ertl, BSc'93
Alumni Activities Member of Alumni Scholarships and Bursaries Committee since
University Activities Director of Administration, AMS, 1991-92; President, AMS,
1992-93; Chair, UBC Aquatic Centre Management Committee, 1991 -92.
Professional Activities Volunteer, McGill Legal Information Clinic, 1994-96;
Special Advisor, NAFTA Advisory Committee on Private Commercial Disputes.
Occupation Managing Director and General Counsel, Navarik Corp, 2000-present.
Billy Wan, BCom'82
Professional Activities Actively involved in the establishment of a major private
school for more than 600 students. Has assisted in the formation of private schools
in British Columbia.
Community Service Volunteered with the Canadian Red Cross, West Point Grey
Independent School Society, and Junior Achievement of British Columbia.
Occupation Vice President of Venturex Global Corporation, a company specializing in project financing for schools and other education related projects.
Paul Rosenau, MA'87, BLA'87
Alumni Activities Received the UBC Alumni Association's Outstanding Young
Alumnus Award
Professional Activities Received the Business in Vancouver's "40 Under 40"
award to BC's top young entrepreneurs, 2000; received the Alberta Association of
Landscape Architects Awards to UBC School of Landscape Architecture, 1985; won
the Dean's Cup in Landscape Architecture for Academic Achievement, First Year
Landscape Architecture, UBC.
Occupation Founder and Principal of EKISTICS Town Planning Inc.
Spring 2001   Trek  47 [
CLASS  ACTS       Find out who's doing what and where they're doing it
Sylvia Ablowitz ba'21 was just a little girl
when her dad built a hotel on the seashore in
Vancouver's West End and named it after her.
Her dad lost the hotel during the Depression,
but the name stuck. Mrs. Ablowitz turns 101 in
Cleveland Hickman Jr. phd'58 (Fish Physiology)
taught zoology at the University of Alberta and
Washington and Lee University in Virginia. He
has also produced two field guides on the invertebrates of the Galapagos, and is working on
a third one, in collaboration with the Darwin
Research Center in the Galapagos. He discovered a rare porcelain crab there that bears his
name: Clastotoechus hickmanii.
After practicing law in Vancouver for more
than 41 years, Merrill Leckie bcom'57, llb'58
has retired to Maple Bay on Vancouver Island,
where he is a trade-mark agent and a chartered accountant . . . Dr. Howard R. Nixon
bpe'51, was named an Officer of the Order of
Canada for service to Canadian youth through
education and sport. He is also a founder of
Philip Victor Allingham ba(hon english)'68,
phd'88 and his wife Andrea ba'83 recently
moved to Thunder Bay, where Philip is assistant
professor of English Language Arts in the faculty of Education. Philip taught in be for thirty
years at high school, college, and university
levels . . . Robert Amedee Cantin, ba'61, retired
from Hughes Aircraft Company in Culver City,
California after 38 years in the aerospace industry. He has accepted a systems engineering position working on usaf satellite tracking systems
with Lockheed Martin located in El Segundo,
California . . . Raphael Girard ba'63 joined
the Foreign Service of the Dept. of Citizenship
and Immigration Operations in 1963. He
has been appointed assistant deputy minister,
After graduating from UBC, John
Brockington ba(hon)'53 taught
in BC high schools for a few years
and then went on to Yale to get
his doctorate in Fine Arts. In 1961
he came back to UBC to join the
Theatre department where he
taught Theatre History, Dramatic
Literature, directing and acting.
When Dorothy Sommerset retired
in 1965, he became head of the
department, a position he held
for 22 years. He continued as
associate professor until he retired
in 1994. John was a highly
regarded director for the
Vancouver International Festival,
at the early Arts Club, the
Playhouse, as well as at UBC in
the old and new Freddie Wood
Theatres. Notable among the
more than 100 productions he
directed were Henry IV, Part One,
Misalliance, The Three Sisters,
Waiting for Godot (Canadian
Premiere), Who's Afraid of Virginia
Woolf, and Twelfth Night.
Immigrant Operations, and named Ambassador
to the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Most
recently, he was appointed Special Envoy for
Humanitarian Affairs, Kosovo Crisis, and
Special Coordinator for Reconstruction in the
Balkans . . . Jeffrey Ernest Henton phd(chem
eng)'67 was lead environmental consultant with
Eutech. For the last ten years he has worked in
Canada, usa, Mexico, Japan, China, Russia,
Poland and western Europe on environmental issues . . . Gail Mclntyre ba'67 has been
appointed to the Board of Ontario Heritage
Foundation. She has a background in environmental concerns and, as a municipal politician,
she brought in legislation on natural heritage.
. . Erland M. Schulson base (hons)'64, phd'68
was recently appointed the first George Austin
Colligan Distinguished Professor of Engineering
at Thayer School of Engineering, Dartmouth
College . . . Dr. PC Simon msc'60 published a
book, The Missing Piece to Paradise, in May
of this year . . . Lorrie R. Williams ba'66 was
given the Avon "Women of Inspiration" Award
for 2000 for founding the Canadian Harambee
Education Society, which sponsors high school
girls in East Africa. She was featured in the
September issue of Canadian Living . . . Kathy
E. Zimon ba'66, bls'69, ma'70 took early retirement from her position as Fine Arts librarian
at the University of Calgary in 1997 in order
to concentrate on research interests. Her book,
Alberta Society of Artists: the First Seventy
Years, was published last September by the
University of Calgary Press.
Victoria (Brandlmayr) Acheson ba'78, ma'99
presented her masters thesis at the Harvard
School of Public Health International Fishing
Industry Safety and Health Conference, held
at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute in
Massachusetts . . . Brian Coldwells bcom'72 is
in audit and computer specialization at ccra. He
spent nine years as director on the board of the
George Derby Long Term Care Society. He is
a founding member of the Lions Gate Anglers
Club and is in his fifth year as president. He is
also a member of the be Wildlife Federation.
Any interested fishers in the Lower Mainland
can drop him an e-mail at: bcinbc@mybc.com
.-.-. A.M. Lorraine Fader ba'78 is principal horn,
48   Trek   Spring 2001 education director and librarian at Owensboro
Symphony in Kentucky, and instructor of Horn
at Western Kentucky University in Bowling
Green. She regularly plays in several orchestras
and festivals in Indiana, Virginia, and Alabama,
and plays trumpet in a German Bass Band in her
spare time . . . Cameron Louis ba'70 is professor
and head of the department of English at the
University of Regina. He has published Records
of Early English Drama: Sussex, a 500-page
book documenting the performance of drama
and music in the county of Sussex in the Middle
Ages and Renaissance . . . Juan Merkt bsc'78,
msc'85, his wife Lanette, and daughter Rachel
have moved to Athens, oh. Juan has accepted
a position as assistant professor in the Dept. of
Aviation at Ohio University, where he will continue to pursue his three professional passions:
teaching, flying and flight safety-related research
. . . Cecelia (Corriveau) Lee Temple bed'79, dip
(deaf)'83 was awarded the Master of Special
Education (Sensory Disability) with Distinction
from the University of Newcastle in Sydney,
Australia in June 2000
. . . Thora van Male ba'70 headed off to France
as soon as she graduated, and has never looked
back. She teaches at the university in Grenoble,
where she set up a student exchange program
between the Grenoble Institute of Political
Studies and ubc . . . David W. Vogt bsc'78,
meng'85, founder of online educational publishing company Branium.com, was named to
the new David F. Robitaille Professorship in
Mathematics and Science Education at UBC .
. . A psalm setting Murray C. Walker bmus'75
composed was sung by a mass choir of 125
high school students at the National Assoc, of
Episcopal (Anglican) Schools biennial conference at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco in
November. He continues as director of Music
at York School in Monterey, ca . . . Edward
Witzke ba'72, barch'76 has been president of
the Canadian Institute of Professional Home
Inspectors, Inc. since 1992. He was instrumental
in starting the certificate in housing inspection
program at BCIT. Edward has been featured
on radio, tv, and in numerous publications on
building inspection issues since the 1980s.
In January 2000, Deborah deBruijn mls'85
joined the Canadian National Site Licensing
Project as executive director. She is now living in Ottawa with husband Gerard and
children Andrea and Vanessa . . . Ian Forster
bsc (zoology)'80, msc (animal sci)'87 is a
research scientist at the Oceanic Institute in
Kailua, Hawaii, studying nutrition and feed
ing of aquatic animals . . . John Forster-Coull
bsc (pharm)'88; phd (pharm)'95 and Jayne
Forster-Coull, bsn'95 are pleased to announce
the birth of their second child, Caitlin Meridith
on August 5th 2000. The whole family (including the cats) are doing fine . . . Donald Haldane
mba'81 has been named senor director of the
Student Service Center of Point Park College
in Pittsburgh, pa. Previously, Donald was principal of the Red Deer campus of Cambridge
College in Alberta .-.-. Kathryn Hatashita-Lee
ba' 82 was the winning author of the Asian
Canadian Writer's Workshop Emerging Writer
Award for Children's Literature. Her short story,
"Remember Crysanthemum" appears in Winds
Through Time (Beach Holme Publishing) and
Crossroads 7 (Gage Educational Publishing) . . .
Grant Hill bsc'86, msc'88 is a support astronomer for Keck Observatory in Kamuela, Hawaii.
It has two 10 meter optical/infrared telescopes
on Mauna Kea ... P. Bradley Kitchen base'8 5
has been appointed vice president, Corporate
Finance at Pacific Opportunity Company Ltd.
In Vancouver . . . North Vancouver physiotherapist Paige (Macdonald) Larson bpe'84 was
chosen as a member of the Canadian Medical
Team for the Paralympics in Sydney, Australia.
She served as physiotherapist for the women's
wheelchair basketball team. She was also selected as the head therapist for the 2001 World
Figure Skating Championships in Vancouver .
. . Graham Lee bcom'87, dule'90 is president
and founder of RG properties Ltd., a diversified
real estate company with long-term holdings
in shopping centers, a hotel and major industrial buildings. It is one of the fastest-growing
companies in be, with annual revenues of about
$24 million . . . Scot Macdonald ba'88 recently
published Rolling the Iron Dice: Historical
Analogies and Decisions to Use Military Force
in Regional Contingencies, with Greenwood
Press . . . Warren Newcomen base'8 5 recently
moved to Kamloops with wife Nancy Stevens
to work for Highland Valley Copper as their
senior geotechnical engineer. They are enjoying
the sunny Cariboo and the career challenges
in a city with a slightly slower pace . . . Helene
(Boutin) Rodriguez ba'89 bought a small business, CSI , which she operates from home while
bringing up son Angel, born Sept. 16, 1999.
Her husband, Lusero, is still in the Air Force
and is traveling all over the world-.-.-.-Tony
Ryan basc'86 moved back to Kamloops
where he is a Senior Process Engineer with
Weyerhaeuser Canada Ltd . . . Mark Sandercock
bsc(chem)'87 and his family moved to Sydney,
Australia, where Mark is studying for a doctorate in Forensic Chemistry at the University of
Technology . . . TedToriumi bsc'87, bed'92
and Kam Toriumi welcomed their son, Brenden
Connor Eizo on August 23, 1999. Brenden's
siblings, Jaspreet and Johnny were very happy
with his arrival as well. Ted is currently a
Radiation Therapist at the Fraser Valley Clinic
in Surrey, be . . . Rick Turner bcom'80 is president and ceo of International Aviation Terminals
Spring 2001   Trek  49 CLASS ACTS
Management Group of Companies. The biotech
company funds a research laboratory at ubc.
Turner is also chair and director of the BC
Aviation Council . . .John van Deursen bmus'85
and Viktorie (Zaskodna) were married on
September 9, 2000 at the District Court of Shin
Dien City in Taiwan. They met while John was
performing jazz at a night club, and Viktorie,
a student from the Czech Republic completing
her masters degree in Chinese languages, was
enjoying a drink in her first week in Taipei City.
Two years later - marriage! . . . Tony Varga
bpe'82 has been teaching overseas since 1992
in Libya, Oman, and currently the Philippines.
He is married to Susana, has a son, Rigel, and
is enjoying expat life . . .  Heidi Walsh ba'89
moved to Germany eight years ago. After working in print and radio, she now teaches radio
skills to journalists from developing countries.
In 1997 she married her German yodeler, Matt,
following a 17 year trial period. Wunderbar . . .
Jeneen Margaret Weekes bsc '81 has taken two
honours diplomas in the digital graphic arts in
Toronto, Digital Media and Computer Graphics,
through the International Academy of Design
in Toronto. She was second programmer for
the Molson Virtual Brewery Tour ed while a
student at the academy, and a brochure cover
that she designed was selected as an example
of outstanding student work in 1999. She is the
in-house graphic designer/artist for an electrical
lighting manufacturer/importer in the Greater
Toronto Area . . . Colin C. Yip bcom'85 and
his wife Cynthia Yip bcom'89 celebrated the
birth of their second daughter, Madison Nicole,
on July 9, 1998. Colin and Cynthia have their
own public practice accounting business in
James Andre bsc'96 is in his third year working
for the Institute for Aboriginal Health at UBC.
He is currently working with be colleges and
universities to establish a consortium to improve
Aboriginal health . . . Richard Bruskiewich
bsc'92, phd'99 has three children: a seven-and-
a-half year-old son and two daughters, five
years and seven months old . . . Keane Carson
French was born Sept. 9, 2000 to Leslie Jean
Carson ba'90 and husband Ewen French.  Leslie
was awarded the Master of Publication from
SFU last October . . . Grace C. Cheng bcom'97
married Ken Ho on June 10, 2000. She is currently pursuing her bachelor of education at
UBC . . . Andrea Childerhose bhk'94 recently
returned from Africa to give birth to her first
child, Sara Elizabeth Klatt, on December 13,
2000. They plan to move to Germany in the
spring . . . Andrew Del Riccio mmus'98 is head
of Brass and Percussion at the Trinity Grammar
School in Sydney, Australia. He was appointed
music director of the Mosman Orchestra after
graduating. This year he was made artistic director of the Kings Cross Chamber Orchestra and
principal trumpet of the Willoughby Symphony
Orchestra . . . Sharon Eblaghie bsc'98, bed'99
was hired as a full-time secondary school
teacher at Grady High School in Atlanta, ga,
immediately after graduation. After only one
year of teaching, she was flown to a conference
in North Carolina, where she was awarded
Teacher of the Year for the State of Georgia
. . . John C. Fiddick llb'92 was admitted as
a partner to the law firm of Clark, Wilson,
Barristers and Solicitors, last August. He joined
the firm as an associate lawyer in May, 1997
. . . Meygan Charlotte was born to Shawn
Gordon-Crane ba'90 and Andrew Crane on
February 27, 2000 . . . Kevin Hamilton ba'98
received his ma in International Affairs from
the Norman Paterson School of International
Affairs, Carleton University, last November . . .
Colleen Hannah bpe'92, bed'97, mhk'99 is the
First Nations Curriculum Resource Teacher with
School District 69 (Qualicum). She is living in
Nanaimo with her new family, Kevin Parkinson
and son Taylor Joseph, born December 8,
1999-.-.-.-Michelle Hartley bed'97 is currently
living in Kyiv, Ukraine. She taught at an international school last year, and briefly returned
to the Fraser Valley to marry Brian Cormick on
August 11, 2000 . . . Andrew Horner ma'97 and
wife Chris were married on July 29, 2000 at St.
Michael's Church, Flixton in Manchester, uk.
The wedding was conducted by another graduate of UBC (and VST), Scott Gould bmus'86
who is now curate at All Saints, Vernon. Scott
was given special permission by the Archbishop
of York to conduct the service . . . After finishing up his contract with the PRC, Jason S.
Hunnisett ba'96 moved to The Netherlands in
Dec, 2000. He invites any UBC grads in the
neighborhood to get in touch: jasonshl@usa.
net. . . Michael Kozdron bsc'98 married the
love of his life, Jessica Burns, on August 5, 2000,
in Maple Ridge, BC. They are currently living
in Durham, ne . . . Simon James Lees bhk'98
has earned a master of science degree in muscle
physiology and biochemistry from Virginia
Tech. He is now a phd student there, continuing
his studies and working as a research assistant
50   Trek   Spring 2001 . . . Willem Maas, ba'95, double honours
Political Science and Geography, is completing his phd at Yale and spending the year on
exchange at Nuffield College, Oxford. He
would love to hear from former classmates:
willem.maas@aya.yale.edu .-.-.-Aarti Moudgill
bsc'99 has entered the Pennsylvania College
of Optometry's Doctor of Optometry program
this fall . . . David J. Musto ba'94, md'99 and
Lisa Musto are thrilled to announce the arrival
of their baby girl Emma Sarah, born July 24th.
She is expected to cheer for the T-birds during
Shrum time despite her mother's SFU ties . . .
Kevin Oldknow basc(eng phys)'96, masc(mech
eng)'00 and Angela Dobson basc(mech eng)'00
were married on Sept. 2, 2000, at Spanish
Banks, Vancouver . . . Christina Pao ba'93
married Elan Cohen on 20th August 2000.
They met in Hong Kong five years ago and
now live in Singapore. Christina is the Asia
Sales and marketing manager for Warner
Bros. Publications . . . Ben Prins basc'93 and
Michelle (Ternes) Prins bcom'90 are pleased
to announce the arrival of their first child,
Dante Michael, on October 13, 2000. Ben and
Michelle have lived in Calgary since 1997,
where Ben works for Fluor Daniel Canada,
and Michelle runs her own consulting business . . . Kevin Purkiss mba'97 is celebrating
the birth of Margaret Alexandra Purkiss,
born July 2, 2000, weighing 91bs lOoz . . .
Andrew Roger phd'96 came back to Canada
after working in the us. He accepted a position with the Canadian Institute for Advanced
Research as Scotiabank scholar, and is assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular
biology at Dalhousie University . . . Mario
Sertic bsc'90, bsc(Pharm)'95, dmd'99 and
Renate Simmons dmd'99 were married on
August 19, 2000. They are both practicing dentistry in the Lower Mainland . . .
Audrey Sloan dip(art hist)'90 is an architect
in Edinburgh, Scotland . . . Manjeet Uppal
bsc'99 has entered the Pennsylvania College
of Optometry's Doctor of Optometry program this fall . . . Manuela Vieira-Ribeiro
ba(hon)'95, ma'97, bed'98 and Jeremy
Thomas Lovell ba(hon)'97 were married on
July 22, 2000. They met at UBC five years
ago. Manuela is a teacher and Jeremy is an
articled student at a downtown law firm . . .
Arthur Wolak ba'90, dip(art hist)'94 received
an ma in humanities, with honours, from
California State University on May 26, 2000
. . . Christy Wright bsc(agr)'96 is looking for
friends from 1995, '96, and '97. You can contact her at: cwright@city.abby.bc.ca.
Dr. Ludwig von Hahn ba'85 has been appointed director of
Crotched Mountain's Outpatient Medical Services. Von Hahn
is a developmental pediatrician with additional two-years'
training in child and adolescent psychiatry. His responsibilities include leadership of the School Partnership Program, the Developmental
Pediatrics Clinic, and other outpatient clinics involving physician services. He is
particularly interested in the development of effective and responsive outreach
programs for public schools centered on the needs of children with disabilities.
Von Hahn also earned his md from McGill where he also completed his
pediatric residency. In 1995, von Hahn undertook fellowships in developmental
and behavioural pediatrics at Children's Hospital in Boston. He has conducted
research on how medical assessments of children with learning problems are
received by school personnel and other consumers. He would like to create
reports and systems of care that are more responsive to the needs of children in
community settings.
Stephen Borden bcom'50 ofVictoria, May 18,
1993 . . . Arnold Gordon Carter basc'47 of
Peterborough, on, November 30, 2000 . . . John
O. Dueckman basc'50 of Surrey, be . . . Arthur
Middleton Eastham ba'37, ma'39, phd'42 of
Ottawa, July 26, 2000 . . . Edmund George
Edgar ba'34, ma'39, bed'53 of Sechelt, be, May
27, 2000 . . . Ingrid Yvonne Einarson basc'98,
July 9, 2000 . . . Marjorie Gertrude Evans
bhe'49, bsw'59, msw'61 of Chilliwack, January
3, 2001 . . . Louise Fletcher ba'53, med'67 of
Vancouver, November 29, 2000 . . . Donald
S. Gailbraith ba'55, msc'58 of Quebec City,
December 9, 2000 . . . Marjorie Halpin phd'73,
Assoc. Prof., Anthropology, Curator, Ethnology,
Museum of Anthropology, August 30, 2000 .
. . Victor E. Hansen basc'51 of Jacksonville,
fl, January 6,2000 . . . Marie (Sutherland)
Hardy bsc(agr)'56, February 21, 1993 . . .
Audrey Hawthorn lid'86 , founding curator
of the Museum of Anthropology, Assoc. Prof.,
Anthropology & Sociology, November 18, 2000
. . . Arthur Hubscher ba'55, msc'59 of Rexburg,
Idaho, October 11, 2000 . . . Randle Iredale
barch'55 ofVancouver . . . Hilary (Helliwell)
James ba'30, October 5, 2000 . . . Heinz Lange
bed'73 of Merritt, be, June 11, 2000 . . . Agnes
Yvonne Mack mis'86 of Regina, September 17,
2000 . . . Geraldine (McDonnell) McAtee ba'49
of Burnaby, August 4, 2000 . . . Robert Law
McDougall ba'39 of Ottawa, August 4, 2000 .
. . Peter C. Mcintosh, UBC physical education
teacher, founding member of the International
Council of Sport Science and Physical Education
in 1958, of England, July 22, 2000 . . .Vaughan
L. Mosher basc'44, of Creston, be, May 7,
2000 . . . CD. "Bill" Osborn bsc(agr)'33 of
Vernon, May 11, 2000 . . . Guy Rene Ouellette
msc'91 of Rimouski, pq, September 7, 2000 . . .
Donald Phillips, secondary student in the Career
Preparation program in Education, November
11, 2000 . . . Leila Rezvani, second-year
Education student, December 1, 2000.
Correction: Homer Armstrong Thompson ba'25,
ma'27, lid'49 was born in 1906, not 1905 . . .
Ralph Tortorelli ba'54, med'67 of White Rock,
July 9, 2000 . . . Margaret (Muirhead) Turner
ba'31 of England, October 10, 2000 . . . Gerry
Ward ba'36 of Lethbridge, October 20, 2000 . .
. Harold A. Wright bcom'62 of Denver, co, June
In Memoriam information should be directed to:
In Memoriam Editor,
Trek Magazine, University of British Columbia,
6251 Cecil Green Park Road, Vancouver, BC, Canada,
V6T 1Z1, or to sharim@alumni.ubc.ca.
Submissions may be edited for length.
Spring 2001   Trek   51 IN MEMORIAM
Janet Susan (Fleck) Ladner (1919-2000)
ba'40, basc'44, ma'77 was a lifelong student with a passion for learning. After
graduation, she started a nursing career
with the Victorian Order of Nurses.
An inveterate traveler, Janet was a frequent speaker at international conferences on heraldry, Napoleonic Studies
and Portuguese history, where she demonstrated her mastery of written and spoken
Portuguese, which she learned in her 50s.
She will be remembered by her friends
at Pasley Island and Whistler, her fellow
lifelong blood donors at the Red Cross, her
fellow students at the UBC library and lecture halls, and many acquaintances at her
Granville Island haunts. Editors at various
newspapers will know her for her unsolicited grammatical corrections.
Her love of exercise started with tennis and badminton championships in
her teens, followed by years of swimming at the Vancouver Lawn Tennis and
Badminton Club, where she was a member
since 1936. Daily early morning False
Creek seawall training walks culminated
in top-five finishes in her age group in
the Sun Run for the last five years, most
recently last April in the 80+ category.
Joseph Kania (1901-2000) ba/bsc'26,
masc'28 was born in Vienna. His family moved to Trail, BC in the early
20th century. He started working in
the smelter at the age of fourteen and
played musical accompaniment for
one of the local silent movie theatres.
He saved his money to go to UBC,
and as a student, he helped stage
Gilbert and Sullivan musicals with
After graduation, Joseph moved to
Anyox, BC to work as a mine surveyor and geologist, and met his first
wife, Nan, there. He then returned
to ubc for his master's, and then
went on to obtain his phd from the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
He settled back in Vancouver at
Pemberton Securities, where he was
made head of the research department. He quickly became top salesman and stayed with the firm for 44
In 1942, Joe started to teach engineering economics to graduating engineering students at UBC, a position he
held for 13 years. As a member of the
UBC Senate for 17 years, Joe was the
chair of the Alumni Higher Education
Committee, whose findings were the
basis for the establishment of BCIT.
Joe traveled all over the world on
trade missions as a member of the
Vancouver Board of Trade. He was
also a founding director of the BC
Chamber of Commerce. Nan died
in 1987, and in 1990, he married
Florence Taylor.
William (Bill) Charles Brown
(1907-2000) bsc'28 was a devoted family man, an enterprising florist and flower
grower, active in his community and part
of a pioneer Haney-Hammond family.
After university, Bill went to work in the
family florist business in Vancouver. He
married Muriel in 1937 and in 1944 he
returned to Maple Ridge to succeed his
father as manager of Brown Brothers'
Greenhouses Ltd. with four acres of greenhouses. As well as belonging to the Knights
of Columbus, Bill joined the Maple Ridge
Lions Club one year after it opened in
1944 and became its president in 1947. He
served as treasurer for the Maple Ridge
Volunteer Fire Department, and chairman
of the Centennial Swimming Pool project
for the Parks Board. Bill sat on Maple
Ridge Municipal Council for 14 years, was
a founding member of the Maple Ridge
Hospital Society and chaired the committee that built the Ridge Meadows Hospital.
He was a director on the hospital board
for 16 years. Muriel passed away only a
few months before Bill. They were married
for 63 years.
52   Trek   Spring 2001 Vincent Stogan lld'95, also known as
Tsimilano, of the Musqueam First Nation,
was an elder for the First Nations House
of Learning (FHNL). He was a cherished
friend, teacher, and mentor to many at
In addition to his honorary degree from
UBC, Vincent also received an honorary
degree from the native Indian Teacher
Program in 1991.
He made a significant contribution
during the building of the First Nations
Longhouse and of to the academic and student services of the FNHL. Vincent served
in various committees for First Nations
academic initiatives, opened numerous
events with prayers in the Hun'q'umin'un
language, and conducted many ceremonies.
Vincent was chosen by the elders of his
family and community to carry on traditional healing and cultural work. He could
never say no when he was asked to help
others, whether it involved spiritual
assistance or teaching cultural knowledge.
He traveled extensively through BC and
the United States, helping and teaching
others through spiritual ceremonies and
guiding the work of community leaders.
He also served on the board of directors for many aboriginal organizations in
Vancouver and the Lower Mainland.
Heather Kilpatrick (1908-2000) ba'28, basc'31
passed away in her 92nd year in Vancouver. Born in Revelstoke,
Heather was the youngest daughter of a BC pioneer family of Thomas Kilpatrick, then superintendent of the CNR.
After she graduated in Nursing in 1931, she received the
BC Government Award in Public Health Nursing for that
year. Heather worked in the Cowichan Health Centre
in Duncan as a staff nurse and then as a supervisor. As
a   Rockefeller  Scholar,   she   obtained   her  masters   degree
Public Health Nursing from the University of Toronto in
1939. In 1940 she was appointed the first director of Public
Health Nursing in BC.
In 1944, Heather was one of the four senior Canadian nurses to be appointed to
United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration. Heather's position was
in Greece, which was in the middle of a civil war. On return she became nurse in
charge of the large Outpatient department at Shaughnessy Hospital. She held that
position until her retirement.
Heather was a very generous, sensitive, compassionate and loving family member.
She had great empathy for those less fortunate and gave generously to many
charities all her life. She was a proud member of and generous donor to the UBC
Alumni Association. She loved her province and her country, but always maintained
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Spring 2001   Trek   53 IN MEMORIAM
G.E.Ted Baynes (1907-2000) basc'32
served as Alumni Association president
from 1944-45. He donated scholarships
to both ubc and the University of Victoria.
With Baynes Manning and G.E. Baynes
contractors, he built projects throughout
BC and Alberta. He also played an active
role in the family-owned Grosvenor Hotel
and Haney Brick and Tile Company. Ted
was a strong advocate of parks and planning, and contributed much time and
effort to the attractive layout of West
Vancouver. In his own neighbourhood he
worked with a group of friends to purchase land and build the Altamont public
tennis courts.
His wife, Jean Cameron Baynes ba'32,
died two-and-a-half weeks after Ted. She
was a gifted teacher and public speaker.
She and Ted were married for 66 years.
t7m . ■ym&y
< ■
Cheung-Kok Choi
An industrialist, businessman
and philanthropist in China,
Hong Kong and Canada,
Cheung-Kok Choi dedicated
himself to building bridges for
the international exchange of
information and ideas.
The C.K. Choi Building for
the Institute of Asian Research
at UBC was made possible
through his vision, dedication
and generous support.
The institute is a cornerstone of UBC's international activities and is made up
of five research centres which focus on China, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asia, and
India and South Asia.
Three principles guided his life: that the traditional virtues of Confucianism
provide a prescription for human behaviour; that educational institutions help to
achieve greater academic excellence through the exchange of the cultures of the
East and West; and that education plays an important role in increasing knowledge and understanding.
At UBC, he established numerous fellowships and prizes, including the C.K.
Choi Fellowship in Business Administration and the C.K. Choi Scholarship in
Engineering. He is survived by his wife, seven children - five of whom graduated
from UBC - and eight grandchildren.
William (Bill) David McLaren
(1936-2000) bsc'58, msc'63 grew up in
Dollarton, North Vancouver. He worked
for the federal department of Fish and
Wildlife, then went to Monash University
in Australia on a research scholarship from
1963-1966. On his return to Canada, he
became assistant professor at McGill from
1966-1969, and associate master at bcit
from 1969-1979. Subsequently, he worked
for the District of Maple Ridge in Parks
and Leisure Services.
Bill had a wonderful sense of humour
and a keen intellect. He was passionate
about his community and the environment. He dedicated his time and knowledge to various organizations such as the
Alouette River Management Society, gvrd
Parks Forum, Fraser River Coalition, Trans
Canada Trail, and Grasslands Conservation
Council. Maritime history was a particular
interest and he was a dedicated volunteer
for the Vancouver Maritime Museum and
the s.s. Master Society which supports the
last steam tugboat in North America. He
was an avid and talented photographer and
the Maritime Museum has benefited from
thousands of his photographs of ships.
Bill's life was celebrated in a gathering at
Allco Park in Maple Ridge, August 21. His
ashes were taken to sea on the S.S. Master
on September 23. His spirit lives on in the
natural world he so treasured. He is survived by his wife Babs, daughter Dorothy,
brothers James and John and their families.
54   Trek   Spring 2001


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