UBC Publications

UBC Publications

UBC Publications

Trek Mar 31, 2009

Item Metadata


JSON: alumchron-1.0224315.json
JSON-LD: alumchron-1.0224315-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): alumchron-1.0224315-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: alumchron-1.0224315-rdf.json
Turtle: alumchron-1.0224315-turtle.txt
N-Triples: alumchron-1.0224315-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: alumchron-1.0224315-source.json
Full Text

Full Text

 if ©#C1
Magazine of The University of British Columbia
The University of British Columbia Alumni Association
This is Jeff Francis
A Vision for Kandahar
Is Canada Really
a Democracy?
* i
Canadian Publications Mail Agreement #40063528 '
; Trel@
5    Take Note
13   Letters to the Editor
14   A Question Of Conviction by Vanessa Clarke
The UBC Law Innocence Project is investigating potential cases of wrongful conviction in BC.
1 8   ThiS iS Jeff FranciS by Don Wells, BA'S9
The sincere and impeccably modest Jeff Francis has found fame and fortune in Major
League Baseball.
22    A Vision for Kandahar by Michael Awmack, BA'oi
Toor Wesa, PhD'02, has accepted the formidable challenge of governing the complex
and turbulent province of Kandahar.
24  Crown, Parliament or People: Is Canada Really a
Democracy? By Richard Johnston BA'yo, PhD
Was the 2008 Parliamentary crisis in Canada a harbinger of things to come?
28  UBC Library Vault Celebrates its First Anniversary
Here's a sneak peek at images that will be available online this year.
30  New Patinas Bridge Science and Art by jody Jacobs
Entirely new colours for metal patinas are being developed at UBC Okanagan.
35 Alumni News
38 Class Acts
42 Books
44 T-Bird News
48 In Memoriam
w-l Mmw -■•*»-
Cover image: Illustration by Keith Leinweber
(See A Question of Conviction, Pg.14)
Opposite: Hanazunmo Genji Hiiki
The Tale of Genji, written in the 1 Ith century,
recounts Prince Genji's seductive love affairs,
his temporary exile, his subsequent return
to court and his final voluntary solitude in a
mountain temple. Murasaki Shikibu, a lady
of the court, wrote this tale - often considered to be "the first novel" - to be savoured
by women of aristocracy.
Asian Library (PL752.K585 Sen V.16).
Image © UBC Library Vault 2008.
JVw ■-
EDITOR IN CHIEF Christopher Petty, mfa'86
ART DIRECTOR Keith Leinweber
CONTRIBUTOR Michael Awmack, ba'oi
CHAIR Ian Robertson, BSc'86, BA'88, MBA, MA
VICE CHAIR Gayle Stewart, BA'76, MA'08
treasurer Robin Elliott, BCoM'65
Aderita Guerrerio, BA'77
Mark Mawhinney, BA'94
Don Dalik, BCom, LLB'76
Dallas Leung, BCoM'94
Brent Cameron, BA, MBA'06
Miranda Lam, LLB'02.
Marsha Walden, BCom'So
Ernest Yee, BA'83, MA'87
PAST CHAIR (08-09)
Doug Robinson, BCoM'71, LLB'72.
Stephen Owen, MBA, LLB'72, LLM
Brian Sullivan, AB, MPH
AMS REP (09-10)
Tom Dvorak
Chris Gorman, BA'99
Carmen Lee, BA'01
Catherine Comben, BA'67
Rod Hoffmeister, BA'67
Stephen Toope, ab, llb and bcl, phd
Barbara Miles, ba, postgrad certificate in ed.
Sarah Morgan-Silvester, BCOM'82
Marie Earl, ab, mla
Trek Magazine (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. Address correspondence to:
The Editor,
UBC Alumni Affairs,
6251 Cecil Green Park Road,
Vancouver, bc, Canada v6t izi
e-mail to chris.petty@ubc.ca
Letters published at the editor's discretion and may be edited for
space. Contact the editor for advertising rates.
Address Changes
via e-mail
alumni. association@ubc. ca
Alumni Association
toll free
Trek Editor
UBC Info Line
Belkin Gallery
Chan Centre
Frederic Wood Theatre
Museum of Anthropology
Volume 64, Number 1  1  Printed ir
1 Canada by Mitchell Press
Canadian Publications Mail Agreement #40063528
Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to:
Records Department
UBC Development Office
Suite 500
5950 University Boulevard
Vancouver, bc v6t IZ3
^Ve Mixed Sources
m          m     Product gnvp from well-man
^J— ^_M    forests, controlled sources an
~ ^L^^     recycled wood or fiber
Spring 2009    Trek    3 TELEPHONES,
From smoke signals across the veldt to social networking, we humans
have an overwhelming need to communicate and to produce new tools
to do it ever more effectively. Email, Facebook, Twitter and tomorrow's
new thing serve to underline that fact. Each generation likes to think that
it has fundamentally altered human behavior, human thinking and the
way life is lived with new communications tools, yet the only difference
between a messenger on horseback and an instant text message from
Budapest is the time it takes to deliver. The technology may have
changed, but people are much the same.
But there's no doubt that the time shift has huge implications. Helen,
my grandmother, told me of the time her parents' farm got its first phone
in the 1920s. She was 14 and thrilled. Suddenly, she didn't have to wait
to talk to her friends in town. She could do it whenever she wanted.
Her mother (my great-grandmother) understood the benefits of a phone
on the farm, but was ultimately appalled. "We've become slaves to that
stupid thing," she said after a few months. "It rings, we come running. It
rules our lives." Helen just snickered at her old-fashioned mother.
Little did she know what was to come. My nephew started university
last fall at a school 600 km from his home and from his girlfriend,
who's still in grade 12. Just the same, they communicate all day long.
"It's texting," he says. "It doesn't cost anything, and we can text from
our cell phones anytime. She gets mad at me if I don't text back during
class or when I'm studying. Funny, huh?"
Hilarious. According to my nephew, his generation will change
the world, because they'll never be out of touch. Suddenly, I understand
my great-grandmother.
Of course, there has to be more than play value in a communications
tool, otherwise it quickly loses its appeal. The telephone survived in
spite of its domination by 14-year-olds because it paved the way for
modern business communication, allowed friends and family to stay
in touch over long distances and was, obviously, a good thing in an
emergency. Texting and some form of social networking - Twitter or
its successor - will survive, too. They are just too handy to die.
Here at the Alumni Association we're trying to get our collective
heads around these "new media" and how we can use them to help
in our efforts to get you re-engaged in the life of UBC. As with my
grandmother's new telephone and my nephew's interminable texting,
these technologies can bring people together like never before. Surveys
of our alumni and anecdotal conversations tell us that you want to hear
about the services and events we offer, but you also want to pick and
choose your own level of activity.
In going ahead with a "new media" strategy, we're sensitive to two
things: telemarketing is an inexcusable nuisance, and the invasion of
social networking by unwanted advertising will push users away. Our
responsibility to you is to make sure we balance a respect for your
privacy with a genuine desire to keep you informed about, and involved
in, your university.
We will be implementing some new strategies over the next few
months, and will keep you up-to-date on our efforts.
Chris Petty, mfa'86, Editor in Chief
4    Trek    Spring 2009 take note
Rot and Human Health
life Composting is good for the planet. But is it
good for human health? As more cities adopt a
mass composting policy, UBC researchers are
trying to find the answer. "Even though it is an
eco-friendly practice, we know biohazards may
be present," says associate professor Karen
Bartlett of UBC's school of Environmental
Health. "There are disease-causing organisms
present throughout the process." The wastes
can contain nasty microorganisms such as
listeria and salmonella, but these break down
as the waste heats up and decomposes.
Researchers at UBC are able to study three
different composting technologies used in
Vancouver, Kamloops and Kelowna. These also
present different environmental conditions for
the process. "We will be able to make recommendations to the composting industry, which
could help prevent both acute effects and
chronic lung disease," says Jim Atwater, an
associate professor of civil engineering.
On the front line are the five to io workers
at each composting site. "Workers are exposed
to massive blooms of organisms that can
potentially cause lung damage in high doses,"
says Bartlett. "We've seen studies from
countries where composting is a bigger industry
than in Canada. They show that some workers
experience ill health associated with breathing
organic dust." Chronic health effects can
include permanent scarring of the lungs.
Researchers are exploring what bearing
different methods of composting have on
human exposure to fungal spores, thermophilic
spore-forming bacteria and endotoxins, and on
the presence of disease-causing microorganisms.
They are also considering environmental
factors such as temperature and humidity,
which have already been shown to make a
difference. "The dry air in Kamloops and
Kelowna has an impact on the dispersion of
microorganisms and a buffer zone between the
composting facility and other facilities may be
ow safe is mass composting?
required," says Bartlett. "On the other hand,
the amount of rain in Vancouver has an impact
on dispersion and a buffer zone may not be
required." The researchers also want to
establish if minimum temperatures for the
destruction of disease-causing mircoorganisms
are always met.
The project, which is funded by Worksafe BC,
will be used to establish work safety practices.
Drugs of Choice
Hfe In 2007 Canadians spent about $19 billion
on prescription pharmaceuticals. A new study
culminating in the publication of The Canadian
Rx Atlas (second edition) examines how that
spending breaks down by province, age and
therapeutic category.
The study was conducted by UBC's Centre
for Health Services and Policy Research (CHSPR),
which looks at a population's overall health
and determines the optimal organization,
delivery and funding of healthcare. "The results
Spring 2009    Trek    5 take note
show major differences in the use and cost of
medicines across Canada," says Steve Morgan,
associate director of CHSPR. "Across provinces,
spending differs by more than 50 per cent."
Per capita spending on pharmaceuticals
ranged from $432 in BC to $681 in Quebec.
The most surprising finding was that these
differences were not based on factors such as
age demographics, population health status, or
provincial health policies and drug plans.
"None of the conventional beliefs about
drug spending appear to be true," says Morgan,
who points to factors such as patient expectation
and the prescribing habits of doctors. He says.
"Our atlas shows that for several age groups
and drug classes, residents in some provinces
use 50 per cent more medicines than residents
of other provinces. We must study these
patterns to determine whether this reflects
overuse of medicines in some provinces or
underuse in others."
The illustrated atlas can be seen at
Spinning Paper Gold
Hfe BC's pulp industry - based out of 20 mills -
accounts for almost one fifth of energy
consumed in the province. Pulp screening,
which involves rapid rotation to force pulp
through a screen, is a particularly energy-
intensive part of the operation and the 300
pulp screens housed in the mills use $16 million
worth of electricity each year, enough to light
15,000 households.
But now a cross-sector partnership has
developed an energy-efficient pulp screen
rotor that cuts energy use in half without
sacrificing paper quality. Associate professor
of mechanical engineering, James Olsen, along
with colleagues Carl Ollivier-Gooch and Mark
Martinez, worked with Montreal company
Advanced Fiber Technologies Inc. to develop the
new rotor, which has been hydrodynamically
designed to reduce drag.
The rotor also reduces greenhouse gas
emissions and will help the Canadian pulp
industry compete against up-and-coming
market rivals such as China. One hundred
rotors have already been installed in Canada.
"Adopted nationwide, the industry could save
$20 million a year," says Olsen. More industrial
partners are becoming involved, including BC
Hydro, which is concerned that the supply of
energy might not meet growing demands.
The engineers' work has already attracted
awards, including the Natural Sciences and
Engineering Research Council of Canada's
2007 Synergy Award for Partnership and
Innovation. The council has decided to invest
$2.2 million in the technology.
Fletcher Christian Balked at Breadfruit
The Mutiny on the Bounty made for
dramatic movie-making, but most viewers
don't know that the humble breadfruit played
a role in that 1789 event. Grown in the South
Pacific for more than 3,000 years, breadfruit
has long been considered a valuable source of
high-energy food but is difficult to transport
for cultivation elsewhere. Bounty sailors,
James Olson with a hydrodynamically designed pulp screen rotor that halves energy consumption. transporting specimens from Tahiti to the West
Indies to grow food supplies for slaves, revolted
in part because precious supplies of fresh water
were used to keep the thirsty plants alive.
Propagation of the plant also presents problems,
and production of breadfruit is in decline and a
number of its varieties dying out, casualties of
tropical cyclones, climate change and loss of
cultivating knowledge.
Professor Susan Murch, Canada Research
Chair in Natural Products Chemistry at UBC
Okanagan, wants to reverse that trend. She sees
the breadfruit as a potential saviour in the face of
a growing food crisis. "Every four seconds
someone in the tropics dies of hunger," she says.
"It is one of the biggest food security issues in
the world at the moment. Breadfruit has huge
value for food security. A single tree can
produce 150 to 200 kilograms of food a year."
Murch has been working with colleagues at the
National Tropical Botanical Garden in Hawaii.
Her research subjects are 230 different varietal
specimens of the tree, originally gathered and
nurtured in the 1970s and '80s. The aim is to use
modern techniques to conserve, mass propagate
and distribute the most nutritionally valuable
varieties. Murch's team is the first to grow
breadfruit successfully in a bioreactor (already a
common way of producing less challenging North
American food crops), both in Hawaii and her
Okanagan lab, an achievement which means
Murch was able to distribute 7,500 trees to
tropical nations last year. But demand for the
plants have already far exceeded the small outfit's
ability to supply, and to meet the need Murch
has begun a partnership with the botanical garden
in Hawaii, the government of Western Samoa
and a San Diego-based horticultural company.
Not only the tropics will benefit from Murch's
research. She hopes the breadfruit can also be used
to improve nutrition in North America in the form
of a gluten-free, vitamin- and protein-rich flour.
Murch wants to gain a better understanding of the
relationship between plants and human health.
"Everything we eat comes from a plant or
something that ate a plant, she says. "Understanding the mechanisms of a plant has a huge
impact on how human health will progress
through the next 50 years and on how we can feed
and care for the growing population in the world."
Paul Courtright is helping communities in Africa to eradicate blindness.
Your Brain and Protein Power
As nerve cells develop, they grow connections
and become integrated into neural networks
that transmit electrochemical signals through
the nervous system. Once these networks are
established, a neuron's capacity for growth and
formation of new connections is diminished.
This loss of neural plasticity is why an ageing
or damaged brain is unable to repair itself by
forming new connections.
But UBC researchers have discovered that
neurons don't lose their capacity for growth;
rather, they are prevented from doing so.
Researchers have pinpointed the agents
involved in neural growth and suppression:
the proteins calpain and cortactin. Cortactin
activates neural growth, and calpain blocks
cortactin once the neuron has developed and
integrated into the nervous system.
The researchers were able to demonstrate
in animal models that suppression of calpain
results in greater neural plasticity. They are
hopeful their discovery will lead to new
treatments for neurological disorders and boost
in the efficacy of treatments for other conditions.
Ana Mingorance-Le Meur, a postdoc in the
department of Cellular and Physiological
Sciences, is study lead along with professor
Timothy O'Connor. "The maintenance of
neuronal connections is an active process that
requires constant repression of the formation
of nerve sprouts by the protein calpain to
avoid uncontrolled growth," she says. "But a
consequence of this role is that calpain limits
neural plasticity and the brain's ability to repair
itself. The next step is to find a way to enhance
neural plasticity without interfering with the
good connections that are already in place."
Mingorance-Le Meur is also a member of
the Brain Research Centre at UBC and VCH
Research Institute.
Blind Spot
life Breakthrough health cures are wonderful,
but wasted if they are not accessible to the
people who need the therapy. While the good
news is that most forms of blindness can now
be prevented or treated, the bad news is that
these cures are not reaching hundreds of
women in Africa.
Ophthalmic epidemiologist Paul Courtright
is studying blindness on that continent and
some of the sociological reasons behind its
prevalence. "Research shows that two thirds of
blind people in the world are women," he says.
"In Africa, this is as much a social issue as it is
a need for adequate resources. For example, the
social standing of women often prevents them
Photograph courtesy of Paul Courtright
Spring 2009    Trek    7 take note
from seeking treatment." He is working to
enable communities to change the situation.
The BC Centre for Epidemiological and
International Ophthalmology is an advocacy
and teaching organization established on UBC's
Vancouver campus in 1995. It advocates for
reducing cases of blindness and teaches research
methods and data management, but Courtright
believes its work must be supplemented by
hands-on work in African communities. "The
centre is instrumental in developing research
and training tools," he says. "However, to
have an impact and enable change we need
to be on the ground working with local
providers and communities and applying
what we are learning."
He and wife Susan Lewellan, a UBC
ophthalmologist, moved to Moshi in Tanzania
and in 2001 established the Kilimanjaro Centre
for Community Ophthalmology. "We are not
training surgeons. We train people to set up
programs that support surgeons in their work.
Surgeons on their own really can't do much.
They need a team to keep the clinic running
smoothly and to bring patients in from rural
communities," says Lewellan.
The Centre serves 18 eastern African
counties with a combined population of about
210 million. Requests for training have multiplied,
as has treatment intervention. "Our work has
already demonstrated that cataract surgeries in
programs treating rural communities can be
increased by 300 per cent," says Courtright.
One project involves training local female
leaders to provide information to the families
in their communities and refer patients for
treatment. Another specifically targets children
with eye conditions. Courtright also wants to
tackle the gender issues behind healthcare
provision. "Treating blindness has become a tool
and entryway into the system," he says. "We
are definitely making an impact on reducing
blindness, but really, we want to change
systems beyond eye care services, at the health
provider level and also at the community level."
Eco-Friendly Farming
life Are increased agricultural productivity and
biodiversity mutually exclusive? Professor Kai
Chan doesn't think so. He has co-developed the
world's first planning framework to calculate
the production and conservation outcomes
of farmland, a tool that can help farmers
make sound business decisions and preserve
biodiversity at the same time.
"Small, targeted changes to farms can have
a positive impact on biodiversity without
affecting a farmer's bottom line," says Chan,
who is based in UBC's Institute for Resources,
Environment and Sustainability. The framework
identifies aspects of local terrain that impact
native species, assesses how vital these habitats
and their distribution across the landscape are
to species survival, and determines how changes
to them would affect individual species and the
diversity of species.
Chan developed the framework with
professor Gretchen Daily from Stanford
University and tested it by travelling to Costa
Rica - where logging and agricultural practices
have had a negative impact on biodiversity -
and demonstrating to farmers the benefit of
planting wind barriers, made up of trees,
shrubs, and plants, that can boost yield while
protecting bird habitats.
"Cattle, bananas and coffee were underper-
forming due to high winds, so they saw a clear
economic argument for investing in wind
barriers," says Chan. Natural wind barriers
also cost less than manufactured wooden
fences. After investigating, Chan concluded that
17 species of wild bird, some of which migrate
from Canada and the US, would also benefit.
Brain Stimulation Stimulates Mobility
Hfe A new technique is being developed to help
stroke victims recover their mobility faster than
they would using physical therapy alone. It
involves stimulating the brain prior to therapy,
preparing it to relearn and retain information
more efficiently. Assistant professor of Physical
Therapy Lara Boyd is heading a study yielding
encouraging results for the 300,000 Canadians
living with the effects of stroke, which can
include partial paralysis.
A stroke affects areas of the brain by cutting
Kai Chan believes biodiversity can go hand-in-
hand with increased agricultural productivity.
off blood supply and rendering them inactive.
"One of the reasons it is so difficult for the
brain to recover from a stroke and reorganize
itself is that the damaged side of the brain
becomes suppressed while the undamaged side
becomes hyperactive," says Boyd. This
imbalance creates difficulties when stroke patients
try to regain mobility. "Fortunately, the brain is
an amazingly dynamic organ." The new technique
involves applying an electromagnetic stimulus
to the affected area of the brain via a wand
attached to a computer in order to enhance cell
reorganization. Boyd, who is Canadian Research
Chair in Neurobiology, is hopeful that the
technique will allow the brain to build other
pathways to guide movement.
"Preliminary results on non-stroke patients
show that if you pre-excite the brain with an
electromagnetic stimulus, motor learning and
retention of skill is improved and retained,"
she says. "We are quite optimistic that this
approach will work and we expect results in
the coming months."
Busting Boosting
Using banned substances to improve athletic
performance has long been a blight to both
amateur and professional sport. Whatever the
motivation - pressure to produce results,
national pride or the prospects of big money -
doping makes a mockery of fair competition,
and can put an athlete's health at risk.
Another performance enhancing method is
being used by some Paralympian athletes with
Trek    Spring 2009
Photograph: Martin Dee spinal cord injuries. Although it doesn't rely on
drugs and is used to counteract a disadvantage
rather than create an advantage, the method
(called boosting) is nevertheless banned because
it can be life-threatening. Spinal cord injuries
often lead to an inability to regulate autonomic
body functions such as heart rate, bladder
control and blood pressure. As a result, the
heart rate doesn't increase with physical effort
and blood pressure remains low, leading to
fatigue and a competitive disadvantage. While
some Paralympians counteract this by using
pressure stockings or abdominal binders to
increase blood pressure, others are going to
more alarming extremes.
These involve causing bodily harm or stress
below the site of spinal injury. An athlete may
purposely break a toe, block their catheter or sit
on their testes during competition. The athlete
cannot feel the pain, but the desired autonomic
result is achieved and blood pressure is boosted.
But the risks involve stroke, intracranial hemorrhage and even death.
Bans, however, aren't always effective and
Andrei Krassioukov from UBC's faculty of
Medicine wants to prevent the practice in a
way he believes will be more effective.
Krassioukov and colleagues are urging the
International Paralympics Committee to
introduce another classification for athletes
based on an assessment of their level of
autonomic functioning - to accompany the
existing classifications based on conscious
physical capacities - and have proposed
such an assessment for sledge hockey and
curling Paralympics teams at the 2010 Winter
Olympics in Vancouver. He hopes the results
will help inform the committee in making their
decision. "If we will introduce an autonomic
component to classification, maybe this will
allow a fairer and safer competition for all
Paralympians," he says.
Breath Easy
Hfe Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) causes
sufferers to stop breathing for short periods
during sleep, a result of the upper airway being
obstructed by the tongue. Many sufferers also
experience restless sleep. In children, OSA can
lead to attention-deficit disorder, behavioural
problems, poor academic performance,
bedwetting, cardiopulmonary disease and
sometimes obesity and type II diabetes.
Researchers in the faculty of Dentistry are
testing out a device called Klearway™ for
children that is already in use by 30,000 adult
sufferers of OSA. Made out of acrylic resin, the
device fits over the upper and lower teeth and
works by creating more space at the back of
the throat, thereby keeping the airway open.
Preliminary results show great promise in
improving sleep and breathing. "What is
surprising," says study lead professor Alan
Lowe, inventor of Klearway™, "is how quickly
the appliance works in children. In just a
matter of months, we have found that children
who wear the appliance show dramatic
improvement in sleep and significantly improve
how their upper and lower teeth fit together."
(Children suffering with OSA often have
malocclusion, a condition where the upper
front teeth are prominent and the lower jaw
short.) As well as reducing from eight to 2.4
the number of pauses in breathing per hour,
study results also show improved minimum
blood oxygen levels.
"One of our patients' grandmothers reported
that she suspected a problem because her
grandson was often very tired and reported he
fell asleep on the bus on the way home from
school," says Lowe. "After using the device for
a few months, the patient and grandmother
have seen a tremendous improvement in sleep,
energy, concentration and overall mood."
Lowe stresses that OSA must first be diagnosed
in children by a pediatric sleep specialist before
an appropriate treatment is decided on.
Teachers Rise Up
life As we noted in the last issue of Trek Magazine,
UBC has embarked upon a review of teaching
effectiveness. The LEAD initiative (Lasting
Education, Achieved and Demonstrated) supports
changes that make the learning experience
more rewarding for students and faculty alike.
Any change to the pedagogy of teaching,
however, will depend on the enthusiastic
cooperation of university teachers.
As most grads know, a faculty member's
success (at least on the tenure track) is judged
on the basis of three general criteria: research
excellence, involvement in the faculty's
governance and teaching. Teaching effectiveness,
being the most difficult to measure, is often
seen to be given less weight than the others. But
UBC, as a research-intensive university bent on
improving its status around the world, must
excel in all aspects of university life, especially
Children with Obstructive Sleep Apnea may gain relief with a new device.
Photograph: Martin Dee
Spring 2009    Trek    9 take note
Funding the Future
Stephen J. Toope, President, UBC
In the fall 2007 issue of this magazine, I wrote to you
about the importance - and good health - of UBC's endowment fund. At that time our endowment had surpassed $1 billion and was growing steadily.
How quickly things change. The current economic
downturn has affected virtually every investment portfolio in our society. UBC's investment portfolio - our endowment - is no different. It is made up of monetary
gifts, from individuals and groups, entrusted to the university in perpetuity to advance UBC's mission. Since
September, 2008, our endowment has lost 20 per cent
of its value. We can find some comfort in the fact that UBC has done markedly better in this
regard than many other institutions in North America. Through prudent management of the
fund, our losses, relatively speaking, have been modest.
But such a loss cannot help but have a serious impact on the main purpose of this portfolio:
to generate financial support for students, research and exceptional programming at UBC. We
are determined, going forward, to maintain support for these essential areas, retain our donors'
confidence that their visions for UBC are being fulfilled, and rebuild our endowment to its
previous level and beyond. To those ends, we have established new guidelines for distributing
and managing our endowment portfolio.
We will, of course, continue to honour the objectives established by our donors for their gifts.
Further, our payouts of endowment income will preserve the gift against inflation, and we will
adopt practices that will restore individual endowments to their original value in 10 years. Our
first act under the new management principles is to reduce payout from 5 per cent to 3.5 per
cent. This represents a 30 per cent reduction in the endowment's spending rate.
This reduction means we will see a $15 million shortfall to the faculties and colleges in the
next fiscal year. Some of this reduction will be made up through reserves held by faculties and
colleges for other purposes, and some will be offset by units working together to address the
most critical funding challenges.
Even more importantly, the decline in our endowment will mean a reduction of $6.5 million
in the area of student aid from our total budget of $65 million. I want to assure parents, students, alumni and donors of three things: current levels of support will continue in this academic year; we remain committed to our access policy, which states that no otherwise-eligible
domestic student will be denied entrance for financial reasons alone; and that no needs-based
award will be cut. To address the shortfall, we will seek new funding sources and engage in
talks with students and faculty to weigh the pros and cons of reducing the value of non-needs-
based awards or reducing the number of such awards.
I'm confident that the measures we are taking now will insure the strength and growth of
our endowment during these difficult times, and will put us far ahead of the curve when the
economic climate shifts. For more detailed information on the university's endowment please
visit www.president.ubc.ca.
teaching. Thus, the LEAD initiative.
The university engaged Angus Reid Strategies
to conduct a survey of UBC faculty members.
Angus Reid sent the survey to 3,200 faculty
members, hoping for a response rate of 25 per
cent. Instead, 3 5 per cent responded, indicating
high interest on the part of faculty. Angus Reid
VP Catherine Rogers, MBA'9 5, says the response
rate exceeded her most optimistic projection.
Initial findings indicate that faculty members
feel there is considerable room for improvement
in undergraduate teaching, recognizing that the
lecture method and increasing class sizes are
the two most detrimental aspects of current
methodology. Most, however, feel they do not
have the tools or the knowledge to move the
classroom experience to a higher level. As well,
the majority of faculty - both teaching-focused
and research-focused - want to acquire and
apply new teaching techniques in their work,
and feel that excellence in teaching should, in
fact, be weighted more heavily in judging the
success of individual faculty members.
UBC is taking the LEAD initiative seriously.
Last year, according to UBC's president, Stephen
Toope, the majority of denied tenure applications
failed because of concerns about teaching. As well,
Walter Sudmant, director of Planning and
Institutional Research, notes that UBC is the
first major Canadian university to survey its faculty
about improvements to teaching and learning.
It's all good news to LEAD leaders, who
will use these findings to improve teaching
effectiveness in all undergrad disciplines at
UBC. The findings also add credibility to the
use of external resources to improve pedagogy,
opening the door to developing fundraising
goals around the initiative.
Changes will take some time, but initial
efforts are already underway in such programs
as the Carl Weiman Science Education initiative
in the faculty of Science. This year, 20,000
science students in 60 courses are benefiting
from changes in teaching methodology.
To see more of the survey results, visit
10    Trek    Spring 2009 Beetling About in Kelowna
life When people think about pine beetle
infestation, they usually think of vast tracts of
dead forest. But pine beetles don't limit their
activities to rural areas, as Kelowna residents
can testify. The city was hit with an infestation
of the insect for the first time last summer. For
UBC Okanagan researchers, this presented an
opportunity to learn how the beetle moves and
spreads through an urban area.
Bob Lalonde and Rebecca Tyson combined their
expertise in biology and mathematics respectively
to gather data and build a mathematical model
that can identify dispersal patterns. "We are
trying to determine how the bark beetle enters
the city, what direction they come from and
how they move in the city," says Lalonde. "In
addition, we plan to study the beetles themselves and look at factors such as how much
energy is being burned in their flight path."
With two summer students, the researchers
placed 44 pheromone traps around the city and
its outskirts. They were left for two months and
checked every week. Depending on location and
the prevalence of natural predators (the work
should also shed light on how quickly beetle
predators follow their prey into new areas) the
traps contained anywhere from zero to 200
beetles. Other variables used to create the
dispersal model include concentration of pine
trees, beetle biology and weather conditions.
"Mathematical modeling often reveals
interesting behaviors that aren't anticipated,"
says Tyson, an assistant professor of mathematics,
statistics and physics. "We are using beetle
biology, spatial data and math in this research,
which may help us gain insight into the risk of
infection for pine trees in certain areas of the
city. This could result in possible solutions or
preventative measures."
The team plans more data collection this
summer. This time, the data may help reveal
the number of beetles originating from the city
rather than entering it. "There is still a lot of
data to be collected and analyzed," says Tyson.
One thing we can say with confidence is that,
based on early results, it looks as though bark
beetles enter a city from the outskirts inward,
as opposed to dropping randomly from above,
as some people had originally suggested."
Seeing Below the Surface
Hfe A new piece of technology used to detect
underwater pipes and cables was recently put
to a novel use. The ground-penetrating radar
(GPR) device uses radio signals and software
to provide a visual representation of objects
under the surface without having to break
ground, and its capabilities have proved ideal
in the hunt for lost graves in old cemeteries
where markers have weathered away.
In the first survey of its type in North America,
UBC archeologists worked at the Kwantlen First
Nation's cemetery in Maple Ridge to establish
Know thine enemy: Lalonde and
Tyson track pine beetles in Kelowna.
Archaeology grad Steve Daniel helped
locate ancestral gravesites in Maple Ridge.
the exact resting place of more than 70
Musqueam ancestors. As well as the elements,
the original headstones or metal crosses had
been subject to theft, vandalism and even car
accidents from the nearby highway.
"Knowing where our loved ones are means a
great deal for our people," says Kwantlen Chief
Marilyn Gabriel. "It was a very powerful moment
when we first saw all those new markers above
where are our ancestors lay." The Kwantlen
will erect permanent grave markers now the
final resting spots have been confirmed.
As an archeological tool, the GPR saves time
and money and prevents excavation errors. It was
purchased with $70,000 from UBC's Teaching
and Learning Enhancement Fund and was first
used during a field school last summer. "The field
school helps UBC and the Musqueam develop
research projects that give students practical
experience and address the research interests of
the Musqueam people," says UBC archeology
professor Andrew Martindale. The roots of this
collaboration go back to the 1940s, when
UBC's first archeologist, Charles Borden, and
Musqueam band member Andrew Charles
recognized the value in working together.
Photographs: Top, Martin Dee; Bottom, Jody Jacobs
Spring 2009    Trek    11 Engagement, Painted Faces and the Value of Your Degree
Ian Robertson, BSc'86, BA'88, MBA, MA, Chair, UBC Alumni Association
essential for effective advocacy, attracting and mentoring the best
students and ensuring a high profile in their communities.
Your Alumni Association plays a key role in building involvement
among UBC grads. Last year, the Alumni Affairs unit (made up of the
Association and the university's Alumni Relations unit) joined with the
Development Office under the administrative umbrella of the Vice
President Development and Alumni Engagement, and we are currently
putting the finishing touches on the new Letter of Agreement between
the Association and the university. Together we have identified a series
of programs and events designed to double the number of alumni
engaged in the life of the university.
At events over the past year, I've heard from alumni that they see more
communication from UBC than ever before: more emails about upcoming
events, more invitations in the mail, more notices about travel opportunities
and more news about their university. Our new UBC Dialogues series
-which brings UBC experts to Lower Mainland, Okanagan communities
and beyond to discuss local issues - is a good case in point. Our first
offerings are fully subscribed and alumni have shown a strong demand for
more. (If you missed our notices about this series, make sure we have
your email address. Share it with us at alumni.association@ubc.ca.)
The value of your degree increases with the reputation of the university.
At the same time, your involvement increases UBC's value in the
community. We might not ask you to paint your face blue and gold,
but there are lots of other ways to display your UBC colours. We have
developed a wide selection of events and programs for you, so check
our website regularly, and get involved in the life of your university.
Universities measure their success
in many ways: the GPA average of
btheirfirstyear students; the amount
of money they raise and have in
^L their endowments; and the success
of their athletic teams are just a
few. Another important yardstick
universities use is the level of engagement of their alumni. At UBC,
we're putting a good deal of effort
into increasing this metric.
Some of North America's most successful universities boast a very
high level of alumni engagement. Harvard, Yale, Stanford and other
elite institutions set the highest bars for alumni affinity, but public
universities such as the universities of Michigan, Illinois, California
(Berkeley, especially) and Oregon also inspire fierce loyalties in their grads.
University of Oregon fans from across the US descend on Eugene -
faces painted green and gold -when the Ducks play important games.
As well, UO grads are considered one of the most important ambassador
groups the university has in attracting the best students.
Canadian universities have traditionally lagged behind in alumni
engagement, partly because they have been better-supported by
government (which makes connecting with alumni less critical), and
they have not understood the non-monetary value of alumni cultivation.
In recent years government support, though still robust, has not grown
at the same rate as the demand for resources, and Canadian universities
are seeing clearly that a passionate alumni body - face paint and all - is
On Social Capital
Marie Earl, Associate Vice President, Alumni; Executive Director, UBC Alumni Association
UBC political scientist Richard
Johnston, BA'70, is an ideal running
partner. He is less interested in pace
or distance covered than he is in
engaging in a sort of mobile philosopher's cafe. Thus it was enough
to say, "Tell me more about social
capital," to set in motion an hour
long tutorial on a subject that turns
out to be very relevant to the
alumni profession.
Wikipedia invokes L. J. Hanifan, the state supervisor of rural schools
in West Virginia circa 1916, who spoke of social capital as "the good
will, fellowship, sympathy and social intercourse among individuals
and families" that he proclaimed "count for most in the daily lives of
people." Some argue that social capital is as likely to promote insularity
and produce inequality as it is to contribute to the health of individuals
and communities. Consider the disproportionate percentage of US
leaders in government, business and academia who graduated from a
handful of elite universities in that nation. These lucky few weren't
necessarily smarter or more talented than others, but they did have
access to a rich reservoir of social capital in the form of generations of
privileged graduates who opened doors for one another. (Full disclosure:
Stanford connections factored in to nearly every job I've held.)
Graduates of Canadian universities do not seem to tap into their
networks to nearly the same degree. And when they do, their aims
seem to be less self-serving. Former AMS leaders, for example, recently formed an AMSNet alumni group. One of their first orders of
business was to offer counsel to current student leaders who were
working to pass a student fee referendum that will fund an $85 million
contribution toward a new student union building. Social capital indeed!
12    Trek    Spring 2009 letters to the editor:
Some fond memories...
I was most flattered to see my picture on the
cover of the fall 2008 issue of Trek Magazine.
In case there is an identification problem, I was the
person closest to the camera. I think the picture
was taken by Art Jones, who commenced his
career as a photographer at UBC. (Art and I
had the same godmother and we were both
members of the Players' Club).
I was a buck private with COTC when the
photo was taken, and by my final year at UBC
I rose to the glorious rank of a one pip wonder
(second lieutenant) in Shrum's Army, and was
included in a photo shoot by the lily pond with
the late Phyllis Bishop, published in a national
photo journal of the day.
I also enjoyed very much the picture of the
Leavy brothers. They were identical twins
and the only difference one could detect was
that one of them had lost a corner of a tooth.
One was a lance corporal in the COTC and
the other a private. Occasionally they would
switch tunics. On one occasion I recall that the
imposter L/Cpl was called upon to carry out a
squad drill and was making an awful mess of
it, while the imposter private, a member of the
squad, wore a wide grin.
Thanks for the memories!
Don Chutter, BCOM '44, Ottawa
... and some not so fond
I respectfully suggest that you check your
history before choosing a front cover (Fall,
2008). The soldiers depicted are in fact
students, exempted from active service as long
as they were attending university thus avoiding
active service in Canadian Forces.
I left UBC at the end of the spring semester
of 1942 to serve in the Canadian Army in
Canada and overseas until late summer of
1946. While looking for a job in 1946 I
encountered a (former) friend who also
attended UBC in 1942, and who had taken
advantage of the exemption from active
service, and he laughed and called me a fool
for serving in the war against Hitler.
Your cover does not engender fond memories;
perhaps it is well that the students portrayed
on your cover are wearing respirators. It avoids
embarrassment. In my view, an apology is due
to everyone of the alumni who interrupted their
education to serve their country in war.
William E. Ellis, LLB'53
Isolation in any language
The article on Chinese experiences in BC
(spring, 2008) reminded me of when I, aged
five, accompanied my parents to Canada from
England. There's no argument that the Chinese
and other Asians in BC had far more traumatic
experiences than we did in eastern Canada, but
some interesting parallels emerged.
My parents were British subjects and they
decided in 1936 to emigrate to Nova Scotia, and
made arrangements to do so. My father's memoirs
noted, "on the last day [before departure] we
had a letter from Canada House to say that, as
Tony had glasses, I must show sufficient money
to support him so that he would not become
a burden upon Canada. A kindly solicitor
confirmed our financial position " In school
in Nova Scotia next year, I was one of the two
children under age 10 with glasses. Even from
the UK, immigrants were screened.
My glasses marked me as an oddity, at
least among children, as did my speaking with
an English accent. The only Canadians who
accepted me as native were outport Newfoundlanders, who assumed I was from St. John's.
I've lived in the Maritimes more than 50
years, but my foreign birth excludes me here
from calling myself a New Brunswicker or a
Nova Scotian.
My mother didn't return to England until
1969. In that interval, Ma's only relative seen was
her mother's sister, who came twice from New
York. I did not meet any of my first cousins,
and only one second cousin, until I was 45.
During the Depression and World War II, Nova
Scotia was almost as remote from England as
Vancouver was from China. Our second child
was born in Vancouver while I was at UBC, but
my parents never saw young Rachel until we
returned east 15 months later. The breadth of
Canada was, and remains, an important factor
separating families of any origin.
A.J. (Tony) Erskine, MA'60
International House omissions
In your piece on International House (Fall,
2008), you left a void which needs clarification.
The contributions of professor Cowie and Evelyn
Lett in the beginning should not be overlooked.
In 1949 when I arrived from India, Hut L6
was the hub of activity with Frena Ginwali as
the leader, and I got actively involved. Dr.
Cowie from the German department was our
faculty adviser. International House was
essentially her brainchild and she worked for it
tirelessly. It was in 1950-51 that we launched
the International House committee with Mrs.
Lett as our patron and Dr. Cowie as our faculty
adviser. We came up with a logo for International House and petitioned UBC's Board of
Governors for a suitable site, which turned out
to be the West Mall location.
I became president of the International
House Committee in 1951-52.1 addressed the
Rotary Club of South Vancouver and a number
of other Rotary clubs and raised $20oK for the
building. I also spoke to the Zonta Club of
Vancouver and they pledged to furnish
International House.
So, I played a role in the beginning, but the
crucial support came from Dr. Cowie and Mrs.
Lett. I thought this little piece of history might
be of interest to you and the readers.
Raghbir Basi, BA'52, BSW53
Spring 2009    Trek    13 \W ^ r uv tNr «* ,m «* 'W w v «tir»ivr<rir F 'r "* "•* * wr IHt il,   ,T      '    ^ •*
vtxc ^ iwr ivn ,nr wr |«r * *r w w „ m £ ^ £™J^V*J* m ^-^ iMr *r
/tfV{w mt k \w r ^ ^ * i* i< fc" *«-1.«- (nr * w i*r p £»?_?,,*" ^ K M **l#r
l«r utr utr ** l*" ut M ««" t<*r i«r f#f mr wr iht l«r it* w hr wr «■ lk,X   ^ "r *r '*'*'''"" •"
   *  '   . . mr.^ iih- mr i*r f«r jwr   '*•        ir .   _ m '"'J? W-^ wr («f jW
(ar mr u«r iht
UtriHr'k* fm 4«rr   '«f
» —.- i
ft % mr wr     —-      - i- (Kiir.    .
H- fcffl'iwr lur^n^ ^ lur^wr \^ i^ ^iHr-^ufr^riifr *rj«r ^ Wi'wwiw-Jttfwr
, Vtr utr mr wTfirf ht w (wr wr (irr Ir wr H*r iht nr wr r wrjfttr fwATffrr./ftt-wr Wrifrr
jm irHtr t^r ^ utru*riw ihtW*^^4^ ^rii+r wiwrKJ«r nr ^ #r^ ^n wmw
fiMW tiw-ffir ftir vw wr wr ^ ?C\ y~^ w m ^ w M ^ ^ \MN m ^r ^ sm
^^^^^^^1      1 |^^w^^^^^^^^w^i«rfttr
' w mr wr mr ter Ar ^r i^r Wr iw\_^ Il!tf IHf ^ lftr ^ ^ ^,ltr ^ ^ l^^r^r w
\\tr tyr m W wr lWi*+^ {^frtr wr Ur Wr w -w Inrwr BfTlW'jf/ri#rwr(iri«r(ftr ^
i^wiMr^i^^^W^^^^ ^ ^^ wr iir ir i«r jht ^ w^^r^r^r wr jw
r Jtr u+r \HTHftru*rMrittr^M»r^wt' ter i^ (w wr ur »«r i#f ^^ jrJifJiir-W-4rJir-4*fr-*«r
^jHr^wrUff^ur ikf^f ^ ^ww >tf^ W--nr-wr-wr wr J^r-tttr «tr K^^
r ;m- ^r w v*r te m^w ^ Jiir <w «r -Htf-ur ^r^^iMr^J^^^^mMfftr!
[ar iut i&^^f mr jht ^r iwr m *rjnrJ*«r W^4W JT w
* Miscarriages of justice in Canada may
be more commonplace than most people
suppose. The UBC Law Innocence Project
is investigating potential cases of wrongful
conviction in British Columbia.
Featured on the front page of The Vancouver
Sun this January was the photo of a 1982
police lineup, with the headline "Who Looks
Guilty Here?" It's a rhetorical question. The eye
immediately lands on one of the seven men -
Ivan Henry - who is being restrained by three
police officers applying head and arm locks.
The case culminated in Henry's imprisonment
for a series of sexual assaults including rape,
his identification from the lineup helping to
seal his fate. For 26 years Henry protested his
innocence and made dozens of applications to
have his case reheard, all refused. But now an
appeal has been granted after officers working
on another case researched old Vancouver police
files and stumbled upon a new prime suspect
for the 1982 crimes attributed to Henry. The
farcical lineup is apparently one of a few
questionable factors behind his conviction that
Henry's lawyers plan to present at appeal.
Most people were probably shocked by the
blatant unfairness portrayed in the photo, but
the image held no surprises for criminal lawyer
Tamara Levy. She is director of the UBC Law
Innocence Project, a non-profit legal clinic
established in 2007 that operates out of a small
office in a faculty annex. Here, law students
conduct post-conviction investigative work on
behalf of prisoners proclaiming innocence
whose cases present convincing grounds for
appeal. One of the cases they are working on
bears similarities to Henry's. It stems from the
same era, when fewer safeguards existed to
ensure good professional practices in police and
prosecution work.
Some people may be of the opinion that
wrongful convictions only happen to people
who are known to the police, who already have
records and histories of violent behavior, a
karma-comeuppance that puts away the bad
guys, even if it's for the wrong crime. Why
should law-abiding people feel outrage?
Others think that wrongful convictions
involve extreme examples of professional
malpractice and are rare occurrences. Levy begs
to differ. Wrongful conviction can happen to
anyone, she says. And although there is no way of
knowing how many, Levy suspects miscarriages
of justice are more commonplace than most
people suppose. It's in everybody's interest to
make sure the system is as fair and accurate as
Levy suspects
miscarriages of justice
are more commonplace
than most people
suppose. It's in
everybody's interest to
make sure the system
is as fair and accurate
as possible, to hold the
professionals involved
to account, to ensure
clean investigations and
fair trials no matter
who they're for.
possible, to hold the professionals involved to
account, to ensure clean investigations and fair
trials no matter who they're for.
This subject started to attract more attention
20 years ago, when David Vasquez was released
from a Virginia jail where he had been incarcerated
for a murder he didn't commit. His was the
first case of a convict being exonerated as a
result of new DNA evidence, a scientific leap
forward that has become the gold standard for
proving innocence or guilt. Since Vasquez'
release, more than 350 convictions have been
overturned in the US - the majority as a result
of DNA evidence - and hundreds of inmates
are still waiting for their chance at appeal.
The first Innocence Project was established in
1992 at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of
Law in New York to help those convicts unable
to afford or find a lawyer. Many more such
clinics have been established over the years,
and part of the growing movement's mandate
has been to find answers to a question that
naturally arises in response to the growing
number of exonerations: Why were these
individuals found guilty in the first place?
Research based on reviews of overturned
convictions in the US revealed the main causes
behind wrongful conviction were eyewitness
misidentification; incompetent forensics work;
false confessions; the use of jailhouse informants; poor defence; and mistakes or misconduct on the part of prosecution or police.
As well as research, the Innocence Project
has expanded its mandate to include public
education, advocacy for reform of the justice
system and for compensation and programs to
assist people released after years of incarceration.
Canada has less than a handful of innocence
projects, UBC's being the most recent and the
llustration: Keith Leinweber
Spring 2009    Trek    15 only one in western Canada.
Canada's justice system differs from that in
the US in many respects, but we have our own
record of wrongful conviction illustrated by
high profile cases like David Milgaard,
Guy-Paul Morin and Steven Truseott. Public
inquiries into cases like these have unveiled
similar weaknesses in the Canadian system.
Levy puts the number of known wrongful
convictions in Canada at about 30, but suspects
the extent may be a lot worse than we know.
"In many cases, DNA was not a factor or
wasn't collected because of inadequate police
work, has since been destroyed or is no longer
viable for testing," she says, "yet the person is
still proclaiming innocence." Cardozo's
Innocence Project insists on the presence of
testable DNA as a criterion for taking on cases,
while the UBC project does not.
The UBC Law Innocence Project has about
20 active cases. Three quarters of them involve
murders, high profile at the time of conviction.
Two or three of them involve biological
evidence that was collected but not presented
by crown at trial or not tested. Levy and her
students will investigate to find out if there was
a valid reason for not doing so. But the vast
majority of the other cases are based on claims
of false testimony, such as evidence from a
jailhouse informant.
"I have serious doubts about the reliability
of these convictions and the individuals have
been claiming their innocence for 15 years
plus," says Levy. "I hope we're going to be able
to find the one piece of evidence that will prove
their innocence. In Canada, once a person has
been convicted the burden shifts onto them to
present new, significant and reliable evidence
which provides a reasonable basis for claiming
that a miscarriage of justice occurred."
The process to determine if there is a strong
claim for factual innocence involves interviewing
the applicant, gathering the original police file
and all related documents, reviewing them and
conducting an investigation. If there are strong
grounds for reopening the case, it is assigned to a
pro bono lawyer to assist in further investigation
16    Trek    Spring 2009
and in making an application to the Minister of
Justice for review under section 696.1 of the
Criminal Code. UBC Law's Innocence Project
is about to approach the Ministry with its first
case. It remains to be seen how much reluctance
there will be for reopening cases, especially
those that don't involve new DNA evidence.
Levy says that so far she has received positive
cooperation and encouragement from the Crown,
local corrections services, the Vancouver Police
Department and the RCMP.
The 12 second- and third-year law students
involved are the frontline of UBC Law's
Innocence Project. They conduct the vital
investigative work as best they can under
Levy's stretched-thin supervision and that of
criminal lawyers in Vancouver. "The students
get to review a case from the incident, through
the investigation, the bail process, the trial,
the appeal, and gain an understanding of how
a case moves through the system, of what it's
like to practice criminal law," says Levy. "And
an awareness of the flaws within the system."
It sounds corny, but
the demeanor of the
applicants teaches you
a valuable lesson in
human integrity. I've
spoken to someone
who has been in jail
for 15 years and who
says that they don't
care about parole,
because parole is for
guilty people.
Tony Paisana is a second-year law student
involved in the project. "Dealing with very
serious cases is quite rare for law students,"
he says. "We're working on complex cases
involving rape, fraud and murder. A law
student wouldn't get this type of exposure
until at least a couple of years into practice at
a criminal law firm." It also taught him a lot
about the human spirit. "It sounds corny, but
the demeanor of the applicants teaches you a
valuable lesson in human integrity. I've spoken
to someone who has been in jail for 15 years
and who says that they don't care about
parole, because parole is for guilty people. It's
compelling when you're dealing with someone
who could be released immediately or soon
thereafter if they would just admit to guilt but
who refuses to do so for the sake of integrity
and clearing their name."
Although it's a good learning experience for
the students, it's far from ideal for the applicants
and their supporters. The appeal process is
painstakingly slow. Even after a case is accepted
by the Department of Justice in Ottawa, there
still often follows a two- or three-year review
process. For that reason, Levy's current goal for
the UBC part of the equation is greater
efficiency and speed.
So far, 25 applicants have been rejected for
not meeting the project criteria which includes
factual innocence, and another 25-30 applications
are under review. Levy's had to turn down
potentially valid applications from other
provinces, and even one from New York,
because geographical proximity is one of the
criteria. "There's a huge gap between demand
and ability to respond, and we're not moving
quickly toward reform," she says.
Only a few of the 25-30 overturned
convictions in Canada have involved a public
inquiry. "We only seem to hold inquiries if
there is massive public and media pressure to
do so," says Levy. "It's a very expensive and
non-standardized process. The Crown can
pick and choose which cases warrant a public
inquiry, or they may negotiate a private
\m w W WC wr W compensation package." All inquiries, however,
have recommended establishing an independent
board for post-conviction review, and Levy
agrees. "Right now we have the Criminal
Conviction Review Group in Ottawa, which
is an arm of the Department of Justice," she
says. "Many people don't believe it's a very
independent or transparent system: it's the
state investigating the state. It takes a long
time and is inefficient." The UK already has
an independent review board that examines
hundreds of cases of potential wrongful
conviction each year. "If a working lawyer
takes on one of these cases pro-bono, it could
easily take up half their year," says Levy. "If
paid lawyers were involved they could be
addressing the problem more efficiently and
results may be more successful. It's hard to
move the process along quickly when the
main resource is students who are already
tackling a demanding course workload."
How good a job is Canada doing at
responding to the problem of wrongful
conviction? Levy believes we have a lot of
work still to do. Canada has some policies in
place to address weaknesses in the system, and
Levy is encouraged that the Vancouver Police
Department has been recording interrogations
for the past decade and includes a section on
wrongful conviction in their training. The VPD
also uses sequential line-ups, which are one of
the main recommendations in eyewitness
identification techniques. But she believes more
rigorous research is required and would like to
expand the UBC Law's Innocence Project by
adding a research arm. "We haven't done much
field research in Canada. Crown and police
may have changed their policies, and there
seems to be a great understanding of the issue
at senior levels, but there's been no independent
investigation into how things are actually
working down at the ground level," she says.
"I'm curious to know how much is filtering
down to the officer on the beat and junior
crown counsel starting out in court."
The justice system is based on human
observation, testimony and honesty, and
therefore prone to error. Graduates from Levy's
program will be better equipped to establish
safeguards in investigation and prosecution
processes to make Canada's justice system as
reliable as it can be in the face of human
complexity and fallibility. "Wrongful convictions
in one sense are the greatest tragedy the justice
system can produce," says Tony Paisana. "But in
the same breath, I don't think there's anything
more democratic than those in authority saying
'we're wrong, we're going to let you go, and
(often) we're going to compensate you, too.' I
don't say it's easy, by any stretch, but it shows
the versatility of our legal process."
To find out more about the Innocence
Project at UBC Law please visit the website at
www.innocenceproject.law.ubc.ca. To request
an application form, please send an e-mail to
innocenceproject@law.ubc.ca. To get involved
as a donor, researcher or supervising lawyer,
please call the office at (604) 827-3616 or
contact the director at tlevy@law.ubc.ca.
W m wr wr m inn Mr4«r w ** w w
Human Kinetics, Physical Education
and Recreation
Join us on May 23,2009
War Memorial Gym
All grads, family ond friends welcome
For more information visit www.hkin.ubc.ca/
email: hkin.60@ubc.ca, or call 604.822.2767
UBC School of Human Kinetics
Spring 2009    Trek    17 Former T-Bird star
takes his class act to
the big league
This is
Jeff Francis
"Hi, this is Jeff Francis, I'm not available to
take your call right now, but if you leave a
message, I'll get back to you as soon as
possible. Thanks. Bye."
The polite voicemail greeting provides the
first hint of what kind of a guy he is. The
promptly returned call, as promised, is the
second. But the sincere and impeccably modest
voice on the line is the clincher.
Jeff Francis is, well, polite, sincere and
impeccably modest. In other words, fame and
fortune as one of the top pitchers with Major
League Baseball's Colorado Rockies have not
had any apparent effect on the lanky lefthander who put the UBC Thunderbird baseball
program on the map. At 205 pounds, he is a bit
slender for his six foot five frame, but his arm
is a rocket launcher even by big league
standards, with a fastball that reaches speeds in
excess of 90 mph. That, however, is where the
stereotype image of a big-league star ends.
It's not that pro ball players are all the same.
It's just that the 28-year-old from North Delta,
BC, is noticeably thoughtful and articulate, and
even a short conversation reveals a bred-in-the-
bone intellectual curiosity about the world
outside the ball park. Take physics, for
example. He entered the UBC faculty of Science
in the fall of 1999 intent on an in-depth
exploration of the discipline. He credits
Professor Jaymie Matthews for being an
outstanding teacher and for piquing his interest
in Astronomy. He also took courses in medical
physics and became fascinated with applications such as diagnostic imaging, and how
cancer cells respond to radiation.
But what is more immediately obvious when
talking to Jeff Francis is his determination to
stay out of the spotlight. So far, it's worked out.
In spite of making the cover of Sports Illustrated
as Colorado's top pitcher and one of the keys
to the Rockies' single-season ascent from the
cellar of the National League West to the 2007
World Series, he can still walk the streets of
Denver in relative anonymity.
"There are some guys on our team who have
reached celebrity status and they can't lead a
regular life," he says. "Our first baseman, Todd
Helton, can't go anywhere. Fortunately I've
never gotten to that level and I hope I never do.
But it's give and take: if you reach that level of
celebrity it's out of your control."
Compelling evidence of Francis' humility
was revealed at a news conference prior to the
18    Trek    Spring 2009
Pitching photos by Rich Lam; childhood photos courtesy of the Francis family 2007 World Series between Colorado and the
Boston Red Sox, a game in which he became
the first Canadian ever to start on the mound
in a World Series game, when a reporter asked
"What's it like to be the poster boy for
Canadian baseball?"
"I don't know if I have that honour," he said,
seemingly at ease with the glare of the national
media. "There are a lot of Canadians doing some
great things in baseball and I'm just one of them
who's proud to be from Canada, who's making
a lot of people back home in Canada proud."
One of those proud people from Canada is
UBC baseball coach Terry McKaig, who
recruited Francis out of high school to play for
the Thunderbirds. "To me, he's still the pitcher
for UBC; he's not the pitcher for the Colorado
Rockies," says McKaig. "Nothing's changed.
He's a very polite young man who goes about
everything the right way. He is never searching
for the spotlight. He would rather be off
fly-fishing with his dad."
Jeffrey William Francis was born in Vancouver on January 8, 1981, to Mike and Joanne
Francis, who nicknamed him "Boomer" after
Montreal Canadiens hockey legend Bernie
(Boom Boom) Geffrion. He grew up in North
Delta and played baseball with the North Delta
Blue Jays alongside future Minnesota Twins
slugger and 2006 American League MVP Justin
Morneau. In spite of a promising start, he
couldn't imagine at the time that he would
one day be a starting major league pitcher.
"Not really," he laughs. "It was a dream, just
like it's a dream for any kid I'm sure, but it
wasn't really in the plans until my last year at
UBC when all of a sudden the scouts started
calling. When I lived in Delta, my plan was to
play for the Delta Blue Jays. When I was on the
Blue Jays, it was to get a ticket to college and
get an education. I was just always trying to get
to the next level."
The choice of where he would go after high
school wasn't an easy one for the Francis
family. Several of the bigger NCAA schools
attempted to recruit him, including baseball
powerhouses San Diego State and Oregon
State, but none offered a scholarship.
"I would have had to pay my own way to
school down there, which my family couldn't
really afford, but we were ready to do whatever
we could to make it happen. But then UBC had
this new baseball program. Educationally, it's
as good an institution as there is and so late in
the summer after high school I just pulled the
trigger and went to UBC."
UBC's baseball team was, at the time, a
fledgling program that had been initiated in
1998 by a small but enthusiastic group of UBC
alumni and friends. His first season with the
Thunderbirds was also their first official season
in the US based National Association of
Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA). According to
McKaig, he had a decent freshman year, but
then something happened between the end of
the 2000 season and the beginning of 2001 that
put his star on a much steeper trajectory.
"At the start of his sophomore season we
were in a tournament down in California. He
came out for his first start and hit 90 mph and
that's kind of a magic number for amateur
pitchers. The next day about ten scouts showed
up wanting to see what the buzz was about
after hearing that this gangly lefty from Canada
was throwing 90. As the season went on he just
got more and more dominant, throwing harder,
and by the end of the season everybody knew
who he was."
"He came out for
his first start and hit
90 mph... that kind
of said, hey, it doesn't
matter where the
kid is from, that's as
legit as it gets."
He posted a 12-3 win-loss record in the 2001
NAIA campaign with an incredible 0.92 ERA
in almost 100 innings pitched, an impressive
record in any league and one that caused scouts
to speculate as to his chances of being a
first-round pick when he became draft eligible
the following year. Still, McKaig says, there
were skeptics who maintained that because he
was from a Canadian university, the competition couldn't be that great.
"That was the knock on him, but then he
played that summer in the Alaska League
against the big NCAA Division I guys and did
the same there and was Player of the Year. His
team went to the National Baseball Congress
World Series and he was MVP. That kind of
said, hey, it doesn't matter where the kid is
from, that's as legit as it gets."
Over the course of his UBC career, Jeff
Francis set n UBC pitching records and was
twice selected to the NAIA Ail-American team.
Equally important, from the perspective of UBC's
athletic department, he was also named an
Academic All-Canadian in each of his three years
for maintaining a grade point average in excess
of 80 per cent in a course of full-time study.
He also found time to be a regular volunteer
with I'm Going to UBC, a program that pairs
varsity athletes with inner city kids for campus
tours, sports clinics and Thunderbirds games, as
well as UBC's Learning Exchange community
service learning programs. At around the same
time he met Allison Padfield, a similarly gifted
science student and a member of UBC's
women's volleyball team. They were married
in Allison's home town of London, Ontario,
on New Year's Eve, 2005.
"I'm not sure I would be where I am today
had it not been for UBC, not just in terms of
baseball. It was my first three years living away
from home and there was so much learning for
me during that time. I met my wife and some of
my best friends at UBC. The atmosphere on our
team was really special, too, one of a kind
really. I always say that those were the best
three years of my life."
McKaig insists the comments about UBC
are indeed heartfelt, explaining that Francis
stays in touch and enjoys coming back to Point
Grey every fall for the team's annual alumni
weekend. He is also a generous financial
supporter, having endowed a scholarship and
contributed, along with other alumni, to
fundraising initiatives such as the Lunch Box
Program, designed to make the often spartan
existence of a student-athlete a little easier for
today's players than it was in the past.
"I remember when we played double-headers
on the road, we had to rush around getting our
own food between games and then having to
wash our own uniforms at night," he says.
"We're just trying to put some basic things in
place so that they feel like ball players."
Wednesday, June 5, 2002 is a date indelibly
etched in UBC athletics history. Just three
Spring 2009    Trek    19 • **
>£*. n
■ v
seasons after the Thunderbirds took the field
for the first time as the only Canadian entry in
US college baseball, their star pitcher - the tall
skinny kid from North Delta - was selected in
the first round of the major league draft by the
Colorado Rockies. He moved up through the
Colorado organization in just two and a half
seasons, and in 2004 was named Minor League
Player of the Year by both Baseball America
and USA Today. The following season was his
first full year with Colorado and in 2007, he
signed a four-year $13.25 million deal with the
Denver-based club.
Considered the true ace of the Rockies'
pitching staff for much of the spectacular 2007
season, he posted one of the finest individual
seasons by any pitcher in Rockies history. His
win-loss record of 17-9 is the best ever for a
left-hander, and his 215.1 innings pitched is the
third highest in franchise history.
Life in the big leagues, he says is "everything
you would expect and more," but it's not
without its challenges. The season is long and
-    1] . jjtoFiinuB
■ii'1 tsaM
£  -13
20    Trek    Spring 2009 -ftj||  U\ r
when the Rockies are at home, the confessed
home-body goes to the ball park in the
morning and doesn't return until evening. Then
there is the road schedule and, of course, the
injuries. "It's a great life, don't get me wrong,"
he says, "but it's not a particularly easy one."
2008 was not easy at all. A nagging shoulder
injury claimed much of it and as spring training
got under way in mid-February, the uppermost
thing on his mind was whether or not shoulder
surgery could be avoided.
His favourite activity in the off-season is
fly-fishing. Asked if he has had time to enjoy the
financial benefits of a big-league salary, he says
that he and Allison prefer not to live extravagantly,
but do enjoy traveling. "We've been to Europe
and Australia, and just last month we spent
two weeks in Costa Rica. Experiences are more
important to us than possessions."
He is unsure what life holds after baseball,
other than that he wants to provide support for
Allison to pursue her career. She recently
completed a PhD in physical therapy at
Denver's Regis University. "I want to be there
for her so that she can explore the upper ranks
of her career. She's been following me around
so long, it's only fair that I follow her around
for a while," he laughs.
He is also committed to finishing the handful
of courses required for his UBC degree, but
knows that will have to wait. They both want
to return to Canada, but when that might occur
is a matter that must be left up to fate to
decide, at least for now.
For now, it's baseball, and on the same
February day he left for Tuscon to attend the
Rockies' 2009 spring training camp, a couple
of thousand kilometers away the UBC
Thunderbirds boarded a bus for their long
annual trek to California for their pre-season
exhibition tour. It's a fitting coincidence. No
matter where Jeff Francis is, his mind and heart
remain inextricably linked to the team and the
school that gave so much of what is precious to
him today.
It's a favour he has returned many fold.
According to McKaig, his success has made it
much easier to recruit players, entice sponsors
and to schedule pre-season competition against
top US schools, which have nothing but respect
for the team from Canada that produced Jeff
Francis. And if Jeff Francis has done that much
for UBC, nobody could be more pleased than he.
"UBC is a special school. That much I know
for sure. And it's in one of the most beautiful
cities in the world. I'm not sure I can think of a
better way to put it."
No need to, Boomer. That's a perfect strike.
Post script: Regrettably, just days before this
issue went to press, the Colorado Rockies
medical staff announced that Jeff Francis will
undergo arthroscopic surgery to determine and
repair injuries to his shoulder. He will likely
miss the entire 2009 season. We wish him all
the best and a rapid recovery.
Don Wells is a freelance writer and video producer. A
for Kandahar
22    Trek    Spring 2009 A long and bloody insurgency that has killed
thousands of civilians since 2001; fields of
poppies seeping with opium resin waiting to be
harvested; corrupt officials turning a blind eye
to the chaos surrounding them and thousands of
NATO troops trying to hold it all together.
After more than seven years of post-Taliban
uncertainty, Afghanistan still appears, to many
outsiders, to be a lost cause. The southern
province of Kandahar - the traditional
stronghold of the Taliban - has developed a
particularly dangerous reputation among the
Canadian public due to the intense battles and
frequent casualties suffered by the Canadian
military there. Yet despite all this turmoil there
is another side to Kandahar, one driven by the
hope of its people that it will, one day, return
to normal life. It was this lingering sense of
possibility that inspired Afghan-born agriculture expert and education graduate, Toor Wesa,
PhD'02, to take up the formidable challenge of
governing this complex and turbulent province.
This past December, Wesa was invited to
Kabul to meet with Afghan Prime Minister
Hamid Karzai. The meeting was to discuss the
possibility of a political appointment for Wesa,
who had spent much of the six years since
receiving his doctorate working on various
development projects across Afghanistan. The
resulting appointment, however, ended up
being as much of a surprise for the Prime
Minister as it was for Wesa himself.
"He had known Karzai for some time,"
Wesa's friend and doctoral supervisor Tom
Sork says, "and Toor expected that the meeting
would be to discuss an agricultural development
appointment, or maybe one at Kandahar
University. When he got to Kabul, Karzai told
him that he'd had a change of heart only the
night before and thought that Toor might be an
ideal person to fill the Kandahar governor role.
So they talked about it for a while and both
concluded that although it would be a challenge,
Toor probably had the background and the
knowledge of local conditions to be successful.
He was far enough removed from previous
political contests that had occurred and was on
positive enough terms with the various power
groups in that part of Afghanistan that he
might be a very good choice for the role."
Only days later, he was sworn in as governor,
the third person to hold the position in 2008.
What ultimately separates Wesa from these
predecessors, however, is not only his distance
from past political turmoil, but also his strong,
research-oriented background in agriculture
and education - necessary cornerstones of any
future Afghan reconstruction - that he brings
to the governorship.
"His UBC research was on the reconstruction
of the agricultural sector in Afghanistan. His
study dealt with a lot of the major issues
confronting Afghanistan right now, including
the problem of poppy growing and getting the
agricultural sector back in line with world markets
and local food production needs," Sork says.
In 2004, Wesa told UBC Reports, "Farmers
are not interested in poppies. It goes against
religious and social norms. They want alternatives.
If other economic sources are introduced to
the farmer, they will grow other crops. Farmers
want a normal life for themselves and for
their children."
In order to provide these alternatives, Wesa
will continue to support initiatives he has
worked on in recent years. According to Sork,
this work has included facilitating connections
between local grape growers - Kandahar is
traditionally a grape growing region - and
experts at the University of California Davis'
excellent viticulture program. He also hopes to
revive a fruit drying and packing business that
has deteriorated over the years by attracting
investment while also developing markets for
these products.
Even with all of his preparations, relationship-building and good intentions, he will need
all the help he can get. In order for Afghanistan
to have the ability to take the steps required to
rebuild, the country needs to develop a new
professional class. This takes an educational
system that the country doesn't currently have.
"Kabul University, as the mother of all
universities within the country, is nothing more
than a high school, with limited qualified
faculties, a lack of research facilities and academic
journals, and few teachers qualified to teach
foreign languages," Wesa told UBC Reports.
Despite these limitations, Wesa will not give
up on his homeland, a place he feels has much
potential. It is clear from his words that he
truly believes in the people of Afghanistan. All
along, according to Sork, his plan has been to
finish his PhD and return home to contribute
his expertise for the benefit of all.
"He is an educator at heart," Sork concludes,
"so he is already putting a great deal of
emphasis on providing enhanced educational
opportunities for all the people of Afghanistan.
This will serve him and his country well in the
years ahead."
Michael Awmack is a communications coordinator
for UBC Alumni Affairs.
Spring 2009    Trek    23 Crown, Parliament or People:
Is Canada Really
a democracy?
24    Trek    Spring 2009 Was the 2008 Parliamentary crisis a
one-of-a-kind confluence of events that resulted
in a freak accident? Or was it harbinger of
things to come, an indicator of the normal
state of Canada's governmental future?
Outside Canada, the optics are terrible. The New
York Times reported on December 4 that:
Prime Minister Stephen Harper shut down
the legislature until Jan. 26, seeking to
forestall a no-confidence vote that he was
sure to lose	
It gets worse:
Mr. Harper acted after getting the approval
of Governor General Michaelle Jean, who
represents Queen Elizabeth II as the nation's
head of state.
Canada doesn't even qualify as a banana
republic. A banana monarchy, perhaps?
Of course, the Governor-General was caught
in the middle of a dispute not of her own
making. The governing Conservatives were on
the verge of losing the confidence of Parliament. An alternative government could be
identified among the currently sitting members.
Each side appealed to democratic values, but
each translated those values its own way. Prime
Minister Harper claimed that the people had
spoken and had given his party - and only his
party - the presumptive right to govern. In
opinion polls, most Canadians seemed to agree.
Awkwardly, Mr. Harper did not have an
outright majority of seats, had no natural
parliamentary allies, and could claim only 37.6
per cent of the popular vote. The opposition
appealed to the classic conception of "responsible government," that the House of Commons
decides who shall govern. Usually the House is
short-circuited because the electorate gives one
party a majority of seats (although rarely of
votes). But that was arguably not relevant for
the current situation, a hung parliament.
Together the three coalition parties controlled a
majority of seats in the House, and also owned
a majority of the popular vote. But voters
supported these parties severally, not jointly,
and the presence of the Bloc Quebecois as a
supporter of the arch-federalist Liberals made
the coalition especially incoherent.
At first, the Prime Minister argued that
should his party lose the confidence vote, the
Governor-General was bound to grant him a
dissolution, so that the people could referee the
dispute. For her to do otherwise - to reject the
advice of the duly elected Prime Minister -
would be an affront to democracy. The
opposition argued that Mme. Jean was required
to do no such thing. The affront to democracy
would be dissolution less than two months
after an election, especially when an alternative
government had already presented itself. We
know, of course, that the Prime Minister
backed off and asked not for dissolution but
for prorogation, which was granted. This gave
the government breathing space, and set in
train a leadership change in the Liberal Party.
But who was correct on the original issue:
the Prime Minister or the might-have-been
coalition? You will not find the answer on
any official Canadian government website.
The Governor-General's site is especially thin:
photo opportunities, bits of heraldry, driving
directions and honours. The Prime Minister's
site is little more than propaganda. To find
useful and accessible discussions, you need to
go to the Governor-General sites for Australia
and New Zealand. Each has short but well
crafted statements, with useful further links.
These sites embody a conversation spanning
decades and in which Canadian experience is
prominent. The greater maturity of the
down-under sites reflects the fact that for
both countries these issues have real currency.
Australians remain divided over the crisis
of 1975, when the Governor-General seemed
to take one side in a partisan dispute; this
event accelerated the growth of Australian
republicanism. New Zealand did not have
such a crisis, but now works with an electoral
system that routinely produces hung parliaments.
For both countries, however, a Canadian event -
the 1926 refusal by Lord Byng to grant Prime
Minister Mackenzie King a dissolution - is of
continuing relevance.
If the King-Byng contretemps remains
controversial, all sides to the controversy agree
that in 2008 the coalition had it right: the
Governor-General should have denied a request
for dissolution. The election was too recent and
the three potential coalition partners had
spoken clearly. The appropriateness of
prorogation is more puzzling. But both the
Conservatives and the Liberals should thank
Mme. Jean for it.
The 2008 crisis is unlikely to be an isolated
incident. Both of Canada's major players have
been losing ground since 1917 and, if winners
have lost ground, the second-place parties must
also have lost ground. An examination of
electoral results over Canada's history shows a
flattening trend in the spread of votes among
the parties. The typical winner receives about
15 points less of the vote in the 21st century
than in the 19th century. Since 1993, no
winning party has received more than 41 per
cent of the vote. The pattern for seats is more
cyclical, a reflection of shifts in the opposition
vote. The last three elections represent a
sustained low point. Single-party majorities
may have slipped out of reach.
Of course, these parties have names. Slippage
on the government side has been mainly a story
of the Liberal Party. Although its banishment
from office in 1957 and 1984 was temporary,
the Liberal Party that returned to power in
1963 and 1993 was clearly weaker than its
predecessors. The opposition story has been
mainly about the Conservatives, and the narrative
is dominated by what happens after their brief
flirtations with power. Usually, the Conservative
fall from power is catastrophic, with the
extreme case being the calamity of 1993.
Ilustration: Keith Leinweber
Spring 2009    Trek    25 Other parties, obviously, pick up the slack,
and in Canada, this takes two forms. One has
been the growth of the party of the left, first the
CCF, then the NDP. This party receives shares
in the high teens, although its support occasionally ebbs if some of its usual supporters
shift to the Liberals to block the Conservatives.
Although the NDP cramps the style of the
other two parties (and NDP strategists would
especially celebrate the disappearance of the
Liberals), the party is thoroughly committed to
mainstream politics.
The rest of the slack is picked up by parties
that might be styled as niche or anti-system, in
that they opt out of the struggle for government. Traditionally, these parties come and go:
the Progressives in the 1920s, Social Credit (in
two incarnations) from the 1930s to the 1970s,
and Reform/Alliance in the 1990s. Roughly
speaking, their ebb and flow complements the
rise and decline of the various incarnations of
the Conservative Party. This is also true of the
Bloc Quebecois, which rose from the ashes of
the Mulroney Conservatives' Quebec base in
1993. The continued strength of the Bloc poses
a severe challenge to the prospects for business
as usual. The Bloc's 10-point (give or take) vote
share routinely translates into 15 per cent of
seats. To get a simple majority, then, a party has
to win nearly 60 per cent of the remaining
seats, a tall order. Also confusing the issue is the
five-plus per cent of the electorate voting for
yet other parties, mainly the Greens. The Bloc
and other surviving niche parties are unlikely
to disappear, given that the system of party
finance subsidizes their continued existence. It
is no coincidence that a Conservative proposal
to pull the plug on subsidies to parties was a
catalyst for the 2008 crisis.
With the fracturing of the party system, our
first-past-the-post electoral formula may be
living on borrowed time. At this point, few
players, the Bloc least of all, want change.
Canadian elections still seem fairly decisive:
when the votes are counted, it is clear who
should form the government. Even when no
party has a majority of seats, one party usually
has a clear edge over its closest rival. And this
decisiveness has meant that minorities were
usually transitional: the party in government
looks for the right moment to turn itself into a
majority; the opposition looks for the right
moment to bring the government down; each
side looks to the electorate. At least this is what
the major players tell themselves.
But hung Parliaments may truly represent
our political future. If they do, the Governor-
General's role as umpire will only grow, and
will do so whatever the electoral system. If MPs
no longer believe that elections are decisive,
they will be less willing to allow minority
governments to form. Or they will be less
inclined to give the benefit of the doubt to the
party with the largest number of seats. Instead,
the party with the most allies may become the
presumptive government. It may fall to the
Governor-General to identify such possibilities.
This will require institutionalized consultation
with all parties and the development of a
transparent mechanism for revealing their
wishes. Transparency was conspicuously
lacking in December 2008. If the Governor-
General enters the political game without such
procedures, he or she risks undermining the
legitimacy of the Crown and, indeed, of
Parliamentary democracy. If she has not done
so already, Mme. Jean should get on the phone to
her counterparts in Wellington and Canberra.
Richard Johnston, is currently Research Director
of the National Annenberg Election Study at the
University of Pennsylvania. He has been nominated
by UBC as the Canada Research Chair in Elections,
Public Opinion, and Representation. He returns to
UBC in July, 2009.
The impact of your legacy gift to UBC will live on. Universities change our world
for the better. By planning your gift today, you can help future generations of students
and researchers meet the needs of tomorrow. No matter what your passion or interest,
UBC is making significant advances through education
and research. We can help you plan a meaningful gift to
the area that means the most to you.
Request a copy of our Planned Giving Options booklet
to learn about gifts that fit your financial plans and
family goals. The booklet is full of practical information,
examples and stories of donors whose gifts will influence
generations to come.
Contact UBC Gift & Estate Planning:
604.822.5373 | heritage.circle@ubcca
26    Trek    Spring 2009 Embark on a cultural, educational and social odyssey, and make a weekend of it.
Bursting with relevance. Alumni Weekend provides access to
campus shakers and newsmakers. Learn about the Innocence
Project - a UBC initiative that investigates claims of wrongful
convictions, or attend a panel discussion on the current economic
crisis with Globe and Mail columnist, Jeffrey Simpson.
Indulge your senses and get your culture on with some wine
appreciation at UBC's wine research library and a visit to the
newly renovated Museum of Anthropology. Get together with
old friends and meet some new ones at an alumni softball game.
Make sure you fuel-up first at the BBQ lunch.
More than 50 cultural, social and educational events have
been carefully planned so you can rediscover UBC. Take some
time to stop and smell the rose garden and see campus through
a new lens.
Registration is now open. Updates will be sent electronically
so make sure that we have your email address. Contact us at
alumni.weekend@ubc.ca, 604.827.3081 or 1.800.883.3088
for more information.
Have your friends and family join you for a delicious
veggie or beef burger at the outdoor BBQ.
Visit the Biodiversity Canopy Walkway at the UBC
Botanical Garden. Spanning 308 meters, rising 17.5
meters into the tree canopies and featuring nine
tree top platforms, it will provide an in-depth view of
the upper layers of second growth coastal rainforest
eco-system, as well as vegetation on the forest floor
below. An engaging activity for the whole family.
Join UBC professor and physicist Jaymie Matthews as
he explores this question and gives us an insider
scoop on the MOST satellite, UBC's very own and
Canada's first space telescope. This UBC treasure is
capable of measurements beyond that of most
observatories in the world.
One of Canada's most important visual artists, Jack
Shadbolt is known for paintings and murals that
depict social and political collisions from BC's past.
This exhibition, at the Morris and Helen Belkin Art
Gallery, will feature more than 100 drawings, sketches
and archival materials from the 1930s to the 1980s
that reveal Shadbolt's technical and creative approach
to his work. Witness how a small sketch is turned
into a large mural, and the maturing of the themes
in his artwork throughout his artistic career.
Grab your glove and bat and swing for the fences! Join
us for an afternoon of softball fun with alumni and friends
on the brand new UBC fields at Thunderbird Park.
What is TRIUMF? It's only Canada's national laboratory
for Particle and Nuclear Physics. Come witness
the world's largest cyclotron at work as physicists
strive to discover the secrets of matter, subatomic
particles and even supernovas. Discover your inner
nuclear physicist.
Tidepooling is back again this year with assistant
professor of zoology Chris Harley. Bring the family
out for a Sunday afternoon session near Brockton
Point in Stanley Park to investigate some of the sea's
fascinating creatures.
To find out more about Alumni Weekend, or to register,
check out our Alumni Weekend webpage.
www.alumni.ubc.ca/events/alumniweekend UBC Library Vault Turns One!
UBC Library Vault is celebrating one year of bringing you the magic of our rare books,
archives and other special collections in an online format (www.ubcvault.ca). As a treat,
we're showing you some of the exceptional images that the Vault plans to unveil in the
coming year. Gorgeous giclee prints and new cards sets will be available from the online
gallery in the spring. Proceeds support UBC Library initiatives, ensuring our collections
endure for future generations. You can sign up for the monthly e-newsletter, eVault, at
1. Queen Triggerfish
"They sold me several curious fish," wrote
naturalist Rene-Primevere Lesson of the
villagers in his 1824 New Zealand journal.
During a voyage chartered by the French ship
La Coquille, approximately 50 species of
animals were collected and taken back to Paris.
The colourful creature pictured here attacks sea
urchins by blowing water to overturn them.
Voyage de la Coquille, Woodward Biomedical
Library (QL5 .L3 1826)
2. Curcuma roscoeana
The 19th-century horticulturist, landscape
architect and designer Joseph Paxton was
also a prolific author and editor, responsible
for respected horticultural journals such as
Paxton's Magazine of Botany, which were
distinguished by their outstanding illustrations.
This particular image depicts the Curcuma
roscoeana, known for the brilliant colour of its
blossoms, and introduced to England in 1837
by the superintendent of the East India
Company in Calcutta.
3. Abraham Ortelius
This image is a close-up of "A New Description
of America," one of many maps collected by
Flemish scholar and geographer Abraham
Ortelius (1527-1598) in his atlas Theatrum
Orbis Terrarum. Published in 1570, the text
was considered to be the first modern atlas,
and was referred to as a summary of all
16th-century cartography.
Theatrum Orbis Terrarum, Rare Books and
Special Collections (G3290 1587 Oj 1588).
Paxton's Magazine of Botany, Woodward
Biomedical Library (QK1.P18).
Trek    Spring 2009 4. Spanish Manuscript
The Spanish Chant Manuscript is an exquisite
collection of Gregorian chants, hymns and
psalms. The complete volume contains 208
pages of music compiled by the Catholic church.
It is believed to have originated sometime
between 1575 and 1625 in Longrono, Spain.
The text is often decorative, with unique
designs woven into the notation.
Spanish Chant Manuscript, Rare Books and
Special Collections (M2149.L32 S6 1575).
S. A Mad Tea Party
Some of the curious members of the Wonderland
tea-party were based on real characters whom
Carroll knew. The drowsy Dormouse, a rodent
that Victorian children often kept as pets in old
teapots, was based on Dante Gabrielle Rossetti's
pet wombat which had a bad habit of sleeping
on the dinner table. The Mad Hatter may have
been inspired by Theophilus Carter, an eccentric
Oxford furniture dealer who always wore a top
hat. He was the inventor of the "alarm clock
bed," which rudely tossed sleepers out from
under the covers and was guaranteed to wake
even the most reluctant morning riser.
Alice in Wonderland, Rare Books and Special
Collections (Alice. Book 13).
6. William Darwin Fox: Friend
and Foe by Charles Darwin
Charles Darwin addressed this letter to his
second cousin, William Darwin Fox (1805-
1880), who studied with him at Christ's College,
Cambridge. Fox, an amateur entomologist and
botanist, is credited for sparking Darwin's interest
in natural history. Despite their convergent
interests, Darwin and Fox didn't always see eye
to eye. Fox went on to become the county vicar
of Nottingham and an outspoken adversary of
Darwin's evolutionary theory.
Charles Darwin Letters digital collection
5,236). (Photo courtesy of UBC Archives.)
Spring 2009    Trek    29 h
■     ■ .0 9 %
an/i /\rt
%■♦■   ■ **&*■ * * i %-
Entirely new colours
for metal patinas are
being developed by
UBC Okanagan fourth-
year undergraduate
Ashley Devantier and
chemistry professor
Stephen McNeil.
Imagine a purple Statue of Liberty dressed in a
canary-yellow robe, holding a bright red flame.
The artistic concept is in the scientific works
thanks to research by Ashley Devantier, a
fourth-year UBC Okanagan student who is
using chemistry to create more colour options
for artists working with patinas.
A patina is a coloured coating on the surface
of bronze or similar metals, often produced
naturally by oxidation over a long period, such
as the blue-green colour on the Statute of
Liberty's copper surfaces. Artificial patinas are
used by artists to add an antique look or feel to
their artwork, but these artificial patinas have
their drawbacks: they're confined to a very
imited colour palette (usually blue-green) and
often use highly toxic or hazardous compounds.
By mixing and manipulating common
- and far less toxic - metallic elements and
identifying the molecular basis for new
i     colours, Devantier has produced nearly a
full rainbow of colours not previously available
in the patina palette. In addition, she has studied
and analyzed the underlying molecular changes
that take place when applying these new patinas.
"I took some common metallic elements -
chromium, iron, cobalt and copper - which are
known to give compounds very intense, vibrant
colours, and started to explore the chemical
processes that occur when they are applied to
bronze surfaces," says Devantier. "All of a sudden
these amazing colours started to show up."
Although the practical applications are yet to
be determined, Devantier's research could
potentially give artists new, less toxic formulas
to create patinas of varying colours and an
array of exciting options for their bronze art.
Devantier, who received an Undergraduate
Research Award (URA) from the Irving K.
Barber School of Arts and Sciences to conduct
her research last summer, says interest in her
work has been overwhelming and the experience itself has been life-changing.
30    Trek    Spring 2009 "I produced
this beautiful
bright red and
for the life of me
I couldn't figure
out how to do
it again. I used
the exact same
mixture, and it
would repeatedly
turn blue. I was
convinced the
colour gods
hated me."
"The response I've had from the internal
UBC arts community is fantastic," she says.
"When I look at where I was only a few
months ago and where this project has taken
me, well, it's mind-boggling. The URA grant
has completely changed my personal path and
the way I thought about science and research."
Devantier had planned to finish her bachelor of
science degree in chemistry by December. She
was looking forward to finishing university and
was eager to start working in whatever field she
was able to land a job. But after receiving the
URA and completing the research part of her
project last summer, Devantier decided to continue
with her project through an honours thesis.
"This project has been in Ashley's hands
since day one," says Stephen McNeil, assistant
professor of chemistry and primary supervisor
of Devantier's patina research project. "It is
really something off the beaten path. I was
surprised to find out that nobody has done the
preliminary work to see what transition metals
could be put on a surface to create colour, so it
was very exploratory at the start. It's a visually
enticing project that bridges science and art."
As part of her honours thesis, Devantier is
studying molecular changes over time occurring
on the surface of the bronze patinas, and
recording them. The next step will be to
approach the arts community to determine the
practical applications of the research.
Although the project has been rewarding
for Devantier, it has presented interesting
challenges. "There was the great saga of the
disappearing red," she says. "I produced this
beautiful bright red and for the life of me I
couldn't figure out how to do it again. I
used the exact same mixture, and it would
repeatedly turn blue. I was convinced the
colour gods hated me."
The colourful Ashley Devantier.
A few weeks of perseverance and careful
study revealed the cause: solutions of an iron
salt would react with the copper atoms in the
bronze surface, yielding a red iron compound.
If the iron solution had time to react with
oxygen in the surrounding atmosphere, the iron
complex would oxidize and form a blue colour
instead. Applying the iron under a flow of
nitrogen gas would prevent the oxidation,
leaving the original red. Chemical identification
of the blue and red materials provided the clues
needed to reproduce each colour.
"Figuring that out was the most rewarding
thing I've ever done," says Devantier.
Jody Jacob is a communications coordinator
at UBC Okanagan.
Photograph: Tim Swanky
Spring 2009    Trek    31 'fl
Join other adult learners in condensed programs over one week or more at
UBC's Point Grey or Robson Square campus. UBC Continuing Studies summer
institutes feature outstanding instructors in engaging classes. Subjects include:
writing | languages | liberal arts | culinary and wine arts | intercultural studies
sustainability | career development | multimedia | and morel
Wgi Continuing
**$ Studies
UBC Alumni participating in one of our 2009 summer institutes are eligible for:
• $75 gift certificate towards a future UBC Continuing Studies course
• behind-the-scenes tour of the Wine Library at the UBC Wine Research Centre,
complete with wine tasting, culinary demonstration and souvenir gift
• free lectures and special events.
or information, view cstudies.ubc.ca/treksummer Les Harris bsc'67, mba'72 took a course in garden design
that led to a new career.
Les Harris is passionate about gardens.
With a management career in information
technology behind him, no wonder he tackles
his own overgrown garden by using a database
to catalogue its abundance of flowering trees,
evergreens and hybrid rhododendrons. But who
would have guessed that this garden project at
Spindrift Cottage, a vacation property Les and
his wife purchased on Vancouver Island, would
lead to a new career?
It was his desire to improve the garden at
Spindrift that prompted Les to look for
educational programs to give him the skills
required to create his own design. Les decided
on UBC Continuing Studies' Certificate Program
in Garden Design, a part-time program led by
Ron Rule, a leading landscape architect and
garden historian specializing in the Pacific
Northwest region.
Program participants come from all walks of
life, some interested in improving their own
gardens, others already working in landscape
design but lacking formal training. "I was
the old guy with lots of experience," says Les,
who used his skills to help other students.
"I've always been good at visualizing solutions
and making them into a diagram to explain
ideas to clients and my working team. I've also
taken courses in drafting and painting, and
I've done house renovations and furniture
building. So the process of designing a garden
felt very natural to me."
"Perhaps the most important skill I learned
in the Garden Design program was to design
garden spaces that matched the lifestyle of the
client," he says. "Part of this was the hardscape
design (stonework, paths, water features, etc.),
but the real eye opener was the multitude
of plants available, and how their shapes,
colours, scents, textures and seasonal
displays could be used to expand the client's
experience in the garden."
What began as a simple desire to improve his
garden became a passion. "My wife said I was
obsessed not just with gardening but with the
program, instructors and students." He received
the prestigious Rosemary Verey Award in 2007
in recognition of his ability to inspire others
through his commitment and enthusiasm, in
addition to academic achievement and creative
excellence. Winning the award made him
consider opening his own garden design
business and Spindrift Garden Designs, Ltd.
was born. Spindrift is sea spray, forming when
the wind blows from the land to the ocean. It
was also the name of his Scottish uncle's boat.
Les grew up in the Shetland Islands, a landscape so windswept that stone walls had to be
built to protect plants. "Plants would grow up
to the top of the wall and then stop," he says.
Les enjoys developing challenging garden
designs. "My current project involves a seaside
property where there is full sun, strong winds,
salt spray and many hungry deer," he says. And
surely this native Shetlander won't have any
trouble finding creative solutions.
PROFILES: UBC Continuing Studies
When Kirsten Molstad found herself
wondering if she was travelling the right career
path, she decided to take personality and career
testing with the UBC Continuing Studies Life
and Career Centre at UBC Robson Square.
"I was working as a project manager, and I
loved some aspects of the job but felt others
weren't right for me," says Kirsten. who chose
the course Working on Purpose: Life Shifts and
Job Change taught by Sally HaUiday and
Howard Askwith, alumni of UBC's MA
Counselling Psychology program.
"I have always struggled with decisions
about pursuing opportunities in areas I was
good in or areas I was more interested in," says
Kirsten. "At high school I was strong in math
but decided to study political science. I was
more curious about social sciences, and
instinctively knew that it was a better fit." Her
course work at the Life and Career Centre has
helped Kirsten recognize how her values relate
to her career choices. "It started the process
of discovering my own values and generated
awareness of what happens when those values
are challenged," she says. "It became clear I
would be happiest in a position working
directly with people in a helping capacity."
These days, Kirsten is putting her educational background and personality strengths to
work in a job she loves as an international
student recruiter and advisor for UBC.
Understanding her thinking style and recognizing her values has also helped Kirsten in her
interactions with students and colleagues. She
discovered that curiosity and collaboration
rank highly among her values and help her in
her job. "Curiosity about the students I work
with makes me a better advisor," she says.
Kirsten is also putting her career mapping
and skills development to use assisting others
by volunteering as a mentor with the YWCA
High School Mentor program and with the
Minerva Foundation's Learning to Lead
program as well as the United Way Campaign.
Having found the courage to examine her
goals and ultimately discover the right career
path, Kirsten does an excellent job of helping
others find theirs. "I often recommend the
Life and Career Centre courses and career
testing to colleagues," she says. "I found it
really helpful to look at my goals through
the lens of what would be a good fit with
my interests, personality and values."
Kirsten Molstad ba'99 took a course to help her find a
career that matched her interests and values. Guests broke out their winter glam
gear, kicked up their heels and
applauded the achievements of
UBC's most talented at the 2008
Alumni Achievement Awards held a1
the new UBC Thunderbird Arena (a
2010 Winter Olympics venue) last
November. After hearing some
inspiring speeches from the award
recipients, guests were treated to
gourmet fare, a salsa band, hipster
decor and our best silent auction to
date, which raised more than
$10,000 for student scholarships.
Award recipients for the 2009
awards will be announced in May.
Want to find out if your class is planning a
special celebration? For the most up-to-date
reunion information, visit our website at:
Want to plan your reunion but don't know
where to start? Look no further. Check out the
reunion toolkit on our website at www.alumni.
ubc.ca/events/reunions or contact your reunion
representative. Many faculties and departments
have reunion coordinators who can help you
every step of the way and Alumni Affairs can
help as well. Please find contact information
below for your reunion coordinator.
If your faculty isn't listed below, you can
find the most up-to-date reunion information
on the Alumni Affairs website, or contact
Marguerite Collins, events coordinator at
marguerite.collins@ubc.ca, 800.883.3088 or
APPLIED SCIENCE Visit the Applied Science
website at www.apsc.ubc.ca/alumni/events or
contact Tracey Charette at alumni®apse.ubc.ca
or 604.822.9454.
DENTISTRY Visit the Dentistry alumni website at
www.dentistry.ubc.ca/alumni or contact Jenn
Parsons at dentalum@interchange.ubc.ca or
FORESTRY Visit the Forestry alumni website at
tabid/'673/Default.aspx or contact Jenna
McCann jenna.mccann@ubc.ca or 604.822.8787.
LAW Visit the Law alumni website at: www.law.
ubc.cai'alumni/reunions or contact alumni@law.
ubc.ca or 604.827.3612.
MEDICINE For all Medicine reunions, please visit
Reunion.htm or contact Med.Alumni@ubc.ca
or 604.875.4411 extension 6774.
alumni website at: www.sauder.ubc.ca/Alumni/
Reunions/default.htm or contact Kim Duffell
directly at 604.822.6027 or alumni@sauder.ubc.ca.
Alumni Regional Networks
You can be part of the Alumni Network (aka
alumni branches and chapters) through faculty,
affinity or regional connections with your
fellow alumni. If you want to stay connected to
your student clubs and revel in your experiences
from those good ol' days, why not collaborate
with your former club members and form an
affinity network. Check with your faculty or
department to see if they already have an
alumni group.
If you want to connect with fellow alumni
but you live outside of the Lower Mainland,
check for a regional network in your area.
There are more than 50 contacts and networks
around the globe, and the list continues to
grow. If your area doesn't have a UBC alumni
network, why not start one?
Your Alumni Relations contact can help:
■ Brenda at UBC Okanagan:
brenda. tournier@ubc. ca
Caely-Ann at UBC Vancouver:
m Mei Mei at the Asia Pacific Regional Office
(Hong Kong): meimei.yiu@apro.ubc.ca
Grads getting tied in knots at Hong
Kong alumni Christmas party.
Comings and Goings
We'd like to thank our outgoing volunteers
and wish them all the best in their future
endeavours, and hope to keep in touch:
Kristine Randall BA'05, (Montreal), Alexandra
Percy BA'05, (Montreal), Jesse Touzel BASc'86,
(Santa Barbara), Jacob Tummon BA'03, LLB'oy,
(north and central Vancouver Island) and Zoe
Jackson BA'03, LLB'06, (north and central
Vancouver Island). Welcome to our new alumni
reps in the following cities:
Nawaaz Nathoo, BSc'06
Jim Vavra, BCom'84
Sophia J.K. Lee, BCom'oy
Amy Dickens, BA'oy
amyjdickens@gmail. com
Get involved
You can be an active member of the UBC
community no matter where you live. Join us
for an upcoming event or get involved as a
volunteer. Do you have an idea for a unique
event? A talent for connecting people? A desire
to share your experiences with new students or
provide insider tips on your city to alumni who
are relocating? Contact the alumni rep for your
region and share your talent, they'd love to
hear from you.
We're looking for volunteers to build the
alumni network in London (UK) and Montreal.
If you're interested, contact Caely-Ann
McNabb, alumni relations coordinator at
caely-ann.mcnabb@ubc.ca or 1.800.883.3088.
36    Trek    Spring 2009 Past Events
Grads have been coming together for a wide variety of activities since we last reported.
Maybe you cheered on the Canucks when they were in Denver or Ottawa, questioned
the Canadian electoral system in Palo Alto, California with other alumni and political
guru Professor Richard Johnston, mixed and mingled with other hip and happenin'
grads at the Royal Ontario Museum's c5 Restaurant and Lounge in Toronto, told us
your thoughts at a focus group meeting in Campbell River or perhaps you met former
Canadian Prime Minister and alumna, Kim Campbell, in London? Come out and join
us for the next event in your area.
The Next Step: Achieving Your Goals
On January 28, 2009, close to 100 alumni packed
the Pacific Palisades Hotel in Vancouver for a special
dinner with Olympic gold medallist Ben Rutledge,
BCom'06, and certified executive coach Doug
Brockway. After listening to these engaging
speakers, then sitting down to converse with
other Olympic and world champion varsity
alumni, attendees left inspired, knowing that
with a little motivation, they too could make
their life goals a reality.
A Conversation with Kim Cattrall
On January 7, 2009, UBC Alumni Affairs
and Theatre at UBC welcomed award-winning
Sex and the City actress, producer and author
Kim Cattrall to the Freddie Wood Theatre.
She talked to Jerry Wasserman about her
professional work in television, theatre and
film, her life challenges, women in the workforce,
post-feminism, self-image and her more than
3 5 years of success in one of the toughest, most
competitive businesses there is.
Do we have your email?
Do you want to find out about UBC alumni events in your area? Then make sure
we have your email address by sending it along with your name, degree and year of
graduation to alumni.records@ubc.ca. You will then automatically be invited to
events in your area. We look forward to hearing from you soon.
Upcoming Events
Starting in March, the UBC Dialogues series
will visit communities across the Lower
Mainland and around the world, asking
provocative questions and bringing insightful
discussions to our alumni. Some of the topics
to be discussed include: transportation, the
Olympics and funding of the arts.
On April 22 at 7:00 pm in the Chan Centre
for the Performing Arts, John Ralston Saul, CC,
will sit down with distinguished panelists - BC
Assembly of First Nations Regional Chief
Shawn Atleo and associate dean for indigenous
education and acting director of the Native
Indian Teacher Education Program Joanne
Archibald - for the UBC-Laurier Institution
Multiculturalism Lecture. The topic of discussion will be Aboriginals and New Canadians:
The Missing Conversation. The evening will be
hosted by Paul Kennedy and broadcast on CBC
Ideas. Tickets are free and can be picked up at
the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts on
UBC's Vancouver campus or downloaded from
Ticketmaster for a nominal fee of $2.50. (Limit
four tickets per person.)
John Ralston Saul
The annual All Canada University event in
Washington, DC, will be held in April. And be
sure to keep an eye out for a UBC Bound!
student send-off event in your city over the
summer. Visit the Alumni Affairs website at
www.alumni.ubc.ca to find out more about
these and other upcoming events. Your reps
are all using email to send out invitations
and we determine who to invite to regional
events based on your mailing address, so
please make sure that we have all your current
contact information. It's easy to update at
(Please pass this on to any fellow alumni
who are missing out because they have lost
contact with us.)
Spring 2009    Trek    37 claSSACTS
The Return of the Vets section published in our
last issue inspired J.E. Oldfield BSA'41, MSA'49 to
provide an update on his post-UBC career in
agriculture. He wrote: "After serving with the
Westminster Regiment in the 5th Canadian
Armoured Division in Italy and northwest
Europe, I returned to UBC in 1945 to do
graduate work. My major professor was Alex
Wood, a remarkable man to whom I shall
always feel indebted. At that time, UBC did not
offer the PhD degree in agriculture, so I went
south to Oregon State University in Corvallis
for my doctorate. My intent was to earn my
doctor's degree, which I did, and come right
back to Canada to go to work. Oregon State
offered me a position in their animal sciences
department, however, and I took it and have
been here ever since. At Dr. Wood's urging, I
started working with the trace element,
selenium, which most people have never heard
of and it has proven to be a most rewarding
experience. We were able to show that the
cause of white muscle disease seen in cattle and
sheep in areas of central Oregon was a
deficiency of selenium. Surprisingly, publication
of our work all over the world and selenium
supplementation has become an established
husbandry practice worldwide."
Semi-retired lawyer and mediator Walley
Lightbody BA'56, LLB'59 played a key role in
establishing the Okanagan Bar Association
Endowed Entrance Award, a scholarship
which will be awarded to a UBC Okanagan
undergraduate student accepted into the law
program at UBC. After he secured more than
$50,000 in donations from UBC Law alumni and
Okanagan law firms, the BC Law Foundation
matched the contributions for a current total of
$104,000. Walley has also been working with
UBC Okanagan to develop a Contemporary
Canadian Law concentration within the Barber
School of Arts and Sciences.
Bill Watt BMus'6y, MMus'yj recently retired from
School District 57 with 35 years of service in
BC's secondary public schools. Bill taught
mathematics and music in Mission, Prince
George, Shuswap, Surrey and Vancouver.
He continues to conduct the Prince George
Community Band and works part-time for
Enterprise Rent-A-Car in Prince George ...
Brian W. Wallace PEng, BASc'66 was given the
Institute of Transportation Engineers Greater
Vancouver Section's Lifetime Achievement
Award for Outstanding Contributions to the
Transportation Profession in BC. He has been
involved in transportation planning for more
than 40 years. During his career he was the
transportation consultant on some of the
largest and most visible projects in Vancouver
including BC Place, GM Place, Concord
Pacific's False Creek redevelopment and
Marathon's Coal Harbour redevelopment.
He was also part of the Owner's Engineer
team for the Lions Gate Bridge rehabilitation
project. He is currently in semi-retirement.
Eric Jamieson BA'yi has just finished writing
Tragedy at Second Narrows, the Story of the
Ironworkers Memorial Bridge (Harbour
Publishing, November 2008). It is his second
book. His previous work, South Pole, 900
Miles on Foot was published in 1996 by
Horsdal and Schubart ... Lyall Knott QC,
BCom'yi, LLB'y2, LLM'yj, a partner at the law
firm Clark Wilson LLP in Vancouver, has been
appointed honorary captain of Canadian Fleet
Pacific. There are only 10 honorary captains in
the Canadian Navy. Honorary appointees carry
responsibilities within the Canadian Forces,
including developing and promoting community support for their unit, establishing unit
relationships with local charities, providing
expertise in their associated vocations and
attending ceremonies, parades and other events
... Peter Frinton BSc'72 was re-elected for a
fourth term to Bowen Island's Municipal
Council on November 15, 2008. He was also
appointed by the council to sit as Bowen's
Peter Frinton
municipal director at the Metro Vancouver
table, and will act in lieu of the mayor on the
Translink Mayors' Council on Regional
Transportation ... Hem Savla MBA'y5 was
appointed acting head of Internal Audit and
Ethical Governance at the London Borough of
Barnet in February 2008. In March he visited
friends in Tanzania during his safari to
Ngorongoro and Serengeti National Parks. His
son, Neil, married Seetal in September 2008.
Leslie Allan Dawn MA'82, PhD'02 an associate
professor in the department of Art at the
University of Lethbridge, has been awarded the
Raymond Klibansky Prize for best English
work in the humanities for his book National
Visions, National Blindness: Canadian Art and
Identities in the 1920s. In the early 20th
century, visual arts were considered central to
the formation of a distinctive Canadian identity
and the Group of Seven's landscapes became
part of a larger program to unify the nation and
assert its uniqueness. Using newly discovered
archival evidence, his book traces the emergence
of a young nation. His book is published by
UBC Press ... Anna K. Fung QC, BA'81, LLB'84
former senior counsel and chief privacy officer
at Terasen Inc., joined the legal department of
Intrawest ULC in Vancouver under the
leadership of its new chief legal officer, Stephen
38    Trek    Spring 2009 1990s
Walley Lightbody with Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin, LLD'90, (left) and Kelowna mayor
Sharon Shepherd, BSc'73 on January 27. Chief Justice McLachline visited UBC Okanagan and
later gave a speech on the topic of access to the justice system and the barriers that exist including
cost, complex court procedures and delays.
M.G. Richards ba'8i, llb'8; ... Dr. Bradly
Condon BA'85 has been made a member of the
Mexican Academy of Sciences for his work in
international economic law. He is a professor
and director of the Centre for International
Economic Law at the Instituto Tecnologico
Autonomo de Mexico, in Mexico City ... Last
August, Rod Chow BCom'83, MBA'86 and his
family were featured on the cover of the
"Sunday Unwind" special section of the
Vancouver Province newspaper with the
headline "Ala-Kazam! BC's First Family of
Magic." Vancouver's Chow family are tops in
Hats off to B.C. magicians
Rod Chow's family of magicians featured in the
Vancouver Province, last August
the battle of the hands. His two sons, Jack and
Nicholas, won two gold medals each at the
2008 Pacific Coast Association of Magicians
conference in Monterey, California. Combined
with the gold medal that Rod won, the family
brought home an unprecedented five gold
medals in the same year. Jack, 12, is now a
six-time Pacific Coast and four-time Vancouver
magic junior champion. Nicholas, nine, is the
youngest four-time Pacific Coast and two-time
Vancouver junior champion. Rod's wife, Sylvia,
is a two-time Society of American Magicians
#95 Best Assistant of the Year. Rod has
personally won more than 30 magic awards in
his magic career including first place at the
Society of American Magicians International
Contest of Close-Up Magic. In total, his family
of magic has won an incredible 50 magic
awards. When he's not practicing magic, you
can find Rod selling insurance in the narrowest
building in the world, as recognized by the
Guinness Book of Records, located in Vancouver's Chinatown, where he is a certified
financial and insurance advisor/broker and
president of Jack Chow Insurance. For a bio,
photos and show info, please visit his website
at www.rodchow.com.
Christina Pao BA'93 and Elan Cohen are
delighted to announce the birth of their fourth
child, Ashley Hannah on October 10, 2008.
Christina and Elan have been living in
Singapore since 1997, where Christina works
for Alfred Publishing as the Northeast Asia
Sales Manager ... Michele Melland BFA'90 had
her fourth child, Lena Jo Melland Strassberg,
on August 16, 2007. Michele lives in New York
City with her husband Rich Strassberg and
their children. Rich is a white collar defense
attorney at Goodwin Procter and Michele is a
stay at home mom, still pursuing her acting
career in her spare time.
Daniela Cohen BA'oo, BEDE'03 has almost
completed a year-long term as senior editor and
NPO manager with Amazwi, a start-up South
African non-profit organization focused on
empowering rural women through narrative
journalism. Based in the rural community of
Acornhoek, Amazwi aims to empower rural
African women to tell (and preserve) the stories
of their community by providing training in
journalism and publishing the stories in the
Villager newspaper, as well as its online
component. Since January 2008, Daniela has
been mentoring the journalists through the
process of editing their stories for publication,
as well as managing the organization's
fundraising and marketing projects. She has
been documenting her experience of returning
to her homeland in the monthly column
Homeward Bound for the online component of
Canadian Immigrant magazine ... Dr. Jessica
Ware BSc'oi was awarded the 2008 Snodgrass
Memorial Research Award at the Entomological
Foundation's award ceremony in Reno, NV, on
November 18, 2008.The award recognizes
outstanding research by a graduate student
who has completed investigations in related
fields of entomology including arthropod
morphology, systematics, taxonomy or
evolution. Jessica also recently won an NSF
Postdoctoral Research Fellowship to work on
the systematics of lower termites with Dave
Spring 2009    Trek    39 claSSACTS
Bal Arneson
Grimaldi at the American Museum of Natural
History ... Energy Aware Technology, a
company started by Colin McKerracher
BCom'05, Colby Gore BASc'06, MEng'06, Janice
Cheam BCom'06, Jon Hallam BASc'oy, and
Lauren Kulokas BASc'06 has developed the
PowerTab, an in-home energy display that
provides real-time feedback on electricity
consumption, in both dollars and kilowatt
hours, to homeowners. Energy Aware's aim in
developing the PowerTab was to create a
product that would raise energy awareness and
reduce energy waste without requiring
significant lifestyle changes. The PowerTab will
be included in the Vancouver 2010 Olympic
and Paralympic Village, and the company
recently signed a multi-million dollar licensing
deal to a major US company to handle
distribution of the product throughout the US
... Bal Arneson BA'05 recently published her
first cookbook Everyday Indian: 100 Fast, Fresh,
and Healthy Recipes (Whitecap, 2009). In this
book, Bal takes the cooking techniques and food
philosophies she learned from her elders in a
small village in India and shows you how easy
they are to incorporate into the home kitchen.
Save the date!
On Saturday July 25, 2009, UBC Child Care Services is
celebrating 40 years of top quality care with a BLOCK PARTY
from 3:00 - 9:00 pm. Don't miss the chance to reconnect with
families and staff, enjoy great live music, food and family fun.
5690 Osoyoos Crescent, UBC.
For more details visit www.childcare.ubc.ca.
Can UBC Create Your Legacy?
Stuart Marshall and Theresa Arsenault think so. As Kelowna residents and strong
promoters of post-secondary education, they have made a gift of life insurance to
UBC Okanagan. Theresa believes in supporting institutions that make life better
for her community, and "UBC Okanagan is very much performing that function
now, both in providing access to education that wasn't available locally and by
helping the region develop knowledge areas through research and its spinoffs."
A gift of life insurance lets you make a substantial philanthropic contribution in
the future for relatively modest investments today. Your legacy gift to UBC can
be directed to either our Vancouver or Okanagan campus. Please contact UBC
Gift and Estate Planning at 604-822-5373 or heritage.circle@ubc.ca for more
40    Trek    Spring 2009 ubci      The MBNA® MasterCard® credit card
Credit you don't have to cram for
Apply now for your University of British Columbia Alumni Association
MasterCard and join more than 16,000 UBC alumni and students in
supporting your Association.
Call 1-866-434-5393 for an Instant Decision and quote Priority Code BPFY Monday - Friday 8 am - 8 pm (Eastern Time)
Visit www.alumni.ubc.ca/rewards/mastercard.php for more information.
MasterCard ^0
Doing Democracy
ro't?n|C«—T 1.--V.-.I',."!
A World History
; *■»£ -
Sacrah cf an
Eipat'i+ncad Gantbrw
Doing Democracy: Striving for
Political Literacy and Social Justice
Peter Lang Publishing, $45.00
Editors Darren Lund and Paul Carr explore the
role that education plays in building and
maintaining democratic societies.
The collection suggests democracy should be
a key component in all aspects of education. It
reveals that democracy is an ideology, a set of
values, a philosophy and a complex, dynamic
terrain that transcends borders and is a
contested forum for debate.
The authors offer a wide range of views on
democracy, including Freirean empowerment,
critical theory, global citizenship and feminist
and Marxist perspectives. Topics of focus
include African schooling and the Middle East,
and inspirations range from Jungian and
eastern thought to Aboriginal ways of knowing.
From seasoned veterans to emerging
scholars, these writers challenge those who hold
that there is only one type of democracy, that it
is bound by nationalism or that it is defined by
elections. Each makes a compelling case for
how education can advance a more critical and
global engagement in democracy that promotes
social justice and political literacy for all.
Sima's Undergarments for Women
The Overlook Press, $27.50
In her debut novel, liana Stanger-Ross (a
student midwife in UBC's faculty of Medicine)
has delivered a stunningly honest story about
community and sisterhood, set in a basement
bra shop.
For years, Sima Goldner has watched women
of all shapes and sizes come to her Brooklyn
shop in search of intimate garments. She has
become an expert at finding the perfect fit for
her customers just from a look, but it's her
knack for doling out a different kind of support
to the lovelorn and unconfident that's made her
shop a Mecca where women gather and gossip.
When Timna, a young Israeli with enviable
cleavage, becomes the shop's seamstress, Sima
finds herself drawn into the girl's life of
romance and adventure. Stuck in a bitter
marriage of nearly fifty years and harboring a
secret from her youth, Sima must try her own
advice on for size to find out if it's not too late
to turn her life around.
Stanger-Ross has received several prizes for
her fiction, including a Timothy Findley
Fellowship, and her work has been published in
Bellevue Literary Review, Lilith Magazine, The
Globe and Mail and The Walrus.
Peace: A World History
Polity, $69.50 (Forthcoming, April 2009)
How peace has been made and maintained,
experienced and imagined is not only a matter of
historical interest, but also of pressing concern.
Peace: A World History is the first study to explore
the full spectrum of peace and peacemaking
from prehistoric to contemporary times in a
single volume aimed at improving its prospects.
By focusing on key periods, events, people,
ideas and texts, Antony Adolf shows how the
inspiring possibilities and pragmatic limits of
peace and peacemaking were shaped by their
cultural contexts and, in turn, shaped local and
global histories. Diplomatic, pacifist, legal,
transformative non-violent and anti-war
movements are just a few prominent examples.
Adolf challenges the notions that peace is
solely the absence of war, that this negation is
the only task of peacemakers and that history
is exclusively written by military victors.
"Without the victories of peacemakers and the
resourcefulness of the peaceful," he contends,
"there would be no history to write."
Garden Sense: Secrets of
an Experienced Gardener
If you're looking for a compact little volume
that's densely packed with useful information
on a broad range of gardening topics, look no
further. What makes Garden Sense so great is
that it covers not just the "whats" and the
"how tos" but also the "whys."
For example, tulip bulbs tend to lose their
vigor after a few years because they are native
to the Mediterranean and need a dry period
after they bloom, which they don't get if they
are left in the flower border and watered all
summer. For a thrifty gardener who isn't
interested in lifting or replacing them every
year, Jonsson even offers a solution: plant them
under a deciduous tree where they will receive
spring sunshine but will be left competing for
moisture over the summer growing season.
Simple and practical.
Another "why" explains why tomato plants
that are allowed to dry out develop blossom end
rot. When dryness stops nutrient uptake, the lack
of calcium causes a breakdown in the tomato's
structure, starting with the blossom end. This
also occurs in peppers, melon and squash. As Roy
points out, most books will suggest you add
lime (calcium) and that you not let them dry
42    Trek    Spring 2009 GOLD
D U ST &
Israel Cliafetz
out, but don't explain the connection between
the two. I'm betting this is the reason the
tomatoes in our expensive new self-watering
planters did so much better this past season.
This book will be most useful to the
experienced gardener who wants to know
what's actually happening under the ground.
For more information on Garden Sense, visit
Reviewed by Elizabeth Minish
A Well-Mannered Storm:
The Glenn Gould Poems
Caitlin Press, $16.95
This book is an exploration of imagined
correspondence between one of Canada's greatest
musicians, Glenn Gould, and "k," an admiring
fan. Braid weaves an intimate dynamic as k
struggles with the loss of her hearing, finding
her greatest comfort in Gould's music,
particularly when he plays Bach. Gould's
poems don't directly reply, but they do echo a
response as he struggles with his own difficult
life; his family, his health, his strong beliefs in how
music should be presented and his personal
habits, considered eccentric by an ever-watchful
press. As the poems unfold, k comes to terms
with her changing world, just as Gould begins
a downward spiral into disintegration. In his
final reflection, Gould acknowledges that in
spite of his personal trials, his music now
circles the world in the spacecraft Voyager, as
Earth's example to other possible life forms of
what is most beautiful in this civilization.
Braid's books of poetry have garnered numerous
awards. She has also written three books of
non-fiction and has taught creative writing at
UBC, SFU and Malaspina University-College.
Gold Dust on His Shirt: The True Story
of an Immigrant Mining Family
Between the Lines, $26.95
Gold Dust on His Shirt is an evocative telling
of the experience of a Scandinavian immigrant
family of hard-rock miners at the turn of the
century and up to World War II. Based on
fascinating historical research, these are tales of
arriving in Amerika,' blasting the Grand Trunk
Pacific railway and working in the mines. They
describe domestic life and labour struggles in
company towns throughout British Columbia.
Part family history, part economic and social
history, the book is an intriguing look at life on
the industrial frontier, the world of immigrant
workers and the rise of unions such as the
Wobblies. This provocative tale of a family,
region and era references a number of broader
social and political issues.
Irene Howard has devoted her writing career
to combining her interest in labour and
immigrant history with her love of literature.
She is the author of several books, including
The Struggle for Social Justice in British
Columbia: Helena Gutteridge, the Unknown
Reformer, which in 1993 won the University of
British Columbia Silver Medal for Canadian
Biography and was shortlisted for a City of
Vancouver Book Award and the Hubert Evans
Non-Fiction Prize.
Ben's Way Out
Vantage Press, $24.95
At age 34, Ben Stein is questioning his roots
and his decision to finally leave academia and
become a lawyer. He finds himself in one
predicament after another as he battles the
wisdom and comfort of family and culture to
forge a way that is uniquely his own. Ben never
goes so far as to disengage himself completely
from his past, but he tests the limits of change
in his personal and working life.
In Ben's Way Out, the humorous and
thoughtful fiction debut from Israel Chafetz,
our hero's heart and mind are analyzed as they
relate to one young Jewish attorney, his
traditions, lineage and the ups and downs of
friendship, dating, education, career choices
and diet. How are these decisions to be
governed? According to traditional ways and
adhering to stereotypes? Or by breaking free of
one's past completely?
Chafetz is a partner in Vancouver's Taylor
Jordan Chafetz law firm. He has previously
published short stories, articles, comments and
professional papers for academic and legal
journals. Ben's Way Out is his first novel.
Spring 2009    Trek    43 "[-BIRD NEWS
T-Bird BBallers Primed for
CIS Championship in Ottawa
T-Bird men's basketball team claimed their
fourth straight Pacific Division title after a 21-2
regular season record clinched them home
court advantage throughout the playoffs. As we
go to press, they are in Ottawa competing for
the National Championship. This is the sixth
time the T-Birds have made the CIS Tournament in the past seven years.
After losing the consolation final of the 2008
CIS Final 8, the T-Birds came into this season
with all but one player from that roster
returning. To fill this space they added a proven
all-star, point guard Josh Whyte.
The regular season campaign began with
seven straight victories. UBC's first loss of the
season came on the road 76-73 to the Regina
Cougars. The T-Birds then won their next five
games before suffering an 87-78 road loss to
the TWU Spartans early in the second half of the
season. UBC closed their regular season with
nine straight wins before sweeping past the SFU
Clan and TWU Spartans in the Pac-D playoffs
with a pair of 2-0 series victories. They beat
Brandon 92-71 at the Canada West Final Four to
secure a spot at the CIS Nationals. Their 14-game
win streak came to an end, however, with their
first home loss of the season, an 80-76 defeat at
the hands of the Calgary Dinos, a team they
had defeated 91-76 earlier in the season, in the
Canada West championship game.
A trio of fifth-years formed the veteran
nucleus of this year's team, with Chris Dyck,
Matt Rachar and Bryson Kool starting a
combined 83 of a possible 87 games. Whyte,
who was in his first season with the T-Birds,
started all 21 regular season games he dressed
in this year and along with Dyck combined to
form one of the most potent backcourt duos in
the conference. Both Dyck and Whyte were
named Canada West second-team all stars,
marking the third straight season that Dyck
earned the honour. He was also named the
Canada West Ken Shields award nominee, after
leading the T-Birds with 14 points per game,
adding 4.5 rebounds during conference play.
Whyte was second on the team in scoring
with 13.8 points per game and finished tied for
fourth in the CW in assists (4.9 per game), and
third in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.2). Both
players, however, averaged just 25 minutes per
game during the regular season, making their
numbers all the more impressive.
Rachar (8.3 points and 5.6 boards per game)
and Kool (7.5 points, 5.4 boards, and 1.2
blocks per game) capped impressive five-year
stints with the T-Birds with another pair of
solid seasons. Both played in all 109 regular
season conference games over their careers and
rank tied for first in that category.
Not to be lost in all the T-Bird depth was the
outstanding play of fourth-year Blaine
LaBranche and Brent Malish. LaBranche
worked his way into a starter's role by season's
end and ranked third on the team in regular
season scoring with n.3 points per game in
only 20 minutes of action per contest.
Malish was the T-Birds' sixth man and the
talented junior came off the bench to lead the
T-Birds in rebounding (5.9 per game) while adding
8.7 points per contest. He was also called upon
to guard some of the best big men in the
conference and hit numerous clutch threes as
his inside-outside game caused match-up
problems for opponents all season long.
UBC also got solid contributions from
sophomore guard Nathan Yu (6.5 points per
game) who had the team's top three-point
shooting percentage (39.7%), senior forward
Kyle Watson (6.2 points per game) who made
14 starts this year, and junior guard Alex
Murphy (4.7 points and 2.9 assists per game in
just 17 minutes) who stepped up into a starter's
role when Whyte was out with an injury,
leading UBC to four straight victories.
In the post, sophomores Graham Bath and
Balraj Bains give the T-Birds depth and
outstanding hustle and defence - combining for
6.5 points, 4.8 boards, and 1.0 blocks per game -
while rookie guard Akeem Pierre and senior
guard Brett Leversage saw action in a combined
25 games this season. Back-to-Back Champs!
For the second straight season, the T-Bird Women's
Volleyball squad won the CIS National
Championship, besting the Calgary Dinos 3-2.
The T-Birds used a remarkable third-set
comeback and a near-flawless final frame to
become the first team since Manitoba (2001
and 2002) to earn back-to-back CIS banners.
"It's a totally different feeling this year," said
UBC head coach Doug Reimer. "The growth in
the team was so important for us and it was
such a complete team effort to get this win."
Sophomore Kyla Richey led the T-Birds with
18 kills and added five block assists and two
aces in the gold medal game. She was named
the CIS Championship MVP. Fifth-year middle
Marisa Field was a dominant force at the net
for the T-Birds, notching 10 kills, and tallying
two solo blocks and 10 block assists. Rookie
Shanice Marcelle came off the bench to notch
10 kills, 13 digs, two solo and one block assist.
Both players were named to the CIS Championship All-Star team alongside Richey.
A pair of UBC veterans played equally huge
roles. Team captain Danielle Petersen, playing
in her final CIS match, has had a knee injury
since mid-way through the season and Liz
Cordonier, the T-Bird primary power hitter,
had an abdominal injury that should have kept
her off the court. Petersen finished with six
kills, 13 digs, and seven block assists playing
the entire match while Cordonier had seven
kills and three digs as she stayed on the court
for as long as possible, appearing in four sets.
UBC trailed 12-7 in the third set after
splitting the opening two frames but were able
to fight all the way back to take a 16-15 lea(f
before seeing the Dinos go on a run of their own
to take a 23-20 lead. The T-Birds were able to
pull within one at 24-23 but then had to fend
off four Dino set points. UBC finally gained a
28-27 advantage on a Calgary error before
Marcelle ended the comeback with a kill.
The Dinos responded with a convincing
25-20 victory in the fourth frame but the
T-Birds were just too strong in the fifth set,
playing arguably their best volleyball of the
match with the CIS trophy on the line.
"When it comes down to it, our team is really a
pressure playing team," said Field. "We all want
it so bad and we never gave up on anything."
Men Win CIS Title, Women Silver
The T-Bird men's swimming team reclaimed top
spot in the country as the fastest CIS swimming
championships in history concluded in late
February at the UBC Aquatic Centre. The
T-Birds won their nth banner in 12 years.
The men's competition came down to the
final race with UBC (689) reclaiming the banner
it lost to the Dinos (661) last season, following
a record 10-year reign from 1998 to 2007. The
28-point margin marks one of the closest finishes
in CIS swimming history. After three days of
competition and 38 races, 25 CIS championship
records were toppled with 15 of those also new
senior Canadian short-course marks.
A pair of fifth-years had memorable
performances for the T-Birds. Scott Dickens, a
2004 Olympian, set a pair of Canadian records
in the men's 50 and 100 metre breaststrokes
(27.53 an(f 59-34) an(f was Part °f aH three
UBC relays that won gold on the men's side,
two of them in Canadian record time.
"It feels great to have my own Canadian
record," said Dickens, who tied Morgan
Knabe's national mark in the 100 breast. "To
be honest, coming into the race I was only
thinking about getting points for the team.
Winning this title was the best prize of the
whole weekend." Dickens finished the meet
with seven medals, five of them gold, and added
a silver in the 200 metre breaststroke and a
bronze in the 200 metre individual medley.
Fellow graduating senior Callum Ng capped
off a brilliant UBC career, winning gold in the
men's 50 and 100 metre backstrokes, 100
metre butterfly, silver in the 200 metre butterfly,
and a pair of gold medals on the 4x100
freestyle and 4x100 medley relays.
The UBC foursome of Ng, Dickens, Rory
Biskupski and Tommy Gossland closed the
meet with a senior national record in the 4 x
100 medley (3133.04). That time erased the
oldest Canadian record still on the books,
bettering Calgary's 1992 standard of 3:34.86
set by a quartet of Olympic medalists.
In the women's competition, UBC Olympian
Annamay Pierse took home the CIS female
swimmer of the meet award. The fifth-year
star swept the three breaststroke events for
the second straight year with senior national
records in the 100 (1:05.12) and 200 (2:18.59)
while notching a championship mark in
winning the 50 (30.71) Saturday evening. She
also took home a silver medal in 200 individual
medley (2:11.61) and a silver in the 4 x 100
medley relay.
Calgary, which had finished second behind
UBC in the women's competition for the last
eight seasons, tallied a CIS-record 791 points
to put an end to the Thunderbirds' (566.5)
streak of 11 straight national titles, a CIS
record in any sports.
Members of the T-Bird men's swimming team
Spring 2009    Trek    45 )NEWS
Sport Shorts
Both T-Bird squads qualified for the 2009
Canada West playoffs. The men travel to
Lethbridge to take on the Pronghorns, while
the women are slated to battle the top-ranked
Alberta Pandas. Both teams had players
represent Canada at the FISU Games in
February, with T-Bird goalie Melinda Choy
winning gold with the women's squad. On the
men's side, UBC head coach Milan Dragicevic,
defencemen Matt Pepe and Craig Lineker
brought back silver from Harbin, China. Pepe
was the lone male T-Bird to earn Canada West
all-star recognition, earning a spot on the
Canada West All-Freshman team.
The T-Birds finished the season with a furious
homestretch run, finishing 10-2 in the regular
season before upsetting the Victoria Vikes in
the first round of the playoffs with a 2-0 sweep
on the Island. Their season ended, however, at
the hands of the No.i ranked SFU Clan with a
2-0 loss in the Pacific Division finals. The
T-Birds finished the season ranked 10th in the
CIS and fourth-year post Leanne Evans was
named the CIS Defensive Player of the Year
after averaging nearly three blocks per game.
UBC missed qualifying for the CIS Championship
by just one series, losing to the Brandon Bobcats
2-0 in the Canada West playoffs. Fifth-year
Steve Gotch notched a Canada West record 34
kills in the final match of his career and was
named a CIS second-team All-Canadian, the
first time since the 1999-00 season that a
T-Bird has won that honour. Blair Bann was
named the Canada West Libero of the Year and
a second-team Canada West all-star.
Springtime has officially arrived when the
UBC Thunderbirds baseball team begins their
season. The T-Birds have had a hot start and
currently sport a 10-2 overall record and are
a near-perfect 6-1 in NAIA conference action,
with all of their games coming on the road.
They open their home schedule on March 13
and 14 with a pair of double headers versus
Corban College in the friendly confines of
Nat Bailey Stadium.
As a member of the University of British Columbia Alumni Association,
you can SAVE on your home and auto insurance through preferred group rates,
while enjoying high-quality insurance products and outstanding service.
As the leading provider of group home and auto insurance, we offer a wide
range of innovative products, so you are sure to get the coverage that is right for
your particular needs.. .and the peace of mind that goes with it!
Request a quote and you could
When you choose
TD Insurance Meloche Monnex
services, we are able to provide
financial and marketing
support for UBC alumni
programs and events.
Destination of your choice!
<oa ju.om ih cash)
1 866 352 6187
(Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.)
Meloche Monnex
The TD Insurance Meloche Monnex home and auto insurance program is underwritten by SECURITY NATIONAL INSURANCE COMPANY and
distributed by Meloche Monnex Insurance and Financial Services Inc. in Quebec and by Meloche Monnex Financial Services Inc.
in the rest ol Canada.
Due to provincial legislation, our auto insurance program is not offered in British Columbia, Manitoba or Saskatchewan.
*No purchase required. Contest ends on January 16, 2010. Skill-testing question required. Odds of winning depend on number of entries received. Complete contest rules
available atMelocheMonnex.com.
Meloche Moaned is a trade-mark of Meloche Monnex Inc.
TD Insurance is a trade-mark of The Toronto-Dominion Bank, used under license.
46    Trek    Spring 2009 The perks of membership!
Alumni Affairs has established relationships with carefully selected companies to provide you
with special deals on quality products and services. Help support student and alumni activities
at UBC by participating in the following great programs:
Wealth Management
Wellington West Clearsight
offers full service
retirement planning
including lower fees,
professional advice and a
wide selection of products.
TD Meloche Monnex home and
auto insurance plans extend
preferred group rates and
specially designed features for
our grads. Small-business and
travel insurance is also available.
Manulife Financial has
served the alumni
community for over twenty
years, providing extended
health and dental, term life
and critical illness plans.
Credit card
More than 12,000 alumni and
students use their UBC MBNA
Alumni Mastercard which has
low introductory rates,
24-hour customer support
and no annual fees.
Visit www.alumni.ubc.ca/rewards for more information.
Whatever the occasion,
our wine will leave you
wearing a smile.
Alumni Affairs has teamed up with Bounty Cellars to bring you a choice of
four UBC-packaged wines to grace your dining table. The groovy labels are
bound to be a hit with your friends.
Choose from pinot noir, merlot, chardonnay and pinot blanc, or save yourself a difficult decision and buy all four. It's for a good cause, after all.
Proceeds will support the construction of an alumni centre on the Vancouver
campus, with amenities and space to serve the whole UBC community as
well as providing a welcoming spot for your next visit to campus.
Available soon. Keep an eye on our website:
www. a I u m n i. u be. ca/rewa rd s/wi n e. p h p
Spring 2009    Trek    47 N MEMORIAM
We depend on friends and relatives for our
IN MEMORIAM materials. Please send obituaries
(500 words or less) to Michael Awmack at
michael.awmack@ubc.ca. We will edit all
materials to fit the space available. When sending
photos, please send originals or high resolution
scans (at least 300 dpi) as separate files.
Jean died peacefully in hospital, with family and
friends holding her hands, after a brief illness.
Her wish was fulfilled to live independently to
the end. Two days earlier she had attended
mass and gone out to lunch with friends. Jean
was born in the Royal City, the first of four
children to Joe and Maude Dorgan. She studied
nursing at UBC during the Depression, and
following the death of her mother in 1934
assumed a position of responsibility within the
family. After graduating she became a public
health nurse in East Vancouver. She recalled the
hospitality of the homes she visited, where the
offer of a glass of wine had to be refused by a
civil servant on duty.
During WWII she volunteered as a nursing
sister and it is no exaggeration to say that her
wartime experiences in the Italian campaign
were pivotal. Jean was able to enlist in 1942,
shipped to England aboard the Queen Elizabeth
in 1943, then went on to Italy where, as Lieutenant
Dorgan, she was assigned to Number 3 Mobile
Surgical Unit, a casualty clearing station. She
was present at the third attack on Cassino
(among other northward-moving campaigns)
and finished the war in Holland.
In peacetime she attained her master's
degree, taught nursing at the University of
Toronto, and worked for many years in Ottawa
for the Ministry of Health. The capital gave her
access to the archives where she could research
genealogy; she also visited much of southern
Ontario from where Irish settlers like her
family had come in the 1830s. In retirement she
moved back to the west coast, finally settling in
New Westminster and taking an active
volunteer role in Irving House. She was not
short of interests - heritage, Catholicism,
politics, clothes - nor shy of holding and
expressing forcefully her opinions. She was an
observant commentator until the end. Among
her last words were: "I didn't think it would be
like this; I thought it would be different!" Then
she thanked us, was blessed and went over to
join family departed. She is survived by many
(grand) nephews, (grand) nieces, and cousins.
Estelle died on October 21, 2008, in Vancouver
General Hospital as the result of a stroke only
a couple of weeks short of her 94th birthday.
She is predeceased by her husband, Cyril
(July, 1999), by her first grandson, Richard
Sanderson (February, 2008), and by her sister,
Jean Higginbotham (August, 2004). She is
survived by her daughter, Rosalind Sanderson,
son-in-law Alan, grandson Trevor, younger
sister Joan Matheson, and other relatives in
Vancouver and Toronto. She was a warm,
loving, generous and intelligent person in all
her roles, best-beloved mother, mother-in-law,
grandmother and sister. The family and many
friends all miss her terribly.
Estelle was born in Winnipeg on November
10, 1914, but grew up in New Westminster and
Victoria. She attended Oak Bay High School
and Victoria College before moving on to UBC,
where she attained her BA with first class
honours in French in 1935.Throughout her
studies, she won a number of scholarships,
including the French government prize at
graduation. She even found time to perform in
several Players' Club productions.
Estelle was awarded the Captain Leroy
Scholarship for general proficiency, which she
applied to her subsequent study of Social Work.
She attained certification in 1937 and began
working for the Children's Aid Society in
Vancouver. Estelle completed her MSW degree,
then worked at the Child Guidance Clinic as a
case worker then case-work supervisor until
1957. Estelle became a professor, teaching
social work at UBC in the early 1960s and
retiring in 1974.
Estelle and Cyril travelled extensively. They
celebrated their sixtieth Wedding Anniversary
in April 1997. A couple of years after Cyril's
death Estelle moved into Arbutus Manor,
where she was very happy. Her hobbies
included painting, gardening, reading, listening
Estelle Christine (Matheson) Chave
to classical music and minding grandsons. She
was unfailingly cheerful and uncomplaining even
in the face of adversity. She maintained a quiet
dignity, always endeavouring to adhere to the
Aristotelian philosophic ideal, the Golden Mean.
Estelle was a treasure for both family and
friends, and the loss of her love, intelligence,
wisdom, and infectious sense of humour will
leave a chasm in the lives of all who knew her.
Any donations made in Estelle's memory to the
BC Heart and Stroke Foundation will be very
much appreciated.
After graduating with a degree in mining
engineering, Ralph worked in BC mines
including Britannia. During WWII he served
overseas with the Royal Canadian Engineers.
After the war Ralph attended McGill University studying geology. (No more working
underground in mines for him!) He earned his
MSc in 1949 and his PhD in 1956.
Joining the Geological Survey of Canada
(GSC) he surveyed and mapped in various parts
of Canada including Western Ontario, New
Brunswick, and Northern Quebec. Ralph
served as resident geologist in Whitehorse,
Yukon, from 1956 to 1962. He retired in 1981,
but returned to the "office" to tie up loose ends.
During his active years with the GSC, Ralph
spent his summers collecting rock specimens. In
the Far North, large areas could be surveyed
48    Trek    Spring 2009 Virginia Joyce Bazilli (Nee Richards)
and mapped using helicopters. His knapsack
filled with his geologist's special pick-hammer,
compass, camera, lunch and possibly other
paraphernalia, Ralph would be transported in
the helicopter from his base camp to a
predetermined location where he was set down.
The rest of the day was spent traversing to
another predetermined location, picking up
samples of rocks, labeling them, photographing
them in some cases and carrying them to the
helicopter rendezvous. After returning to his
base the location of each rock sample was
plotted on a map using his notes and the ID
number on each rock.
This method of mapping allowed for greater
coverage of vast areas. The final products were
maps and memoirs detailing all the information he
had gathered. These were published by the GSC.
Similar techniques were used in mapping areas in
southern Canada, but the traversing was done on
foot and more detailed surveying was carried out.
Ralph enjoyed working in the great outdoors
and even after retirement enjoyed walking,
especially with his Schipperke dog, Quincy, and
poodle Machco.
After a ten-year battle with Alzheimer's
disease, Ralph died last March at the Perley
Rideau Veterans Health Care Centre in Ottawa.
Ralph is survived by his wife, Isobelle, sons
Chris and Colin, his daughter, Maureen, and
grandson Daniel.
Gone to rest after a lengthy illness, Bill passed
away on February 12, 2008. Gone before
are his parents, James and Jean Burton, and
sister Betty Jean (Mac) Storey. Bill's life is
celebrated by his loving wife, Mavis, and
children James (Lindy), Lynn (Larry) and
Barbara. He is lovingly remembered by his
nine grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren
and many nieces and nephews.
Bill was born in Innisfail, Alberta, on June 22,
1927. After attending the University of Alberta
and UBC, he commenced a career in engineering.
His work took him from sea to sea, with
Canadian General Electric, Macmillan Bloedel
and BC Hydro all benefiting from his expertise.
Bill was truly a family man first and
foremost, although he maintained lifelong
interests in boating, gardening and hunting. His
Mr. Fixit abilities were transferred by sterling
example to his children and grandchildren.
Heartfelt thanks to the staff at Cedar View
and Inglewood Care Centre; nurses and care
aides showed great compassion to Bill and his
family, as did Drs. Forder and Dawson.
On September 2, 2008, we lost our most
beloved mother and grandmother. She will live
on in our hearts forever.
Virginia, born into a pioneer family from the
UK (Russell Richards) and Australia (Nan
Richards nee Wood), spent her childhood in
Vancouver, West Vancouver and Trail.
After travelling, she settled in West Vancouver
with her new husband, Michael Bazilli. Their
florist business led to a lifelong passion with
gardening. A move to Oakville, Ontario, in
1959 saw the start of a busy life with four
children. Summers were spent at the family-
built cottage in Muskoka. After her divorce, she
raised her children alone as a subsistence
farmer in Centreville, Ontario.
With the support of the Ban Righ Foundation, Virginia returned to university aged 5 o
and graduated from Queen's in 1976 with a
BEd. She and her daughters, Susan and
Catherine, all attended Queen's together. She
began her career as a teacher in Belleville,
Ontario. She returned to Vancouver in 1980
and became principal of Pitman's Business
College, which was founded in 1898 by her
Aunt Eveline and was a landmark at Broadway
and Granville for many decades. In 1988 she
retired to Hatzic Island, created a spectacular
garden and painted - exhibiting at the Mission
Art Gallery. She adventured with her children
to Africa, India, Australia, Mexico, Russia, the
Spring 2009    Trek    49 IN MEMORIAM
UK, the US and Canada. To be closer to her
grandchildren and children, she moved to
"Nanna's House" in North Vancouver in 2002.
She proudly attended her 60th reunion last year
with UBC's Class of '48.
Virginia leaves her bereft children, Susan,
Michael, Catherine and John, their partners,
Dasi, Mimi, Lachlan and Nancy; grandchildren
Cameron, Matthew, Alison and Rosalie; her
brother, Peter Richards, and sister Shirlie
Barnett; nieces and nephews, Australian
cousins, and her many dear friends. She was the
heart and soul of our family, and we were hers.
An educator and mentor, her real life's work
was to nurture her children with joy and love.
We were blessed, and always will be.
George passed away peacefully at Chilliwack
General Hospital with his wife and family
by his side.
George was born in Vancouver, joined the
RCAF in 1942, and received his pilot's wings
in 1943. After being discharged at the end of
WWII he enrolled at UBC to study agriculture.
George's passion was agriculture and he spent
his career with the BC Ministry of Agriculture
in the upper Fraser Valley while also operating
his own sheep farm. In addition to his work he
spent a great deal of his spare time working
with the 4-H program and farm youth. George
was active in Carmen United Church for many
years. He married Thelma Macklam in 1943
before being posted overseas and was married
to her for 65 wonderful years.
George is survived by his wife, Thelma,
brother Jim, sister Shirley (Katalinic), children
Colin, Bryan, Karen (Hawkins) and David, and
grandchildren Aileen, Noreen, Alyson, Barry,
Tess, Joe, Callie, Billy, Rianna and Liam.
Wilfrid Norman (Bill) Plumb was born in
North Battleford, Saskatchewan, in 1915.
He served with the First Canadian Armoured
Brigade Signals in England, Sicily, Italy and
Holland from 1940 to 1945, and received the
British Empire Medal for meritorious service.
In 1950 he graduated from UBC as a
geological engineer. His fascination with the
natural world flowed through his career in
mining and exploration in BC, the Yukon and
Saskatchewan, including his favorite post as
chief geologist for Cassiar Asbestos Corporation.
He finished his career as information officer
at the BC & Yukon Chamber of Mines in
Vancouver. During retirement in Kelowna he
taught prospecting courses and continued his
lifelong quest for learning until his death in
February 2008, at age 92. He was loyal to his
profession, his family and his ideals, and
inspired all who knew him with his optimism
and determination to enjoy life to the fullest. He
is survived by his wife Barbara, his daughters
Sharon and Linda and six grandchildren.
Dick Vivian passed away on Sunday, October 19,
2008, in North Vancouver at the age of 86 years.
He was born in 1922 inVancouver. After
spending his early years in Penticton, Dick
moved to Victoria where he graduated from
Victoria High in 1940. He apprenticed as a
land surveyor, and then joined the military in
1942 where he served as a bombardier in the
RCA Corps in Europe. Following the war he
attended UBC.
He spent his entire career with Alaska Pine
and Cellulose and successor companies until
his retirement as chief forester of Western
Forest Products in 1987. Initial work focused
on timber cruising and silviculture on northern
Vancouver Island. He played an important
role in developing working relationships
between logging and forestry in the company
and strong linkages with his colleagues in the
BC Forest Service.
Dick was a conservationist at heart and
instigated a series of fisheries awareness
programs as well as being a strong supporter of
industry involvement in salmon enhancement.
As a practical forester Dick placed high
importance on understanding the information
he was given making sure the numbers fit
with his "back of the envelope" calculations.
Nevertheless, he put much energy and persuasion
into acquiring a new GIS mapping system for
the company.
Dick was a quiet man of high integrity, soft
spoken and a consummate professional forester.
His knowledge and perception of issues,
particularly government policies and actions was
impressive. This policy interest served the sector
well through his involvement with several COFI
committees. He had an impressive ability to
draft effective and diplomatic correspondence.
Loath to "jump on the train" without lots of
thought, he needed to know the direction it
was heading. He was a good and loyal friend to
many and respected by all who knew him.
Loggers appreciated his understanding of their
challenges and his efforts to keep operations
running smoothly.
He had a passion and love for drama and
history and visited many London theatre
venues following retirement. He was an expert
spinner and his yarn won several awards at
competitions around the Lower Mainland.
Dick is survived by his wife, Arlene, his
brother, Ben and many nieces and nephews.
It is with deep sadness that his family announces the passing of George Rogers of
Calgary, on October 2, 2008, at the age of 89.
George was born in Transcona, Manitoba. He
joined the Air Force and fought in WWII as a
flight navigator (lieutenant) for the RCAF. He
flew seventy-seven bombing missions with the
432 Squadron out of Eastmoor in England to
help preserve the freedoms we enjoy today.
George loved animals, classical music, opera,
gardening, and hiking in his beloved national
parks. He was known for his love of cats and
shared his life with many precious pets.
George is survived by his beloved brother,
Don Rogers and Don's wife, Shirley; his
children, Wendy Rogers and husband Ron
Harris, Robyn Homell and Penny Rogers;
and his grandchildren, Kristopher and
Megan Homell. George is predeceased by
his parents, Emma and John Rogers, and his
wife, Edith Rogers.
The family wishes to acknowledge and thank
the staff of the Emergency Department and
Unit 93 at Rockyview Hospital for their
compassionate and excellent care. A very
special thank you goes to Dr. Laatsch, who
coordinated and managed the care of George
throughout his final days. The family feels
50    Trek    Spring 2009 blessed to have had Dr. Laatsch help them and
George through his passing of this life. The
family would also like to express their gratitude
to the staff at We Care North and South for the
care given to George over the last six years.
As this is my auto-obituary, I'd like to write it
in my own fashion! I was born in Vancouver on
All Saints Day, 1931, the only child of Dr. Cam
& Ella Balmer, and graduated from UBC in
1952, and the University ofToronto in 1956.
Apart from practising dentistry in Vancouver
for more than 30 years, I have also at one time
or another been fairly adept as a skier, private
pilot, race car driver, vintner, mechanic, model
builder, marine aquarist, carpenter, photographer,
plumber, scuba diver, writer, boat builder,
Olympic team member (coach - for a bronze
medal), marine Master (CSC3), advanced ham
operator (VE7CTC), offshore sailor, lecturer in
electronics and seamanship, and a Canadian
Coast Guard Auxiliary member. As well, more
of my life was spent being a Canadian Yachting
Association vice-president, founder of the
BCYA (now BC Sailing Assn.), a member of the
Royal Vancouver Yacht Club for over 61 years,
including serving on their executive n times.
I leave Megan, a comely, loving and long-
suffering bride of 47 years, and a son Alex
(Julia). I died on October 10, 2008, from a
touch of lung cancer. Since I know smoking is
not harmful, I probably got it from a bad ice
cube! My ashes will be scattered at sea, my
meagre estate paying for the wake, which is the
only way anyone would attend. In lieu of
flowers, a donation to the Corinthian Fund at
RVYC would be appreciated. Since I've had a
ball in life, with no regrets and nothing left still
undone, and since our world seems to be
quickly deteriorating, it's a good time for me to
cash in. Goodbye, and good luck!
James died of cancer in Toronto. He was
born in Regina in 1930. He completed his
high school in North Vancouver and earned
a teaching certificate from UBC and his MSc
(1962) and PhD (1964) in the field of adult
education from the University of Wisconsin.
In the spring of 1967, James joined the newly
established department of postgraduate studies
in adult education at the Ontario Institute for
Studies in Education (OISE) at the University of
Toronto. In addition to his international studies
and numerous other graduate courses, he
specialized in Canada and India throughout his
career. He retired from OISE in 1995.
James is survived by daughter Maria
Willcockson of Mount Horeb, WI; daughter
Diana Draper of Toronto; and grandchildren
Jacqueline and Daniel Wilcockson, and Mara
Kylie Draper. He is also survived by his sister,
Constance Ellis and her husband, Richard,
of Citrus Heights, CA, and his brother,
William, and wife Linda of Miller Lake,
ON, and numerous nephews and nieces in
Canada and the US.
Merrill passed away at his home at Maple Bay
on January 5, 2008, but his wonderful spirit
and sense of humour will live on in the hearts
and minds of those he touched over the years.
Born in Vancouver on October 9, 1933,
Merrill graduated from UBC with degrees in
Commerce and Law. He went on to practise
law in Vancouver for 42 years, during which
time he served as president of the Canadian Bar
Association's BC Branch, president of the BC
Arbitration & Mediation Institute, and BC
president of the Council for Canadian Unity.
His interests were diverse and he served as a
director of the Dr. Sun Yat-sen Gardens, the
Vancouver Bach Choir and the Canada Safety
Council. Always proud of his Scottish heritage,
Merrill was also a director of the St. Andrews
& Caledonian Society of Vancouver and the
Vancouver Burns Club and never missed a
chance to toast his beloved Robbie Burns with
a wee dram. He was also active for some time
in West Vancouver United Church. In 1989
Merrill was appointed a Chartered Arbitrator
and also served as a trade-mark agent and a
fellow of the Patent and Trade-Mark Institute
of Canada. Before retiring to Maple Bay on
Vancouver Island, he was awarded the Louis St.
Laurent Award of Excellence by the Canadian
Bar Association for his outstanding service.
Upon retiring Merrill was elected as president
of the Cowichan Symphony Society from 2003
to 2007 and he and his board members worked
tirelessly to bring the music of the Victoria
Symphony to the Cowichan Valley. He was also a
member of the Cowichan Harbours Commission.
A highlight of his career was serving for
many years as a director and secretary for the
BC Lions Football Club. The club has lost one
of their greatest supporters.
Merrill is survived by his beloved partner,
Karen Grant; brother and sister-in-law Michael
and Marilyn Leckie of West Vancouver;
daughter and son-in-law Linda and Gerry
O'Handley, and granddaughter Carmen, of
West Vancouver; son Scott, ofToronto;
daughter and son-in-law Aimee and Scott
LeSage and children Jennifer, Tyler and Ashley
of North Vancouver; daughter Heather of
Vancouver; and cousins, nieces and nephews
and their families.
Rudi Drent died in September 2008 in the
Netherlands, where he worked most of his
professional career. His death was quite
unexpected to those of us who had known him
since his UBC days, and who rejoiced to receive
his enthusiastic epistles each year.
Rudi was born in San Diego, where his
Dutch sea-captain father had settled the family
because his assigned voyages seldom allowed
him to see them in the Netherlands. About the
time Rudi was ready to start university his
father retired to Vancouver, where he subsequently earned a PhD in oceanography. That
example helps explain Rudi's affinity both for
the sea and for research.
Rudi's interest in birds likely started earlier,
but he claimed it wasn't focused thus until a
summer job while at UBC. By his senior year,
when I first met him, he was among the most
enthusiastic and knowledgeable bird students
in his year. He had other gifts too. From the
start I admired his ability to draw quickly and
accurately, the subjects assigned in labs.
Probably that ability had been encouraged by
his mother, whose artistry continued all her life.
Later I learned that Rudi was also an accomplished violinist, playing in a chamber group
and entertaining his students.
Spring 2009    Trek    51 IN MEMORIAM
Immediately after his first degree, Rudi
started graduate studies on sea-birds at
Mandarte Island. With Gerry Van Tets (UBC
BA, MA, PhD), he was in at the start of bird
studies there that continue to the present. His
master's thesis centred on the breeding of Pigeon
Guillemots, but he found time also to assemble
a catalogue of sea-bird colonies in BC and to
encourage bird studies by local naturalists.
After his MA in zoology, Rudi moved to the
Netherlands for PhD studies at the University
of Groningen, while getting to know his
relatives who lived nearby. His assigned topic,
as told me in a letter, was the Herring Gull as
an incubator, which took him to Schiermon-
nikoog, one of the Dutch Frisian Islands, for
several summers. His thesis (published in hard
covers) was a well-reasoned and beautifully
illustrated work. Rudi celebrated its completion
by marrying his field assistant, Pieternella (Nel)
Drent (his first cousin). I visited them in
Schiermonnikoog in 1970. It was an unforgettable experience - bicycling among sand dunes,
with Oystercatchers by the acre and Dunlins in
clouds - visible though the people who flushed
them had faded in the distance.
Rudi taught zoology at UBC for a few years,
back to familiar ground to see his parents and
to carry forward with graduate students the
sea-bird studies he'd helped start. He could
have stayed longer, but Groningen offered him
a position with more time and support for
research than any junior professor could hope
for in Canada then. He returned to the
Netherlands and worked there into retirement.
Soon after his return to Holland, Rudi
became involved in studies of Barnacle Geese
wintering on nearby coasts (though breeding in
arctic Russia). He showed me some of the
winter goose flocks during a cruise in his
research vessel Use (named for his mother)
when I visited in October 1976. His studies
soon expanded into goose breeding areas, once
access to Russia became easier, leading to many
publications with students and co-workers. His
paper (with Daan) on the prudent parent is
especially widely cited. He became a world-
respected figure in ornithology.
The Netherlands, though a small country,
has one of the most active bird research
organizations in Europe, and Rudi became one
of their leading scientists. In the 1990s he
served as president of the Dutch ornithological
society, and as a Dutch representative on the
International Ornithological Committee.
Even the most active researchers wind down
eventually. Rudi came to retirement gradually,
remaining in touch with the department to see
to completion PhD candidates who had started
under his supervision. I had not seen Rudi since
the International Ornithological Congress in
Ottawa in 1986, but we still exchanged
Christmas letters. I treasure the memory of
having known him. (Submitted by A.J. (Tony)
Erskine, UBC MA i96o, PhD)
Margaret was born in Winnipeg to Elsie and
Forbes Perkins. Her father rose high in the CPR
and 1930 saw them transferred to Vancouver.
Margaret was a piano prodigy, winning the
provincial junior championship at nine, but as
she told it the boys were getting stronger and
by eighteen she was no longer in the running.
She graduated from Prince of Wales in 1939.
She was one of those pioneer skiers on
Hollyburn, there when the revolutionary
single seat chairlift was put in. She did her
first year towards a BA in German at UBC
but then entered nursing as the war years
began. She proved allergic to the soaps and
so instead took a job in the office of Gerald
Burke (Ged) (BSc'32, MD'35, FICS'45), an
orthopaedic surgeon.
Not long after, Dr. Burke's young wife, Babs,
died, and some time later Margaret and he
were wed - she in a suit according to war time
tradition. Thus she became mother to two
young children, Reilly and Sue. A few years
later, in 1949, they had Bryan together.
Margaret returned to UBC in 1961 to finish
her BA in German and earned her BLS in 1965.
On graduation she landed a faculty position as
assistant to the Dean, Sam Rothstein (professor
emeritus), and was in charge of vetting
admissions. Ged, a heavy smoker, died of
cancer in 1968, so it was good that she had the
foresight to return to school.
Margaret admitted a generation of librarians
to library school, and in 1986 that grateful
Margaret (Perkins) Burke
group awarded her the Helen Gordon Stewart
Award, a kind of champion librarian title and a
nice cap to her career. Then she retired.
She enjoyed summering at her place on
Cultus Lake, winter vacations in Hawaii,
cheering for her beloved Blue Bombers when
they came to town and the Canucks with her
sports fiend boyfriend Claude. With Claude she
volunteered with the Brewery Creek and
Mount Pleasant Community associations,
ushering in some dramatic changes. She
otherwise spent her time curling with Agricurl
at UBC, attending the symphony and plays,
volunteering at Children's Hospital and
generally living the life. In 2000 she became
afflicted with Alzheimer's disease which, after
eight years, took her life.
Margaret will be remembered by son Bryan
(BA'74, LLB'y6) and his wife Janet (RN'72),
Cameron, Jessica (LPN'oy), James (DipCS'08),
and Reilly (BArch'y5), Oksana (MSc'86), Morgan
(BSc'9i), Molly (BA'92), Max (BSc'05), Abigail
and Naomi (still in grade school), Susan
(BEi'75), Gerald (BA'06 MA'08), Jennifer (BA'oy),
and numerous friends, colleagues and relatives.
It would make Margaret happy if the
scholarship fund in her name at the UBC
School of Librarianship and Archival Science
grew larger.
52    Trek    Spring 2009 Michael Blaire Pellatt
Blaire was born in Vancouver on April 3,
1952, and passed away peacefully on August 6,
2008, in Victoria, BC. He will be sadly missed
by Sanna (Galea Enriquez), his wife of 23 years
whom he met at UBC during their undergraduate years in pharmacy; his three daughters,
Katrina (18), Amy (15) and Andrea (10);
brother Rob (Val); sister Janie Hood (John);
in-laws Clare, Jesmond, Tilly and Chris; and
nephews, nieces, friends and colleagues.
Blaire was raised in Vancouver and graduated
from St. George's High School. He went on to
UBC where he obtained degrees in microbiology,
education, and later pharmacy, a field in which
he practised from 1984. He was dedicated to his
profession and loved everything about his work
at Peoples Pharmacy in Shelbourne, Victoria.
A humble and quiet man with a love for the
great outdoors, Blaire's passions included
cycling, kayaking, rock climbing, hiking,
traveling, photography, music and astronomy.
In 1987, he and Sanna back-packed around
Europe, Turkey and Egypt and on their return
hosted numerous themed dinner-parties
highlighting different countries they'd visited
and sharing their slides with many friends.
Blaire was also an avid member of the Royal
Astronomical Society of Canada (Victoria
Branch), and devoted much of his time sharing
his love of the night sky with the public. He
was very involved with his daughters' interests
and eagerly attended all of their performances
and sporting events, as well as helped with
coaching soccer. He actively encouraged his
daughters to enjoy all of their activities as
much as he enjoyed watching them. He also
passed on his love of music, both classical and
rock, to his daughters, who enjoy listening to
all genres of music.
Blaire was a loving husband, devoted father
and loyal friend. His gentle and generous
nature, quiet humour and personal charm will
be missed by all. The family wishes to thank
Victoria General Hospital staff, who cared for
Blaire in his final days, as well as relatives and
friends who offered their support during this
difficult time. Donations, in memory of Blaire,
may be made to the Greater Victoria Public
Library - Oak Bay Branch, and will be directed
towards education in nature and astronomy.
Craig Burton Forster, beloved husband,
father and friend, died on November 28, 2008,
in a hiking accident in Zion National Park. He
was a warm and wonderful research scientist,
educator, mentor, collaborator, musician, and
outdoor enthusiast - in short, a Renaissance man.
Born December 27, 1952, in North Vancouver
to Jean Davidson Forster and Nial Forster, he
was raised on Vancouver Island where he
developed immunity to wet and cold and a
deep appreciation of the outdoors. He married
Bonnie Jeanne Baty May 20, 1988, in Salt Lake
City and, never one to go halfway, he wholeheartedly embraced his new roles as father and
US citizen while maintaining his Canadian identity.
An artistic flair flavoured Craig's approach
to everything - from wood-carving to cooking.
He became an accomplished cimbalom and
bass player in a Hungarian band, a passion
shared with his wife. The themes of his career
have been a concern for the world around us,
interdisciplinary scholarship, and instilling a
sense of individual responsibility into higher
education. He received degrees in hydrogeology
from UBC and an MSc degree from the
University of Waterloo.
His early career included work in the
environmental consulting industry in Canada,
Sweden and the US. His far-ranging professional
interests encompassed groundwater flow
in mountainous terrains, carbon dioxide
sequestration, and systems modeling of the
US-Mexico border and Salt Lake Valley
airshed processes. He leaves a legacy of
former students and colleagues who continue
to work in sound water development and
scientific hydrogeology integrated with public
policy and societal relevance.
More recently, his lifelong diversity of
interests coalesced in his appointment as
director of the Office of Sustainability at the
University of Utah. This work was immensely
satisfying to Craig as he was able to spend the
majority of his time doing what he loved:
collaborating, facilitating, mentoring, and
pursuing lifelong learning.
Craig is survived by his wife; stepdaughter
Gillian Michele Baty; brother Brian Forster
and his wife, Lorraine; aunts and uncles Janet
and Colin Clark and Ian and Joyce Forster;
nephews Dan, Rick, and Patrick Forster; niece
Arlene Forster; and cousins Graehm Clark,
Jennifer Bryden, and Karen Clark.
Martin passed away unexpectedly on Christmas
Eve 2007 at age 39. During his time at UBC,
Martin was president of the electrical engineering
student club. He went on to a successful and
prosperous career in the video game industry
beginning with being a founder of the highly
Mr*"'     \
iff*                 . |
fj    ^^^^ ^^E"~^
1   Martin Sikes
*fr>~ 4
f   1
Spring 2009    Trek    53 IN MEMORIAM
regarded development studio, Black Box Games.
Martin lived life to the fullest, and had a
particular talent for building communities. In
addition to his work at Black Box, he became
a prominent disc jockey and the prime mover
of the Soundproof music collective. He had a
passion for trains, and travelled extensively
to exotic places like Easter Island and the
Antarctic, as well as to visit friends in Australia,
Africa and South America. Whatever he
touched, Martin's enthusiasm and drive would
draw people in and get them involved. The
enduring connections that were formed in
these communities are a significant legacy.
Martin's family, friends and colleagues are
seeking to establish an award in his honour at
UBC. It is expected that the Martin Sikes
Memorial Award will support third-year
undergraduate students with good academic
standing at UBC who have demonstrated
leadership through active involvement in
professional societies, student government, and/
or campus and community activities.
If you would like to make a donation in
memory of Martin, donations can be made
online by visiting www.supporting.ubc.ca, or
forwarded to UBC Annual Giving 500-5950
University Boulevard, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z3.
For more information, please contact Maryn
Ellis at (604) 822-5345.
$60 ($45 FOR ALUMNI UNDER 35)
$550 FOR A TABLE OF 10
Meet the youngest chancellor in UBC's history, and only the second female. Hear UBC Chancellor
Sarah Morgan-Silvester, BCOM'82, in conversation with "The Honourable Roy MacLaren, PC, BA'55.
he Right Honourable John Turner, PC, CC, QC, BA'49, LLD'94, Canada's 17*1 Prime Minister.
Great Trekker Award recipients John Turner, BA'49, LLD'94, Alan Fotheringham, BA'54, and the late
Pierre Berton, BA'41, DLIT'85, met at UBC and maintained strong ties in Toronto by establishing
an annual event. We're continuing that tradition, with the Great Trekker Alumni Luncheon.
Join us for an afternoon of great conversation filled with wit, intellect and certainly humour,
/lake a new UBC Toronto alumni connection or re-establish an old one.
or call (toll free) 1.800.883.3088 and ask for Samantha Diamond.
Mark your calendars: Homecoming 2009 is
happening on September 26. UBC Thunderbirds
will be butting heads with the Regina Rams.
Join current students and show some support for
your old school.
Get into the blue and gold spirit before kick-off
with a tailgate party, BBQ, and live music.
Details coming soon: www.alumni.ubc.ca/events
54    Trek    Spring 2009 ALUMNI     TERM LIFE INSURANCE
The need for life insurance is one of life's most important lessons.
Whatever life brings, make sure the people who count on you will be well taken care of.
With your Alumni Term Life Insurance plan, you may give your loved ones the financial
security to continue living the life you dreamed of for them, no matter what.
Call us at 1 888 913-6333
or e-mail am_service<amanulife.com
What will life
teach you?
DU Manulife Financial
e Company (Manulife Fin;
When you choose Alumni Term Life Insurance, Manulife Financial provides financial and marketing support for UBC alumni programs and events. Get a Second Opinion
In these turbulent investment markets, a Second Opinion
can bring you the stability you're looking for.
Why Do You Need a Second Opinion?
Uncertain market conditions can leave you trying to balance your own peace-of-mind
with your investment needs and goals. We can help guide you through a process to
understand where you stand today and will help you to:
■ Understand and prioritize your goals
Before considering specific investments, it's important to identify your goals and
priorities. What do you want to achieve? How much time do you have? What is your
risk comfort level?
■ Assess your current portfolio
We can share with you our investment process in our goal of having you in the best
position to achieve what you want that will define an appropriate asset mix, and
analyze your existing investments.
■ Make changes where needed
You will also receive helpful recommendations on how you may potentially get
more from your investments, including GICs, mutual funds, RSPs, RRIFs, and RESPs.
Sign up online to receive our
free e-newsletter. The Viewpoint,
and receive a free copy of
Portfolio First Aid; Expert Advice
for Healthier Investing.*
Promo code: 09A0209PFA
: Mini I nn
ppp Kvh USh.
Contact us to schedule a Second Opinion today:
■   Call 1.877.464.6104   ■   Email invest@clearsight.ca
Visit www.clearsight.ca/ubc
S      ^^      10 09
*Book offer available until June 30,2009 or while quantities last. Some conditions apply. Offer subject to change.
The Clearsight Investment Program is available through (1) Wellington West Capital Inc., and (2) Wellington West Financial Services Inc., a member ofthe Mutual Fund Dealers Association of
Canada. Commissions, trailing commissions, management fees and expenses all may be associated with mutual fund investments. Please read the prospectus before investing. Mutual funds are not
guaranteed, their values change frequently and past performance may not be repeated. C2865CA


Citation Scheme:


Citations by CSL (citeproc-js)

Usage Statistics



Customize your widget with the following options, then copy and paste the code below into the HTML of your page to embed this item in your website.
                            <div id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidgetDisplay">
                            <script id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidget"
                            async >
IIIF logo Our image viewer uses the IIIF 2.0 standard. To load this item in other compatible viewers, use this url:


Related Items