Capilano University names 2020 Honorary Degree recipients
North Vancouver, B.C. October 19, 2020 – Capilano University is pleased to announce that Indigenous artist and cultural leader Susan Point, and philanthropist and business leader Derek Lee are the University’s 2020 honorary degree recipients. Honorary degree recipients of CapU are recognized for their exceptional and sustained commitments to their fields of expertise – in ways that are meaningful to Capilano University.
Susan Point is a renowned xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) artist and direct blood descendant of the renowned warrior and leader qiyəplenəxʷ, who met Captain Vancouver in 1792. Through symbolism and artistry, her work has encouraged attention, understanding and respect for the life-sustaining contributions of women in Coast Salish communities since time immemorial. Today, her many prominent examples of public art play an instrumental and ongoing role in presenting to the world with xʷməθkʷəy̓əm’s rich traditions and culture on what is now Canada’s west coast. She is highly regarded for her artistic celebrations of family, creativity, individuality and equality. While her art continues to evolve, Point’s values of family and respect for our connected human spirit endure and deliver an inspiring message of truth and reconciliation. CapU values Point’s role as a knowledge-keeper and teacher, and is honoured to recognize her creative courage and desire for continuous learning and sharing.
Derek Lee is president of Prospero International Realty, a company highly regarded for its integrity. As a well-establish, Vancouver-based business leader and mentor, Lee has demonstrated a strong value of giving back to his community. With a degree in Urban Land Economics (UBC) and deep family roots in property development and management, Lee’s career has involved almost every aspect of the real estate industry. In addition to his work, Lee is a generous supporter of non-profit and community development organizations in the Lower Mainland focused on accessible housing, immigration, and community and economic development. CapU recognizes Lee for the generosity of his giving and the ways his volunteer contributions enhance the well-being of Canadians and new immigrants by building space for creativity in communities and accessible recreation programs for people of all ages and abilities.
“I am immensely proud to welcome these outstanding individuals into the Capilano University community,” says Paul Dangerfield, president of Capilano University. “An honorary doctorate is the highest form of recognition granted by Capilano University; both Susan and Derek are exemplars of the values we uphold for our students, employees and community partners.”
Capilano University will present Point with an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts to recognize her exceptional achievements as an artist, innovator and cultural leader. Lee will be awarded an honorary Doctor of Law degree in recognition of his economic and social development contributions. The honorary degrees will be bestowed by Capilano University Chancellor Yuri Fulmer at the University’s virtual Convocation Ceremony on February 19, 2021.
About Capilano University
Capilano University is a teaching-focused university based in North Vancouver, with programming that also serves the Sunshine Coast and the Sea-to-Sky corridor. Founded in 1968, the University features such highly regarded programs as jazz, film, animation, performing arts, business, paralegal, early childhood care and education, music therapy and design programs. The University offers 93 programs, including bachelor's degrees in areas as diverse as film, jazz, early childhood education and tourism management. Capilano University is named after Chief Joe Capilano, an important leader of the Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) Nation of the Coast Salish Peoples. We respectfully acknowledge that our campuses are located on the territories of the LíỈwat, xʷməθkʷəỷəm (Musqueam), shíshálh (Sechelt), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) and SəỈílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.
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Submitted by: Linda Munro