Retirees 2016/2017

Judy Bates

Judy Bates joined WLU in 2001 as an Economic Geographer, teaching courses related to urbanism, human development, and globalization, and serving as Associate Chair in 2005.  In 2007 she took on the more substantive role as WLUFA president, which she held for six years running, followed by becoming OCUFA VP in 2014 for 2 years and ultimately to her current position as OCUFA president. Under her leadership in these positions she was a staunch advocate for contract academic staff (not just full-time faculty), increasing their role and recognition.  If you’ve interacted with Judy during these years, you know she can always be counted on to participate fully, openly, and with genuine concern and compassion.  Outside academia, Judy is an avid runner, cross-country skier, and bike rider, having ridden many times to raise funds for MS.  She also has 3 grown sons and several grandchildren to whom she is deeply devoted.

Submitted by Sean T. Doherty, Professor and Chair


David Blenkhorn

Through the many decades that David has given to Laurier, he has played an important role as a researcher, a teacher and an administrator. David’s knowledge about the University, its history and its workings are invaluable. He has been a terrific colleague, teacher, and mentor during his time at Laurier. He displays an unflagging interest and involvement in his department, and uses the experience gained over his long tenure at Laurier to guide newer faculty. Even with an imminent retirement, he is invested in, concerned about, and highly protective of the marketing area. Dave bleeds purple and gold, and always will.

Submitted By Kalyani Menon


Siu-Cheung Chau

Dr. Siu-Cheung Chau was born in Hong Kong. He received his B.Ed. degree in Mathematical Science from the University of Lethbridge in 1982, and his M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Computing Science from Simon Fraser University in 1984 and 1990 respectively. He joined the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at the University of Lethbridge in 1984 as a lecturer. From 1994 to 2000, he was the Chair and Associate Professor of the department. From 1995 to 1997, he was the President of the University of Lethbridge Faculty Association. Shortly after Dr. Chau joined Wilfrid Laurier University in July 2000, he was promoted to full professor and became the Chair of the department. During this period, he developed three new programs: The Honours BSc in Computing and Mathematics degree; Honours Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Honours Bachelor of Business Administration Double degree; and Honours BSc Computing and Computer Electronics and Honours Bachelor of Business Administration Double degree.  He also created a new lab format, which is still in use today, in junior Computer Science courses to combat absenteeism. Since joining Laurier, Dr. Chau published 29 papers in refereed conferences and journals. He co-supervised 2 PhD students, 2 MSc students and one postdoc student. His research was supported by NSERC from 1991-2011. His research interest is in Dependable Computer Systems, Computer Networks, Database, Image Processing and Pattern Recognition.​

Submitted by Chinh Hoang


Juanne Clarke

Juanne joined the department in 1971 and, as her status as Full Professor for many years now and her more recently being honored in 2013 as University Research Professor indicates, she is an extremely accomplished researcher. An internationally renowned sociologist, she has been a pioneer in the qualitative study of health and illness who has written extensively on the medicalization and biomedicalization of everyday life, and on how ideas about health and illness are portrayed in the mass print media. Among other things, she has published on topics as diverse and socially significant as children’s mental health issues, gender and heart disease, sexual health, prostate cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and depression.

It is difficult to overstate how impressive Juanne’s work is in its quantity, quality, and scholarly influence, but some indication can be found in the fact that over the course of her career she has published more than 75 refereed articles, many of which appear in influential international journals. She has also published 16 books and many book chapters, reports and reviews and has been the recipient of numerous prestigious external research grants. Her widely adopted textbook, Health, illness and medicine in Canada, has just come out in its 7th edition with Oxford University Press, and this is surely another indication of the widespread influence of her work in the field.

This prolific research and publishing profile, however, should not be taken to imply that Juanne has neglected the other components of her academic career. Over the years she has served on many committees and in several administrative positions at Laurier, including as Chair of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology and as one of the founders and a two-time Coordinator of the Women’s Studies program. She has been a dedicated teacher at all levels of the curriculum who has strived to ensure that her courses remain topically timely and pedagogically fresh. In recent years, for example, she has even experimented with flipping her undergraduate classroom for her courses on Quantitative Methods and the Sociology of Health and Illness. Perhaps most notable, however, have been her contributions to graduate education.  During her career she has either supervised, sat on the advisory committees of, or examined more than 200 MA and PhD students at Laurier and beyond.  As such, she was a most deserving recipient of the Laurier Alumni Faculty Mentoring award in 2011.

Wishing you a wonderful retirement – Dana Sawchuk and the Department of Sociology


Nick Coady

Dr. Nick Coady holds a Master of Social Work from Laurier and a PhD from the University of Toronto. He joined the Faculty of Social Work at Laurier in 1994, after having worked as a faculty member in the Faculty of Social Work at the University of Calgary for six years.

Nick’s social work practice experience included individual and family work with multi-problem adolescents, group work with violent men, and general family counselling. His area of specialization was the individuals, families, and groups field of study–or clinical social work. His teaching and research interests include the importance of relationship factors in counselling, artistic/intuitive elements in counselling, the eclectic use of theory in practice, and communication and counselling skills.

Nick’s research and publications focus primarily on the importance of good worker-client relationships to outcomes in a range of practice areas, including psychotherapy, children’s mental health, and child welfare. His co-edited book “Theoretical Perspectives for Direct Social Work Practice: A Generalist-Eclectic Approach” is a popular text book in social work classrooms in Canada, USA and internationally for example in Spain.  Recently, the 3rd edition of this book this has been published.

Nick supervised many master’s theses and doctoral dissertations in the Faculty of Social Work. He served as a WLUFA grievance officer and also served two terms as Associate Dean in both the Faculty of Social Work and the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral studies. For the last five years of his career, Nick served as Dean of the Faculty of Social Work. In this role he was a great mentor of newly hired full time faculty and initiated the process of the curriculum review at the FSW. He was well liked by colleagues and students and was always gracious in hosting Christmas and year-end parties.  He was adept at making people feel welcome and was easy to work with.

Submitted by Dawn Buzza/Linda Norton


Ross Cressman

Ross Cressman received his BSc in Mathematics and Physics from the University of Toronto in 1971, and his PhD in Mathematics from the University of British Columbia in 1975. He joined Laurier in 1985 after a post-doc at Queen’s University and academic appointments at Memorial University and the University of Guelph. He has held visiting appointments in Vienna and Budapest.

Ross has always been a dedicated and enthusiastic teacher, and has supervised numerous students at the undergraduate, graduate and post-doctoral levels.

His research interests are in dynamic evolutionary game theory and its applications in biology and economics.  He is the author of two books, 5 book chapters, and over 80 journal papers.

He served as Department Chair from 2014 to 2016. His department colleagues were impressed by his ability to stay calm no matter what happened.

He received Merit Awards often, and in 2016 received the Isaacs Award from the International Society of Dynamic Games, in recognition of his “outstanding contribution to the theory and applications of dynamic games.” Ross’s research program has been supported by many external grants; currently, he holds an NSERC Discovery Grant as well as support from the European Union.

Ross and his wife, Karen, enjoy hiking and are looking forward to having more time for travelling.  They have four children and five young grandchildren, and a sixth is on the way.  Their son is getting married this summer.

Ross’s colleagues in Math are happy to see him in the department regularly – he is continuing his research as a Professor Emeritus.

Submitted by Kathie Cameron


Michel Desjardins

Michel Desjardins, a faculty member in Religion and Culture, arrived at Laurier in 1993 as an Assistant Professor, after a 5-year LTA at the University of Toronto. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 1996 and Full Professor in 2001. His reach has focussed on Christian Origins, the Academic Study of Religion, and the intersection of food and religion. To date, he has published 2 books as primary author, 4 more as co-editor, and 37 peer-reviewed papers. He was President of the Canadian Society for Studies in Religion (2008-2011), Secretary of the American Academy of Religion (2007-2011), and an active board and assembly member of the Humanities and Social Sciences Federation of Canada (1996-2003). Michel received the University of Toronto’s Undergraduate Teaching Award in 1991; in 2001 he received Laurier’s Award for Teaching Excellence, and Canada’s 3M National Teaching Award, becoming Laurier’s second recipient of this national award and the first in Canada in his field of religious studies. Over the years, he participated in dozens of Laurier committees, chaired the departments of Religion and Culture and Global Studies, and served as Associate Dean and Acting Dean of Arts. Michel considers himself fortunate to have taught thousands of Laurier undergraduate and graduate students, and to have worked alongside so many outstanding colleagues.

Submitted by Meena Sharify


Gene Deszca

Gene Deszca has been more than just a part of the Lazaridis School of Business and Economics:  for almost three decades, he’s played a key role in the creation of the programs, the experiences and the culture of the school, both at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Those who know Gene casually probably think of him as an easy-going, out-going, stereotypical nice-guy prof, giving students the benefit of the doubt, shuffling through stacks of paper, and leaving a trail of misplaced items behind him – books, pens, glasses – wherever he goes.  And that isn’t totally wrong.

He denies it but I swear, one time, for a teaching engagement, he didn’t get the date wrong, he didn’t get the time wrong, he got the CITY wrong.  I no longer remember whether he went to London instead of Toronto or Toronto instead of Milton, but I swear he went to the wrong city.  He’s going to deny it.

One he can’t deny was when he took a group of students on a study tour and was robbed – immediately upon arrival, before he’d left the airport, in South America.

He won’t deny his South American trauma, but he probably won’t mention that when I went with him on a study tour, with a group of students to China, I was the one who got robbed while Gene was a model of efficiency and good organization.  And he never made fun of me for being careless.

The point (that I’m in danger of wandering away from) is this:  Gene may occasionally resemble the stereotype of the absent-minded professor, but if that’s who you think he is, then you don’t know Gene at all.

What some people manage to miss is the extent to which Gene is driven.  People miss this, because unlike most of us, Gene doesn’t make a fuss over it.

Few people realize, for example, that virtually every day, at around 10 pm – yes, that’s 10 at night—Gene heads out to the gym.  He waits until all the normal people are heading to bed, and he goes to the gym.   Whether he’s traveling or at home, teaching evenings or on holiday, he fits in his run and his time at the gym.  Rain or shine, without any fanfare.

Nor does he talk a lot about his books, two of which are classics of their kind.  One is a collection of Canadian cases in organizational behavior, written when Canadian cases in the field were rare; the other, which Gene painstakingly updated not long ago, is a “toolkit for organizational change”.  Both indicate another fact that he hasn’t bothered to brag about:  Gene was involved in experiential learning decades – literally decades – before everyone else got on the experiential bandwagon.

Gene’s teaching was always oriented toward the student experience.  He was part of the team who, twenty years or so ago, created one of the first one-year MBA programs.  The way they made that work was by focusing on the student experience, and on the efficacy of learning through experience.  It would take too long to explain here how Gene and others worked to put the program together – but if you know anything about how the Lazaridis MBA program still functions today, then you know the key pieces of that learning experience are still the same:  the orientation process, mini integrated case, live integrated case, the Country Project, the Company Project, the consulting project and the not-for-profit consulting requirement.  The original model was so powerful that, while the curriculum changes, the structure of the learning experience carries on – and virtually every other Canadian MBA program has taken on similar initiatives.

Gene pretty much single-handedly created the undergraduate international concentration, which is, again, a model of integration across functions and disciplines, and a model of experiential learning.  He has taken students literally around the world, visiting companies, meeting fellow students and encountering new cultures from South America to Africa, from Eastern Europe to India to Asia.  Gene has taught extensively in France and in South Africa.  And everywhere he’s gone, he’s built lasting relationships.

Ultimately, it’s the quality of his relationships that separates Gene from the stereotype of the absent-minded professor.  Understanding those relationships is the secret to knowing who Gene really is.  You have to see Gene in relation to the MBA program that he helped to build and continues to work to sustain.  You have to understand Gene in relation to the internationalization of the undergraduate program.  You have to see Gene where he really lives, at the intersection of the worlds of the school, of his writing and teaching, of the people he cares for at home and abroad and, of course, the world of his closest friends and immediate family.  When you see Gene like this, you know how much of himself he puts into all of these relationships.

He may be retiring, but Gene has put so much of himself into the Lazaridis School of Business and Economics, that we can never forget him—we can never take for granted who Gene Deszca really is.   Thank you, Gene.  You are at the heart of what we do.

Submitted By Kim Mourney


Marshall Fine

Marshall joined the Faculty of Social Work Laurier in 1999 after teaching in the Couple and Family Therapy Program, Department of Family Studies at the University of Guelph for 16 years.

His research, publishing, practice and theoretical pursuits were related to professional and relational ethics, families’ experiences in child protection services, therapeutic alliances, intergenerational relationships, family therapy and clinical supervision. In the Faculty of Social Work, he taught in the MSW and PhD programs.  At points during his tenure at Laurier he served as Associate Dean:  PhD Program and Associate Dean: MSW Programs.

In his own words: As for retirement, he plans to do a stint as a Rock Star, at least in his own mind, after which, he hopes to continue to drift toward the pursuit of peace, acceptance, learning in new fields of study, writing, spending more time with family and friends and giving back through volunteering in the community.

In the words of his close colleagues:  Marshall is a song writer and singer who has entertained students and faculty alike on numerous occasions. He is an exceptionally thoughtful educator and a dedicated mentor.  His commitment to research and teaching of social work ethics has had an important influence on the Faculty of Social Work.  He’s probably the only faculty member I have ever known who is trusted and liked by absolutely everyone. He’s a good guy.

Marshall was loved by his students and is someone who used words like “groovy”, which endeared him to both the young and the not so young! He was a generous colleague, always kind and thoughtful.  We miss him a lot already.

Submitted by Dawn Buzza/Linda Norton


Peter Hatch

I would like to congratulate my colleague and friend, Dr. Peter Hatch for his 37 amazing years at Laurier as an internationally recognized composer, an inspiring teacher and mentor, and as a scholar and community builder.

It has been a tremendous pleasure to know Peter on many levels, as a dear friend and colleague and also as a performer and propagator of his compositions. His works have been written, performed and recorded for an eclectic range of genres. They are highly regarded in Canada and internationally.  He was the Composer-in-Residence with the Kitchener Waterloo Symphony from 1999-2003 and was a research professor at Laurier in 2006.   As a member of the Penderecki String Quartet, I have had the great pleasure of commissioning, recording and performing his music.  This created an opportunity to work closely with him on a number of projects. He was always congenial, enthusiastic and open as we explored his music together.

Peter has done a great deal as a community builder and enriching the KW area by founding and being the artistic director of two important new music organizations – the Open Ears Festival of Music and Sound and NUMUS, a new music concert series.  These concert organizations have brought an awareness and richness of contemporary art to our community, elevating our musical culture and lives in the Kitchener Waterloo area and beyond.  His fascination and interest in the present moment as it unfolds before us is incorporated in his musical compositions and Soundscapes.  His statement, “An invitation to listen differently to the sounds around us,” encourages us to become more aware of our aural environment, the impact of society’s incessant noise and the relentless use of sound and so called music in public spaces in modern day society.  Peter explores these aspects of our experiences and infuses his music with these elements, bringing the listener into his sound world.   This has changed the way I listen to the sounds around me and undoubtedly has done this for admirers of his compositions.

At Laurier, we are grateful to Dr. Hatch for being instrumental in creating one of the best composition programs in Canada.   Peter has produced a generation of students that are some of the best teachers and composers in Canada and abroad.   He has been an inspiring mentor to countless students that have been guided by his wisdom, kindness and expertise.  Two of my composition/viola students shared some of their experiences they have had with Dr. Hatch.    Their reflections are touching and encapsulate how profoundly he has affected their lives.

My student Isaac Page states: “I have only had a few one on one moments with Dr. Hatch, but I have found each one to be incredibly memorable and informative. Each time we talked, whether it was about contemporary music, walking, or Canadian identity, I always left the conversation with something new to explore, and something to think about.  Listening to his music, and having the chance to play some of it in the past, I think his pieces display his immense creative talent and his voice is one of the most distinct I know of in all of Canada, and also globally.  His composition seminars were always informative, and he would always engage with each student.  He brought a very lighthearted approach to his teaching, which I found very welcoming in an environment that is often too serious.  I was always interested in what he had to say, and appreciated that he would promote all arts to seminar, and not just music.  He really helped me realize that artists need to be well rounded and socially conscious, and understand what is going on in our world.”

From Arie van de Ven: “I never studied with Dr. Hatch personally but I enjoyed his seminars immensely.  His enthusiasm about music is completely infections and I almost always found myself staying up very late writing after comp seminar every week.  One thing from his seminars that really sticks with me is just how varied and diverse the compositional process and even the simple act of making music can be.  I learned a lot about process from him and a lot of what makes me excited about new music comes from his seminars.”

I confidently speak for our Laurier community when I say that we will miss Peter very much at Laurier and the Kitchener-Waterloo area. Personally he has been a dear friend, always caring and of course a good listener.   In his retirement, I wish him peace, good health, great inspiration for further creative endeavours, to be fully surrounded and saturated with nature and to be with his beloved Margaret and family.  Thank you Peter!

Submitted by Christine Vlajk


Shahnaz Khan

Shahnaz Khan has been a faculty member of Global Studies and Women and Gender Studies since 2003.  Dr. Khan has produced influential research in the fields of education, cultural studies, women and gender studies, critical race theory, and post-colonial theory. Her latest book, Zina: Transnational Feminism and the Moral Regulation of Pakistani Women, was published by both UBC Press and Oxford University Press. In it, she probes the impact of patriarchal and dictatorial regimes on women’s rights in Pakistan, with a particular focus on the role of conservative interpretations of Islamic law.  She has been a recipient of three SSHRC grants, the most recent of which funded research on the lives and rights of transgendered communities in Pakistan. Dr. Khan is particularly dedicated to bringing aesthetic narratives into conversation with theory, and in both research and teaching she has explored intersections of gender, women’s rights, Islamic culture, and South Asian film. A valuable mentor to students and fellow faculty alike, Dr. Khan has also exerted an important influence towards the decolonization of the curriculum in both of her home departments at Laurier.

Submitted by Sharon Marquart


Terry Levesque

Terry’s has been at Laurier for 35 years. His distinguished research career features a Best Paper Prize in Marketing shared with Gord McDougall and Theo Darida, The Duncan Black Prize in Public Choice shared with Marc Kilgour, and a Top 10 Google Scholar Ranking of Laurier Faculty with over 4300 cites. His leadership roles at Laurier include: 7 years as Associate Dean of the School of International Policy and Governance, 8 years as Associate Director of the Balsillie School of International Affairs, 7 years as Chair of the Department of Economics,  he led the development and implementation of the MABE Program and was the inaugural Director of the program, he led the implementation of a Long Range University Planning Process, he led a team to devise strategies for dealing with University Budgetary Retrenchment,  he led an SBE team to improve services for students, faculty and staff, he led a very successful university fundraising campaign and he led Senate and Board committees responsible for strategic initiatives and financing. Terry is a lover of Blues Music; in fact he used to play in a high school band. In the past he has expressed an interest in opening a ‘donut shop’ to escape the trials and tribulations of academic life for a while. His favorite joke is to touch someone’s jacket and ask ‘is that felt?’ When the answer comes back ‘no’ he replies by saying ‘well it is now’. Terry your life of leadership and purpose have been well and truly ‘felt’ and appreciated by your colleagues at Laurier.  Thank you and Happy Retirement.

Submitted by Steffen Ziss


Daniel Lichti

Daniel Lichti is an Associate Professor of Voice in Laurier’s Faculty of Music, where he has been an anchoring presence since his appointment in 1998. Highly respected by his colleagues for his moral integrity, strong sense of service and personal warmth, Dan (as he is known to us all) has a long history at the institution and in the community, from his earliest days in the 70’s as a Laurier student (one of the first to be recruited by Professor Emeritus Victor Martens into the fledgling music program) and prior to that, as a farm boy growing up near Shakespeare, ON.

Since his operatic debut at the 1974 Stratford Festival, Daniel Lichti has established himself as one of Canada’s finest bass-baritones, performing with many of North America’s finest orchestras (both modern and baroque) and with most of its choral organizations. He has achieved renown at major Bach and summer Festivals, performed Oratorio and Opera internationally, gained acclaim as a recitalist and recording artist, and taken the stage with many of Canada’s leading opera companies. In 2014-15, he celebrated 40 years of singing for audiences around the world, and ongoing critical commentary indicates that his artistry continues to inspire admiration for the beauty, warmth and richness of his voice, and respect for the dignity and sincerity of his interpretations.

Daniel Lichti’s booming bass-baritone has frequently resounded on local stages, including a recent outing in the title role of Mendelssohn’s Elijah with the Grand Philharmonic Choir (for which he has generously acted as patron and mentor) and the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Orchestra. Other high-profile performances include Schubert’s epic Winterreise in Hagen, Germany with pianist Roland Pröll, in Winnipeg, Victoria, Abottsford, Langley and Edmonton with pianist Sandra Mogensen, in Lyon, France with pianist Laetitia Bougnol, and in Quebec City with Leslie De’Ath, his partner on the recent Analekta release of this cycle. He also returned to sing at the 109th annual Bach Festival in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, a festival with which he has been associated as a regular guest for many years, and was invited to perform Verdi’s Requiem at Maison Symphonique in Montreal under Louis Lavigueur.

Dan is frequently invited to teach and conduct Master Classes internationally, recently doing so at Baldwin- Wallace University Conservatory in Berea, Ohio, at Tapei’s University for the Arts, at the Music Department at Tunghai University in Taiwan, and on multiple occasions, at the Académie de Fourvière in Lyon, France, a program attached to the Conservatoire de Lyon, where Dan was instrumental in bringing an articulation agreement between Laurier and the Conservatoire to successful fruition.  Study abroad has always been a high priority for him, and his encouragement of students to participate in Laurier International exchanges as well as his mentorship of exchange students in his voice studio have begun to put Laurier’s voice program on the international map. Dan’s many successful protégés include Daniel Cabena, winner of the prestigious 2015 Virginia Parker Prize from the Canada Council, and Jennifer Enns-Modolo (BMus 2002), who has made a very successful recording and concert career. He continues to maintain active relationships with many of his former students, always taking great pride in their many accomplishments.

Daniel Lichti’s steady hand as Coordinator of the Voice Area will be greatly missed as he moves into the next phase of his musical life. Most of all, his great humanity and ability to see the positive in all aspects of university life have inspired us all to be better at what we do.

Submitted by Renee Ellis


Deena Mandell

Dr. Deena Mandell has been a faculty member in Social Work since 1998 and will be retiring at the end of June 2017. Prior to that, she had been a community social worker for 13 years. She has taught a range of courses, from MSW practice courses to Writing for Publication in the PhD program. She has taught in the Walls 2 Bridges program and has taught in China, Ireland, Israel, Malta and Taiwan. This summer she will be on faculty at the International Social Work Program in Finland.  Prof. Mandell has been a mentor who has generously offered her time to support faculty in their teaching.  Prof. Mandell, as a valued member of the FSW, was always available to give advice with humour and insight.

Prof. Mandell’s interest in supporting academic writing led to the development (with the Writing Centre) of the Writing Workshops for MSW students, offered annually for over a decade in the FSW. A second program specifically for students previously educated in a foreign language or culture has been an ongoing project for the past 8 years.  She has also worked closely with a committee of students, faculty and staff that focuses on fostering meaningful intercultural learning exchanges and contributing to an equitable and inclusive learning environment in Social Work. As a Laurier Teaching Fellow, Prof. Mandell worked with this committee to create a video on intercultural group work in the university that has met with very enthusiastic response both locally and internationally.  As can be seen through this work, Prof. Mandell has been dedicated to the Faculty of Social Work, always thinking about and developing initiatives that will enrich the Faculty and support students in their work.  She has been adept at seeing where gaps lie and thoughtfully and creatively addressing them.

Prof. Mandell’s research and writing have focused on the interface between individuals/families and social systems (specifically: family law, health, and child welfare). She has published an edited critical collection of essays by Canadian social work professionals and academics on reflexive practices that is used as a text in social work and other health care programs across Canada. Subversive Action: Extralegal Practices for Social Justice is her third book (with Nilan Yu); it is a collection of international and Canadian stories of social activism on the edge of the law (or beyond).  An interview about this book on CBC Radio’s The Current in May 2016 met with great enthusiasm across Canada, especially from social workers happy to hear a voice of resistance.  Prof. Mandell has the ability to take complicated ideas and make them accessible.  Prof. Mandell was more than a co-worker — she is a valued friend and colleague.

Social work bios Submitted by Dawn Buzza/Linda Norton

Bill McTeer

Bill McTeer arrived at Laurier as an Assistant football coach, the Pool administrator, and the coach of the badminton and downhill ski teams in 1976 having obtained his BA and DipEd degrees from Western and his MSc in Physical Education from the University of Montana.  But, his status shifted to that of a faculty member in the 1980s with the somewhat fascinating birth of the Physical Education program following clandestine discussions between Bill and President John Weir in the back of a car driven by Russell Muncaster.  Bill’s leadership over the ensuing years resulted in the transition of Physical Education to department status in 1991, and fueled its emergence as a well-recognized, rigorous academic program drawing a highly qualified cohort of Kinesiology and Physical Education students each year.  At the same time he was providing this foundational leadership, Bill successfully pursued his PhD in Kinesiology from the University of Waterloo.  In Bill, waves of Kinesiology students have found a stalwart advocate and committed instructor.  He received the Alumni Association’s 2008 Hoffmann-Little Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence, and the following year was recognized with Laurier’s prestigious Full-time Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence.   Bill’s colleagues have known this day would arrive, and greet it with a mixture of regret, pride, and renewed commitment.  Regret that we will be losing Bill’s daily presence in the department, pride in what he has accomplished over the years in shepherding the Kinesiology and PE program from its inception through its arrival as a highly regarded program, and a renewed commitment in ensuring that Bill’s legacy is carried forward to the next generation of students in our program.  In retirement, we trust Bill will have more time to spend with his wife Marion, his three boys, and his grandchildren.  And, we expect him in the next few months to wheel by Laurier in the car he plans to build, just one of a number of projects he has lined up.

Submitted by Stephen Wenn


Janet McLellan

Janet McLellan joined Wilfrid Laurier in 2001 and is currently a professor in the department of Religion and Culture.  She has been involved in the study of international migration and Canadian resettlement for over thirty years.  Her specialty is the adaptive and integrative role of religion among immigrants and refugees, particularly in re-creating and redefining ethnic and cultural identities.  She has published two books, Many Petals of the Lotus:  Five Asian Buddhist Communities in Toronto (1999 University of Toronto Press) and Cambodian Refugees in Ontario:  Resettlement, Religion and Identity (2009 University of Toronto Press), as well as numerous articles.  Recent research is on religious diversity and strategies of church survival in small town rural Ontario, highlighting the influence of urban retirees who resettle in high amenity areas of the Kawartha Lakes district.

Submitted by Meena Sharify


Hugh Munro

Hugh Munro is currently MBA Director and a Professor in the Marketing area at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario. He previously served as Associate Dean of Business and Director of the Laurier Trade Development Centre. In addition to these administrative responsibilities, he teaches courses in the areas of Marketing and International Business in Laurier’s graduate and undergraduate programs.  Munro received his PhD and HBA degrees from the University of Western Ontario.

He actively researches and publishes in the areas of new product development, marketing in entrepreneurial firms, and the internationalization of small and medium-sized companies.  He is currently doing research in the area of e-business marketing strategy.  Munro also serves on the editorial boards for the European Journal of Marketing and the Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice.

Munro has had extensive involvement in management training and consulting in the Private sector.  He has developed and delivered management programs for organizations such as the Certified Management Accountants of Canada, Ontario Hydro, Bayer, B.F. Goodrich, Volkswagen and Electrohome.  He also does extensive consulting in the areas of strategy and marketing for companies.  For example, Munro has worked with the Bank of Montreal through its Institute For Learning over the last five years assessing programs and initiatives in the areas of sales and marketing.

Submitted by Kate Brand Tippin


Detlev Nitsch

Dr. Detlev Nitsch is a member of the faculty of the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics in Ontario, Canada. He teaches business strategy, international strategy, and ethics at the undergraduate and MBA levels. His current research focuses on the effectiveness of codes of conduct, academic integrity, and corporate governance.

Dr. Nitsch has written many case studies that have been published in various textbooks. His work has been presented at a number of conferences and is published or forthcoming in journals such as Management International Review, European Management Journal, and the Journal of Business Ethics. Before earning his MBA and PhD at the Richard Ivey School of Business, he worked in a variety of different industries in manufacturing and sales management positions, and as a consultant.

Submitted by Jennifer Knechtel


Paul Pulford

I frequently cite Paul joining our Faculty as the turning point in the development of the WLU Symphony Orchestra.  Under Paul’s direction, the orchestra has achieved a level of performance that is well beyond that of a student ensemble, rivalling not just community orchestras but some in the professional world as well.  But his presence on our Faculty is felt in so many other ways.  From my first long-distance conversation with him, even before he took up residency in Waterloo, he was already probing ways to bridge the two solitudes of musical study: performance (his world) and academia (mine).   And his immediate interest in such a bridge was not merely for the sake of collegiality and teambuilding—though he has always sought both of these—but he was already seeking ways to enrich the breadth of experience he would soon provide to his students.  (Years later, he would co-supervise chamber students with a member of our theory faculty, bringing to tangible realization that goal of bridging performance and academia.)

Paul’s dedication to his students has, without question, helped enormously in raising the qualitative bar within our program.  And through his students, many of whom have gone on to study at the graduate level in universities in Canada, the US, and Europe—with many winning significant awards and earning positions in national music ensembles—he has helped to enrich the musical life our community and beyond.

As a pedagogue, Paul has had a noteworthy influence on students in our program at Laurier, but his impact is much broader.  As the conductor of the K-W Youth Orchestra (KWYO) from 2005 to 2012, Paul devoted significant time and energy to the development of our community’s young musicians, mentoring them individually and collectively, while demonstrating the highest standards of musical and ethical integrity.

Over the years, Paul has sat on Faculty of Music and University-wide committees too numerous to list here.   But the impact on the university community that Paul has had through his committee involvement is less to do with the number and range of committees—as extensive as those are—and more to do with the depth of experience and genuine dedication he brings to his service commitments.  He has also been extremely generous with his time and talent, serving on committees at the regional level (Region of Waterloo Arts Fund Board of Directors) and the provincial level (Ontario Arts Council), to name just two.

Since 2007, Paul has served as Associate Dean in the Faculty of Music, with that position being redefined in 2014 as Associate Dean: External.  In this more recent role, Paul has been responsible for, among other things, student recruitment, developing and maintaining community partnerships, liaising with Conestoga College with respect to shared courses, and sitting on the Laurier International Liaison Committee.  One recent and very significant community project in which Paul played a major role involved the Beckett School, a community-based music school with a decades-old history of offering a broad range of private music lessons to hundreds of people of all ages.  In 2015, the Beckett School was gifted to the Faculty of Music and Paul was the point person for ensuring the smooth transition of the operation as it took up residency at Laurier.

Through his teaching, performing, and recording, his service within and beyond the university, and his statesman-like qualities in forging partnerships too numerous to list, Paul is unanimously admired and profoundly respected by his students and colleagues.

Paul is singular at the Faculty of Music for his wealth of many outstanding achievements that have enriched our community both locally and internationally. In his retirement he will be missed, though his legacy will ensure he and his contributions are never forgotten.

Submitted by Dr. Charles Morrison


Chris Ross

Chris Ross joined the Department of Religion and Culture in 1988 for a position at the interface of religion and psychology, Christopher Ross shifted from a career in clinical psychology that had taken him to CAMH, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto, and to the Southdown Institute for Religious and Clergy in Aurora, Canada, following employment in the UK and the United States.  His teaching responsibilities explored the roles that religion and spirituality play at different points in the human life cycle, and included the well subscribed third year course RE 313 on therapeutic and religious responses to grief, loss and death that over the years earned the sobriquet “Loss with Ross”! His research activities centred upon the applied psychology of individual religious differences. They pursued the question “Regarding religion and spirituality ‘What attracts and what puts people off’ related to their own distinct personality”. This involved discovering the differential frequency of personality types in different religious groups. Finally, he made a sustained study of the effect of the darshan – or gaze – of Hindu avatara Mother Meera, that in 1995 had changed his epistemology. In retirement he plans a return to part-time practice of psychotherapy and psychotherapy supervision, and to teach the occasional course at Waterloo Lutheran Seminary.

Submitted by Meena Sharify


Malcolm Saulis

Not submitted.


Carol Stephenson

Not submitted.


Eli Teram

Eli received his PhD is social work from McGill University. Hi received both BA in Social Work and MSc in Management from the University of Tel Aviv. Eli has been a leader on the use of qualitative research and the understanding of the patients’ experiences with the health care system

Eli is a chess player, he likes movies, chocolates, and going for walks… he has great sense of humour. During his retirement he will continue writing and spend time with his two granddaughters

He is going to Germany In June to a Social Work Conference, where he is presenting a paper on how movies can portrait complicity on child’s sexual abuse.

Submitted by Dawn Buzza/Linda Norton


Deborah Wills

Not submitted.


Nora Znotinas

Nora Znotinas started at Laurier in 1984 in the Department of Physics and Computer Science in a time when the Computer Science side was coming into its own.  As an engineer, she has had a unique perspective on both the sides of the department and often took a leadership role, serving as chair more than once.  For many years she was seconded to running Information Technology Services, but her keenest interest has always been teaching, and in 2007 she was awarded a much-deserved University Teaching Award.


In recent years she has taught a key required second year course in Microprocessor Design that has a reputation for being difficult, but also fascinating and useful.  The students appreciate her ability to make the subject come alive, but also appreciate the care and concern she shows for their learning and their progress, and many former students keep in touch with her years later.

In her retirement she will continue to travel widely, particularly on photography trips.​  We have no doubt that someday she’ll be on a glacier somewhere and will run into a student who will want to exchange fond memories of assembly language programming!​

Submitted by Angele Hamel







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