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In Pursuit of Human Dignity

European Parliament honours author Marina Nemat with social justice award

Marina Nemat, author of Prisoner of Tehran (Viking Canada, 2007), was awarded the first Human Dignity Prize in Milan, Italy, in December. The annual 5,000-euro award was established by Mario Mauro, the vice-president of the European Parliament, and the cultural association Europa 2004 to celebrate those working toward a world free of intolerance and social injustice. Nemat’s memoir traces her imprisonment in Tehran’s notorious Evin Prison after she was arrested on false charges at the age of 16. She holds a certificate in creative writing from the School of Continuing Studies.

Opera singer Adrianne Pieczonka (Dip Op Perf 1988) has been named an officer of the Order of Canada for her contributions as an artistic ambassador for Canada. Three alumni have been named members of the Order of Canada: John Barron (MusB 1961, MusM 1968) for his contributions to music education for young people; Michael Clague (TPS MEd 1969 OISE) for his commitment to social planning and action, particularly in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside; and Late Show with David Letterman musical director Paul Shaffer (BA 1971UC), who has supported many educational, health care and arts groups in Canada. Five alumni have been named Order of Ontario recipients: Peter George (BA 1962 VIC, MA 1963, PhD 1967), president and vice chancellor of McMaster University; Rebecca Jamieson (MEd 1978 OISE), a leader and educator in the First Nations community; William McConkey (BSc 1987), a University of Windsor professor and a world leader in atomic and molecular physics; Roy McMurtry (BA 1954 TRIN), former Chief Justice of Ontario and former Attorney General of Ontario; Margaret Ogilvie (BA 1971 TRIN), Chancellor’s Professor of Law at Carleton University in Ottawa.

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