U of T’s Black Alumni Association held its second awards gala on October 21. Ontario Provincial Police Deputy Commissioner Jay Hope (BA 1994), an advocate on issues of recruitment and police minority relations, served as keynote speaker. Among those honoured were criminal lawyer Charles Roach (JD 1961), recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award. Roach is an expert in international criminal law and has been a lead defence counsel on the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. In 1993, he convened a Pan-African Conference at New College.
This year’s other recipients were Dr. Titus Owolabi (BSc 1968 St. Mike’s, MD 1971, FRCS 1976), an associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology at U of T, for Professional Excellence in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math; Dr. Isa Odidi, a founder and principal of IntelliPharmaCeutics, for Contribution to African and Caribbean Development; the Honourable Jean Augustine (BA 1973 WOODS, MEd 1980, LLD 1994), the first African-Canadian woman elected to the House of Commons, assistant deputy chair of committees of the whole, and a special adviser for Grenada, for Outstanding Leadership; Professor George J. Sefa Dei (PhD 1986), chair of U of T’s department of sociology and equity studies in education for Excellence in Education; and Ebonnie Rowe, founder and CEO of PhemPhat Productions, for Arts and Culture. U of T English professor and poet George Elliott Clarke received the Faculty Award; and Flow 93.5 FM CEO and philanthropist Denham Jolly received the Honorary UTBAA Alumni Award.