Distinguished Alumni of Alumni Week 2017

With the 10th Alumni Week well underway, one of the week's most distinguished events, is the Distinguished Alumni Awards. This year there are 13 increible alumni being awarded. The date of the award ceremony has been postponed, but there will be an opportunity to hear them speak about their amazing accomplishments and inspiring tales that's UVic has contributed to.


Faculty of Science

David Hannay, MSC '95, BSc '88

Roberto Racca, Phd '90, Msc '85, BSc '82



Both joining JASCO Applied Sciences in the late 1980s, Hannay and Racca worked as researchers that eventually changed the focus of the company to a Victoria local Department of National Defense lab that concentrated on the applicability of ocean acoustics for anti-submarine applications. Years later the changed the objective of JASCO Applied Sciences to what it is now. JASCO Applied Sciences focuses on long term sustainability and the understanding and management of human impact on the environment. They look into things such as: Acoustic Impact Assessment and Mitigation, Acoustic Modelling, Impact Assessment: Animal Movement Modelling, Innovation Solutions and more. JASCO has now grown to eight international locations and is recognized world wide. Hanny and Racca have written multiple papers detailing their works, and JASCO has become one of the leaders in ocean sciences.


Faculty of Engineering

Maher Fahmi, MASc '94

COmpleting a BASc in Engineering Physics from the University of Saskatchewan, Fahmi did work in various sectors such as the Canadian Navy, PMC-Sierra and Teradici Corporation. Maher is now the Vice President of product development at Microsemi Corporation. The Microsemi Corporation offers a comprehensive array of products, applications, design tools and services for aerospace and defense, communications, data center and industrial markets. With multiple awards and distinguishments under his belt, it is no surprise that Fahmi is a recipient of a distinguished alumni award from UVic.


Faculty of Education

Andrea Minter, BA '04

Minter majored in Recreation and Health Education during her time at UVic. Still living in Victoria, Minter is now a mother of four children, and uses her educational background into the daily work of running the thriving Russel books located in downtown Victoria, the very Russel books that was started by her grandfather over 50 years ago. Proud alumna, mother, and businesswoman, Minter has a wonderful and thriving continuous connect to the University of Victoria.


Faculty of Humanities

Bev Sellars, BA ’97


For over 20 years, Sellars served as chief of Xat’sull (Soda Creek) First Nation in Williams Lake, and has been noted to speak out on racism, residential school, and the environmental and social threats of mineral resources exploitation. She published “They Called Me Number One” in 2013, a depiction of her childhood experience in the Indian residential school and won the 2013 George Ryga Award for Social Awareness, and was finalist for several other awards.


Gustavson School of Business

Lenora Lee, BCom '02


Straight after her BCom, Lee was hired by KPMG and quickly progressed to senior manager of the company. Her duties included audit engagements, and client and team relationships. Her dedication to remain connected to UVic has shown has she is an executive mentor in the MBA program and was even a session instructor at UVic for an introductory accounting course. She is still an active volunteer, and remains connected to UVic and the greater victoria area.


Faculty of Law

Herman Van Ommen, LLB '84


Van Ommen is a partner in the Vancouver litigation group of McCarthy Tétrault and is the former regional managing partner for British Columbia. He has expertise in Corporate Commercial Litigation, Litigation, Professional Liability, Domestic Arbitration and more. Van Ommen is the current President of the Law Society of British Columbia, is consistently recognized for his outstanding work as a leading lawyer in specialty areas such as arbitration and securities, and the area of dispute resolution.


Faculty of Medical Sciences

Dr. Murray Fyfe, BSc '81 (Biology)



Dr. Fyfe has over 20 years of experience in the area of public health and preventative medicine. Dr. Fyfe is also the recipient of the prestigious James M. Robinson Award. Dr. Fyfe has done tremendous work in his efforts to protect and improve the health of Vancouver Island communities. He also volunteers with the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, while also being an examiner with the Canadian Institute of Public Health Inspectors.


Faculty of Fine Arts

Althea Thauberger, MFA '02


Thauberger is a filmmaker, artist and educator currently based in unceded Kanien'kehá:ka territory, Montréal, Québec. Her work is internationally produced and exhibits the interactions with groups or communities and can involve a provocative reflection of social, political, institutional and aesthetic power relations. She was also a regional finalist for the Sobey Art Award.


Faculty of Social Sciences

Bob Cummings, BA '89 (Economics)


Cummings is currently the Executive Vice President of Commercial WestJet Airlines. When Cummings first joined WestJet in 2005 as Vice President of Marketing, he created the most successful brand communications platform in WestJet history. Cummings was also named Canada’s top marketing executive by Canadian Business magazine in 2008, and named one of the top six marketing executives by the Blue Sky organization.



Faculty of Human and Social Development

Simon Hall, MSc '10 (Health Information Science)


During his MSc at UVic, Hall’s research involved an innovative methodology for studying how telephone triage nurses worked with information technology as they interact with callers during emergencies. Prior he has worked as director of applications for the Vancouver Island Health Authority, and that sparked his interests in optimizing Health Link BC. Now, the director of governance initiatives with the BC ministry of Health, Hall is working alongside with information management and tech leaders in their efforts to improve the standards for sharing health data.


Continuing Studies

Denise Blackwell, Cert '94


In 1992, Blackwell was elected to the Langford city council, and is the chair of the Planning and Zoning and Affordable Housing Committee. Dedicated to her community, Blackwell is on several committees and represents the city of Langford on numerous occasions.


University Libraries

Martin Segger, BA '69


Seeger is an adjunct Professor of Canadian Art and Architecture in the Art History and Visual Studies program in the Fine Arts department. He was the director of the Maltwood Art Museum and Gallery at the University of Victoria from 1979 until his retirement in 2010. Staying in touch with UVic, he is responsible for building and nurturing the 27,000-object art collection during his leadership role with UVic’s art museum and gallery (now Legacy Art Galleries). Among his current cultural service appointments are: Vice-Chair, British Columbia Capital Commission and Board directorships with the Royal British Columbia Museums, the Victoria Civic Trust, and CFUV Radio.


Honouring the impact of UVic community gives recognition to those with outstanding accomplishments, inspiring stories and the UVic pride we all share. Updates will be posted on UVic Alumni social media regarding the new date for the award ceremony. Although students now, you will be Alumni soon and it is enlightening to witness what other’s have done in their time after UVic.