N.B.: The detail displayed about each honorary degree recipient varies, as
the database was compiled from a variety of sources. However, more information may
be available at the University Archives.
Convocation date: October 25, 1980
Discipline / contribution: veterinary medicine ; comparative medical science
Citation / biographical information:
Eminent Chancellor, on behalf of the Council and Senate, I present to you Dr. Harry Rowsell.Degree received: Doctor of Laws
Today we honor a distinguished veterinary scientist who has made outstanding contributions to comparative medical science and to the humane use of animals in medical research.
Harry Rowsell is a native of Toronto who received his D.V.M. degree from the University of Toronto in 1949, a D.V.Ph. from the same institution in 1950, and a Ph.D. in veterinary pathology from the University of Minnesota in 1956. Dr. Rowsell's academic career has included professorial appointments at the Ontario Veterinary College, the Western College of Veterinary Medicine, where he was the first professor and head of the department of Veterinary Pathology, and more recently in the College of Medicine of the University of Ottawa.
Disease processes are similar throughout the animal kingdom. Hence, a better understanding of human disease can often be secured through comparative medical research in animals. In Canada, Dr. Rowsell has been preeminent in this form of medical research. He follows in the tradition established by Sir William Osier who collaborated with veterinarians in the Faculty of Comparative Medicine and Veterinary Science at McGill University, a century ago, on diseases such as tuberculosis and trichinosis.
Dr. Rowsell and colleagues, at Guelph and McMaster Universities, have made many important observations on cardiovascular diseases using animal models of human diseases such as atherosclerosis and hemophilia. These studies have established Rowsell's international reputation as a comparative medical scientist.
Throughout his career, Dr. Rowsell has shown a deep concern for high standards of humane care in animal research. It was no surprise, therefore, that he undertook with relish the task of having scientific and academic institutions collectively take action to secure high standards of experimental animal care in research. Working under the auspices of the Association of Universities and Colleges in Canada, he travelled across this nation and secured the support necessary to establish the Canadian Council of Animal Care. He became its first executive director in 1968. Subsequently, significant strides have been made by this Council in upgrading the quality of animal care at research institutions throughout Canada.
Dr. Rowsell has found time not only to administer the Council but also to write a monograph, "A Guide for Animal Care in Canada", to serve as president of the Youth Science Foundation of Canada, to serve on numerous professional and community organizations, and to continue his research at the University of Ottawa.
Eminent Chancellor, I present to you Harry Rowsell and ask that you will confer on him the degree of Doctor of Laws an honoris causa.
Degree presented by: N.O. Nielsen
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