Honorary Degrees

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.

Name: Raymond E. Ahenakew
Convocation date: June 1, 2016
Citation / biographical information:
A member of the Ahtahkakoop First Nation, Ray Ahenakew has cleared the way for Saskatchewan’s First Nation’s people to strengthen their participation in the provincial economy.
A tireless leader, Mr. Ahenakew believes in education for Aboriginal people as a powerful tool for advancement and opportunity. He served as president of the Saskatchewan Indian Institute of Technologies from 1982 to 1984 and as acting president from 2005 to 2007. He was chair of the Saskatchewan Indian Gaming Authority, and the National Labour Training Market Board of Human Resources Development Canada. He was also a member of the University of Regina’s Board of Governors, the National Advisory Panel on Skill Development Leave, the President’s Provincial Image Team of Tourism Saskatchewan, the provincial Uranium Development Panel and the National Advisory Board to the Auditor General of Canada.
As Meadow Lake Tribal Council Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Ahenakew led a team that pioneered self-government negotiations with Ottawa and purchased Norsask Forest Products. The purchase benefited the local economy and the council member communities in terms of jobs in logging, trucking, mill workers and tree planting.
Mr. Ahenakew was a member of the Board of Peace Hills Trust for eighteen years and served one term as chair. He served as chair of Makwa International, a joint venture with the Miskito Indians of Nicaragua and Contigo International Inc., Canada’s first and only Indigenous non-government organization.
He was part of a team that was instrumental in the development and implementation of the Aircraft Maintenance engineer program at Saskatoon’s John G. Diefenbaker Airport.
Mr. Ahenakew has garnered respect for removing barriers and prejudice, and expanding the potential for economic development and improved lifestyles for First Nations people.
Mr. Ahenakew was awarded an Honorary Diploma in Management Studies from the Saskatchewan Indian Institute of Technologies.
Mr. Ahenakew is the recipient of the Saskatchewan Order of Merit, the Commemorative Medal for the Centennial of Saskatchewan, the Raj Manek Above and Beyond Award, and was recognized by the Saskatchewan Business Magazine as one of Saskatchewan’s most influential men in March 2008.
Degree received: Doctor of Laws
Degree presented by: Michelle Prytula

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