A community harm-reduction pioneer and an arts trailblazer will receive honorary degrees at the University of Victoria’s spring 2023 convocation, set for June 12 to 16.
The university will be awarding more than 3,900 degrees, diplomas and certificates to graduates in nine in-person ceremonies over the course of five days.
The ceremonies will be webcast live and archived online.
Ann Livingston, who will receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree on June 16, is best known for her role in co-founding the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users and acting as its executive program director for 10 years.
She was also a volunteer project co-ordinator for the Nanaimo Area Network of Drug Users, and helped form associations in Surrey, Abbotsford and across Canada, including the B.C. Association of People on Opiate Maintenance, Western Aboriginal Harm Reduction Society and the Canadian Association of People Who Use Drugs.
The university says Livingston is recognized as a champion of social justice, public health and harm reduction for nearly three decades.
Zainub Verjee, who will receive an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts the same day, is a visual and media artist who has been a fixture in the Canadian contemporary art scene since moving to Canada in the 1970s, the university said.
Born in Kenya, she is a laureate of the 2020 Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts.
An award-winning public intellectual and cultural diplomat, she is renowned for her pursuit of art as a public good, the university said.
Verjee served as executive director of the Western Front, an artist-run contemporary art centre in Vancouver, co-founded In Visible Colours, a film and video festival for women of colour and contributed to the prison theatre program at Matsqui Penitentiary. She was integral to the formation of the British Columbia Arts Council, the university said.
For more information, go to bit.ly/3MDyHZy.