About the Lewis Perinbam Award
The award recognizes significant volunteer efforts that:
- improve people’s lives in the developing world;
- engage and inspire Canadians to undertake volunteer action; and
- offer new ways of thinking about and/or addressing development challenges.
The award commends individuals who make a noteworthy volunteer contribution to international development, rather than paid professionals in this arena. However, paid professionals who make a significant voluntary effort are also eligible for the Lewis Perinbam Award.
Nominations for the Lewis Perinbam Award are now closed.
Alastair James Scott Summerlee, LLD, BSc, BVSc, PhD, MRCVS
Former President and Vice-Chancellor, University of Guelph, Canada
Executive Director of FundtheFood, Kirchner Group, USA
Professor Biomedical Science
A passionate humanitarian, dedicated teacher, and internationally renowned researcher, Alastair Summerlee served as president of the University of Guelph in 2003-14. Summerlee spent six years on the board of the World University Service of Canada where he became involved in humanitarian issues in the refugee camps in Kenya. He has championed hunger and poverty alleviation strategies and galvanized the community at the University of Guelph to take action against hunger, and to raise money and awareness of issues as diverse as cancer, disability and mental illness. He has been part of the international movement to unite universities worldwide in fighting hunger and poverty.
In receipt of a number of awards and honours, Summerlee is currently the Lead Researcher for Lucky Iron Fish™ an invention that has the potential to improve the health and livelihoods of 3.5 billion people suffering from iron deficiency. He has published numerous scientific articles and book chapters, written about teaching and teaching practice, advocated in the media for better conditions for people in refugee camps and is regularly invited to speak on teaching, research and community engagement.
About Lewis Perinbam
Lewis Perinbam, O.C. (1925-2007) was admired and appreciated for his vast contributions to Canadian participation in development. Mr. Perinbam, who was born in Malaysia and educated in Scotland, was committed to sharing his knowledge of the developing world with Canadians who wanted to make a difference. He was the founding Executive Director of CUSO, the first full time Secretary-General of the Canadian National Commission for UNESCO and was for many years the General Secretary and CEO of World University Service of Canada (WUSC).
Joining the Canadian International Development Agency in 1969, he became the founding Director General of the Non-government Organizations Division, which he both pioneered and championed in the Agency and was later named Vice President, Special Programs - now the Canadian Partnership Branch. He continued to be sought after for important leadership and consultative roles. He led the Task Force on the Participation of Visible Minorities in the Public Service, whose 2000 report won respect - and generated change - throughout government and industry.
In October 1997 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada. Mr. Perinbam served on numerous NGO Boards of Directors and was a longstanding advisor to the Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE).
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