York University alumni to be honoured for achievements and contributions


TORONTO, Nov. 17, 2014 – Five alumni of York University will receive Bryden Awards this week in recognition of their achievements in science, law, social justice, education, public policy and community engagement.

The awards gala will be held Thursday, Nov. 20, from 7:15pm to 9pm at the Royal Ontario Museum.

The 2014 Bryden Alumni Award Recipients are:

Pinnacle Achievement:
Nigel Lockyer (BSc ’75), Director, Fermilab
For over 30 years, Nigel Lockyer has enjoyed a successful career in the field of high-energy particle physics. A graduate of York University’s Physics and Astronomy department, he is widely recognized as one of the world’s preeminent experimental particle physicists. In 2013, Lockyer began his tenure as director of the internationally renowned Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory. Prior to this appointment, Lockyer spent more than two decades as a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, where his research focused on high-energy particle physics and the application of its technologies to medicine. In 2005, Lockyer became the director of TRIUMF, Canada’s national laboratory for nuclear and particle physics, where his leadership took the lab to the forefront of nuclear physics on an international scale. He holds a BSc from York University, a PhD in physics from The Ohio State University, is a fellow of the American Physical Society and received the 2006 Panofsky Prize for his leading research on the bottom quark.

Outstanding Contribution:
Samuel Schwartz (MA ’69, LLB ’72), Managing Partner (Toronto Office), Davis LLP

Over a remarkable 40-year career, Samuel Schwartz’s guiding principle has been a commitment to his community with a focus on giving back in the areas of education, health care and community empowerment. A tireless York ambassador, Schwartz became a member of the University’s Board of Governors in 2002. During his 12-year board tenure, he served as a member of the Senate and as chair of York’s Academic Resources Committee, directing board oversight in the creation of the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies. In recognition of his outstanding contributions, he was named an honorary governor of the board this past June. Schwartz’s other volunteer contributions have included Mount Sinai Hospital Foundation board member and Canadian Cancer Society national campaign cabinet member. A corporate lawyer specializing in financing and intellectual property, Schwartz’s professional career has included building boutique law practices as well as holding senior leadership positions in regional and national law firms. He is currently managing partner at the Toronto office of Davis LLP.

Redefine the Possible:
The Honourable Mr. Justice Kofi N. Barnes (LLB ’91), Judge, Ontario Superior Court of Justice
First appointed to the Ontario Court of Justice in 2004, the Honourable Mr. Justice Kofi N. Barnes is known as a pioneer and innovator in jurisprudence and champion of social justice. He was appointed a judge of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in 2013. Barnes came to Canada from Ghana and attended Trent University before enrolling at the Osgoode Hall Law School at York University. Admitted to the Ontario Bar in 1993, Barnes is a renowned expert in the area of therapeutic jurisprudence. He is founder of the Metro West Community Restoration Court, Durham Mental Health and Drug Treatment Court and Canada's first Drug Treatment Court. As founding president of the not-for-profit organization Canadian Association of Drug Treatment Court Professionals and president of the International Association of Drug Treatment Courts, Barnes has provided international training sessions under the sponsorship of the UN and the Organization of American States. Barnes is the recipient of many prestigious awards including the Queen Elizabeth Silver Jubilee Commemorative medal, Trent University Distinguished Alumni Award and the African-Canadian Achievement Awards for Excellence in Law.

Local Hero:
Sonia Cianfarani (BA ’96), Recruitment Officer, York University
Sonia Cianfarani has been an integral member of the York University community for more than 16 years. After completing her BA in sociology in 1996, Sonia joined the Admissions Office as a full-time employee, building on her time in that department as a work-study student. Five years later, she transitioned to the Recruitment Office where she took on the important role of student recruitment officer. Dedicated to her work and passionate about the mission of the University, Sonia provides support to a diverse range of people, including mature, high-school and transfer students, helping them successfully navigate their educational journeys at York. She guides and encourages involvement in customized student support programs such as Fall Campus Day, Spring Open House and fast-track recruitment events. An active member on four college committees, Sonia serves as an invaluable resource for expert and practical advice on improving enrolment and associated programs. She also shares her knowledge and enthusiasm as an annual lead presenter at the Ontario Universities Fair, Canada’s largest high school-targeted event promoting university education.

One to Watch:
Irvin Studin (BBA ’99, PhD ’11),
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, Global Brief and President, Institute for 21st Century Questions
In fewer than 15 years, Irvin Studin has distinguished himself as an author, lecturer and one of Canada’s foremost experts on foreign policy and national security. He is editor-in-chief and publisher of Global Brief magazine and president of the Institute for 21st Century Questions, a vision and strategy think tank launching this fall. Between 2009 and 2014, Studin served as program director, Masters of Public Policy program, and as assistant professor at the University of Toronto’s School of Public Policy and Governance. He is the co-founder of Ukraine’s Higher School of Public Administration and a professor at Russia's Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. Studin has worked in the Privy Council Office in Ottawa, and Australia’s Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet in Canberra. The first recruit of the Canadian government’s Recruitment of Policy Leaders program, Studin co-authored Canada’s 2004 national security policy and principal-authored Australia’s 2006 policy on national counter-terrorism. Studin holds degrees from the Schulich School of Business, the London School of Economics and the University of Oxford, where he studied on a Rhodes Scholarship. His PhD is from Osgoode Hall Law School, where he was a Trudeau Scholar and earned the Governor-General’s Gold Medal. An all-Canadian athlete, Studin was inducted into York University's Sports Hall of Fame in 2012 for his achievements in soccer, including his role as captain of the varsity team during his time at York.

York University is helping to shape the global thinkers and thinking that will define tomorrow. York U’s unwavering commitment to excellence reflects a rich diversity of perspectives and a strong sense of social responsibility that sets us apart. A York U degree empowers graduates to thrive in the world and achieve their life goals through a rigorous academic foundation balanced by real-world experiential education. As a globally recognized research centre, York U is fully engaged in the critical discussions that lead to innovative solutions to the most pressing local and global social challenges. York U’s 11 faculties and 28 research centres are thinking bigger, broader and more globally, partnering with 288 leading universities worldwide. York U's community is strong − 55,000 students, 7,000 faculty and staff, and more than 275,000 alumni.

Media Contact:
Janice Walls, York University Media Relations, 416 736 2100 ext. 22101, wallsj@yorku.ca