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Trent University to Honour Distinguished Alumni on May 5


Event to Feature Inaugural Young Leader Award Winners Dalal Al-Waheidi and Darren Murphy

Friday, May 4, 2007, Toronto

Six of Trent University’s most accomplished alumni will be honoured during a night of firsts at the Alumni Awards dinner to be held on the set of the television series Degrassi: The Next Generation, on Saturday, May 5, 2007.

Hosted by the Trent University Alumni Association, the event will mark the first time that the Distinguished Alumni Awards and the Spirit of Trent Award are presented in the same night. It will also be the first time that the Trent University Alumni Association Young Leader Award is bestowed.

“Collectively, this year’s honourees are profound contributors in the fields of business, Canadian identity, arts and entertainment, politics and higher education,” said Trent University President Bonnie Patterson. “Together, they help position Trent as a leading university, and they generate a tremendous amount of pride within our alumni family.”
President Patterson and Alumni Association president Matt Griem will co-emcee the high-profile event. Also speaking during the awards ceremony will be Dr. Roberta Bondar, who is now in her second term as Trent’s chancellor.

The unique venue for the event, located at Epitome Pictures in Toronto, was offered by Trent alumnus Stephen Stohn, executive producer of Degrassi, and one of three alumni to be presented with the prestigious Distinguished Alumni Award at the event. Mr. Stohn will be recognized for his outstanding contributions to both the legal profession and the entertainment industry.

Another Distinguished Alumni Award winner, former politician and renowned higher education advocate Richard Johnston, will be on hand to not only receive his award but also to ensure that even the wine served during the event features a Trent connection. It has been selected from Mr. Johnston’s self-operated By Chadsey’s Cairns Winery, located in Prince Edward County. Mr. Johnston will be honoured with the Distinguished Alumni Award in recognition of his remarkable contributions to post-secondary education and nuclear disarmament.

The third recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award, Juno-award winning musician Ian Tamblyn, will also play a key role in the evening’s events. Following the banquet dinner and awards ceremony in the Degrassi gym, Mr. Tamblyn will perform some of his Canadian-inspired songs. Mr. Tamblyn graduated from Trent with a sociology degree in 1967 and is now renowned as one of Canada’s foremost musicians.
The inaugural winners of the Young Leader Award, which was established to recognize significant contributions by Trent alumni who are under the age of 35, are Dalal Al-Waheidi and Darren Murphy.

Originally from Palestine, Ms. Al-Waheidi graduated from Trent in 1998 and now serves as the chief operations director for Free The Children, the world's largest network of children helping children through education. Darren Murphy has also experienced much success since graduating from Trent only seven years ago. Most recently, he was named the publisher and general manager of The Peterborough Examiner. He is also a highly active community leader, serving on the board of the United Way of Peterborough, the Ontario Press Council, and the Festival of Lights.

In addition, long-time Trent employee and alumnus Bob Condon will receive special honours at the awards ceremony as the recipient of the Spirit of Trent Award. This award is presented to an alumnus or alumna who has made a difference through contributions to the University, the alumni association or the community. Mr. Condon will be recognized for his significant impact Trent students, faculty, staff and the community during his past 30 years of service working in the Physical Resources Department and for the Athletics Complex.


For further information, please contact:
Brittany Cadence, communications officer
Office: (705) 748-1011, ext. 5371
Cell: (705) 768-6844