Double Installation Ceremony Celebrates New Trent University President and Chancellor


Dr. Steven E. Franklin Installed as Trent’s Seventh President and Dr. Tom Jackson Installed as University’s Tenth Chancellor

Thursday, September 24, 2009, Peterborough

More than 300 special guests, including local dignitaries, VIPs, and government officials along with students, faculty and staff, and members of the community, gathered at the University today to celebrate the double installation of Dr. Steven E. Franklin as Trent University’s seventh president and vice-chancellor and Dr. Tom Jackson as Trent’s tenth chancellor.

“There is a great sense of celebration on campus today. It is an honour to officially welcome these two outstanding individuals into the Trent community,” said Mr. David Morton, chair of Trent University’s Board of Governors. “We are thrilled to have Dr. Franklin as our new president and Dr. Jackson as chancellor to guide the University toward its 50th anniversary and the bright future ahead."

In a speech that spoke of vision, values and renewal, Dr. Franklin began by expressing his pleasure in sharing the day’s ceremonies with Dr. Jackson. “I am deeply grateful to Tom Jackson, our new chancellor, for his participation and support today,” Dr. Franklin said. “It is a tremendous honour to share with him this platform, and to consider the responsibilities of leadership with this outstanding humanitarian.”

Focusing on shared responsibility for the future of the institution, he invited the University community to dream with him. “Can we imagine, together, a renewed vision that is wide enough and deep enough, to move us, our hands and our hearts, our minds, our spirits, our whole being, as an intellectual community?” he asked, then added. “I sense that the task before us is to help propel Trent University to the next level of accomplishment and aspiration.”

 Before being appointed Trent’s president and vice-chancellor, Dr. Franklin was the vice president of research at the University of Saskatchewan. He pursued his graduate work at the University of Waterloo where he completed his Master of Arts degree in Physical Geography and a Doctor of Philosophy in Remote Sensing. His academic appointments have included the University of Waterloo, Memorial University, the University of Calgary and the University of Saskatchewan. Throughout his academic career, he has assumed progressively responsible leadership roles including professor, department chair, associate dean of research, special assistant to the provost, and vice president of research.

Born on the One Arrow reserve in Saskatchewan and raised in Winnipeg, Dr. Tom Jackson, Trent’s tenth chancellor, is an award-winning actor, producer, musician and social advocate. He has recorded 14 albums, two of which have received Juno nominations. From North of 60, and The Diviners to Star Trek and Law & Order, Dr. Jackson is also no stranger to television and film. He was appointed an officer of the Order of Canada in 2000 for his music and humanitarian work. To date, Dr. Jackson has been recognized by eight Canadian universities, including Trent, with honorary degrees. He is also the recipient of the humanitarian awards from both the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) and the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television, the Queen’s Jubilee Medal and Centennial Medals from Alberta and Saskatchewan.

Celebrations began with a procession in academic regalia of groups from within the University as well as special guests and officials. During the ceremony, Dr. Franklin and Dr. Jackson were formally endowed with the powers of office and each delivered an installation address.

Dr. Franklin was given the oath of office by Mr. David Morton before administering the oath of office himself to Dr. Jackson. Following the oaths, several guests made special presentations of greetings to the new president and chancellor, including: Dean Del Mastro, MP for Peterborough, Deborah Newman, deputy minister, Ministry of Training, Colleges & Universities, His Worship Paul Ayotte, mayor of the City of Peterborough, and James Jones, deputy warden for the County of Peterborough.

Other special guests in attendance at the ceremony included: Aboriginal actor Graham Greene; Curve Lake First Nation Chief Keith Knott; Hiawatha First Nation Chief Laurie Carr; Ric McGee, mayor of the City of Kawartha Lakes; John Gray, mayor of the City of Oshawa; the deputy chief of Police and fire chief; Fleming College president Dr. Tony Tilly; and past Trent University presidents Leonard Connolly, Bonnie Patterson and founding president Thomas H.B. Symons.

An open reception and luncheon was held following the ceremonies. University presidents and chancellors are usually installed separately, often as part of graduation ceremonies. The double installation in one ceremony is a first at Trent and is very rare for any University or College in Canada, or even North America. 

For more information and biographies of Dr. Franklin and Dr. Jackson, please visit the Installation 2009 website at


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Marilyn Burns, director, Marketing & Communications, (705) 748-1011 ext. 6184