The Trent University community is saddened to learn of the passing of Walter Pitman, teacher, journalist, administrator, author and social activist. Mr. Pitman began working at Trent in 1965 as associate registrar, and later, as dean of arts and science in 1972, a position he held until 1975. Mr. Pitman received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Trent University in 1993.
"He was a person of extraordinary talent," said Tom Symons, founding president of Trent University in an article about Mr. Pitman’s passing in the Peterborough Examiner. "He did an enormous amount of good without making much fuss about it... It was a life of almost total service.”
In addition to his time at Trent, Mr. Pitman made history in 1960 when he was elected the first New Democratic Party (NDP) Member of Parliament for Peterborough. In 1967, he was elected as a member of the Ontario Legislature for the NDP where he became a well-respected education critic, chair of the NDP caucus, and, in 1970, deputy leader of the Ontario NDP. Following his time in politics, Mr. Pitman returned to education as president of Ryerson Polytechnic Institute (1975-1980) and later, director of the Ontario Institute of Studies in Education (1987-1991).
A celebration of Mr. Pitman's life will take place on Friday, June 22 at 7 p.m. at Trinity St. Paul's United Church on Bloor St. W. in Toronto.
The University extends heartfelt sympathies to Mr. Pitman’s family and friends, and to all who knew him in Peterborough and at Trent University.