2020 Distinguished Policy Fellows

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The School of Public Policy is pleased to announce The Honourable Rona Ambrose, P.C., and David A. Bissett, C.M., A.O.E., as the 2020 Distinguished Policy Fellows. Please join us in recognizing these two distinguished leaders for their lifetime commitment to the betterment of public policy in Canada.

Given to eminent individuals who display leadership excellence in support of sound public policy, the Distinguished Policy Fellow award is the highest honour given by the School of Public Policy.

The Hon. Rona Ambrose, P.C.
Rona is a dynamic national leader who has received many awards for her advocacy and role in public policy. As a key member of the federal cabinet for a decade, Rona served as a minister across nine departments and agencies. At the time of her appointment, Rona was the youngest female cabinet minister in Canadian history.Today, Rona is involved in bilateral trade and competitiveness issues. In addition to serving as an independent corporate director on several boards, Rona has recently partnered with TD Securities. She is a Global Fellow at the Wilson Centre Canada Institute in Washington D.C., and serves on the advisory council of the Canadian Global Affairs Institute. Rona is a passionate advocate for women in Canada and around the world and led the global movement to create the “International Day of the Girl” at the United Nations.
David A. Bissett, C.M., A.O.E.
David is a financial management executive and one of Calgary’s leading philanthropists. He received his law degree from Dalhousie University in 1962 and attained his Chartered Financial Analyst designation in 1972. He and his wife Leslie relocated to Calgary in 1977 to run the western operations of a national investment firm. In 1982, he founded Bissett and Associates.In the early 2000s, David switched his focus to philanthropy, supporting postsecondary education, environmental initiatives and community programs. David is a Member of the Order of Canada, the Alberta Business Hall of Fame and received the Alberta Order of Excellence.Previous recipients of the Distinguished Policy Fellow award include The Rt. Hon. Stephen J Harper, PC; Tom Jenkins, OC; Nancy C Southern; Thomas d’Aquino, CM; and Jim Gray OC, AOE, and Steven Williams.

The 2020 Distinguished Policy Fellow dinner and awards ceremony has been postponed due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Since its inception in 2017, proceeds from this event have funded numerous scholarships to deserving graduate students. Without this event, many Master of Public Policy and Master of Science in Sustainable Energy Development students will not receive scholarships next year. Please consider a tax-deductible donation to our Distinguished Policy Fellow Scholarship in honour of this year’s Distinguished Policy Fellows.

To donate click here. For more information contact Catherine Scheers, Director of Development, at catherine.scheers@ucalgary.ca.