UBC Reports | Vol. 47 | No. 10 | June
Pioneering director, student volunteer earn YWCA awards
QLT founder and Canadian Blood Services director also honoured
UBC faculty, staff and students have been honoured in four
of the 10 categories in the annual YWCA Women of Distinction awards.
Ruth Sigal, director of UBC's Women's Resources Centre (WRC), was
given a Life Achievement Award.
A founding member of the Vancouver Crisis Centre, Sigal has directed
the WRC since 1977 with responsibility for co-ordinating
staff and 60 volunteers, program development, teaching, and community
The WRC serves more than 25,000 men and women annually.
Sigal, who was recently honoured with a President's Service Award
for Excellence, will oversee the centre's move to Robson Square
later this year.
Miranda Lam, a third-year Law student, was recognized in the category
of Young Women of Distinction.
Lam has been actively involved in the British Columbia Youth Parliament
(BCYP), both as a Law student and while she pursued three years
of study in UBC's Psychology Dept.
With her leadership, the group was able to raise significant funds
for BCYP's largest annual services project -- Camp Phoenix, a week-long
summer camp for children. Lam is currently a member of the board
of Volunteer Vancouver.
Prof. Dana Devine of the Dept. of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
was recognized in the category of Science, Research and Medicine.
A faculty member since 1987, Devine is also director of research
and development for Canadian Blood Services and founded the new
Centre for Blood Research.
She studies the role of blood platelets in cardiovascular disease
and blood transfusion.
Alumna and Prof. Emeritus Julia Levy earned her award in the category
A member of UBC's Microbiology Dept. from 1958 until her retirement
in 1999, Levy founded and is currently president and chief executive
officer of QLT Inc., a leading biotech pharmaceutical company.
Their best-known product, Visudyne(TM), is used to treat age-related
blindness and has obtained regulatory approval in 31 countries worldwide.
Levy was recently awarded an honorary degree by UBC.
The YWCA annual awards program, created in 1984, celebrates women
in the Greater Vancouver area who have made outstanding contributions
to the community through professional or volunteer work.
UBC was a sponsor of the Life Achievement category.