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UBC Reports | Vol. 47 | No. 10 | June 14, 2001

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 outreach.

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 of Entrepreneur/Innovator.

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.


Last reviewed 22-Sep-2006

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