2022 Recipients

Honorary Degrees are the highest honour conferred by the University of Lethbridge. The degrees are awarded to distinguished individuals in recognition of their scholarly, scientific or artistic achievement, or in recognition of exceptional contributions to the public good.

Regardless of the path they chose, each honoree is an inspiration. They have changed the world, or at least the way we look at it, having an impact both now and for generations to come.



Chancellor Charles Weaselhead proudly conferred honorary degrees to five exceptional individuals at this year’s Chancellor’s Reception.


Kevin Van Tighem, Doctor of Science, honoris causa

A naturalist and award-winning author, Kevin Van Tighem has woven a lifelong narrative that has deepened Albertans’ understanding of and respect for our unique and valuable natural spaces while promoting ecological literacy and a love for nature as essential underpinnings of a sustainable economy. 

Dr. Ruth Collins-Nakai, Doctor of Science, honoris causa

A native of Pincher Creek, Alberta, Dr. Ruth Collins-Nakai pursued a career in medicine, eventually becoming a pediatric cardiologist and professor at the University of Alberta for more than 30 years, while being a staunch advocate and changemaker for public health policies like seatbelt laws and smoking restrictions on airplanes.  

Waneek Horn-Miller, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa

Waneek Horn-Miller, a Mohawk woman from Kahnawake Mohawk Territory, narrowly survived being stabbed by a Canadian soldier’s bayonet at age 14 during the Oka standoff and went on to become an Olympic athlete and an inspiring Indigenous speaker on reconciliation, sport and the importance of following one’s dreams. 

John Charles (Jack) Major, Doctor of Laws, honoris causa

One of Canada’s most respected legal minds, John Charles (Jack) Major has contributed significantly to the rule of law and well-being of Canadians through his service as a lawyer and Supreme Court Justice, establishing a legacy of integrity, wisdom and good judgment while ruling on some of the most important decisions in our country’s history. 

Nancy Southern, Aksistoowa'paakii (Brave Woman), Doctor of Laws, honoris causa

As the Chair and Chief Executive Officer of both ATCO and Canadian Utilities, Nancy Southern possesses all the qualities that make for a successful leader — courage, collaboration and humility, a passion for diversity and human rights, and an unwavering desire to create a better future for all constituents.