A president emeritus of Waterloo and an alum and former member of the University’s Board of Governors have been appointed to the Order of Canada.

Feridun Hamdullahpur and John Lounds were named members of the Order of Canada on December 29, 2022. Hamdullahpur’s honour is in recognition of his groundbreaking research in mechanical and mechatronics engineering and his visionary leadership in academia. Lounds, former president and CEO of Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC), was honoured for his substantial contributions to land conservation across the country.

Hamdullaphur was Waterloo’s sixth president and vice-chancellor, beginning his first of two terms in 2010. During his leadership, the University saw significant growth in several areas, including at its campuses and initiatives focusing on student support and development. He was one of 10 university presidents to join the United Nations’ HeForShe IMPACT 10x10x10 global campaign for gender equity, and he established the Equity Office and the President’s Anti-racism Taskforce. During his presidency, he oversaw the creation of more than 7,500 jobs and $2.3 billion in revenue through entrepreneurship programs at the University. Hamdullahpur is a professor in Waterloo Engineering and serves as chancellor of International Business University.

portrait of Feridun Hamdullahpur

“In the decade Feridun Hamdullahpur led the University of Waterloo as president and vice-chancellor, the institution continued to expand its global reach while making significant contributions to Canada through its dedication to research excellence, innovation and entrepreneurship, and experiential learning opportunities for students,” said Cindy Forbes, chair of Waterloo’s Board. “On behalf of the Board of Governors of the University of Waterloo, I congratulate him on this fitting and deserved honour.”

John Lounds earned his Bachelor of Environmental Studies in planning from Waterloo in 1978. He’s worked to protect biodiversity and preserve some of the country’s most threatened landscapes. Lounds was at NCC for 24 years. The organization saw considerable success during his time at the helm, helping conserve 15 million hectares of land, water and habitats for species at risk across Canada. He served as a member of the University’s Board of Governors from 2013 to 2019.

portrait of John Lounds standing in a natural area

Photo credit: Mike Ford

“Waterloo graduates change lives and communities with their creative and collaborative approaches to solving big challenges, as illustrated by John Lounds’ remarkable accomplishments in environmental conservation,” said Vivek Goel, president and vice-chancellor of Waterloo. “This institution and the whole country have benefitted from his leadership and dedication, and the University community congratulates him on this special honour.”

Hamdullahpur and Lounds are among 99 new appointments to the Order of Canada announced by Her Excellency the Right Honourable Mary Simon, Governor General of Canada. They will receive their insignia at a later date.