Recreation and Leisure Studies Distinguished Alumni Award recipients

Congratulations to all of our Recreation and Leisure Studies Distinguished Alumni Award recipients for their significant contributions to their professions and their communities.

Note: Citations below are from date of presentation and may not reflect current employment/affiliations.

DeAnn Adams, BA 1996

DeAnn is currently transitioning to a new position as a clinical practice consultant, Allied Health with Fraser Healths Professional Practice and Integration. She has a passion for therapeutic recreation (TR) and was instrumental in the development of the Fraser Health TR Professional Practice Council. DeAnn is actively involved in both her provincial and national TR Associations, and is a member of the Douglas College Therapeutic Recreation Advisory Committee. A self-described life-long learner, DeAnn is currently enrolled in the MA in Leadership with Specialization in Health program at Royal Roads University. She lives in Surrey, BC with her husband and two children.

  • Therapeutic Recreation Supervisor, Fraser Health Authority, Surrey, British Columbia (BC)
  • Project leader for Therapeutic Recreation Services in Fraser Health - Innovative Change in Practice Linkages
  • Co-chair, Fraser Health Therapeutic Recreation Professional Practice Council
  • Member of the BC Therapeutic Recreation Association Steering Committee and the Douglas College Bachelor of Therapeutic Recreation Advisory Committee

Shane Baker, BA 1978

Shane first worked with emotionally challenged children, then established Adventure Guide Inc. with Peter McGovern. Shane became sole proprietor soon after, and the store was awarded Retailer Of The Year for Waterloo Region in 2000, recognizing years of quality service to customers and the community. In 2002, Shane sold the store to pursue new interests closer to the home that he has built next to Algonquin Park. He lives with his wife of 30 years, fellow Recreation graduate, Lynda, and they have three grown children. Recently he has worked as a Business Consultant, written business articles, served as municipal councilor and volunteered for a variety of organizations

  • Co-Founder of Adventure Guide Inc., the most complete outdoor store in southwestern Ontario
  • 2002 Waterloo Region “Retailer of the Year” recognising quality service to customers and community
  • Business consultant and author, municipal councilor, active volunteer
  • Built his own home near Algonquin Park

Chris Bourne, MA 2001

Chris is acting executive director with the Active Living Alliance for Canadians with a Disability. He also manages the Canadian Paralympic Committees Changing Minds, Changing Lives program in Ontario. As a competitive triathlete, Chris has competed in 4 World Triathlon Championships, winning a gold, 2 silver and a bronze medal. He has also competed in 3 World Disabled Water Ski Championships. Between these 2 sports he has competed in more than 100 events. With a passion for sport development for persons with a disability, he is the Chairperson of Water Ski and Wakeboard Canadas Adaptive Water Sports Committee and sits on the Disabled Commission of the International Water Ski Federation.

  • Executive Director, Active Living Alliance for Canadians with a Disability
  • Advisory Committee Member of SCI Action Canada
  • Ontario Coordinator for the Canadian Paralympic Committee's Changing Minds, Changing Lives program
  • Won gold and bronze medals at the World Triathlon Championships and Silver at the World Dualthon Championships

Darcy Brioux, BA 1986

Darcy was inducted into the University of Waterloo Athletics Hall of Fame for leadership and development of the Campus Recreation program along with brother John. He holds a Master of Education Degree from Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto/University of Toronto. He is an energetic, self-motivated adult educator with over 20 years experience consulting, collaborating and advising post-secondary students, staff and faculty on leadership and physical education programs. He is particularly interested in providing leading edge mentoring programs for students, and ensuring that students always have the opportunity to be the best leaders they possibly can. Darcy lives in Oakville with his wife and two daughters.

  • Senior Manager, Leadership Development, Faculty of Physical Education and Health, University of Toronto
  • Over 20 years of consulting and collaborating and advising post-secondary stuedents regarding physical education leadership and programming
  • Inducted into University of Waterloo Athletic Hall of Fame for leadership and development of the University's Campus Recreation program

John Brioux, BA 1984

John worked as team travel manager with the Toronto Blue Jays for 14 years after completing a Masters in Sport Management. He received 2 World Series rings during that time. In 2001, he decided to spend more time with his family and cofounded Moore Sports Tours with University of Waterloo friend Mike Moore. Together they create customized itineraries for teams interested in travelling around the world. John was inducted to the University of Waterloo Athletics Hall of Fame for his leadership and development of Campus Recreation programs along with brother Darcy. John is married with two children and now spends time coaching baseball and hockey, and travelling to Europe a couple of times a year.

  • Co-owner of Moore Sport Tours, specializing in custom tours (world-wide) for sports groups
  • Longtime manager of Team Travel for Toronto Blue Jays, including the 1992-1993 World Championship years
  • Inducted into University of Waterloo Athletic Hall of Fame for leadership and development of the University's Campus Recreation program

Dawn Bronson, BA 1983

Dawn first worked for Parks Canada as a co-op student. After graduating, she held assignments with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Interpretation Canada and the National Capital Commission, before returning to Parks Canada for various positions in national, regional and field locations. She has contributed to research, policy development, planning and operations, with a focus on visitor opportunities and experiences in our national parks and national historic sites. She has spent the last 10 years as the superintendent of the Manitoba Field Unit, with responsibility for 7 national historic sites and Wapusk National Park.

  • Superintendent, Manitoba Field Unit, Parks Canada
  • Responsible for 7 National historic sites and Wapusk National Park
  • Member, Commission on Education and Communication, World Conservation Union

Rosalie Brown, BA 1985

Rosalie is an internationally known fitness expert promoting physical fitness as part of a healthy lifestyle. She aims to make fitness fun, exciting and affordable for both novice and experienced fitness enthusiasts. This year Rosalie was voted one of Canadas most influential personal trainers by the countrys leading fitness organization, Can-Fit-Pro. She conducts research testing fitness products and programs, influencing product development. Rosalie appears regularly as a fitness expert on radio and television programs, and at special events. In addition, she volunteers with fundraising for Sick Kids Hospital, Heart and Stroke Foundation and Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).

  • Recognised by Can-Fit-Pro Magazine as among Canada's 15 most influential personal trainers
  • Has sold over 600,000 personal training DVDs, and served as personal trainer for many high profile people including Lennox Lewis, Paula Abdul, Suzanne Somers, Bobby Hull, and Mitch Gaylord
  • An active volunteer with Sick Kids Hospital, the Heart and Stroke Foundation, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving

Lynda Charters, BA 1990

Lynda has worked as a therapeutic recreationist in a variety of settings including long term care and spinal cord rehabilitation. Currently, she is the outreach supervisor at Variety Village in Scarborough where she is responsible for overseeing the Diversity in Action Program which teaches inclusion for people of all ages and abilities. She also teaches inclusion and activity adaptation at the College and University levels throughout the Province. Lynda is an active member of the Junior League of Toronto and is the director of development on Paralympics Ontarios board of directors.

  • Outreach Supervisor, for Variety Village, Scarborough, ON and oversees the Diversity in Action program
  • Has held numerous roles with Active Living Alliance for Canadians with a Disability
  • Has served as Development Director for Paralympics Ontario and is active with Junior League of Toronto

Victor Cheng, MA 1980, BA 1976

Victor is the president and founder of iLogic Inc., a Toronto based information technology firm with clients including major corporations and government sectors across North America. He consults in technology planning and implementation, internet-based solutions in logistics, knowledge and association management. He has also done extensive work with not-for-profit organizations, many in the sports and recreation sectors. Victor was a co-founder and past-president of the Lifestyle Information Network (LIN). He has also been involved with the University of Waterloo Advisory Council and is currently serving as a member of the Applied Health Sciences Deans Advisory Council.

  • President and CEO, iLogic Inc., Toronto. Clients include Loblaw's, Nabisco Brands, American Express, & Time Life Inc.
  • iLogic information systems (hardware and software) are renowned for being "people friendly"
  • A member of the University of Waterloo President's Circle, Applied Health Sciences Waterloo Advisory Committee, a primary developer of the Leisure Information Network, and active with Canadian Parks and Recreation Association (CPRA) and Parks and Recreation Ontario (PRO)

Bob Copeland, MA 1991, BA 1989

Bob has both a BA and an MA in Recreation and Leisure Studies and currently serves as director of athletics and recreational services for University of Waterloo. After working with Branada Sports Communications, he came to University of Waterloo Athletics and Recreational Services in 1996 as manager of marketing and alumni development. He moved to the Office of Development and Alumni Affairs in 2001 and worked in management positions in Development before his appointment as associate vice president for development. Building on his MA thesis, Bob is a published author and recognised Canadian expert with respect to fund-raising, sport and recreation sponsorship issues.

  • Currently Director of Athletics and Recreational Services for the University of Waterloo
  • Spent most of the past 10 years with the University of Waterloo Office of Development and Alumni Affairs
  • Author and recognised expert on sport and recreation sponsorship issues

Sandy Heise, BA 1996

Sandy completed her BA while working full-time in the department and starting her family. Now, as Recreation and Leisure Studies (RLS) administrative assistant, a position created by combining two jobs, she provides valuable support to the RLS department with specific attention to graduate studies. In addition to supporting her childrens activities, Sandy has been actively involved with a variety of church and community activities. Most recently, she has spent a large portion of her summer holidays running a childrens vacation Bible school program in remote First Nations communities in northern Ontario and Manitoba. Her next goal is to complete her MA degree before her oldest child completes his university degree.

  • Administrative Assistant for the Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies. Often hailed as "the glue" that holds our Department together
  • Completed her BA degree part-time while working full-time and as a single parent with three children
  • Spends much of her summer holidays as a Bible school volunteer with northern Ontario aboriginal youth

Dorothy Dowling, MA 1983, BA 1980

Dorothy is senior vice president of marketing and sales for Best Western International. She has more than 20 years of experience within the hospitality and travel industries. Currently, she directs the execution and delivery of all Best Western brand marketing strategies, including frequency, consumer and field marketing programs, advertising/creative services, public relations, and e-commerce initiatives. A respected veteran in her field, she has served on a number of boards of directors nationally and internationally and received several awards for marketing and best practices in guest loyalty programs.

  • Senior Vice President of Marketing and Sales for Best Western International, the world’s largest hotel chain
  • Currently Chair of the Executive Committee of the Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International
  • Formerly a Vice President with Travel Lodge, Canada

Sherry Dupuis, MA 1993

Sherry is associate professor of Recreation and Leisure Studies at University of Waterloo, director of the Murray Alzheimer Research and Education Program and director of the Aging, Health and Well-Being collaborative PhD program. Influenced by her work with residents and their families in long-term care settings, Sherrys research is guided by an authentic partnership philosophy which focuses on later life issues, especially persons with dementia and their family members. She is committed to transferring research into action through participatory approaches such as the Changing Melody forum and by developing educational tools such as Im Still Here, a research-based, professionally produced play.

  • Associate Professor of Leisure and Leisure Studies, University of Waterloo and Director of the Murray Alzheimer Research and Education Program (MAREP)
  • An advocate of transferring research into action via participatory approaches, she played a research and advisory role in development of the Changing Melody forum and I'm Still Here, an educational play related to dementia
  • Has served in editorial roles with Leisure Sciences, Society and Leisure, Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO) Research Annual, Journal of Aging Studies, and the Journal of Applied Recreation Research

Kathy Durst, MA 1991, BA 1974

Kathy began her 30- year career with the City of Waterloo in 1975 as the supervisor of programs for older adults. The city became a leader both provincially and nationally in a wide range of recreation and support programs for active and frail older adults, as well as in the development of research and education in the field of gerontology. Kathy has maintained a volunteer role in many community organizations and has shared the Waterloo message with many national and international audiences. She is currently chair of the Waterloo Wellington Local Health Integration Network. She has been married for 31 years and has two children.

  • Served 30 years with the City of Waterloo including time as the Chief Administrative Officer
  • She was the first female Commissioner of Recreation and Culture (City of Waterloo)
  • She is or has served as a board member with the Waterloo-Wellington Local Health Integration Network (current chair), Habitat for Humanity-Waterloo Region, and the Ontario Recreation Society

Pam Gahwiler, MA 1996, BA 1988

Pam has served in many roles: manager, administrator, educator, program developer, community organizer, communicator, researcher, fund raiser, event coordinator, writer, fitness leader, and advisor. She was a YMCA manager/executive director in Kitchener-Waterloo and Orillia for 17 years and taught at Georgian College. Pam has provided a variety of services, including fund-raising, for non-profit and commercial organizations and she volunteers with United Way and a womens shelter. Pam was a Future Scholar Award recipient (Academy of Leisure Sciences/SPRE) and her Master of Arts research was published in Leisure Sciences. Pam currently works for Parks Canada on the Trent-Severn Waterway.

  • Served 17 years as manager and executive director roles with the YMCA in Kitchener Waterloo and Orillia
  • Won the Academy of Leisure Sciences Future Scholars Award, and the YMCA Educational Award
  • Former instructor, Georgian College. Currently works in semi-retirement with Parks Canada on the Trent-Severn Waterway

Fred Galloway, BA 1973

Fred is president of his own consulting practice formed in 1989 and has managed over $100 million in capital projects. He has served on a number of boards of directors including Fanshawe Colleges board of governors, the 2001 Canada Summer Games, the 2005 Memorial Cup, and five sets of Ontario Games. Fred continues to serve on a number of foundations including past chair of the Monsignor Feeney Foundation, chair of the recreation sub-committee of the London Community Foundation, and site selection committees for the Canada Games Council. In 2002 he was awarded an honorary diploma by Fanshawe College for community service. He is married with two sons.

  • Currently President for FJ Galloway Associates and has managed over $100 million in capital projects
  • Former General Manager of JP Robarts Medical Research Institute, and Director of Operations London YM-YWCA
  • Has served in executive capacities with the Ontario Games, Canada Summer Games, and the Memorial Cup

Adrienne Gilbert, MA 1981, BA 1973

Adrienne Gilbert.

Adrienne is a proud and exuberant member of the first University of Waterloo RLS BA class. Known to virtually all UWaterloo RECers, she has served the Department as lecturer since 1983 and as associate chair for undergraduate studies since 1987, over half the life of the RLS program. Her diverse research interests relate to therapeutic recreation theory and practice, inclusion, and relationships between leisure, health and well being, including eating disorders. She served in various positions on Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (TRO) over the past 10 years, including president, and is founder and past co-editor of the TRO Research Annual. She volunteers as an instructor for the Track 3 program for disabled skiers. Adrienne is married with 3 daughters.

  • Member of the first University of Waterloo Recreation and Leisure Studies (RLS) Bachelor of Arts class (1973)
  • President of Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (2007-2008); Founder and Editor of the Therapeutic Recreation Ontario Research Annual
  • Has served as RLS Associate Chair for Undergraduate Studies for 20 years; a tireless and passionate advocate for (especially) our undergraduate students

Pam Graham, BA 1977

Pam is founder and president of Congress Canada, which she has developed into one of Canadas leaders in the management of group events including incentives, corporate meetings, trade shows, scientific, technical and medical international congresses. Pam has been featured in many business publications and has made many presentations to industry colleagues. She was the founding president of the Canada East Chapter of the Professional Conference Management Association, and has served on several other tourism management and marketing boards of directors and councils.

  • Founder and president of Congress Canada one of Canada’s leading conference, meeting, and trade show organizers
  • Founding president of the Canada East Chapter of the Professional Conference Management Association
  • Has served with the Society of Incentive Travel Executives and on the Editorial Board for Meeting and Incentive Travel Magazine

John Haddock, BA 1978

John Haddock is currently CEO of the YMCAs of Cambridge and Kitchener-Waterloo. With over 20 years experience within Canadian Ys, he is known for expanding YMCA delivery systems to impact more peoples lives.He has provided local, provincial and national leadership within the YMCA movement. He is actively involved in a number of community organizations in Waterloo Region. John and wife Kathryn, a fellow recreation graduate, recently celebrated their 30th anniversary and have three adult children. He pursues an active and healthy lifestyle with his main interests being distance running, hiking and white water canoeing.

  • Currently serves as Chief Executive Officer (CEO)of the YMCAs of Cambridge & Kitchener-Waterloo and a recognised leader in expanding leisure opportunities for people in this community
  • Active volunteer in Waterloo Region
  • Practices what he preaches with respect to active living as a runner, hiker, and white water canoeist

Leigh Hobson, BA 1995

Leigh began her cycling career at 24 when, by chance, she signed up for the Hidden Valley Road race. With some good advice from her dad (a former cyclist) she hung on until the finish of her first novice race. The last ten years shes raced over some of the most beautiful terrain in 20 countries around the world through the Womens Tour de France, Giro dItalia, and World Championships. Her final race at the Beijing Olympics was an incredible experience where she finished 17th, and first on the Canadian team. When not racing, Leigh is a physical education and geography teacher at Galt Collegiate Institute. She is also looking forward to running a mountain biking club at the school.

  • Has raced in the Women’s Tour de France and was the top Canadian finisher (17th) in the 2008 Olympic Games women's road cycling event in Bejing
  • She won a bronze medal at the 2008 Montreal World Cup
  • Currently a geography and physical education teacher at Galt Collegiate Institute

Peter Hopkins, MA 1997

Peter Hopkins

Peter was director of Campus Recreation, football coach, tutor in residence and associate provost for student affairs, responsible for improving the quality of life for students, before retiring from UWaterloo early in 1996. He developed the Campus Recreation program into the most diversified award-winning program in Canada, working alongside many student leaders including many recreation students, and the largest student employer on Campus. He graduated in the first MA Recreation class in Canada, and was founder and first president of the Canadian Intramural Recreation Association (CIRA). Even in retirement he is working to create a full-service YMCA for the Parry Sound area.

  • Peter was the first Recreation and Leisure Studies Master of Arts (MA) graduate at University of Waterloo and in Canada. Director of Campus Recreation at UWaterloo
  • Founder and first president of the Canadian Intramural Recreation Association
  • Retired UWaterloo Associate Provost for Student Affairs and initiated into the UWaterloo Athletic Hall of Fame

Yoshi Iwasaki, PhD 1998, MA 1995

Yoshi Iwasaki

A professor of therapeutic recreation in the College of Health Professions at Temple University, Philadelphia, PA, Yoshis research examines health, life quality, and cultural/diversity issues including the roles of leisure in coping with stress, healing from trauma, and promoting health among non-dominant population groups (e.g., cultural minorities with disabilities), using mixed methods such as community-based participatory research (CBPR) and longitudinal field studies. His team has received $4.5 million in research grants. He has served our discipline as editor of Leisure/loisir. This fall, Yoshi became the first UWaterloo Recreation and Leisure Studies graduate elected to the Academy of Leisure Sciences.

  • Professor of Therapeutic Recreation, College of Health Professions, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (PA)
  • World recognized expert on the effects of leisure in mitigating stress. First UWaterloo Recreation and Leisure Studies graduate elected to the Academy of Leisure Sciences
  • Recipient of over $4,000,000 in research grants. Longtime editor of Leisure/loisir journal

Andy Kaczynski, PhD 2007, BA 2000

Andy Kaczynski

An assistant professor of Kinesiology at Kansas State University, Andy has, over the course of his young career, compiled a remarkable level of academic achievement. He is a two-time winner of the American Academy of Park and Recreation Administration best paper for both his Bachelor of Arts honours thesis (UWaterloo) and his Master of Arts thesis (Texas AM). He won the American Association for Leisure and Recreation R. W. Crawford Literary Award (2004) and was a SSHRC Canada Scholar (2004-2007). His doctoral dissertation earned recognition as AHS Alumni Gold Medal nominee (2007). His current research focuses on physical activity in built environments, especially urban parks; and recreation marketing.

  • Two time winner of American Academy Park and Recreation Administration best paper and the American Association for Leisure and Recreation Robert W. Crawford Literary Award
  • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Canada Scholar and was the Applied Health Sciences (AHS) Nominee for Alumni Gold Medal for his doctoral work
  • Now assistant professor of Kinesiology at Kansas State University, his current research interests focus on the built environment (especially parks) in promoting or discouraging physical activity

Verna Keller, BA 1994

Verna Keller

Verna is a founding member and current president of the UWaterloo Recreation Committee, established in 2004 to enrich the quality of life for UWaterloo employees. Through her ability to encourage and motivate others, the committee has held a large number of successful events for the benefit of staff, faculty, and retirees. In addition, Verna has volunteered her time over the years with several community agencies including the Volunteer Action Centre, several theatres in Kitchener-Waterloo, the House of Friendship and the Out of the Cold program for the homeless. Not only has she given of her own time to these activities, but she has also encouraged her children to participate.

  • Program Coordinator, UWaterloo Centre for Teaching Excellence, and founding member and current president of the UWaterloo Campus Recreation committee
  • A volunteer extraordinaire, she is on the Catholic Youth Organization Board of Directors, the WCI Student Council, and also contributes to the UWaterloo Canada Day Celebrations, Volunteer Action Centre, Out of the Cold, House of Friendship, and Theatre and Company

Maureen Langbo, BA 1987

Maureen Langbo

Maureen is one of the co-founders of HeartWood Centre for Community Youth Development, a Canadian leader in youth engagement programs in Nova Scotia which works with youth in discovering their personal best in service to community for their own and the community's benefit. In 1991 she co-led, with the Ontario March of Dimes, Canadas first integrated trek to the Himalayan mountains of Nepal for 14 people, including 4 with physical disabilities. Now celebrating 20 years of not-for-profit operation and over 25,000 youth involved in the program over the years, the program is described as inclusive, empowering and sustaining. Maureen works and studies in Montreal and continues as a director of HeartWood.

  • Co-founded HeartWood Centre for Community Youth Development in 1989 and served as Managing Director from 1989-1997
  • HeartWood has provided outdoor learning experiences for over 25,000 young people
  • She is an active community volunteer and fundraiser in Nova Scotia and Quebec

Jan Livingston, BA 1973

Jan volunteered for several years with her local theatre group as a stage manager and actor until she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1990. She then became active in fundraising and awareness. She was a founding member of the Orillia breast cancer support group and worked with Willow, a breast cancer support organization for women of all cultures. Jan was involved in researching and starring in the North American play Handle with Care? and then a documentary based on her own life titled, How Do We Love You? She was a guest speaker in one of our therapeutic recreation classes before passing away in October, 2000. She is missed very much by her family, friends, and the class of 73.

  • Jan was a writer and actor in research-based widely acclaimed play "Handle with Care" about Metastic Breast Cancer
  • Dedicated community volunteer with the Terry Fox Run, Willow, Run for the Cure, and Train the Trainer
  • She was, for many years, a Therapeutic Recreation and Early Childhood Education Program instructor at Georgian College

Michelle McClure, MA 1990, BA 1988

Michelle Mcclure

For Michelle, the completion of her Masters degree in therapeutic recreation marked the beginning of an incredible journey that's far from over. Michelle launched her career at the Hugh MacMillan Rehabilitation Centre, where she created Cyberkids, an accessible computer camp, and then helped develop and incorporate Ability Online, a not-for-profit award-winning resource centre for children and youth with disabilities. Due to her computer exposure at Waterloo she discovered that therapeutic recreation could work as well online as off-line. Michelle is also a special needs advisor to Girl Guides of Canada regarding the inclusion of girls with special needs into guiding.

  • Founder & Executive Director, Ability Online: connects young people with disabilities or chronic illness to disabled & non-disabled peers & mentors
  • Created Cyberkids, an accessible community camp and serves the Active Living Alliance, and on the Door2Adulthood Executive Committee
  • Volunteer with Therapeutic Recreation Ontario, and Girl Guides of Canada where she is an advocate of inclusion of girls with special needs

Kate McCrae, BA 2005

Kate Mccrae

Kate is a 2005 graduate of the Recreation and Business program and was captain of the womens basketball team. Immediately following graduation, Kate went to Belfast, Northern Ireland with Peace Players International, an innovative global organization which uses sport to unite and educate young people in divided communities. Kate then worked with Special Olympics Canada and was integral in the development of their Long Term Athlete Development Model. Last year Kate served as assistant womens basketball coach at Yale University. Currently Kate is back on campus with Waterloo Unlimited and as an assistant coach with the womens basketball team.

  • Last year served as assistant women's basketball coach at Yale University, New Haven, CT. Currently serves UWaterloo in that capacity
  • She was National Program Coordinator for Special Olympics Canada (2006-2007)
  • Right after graduation became the first Canadian hired by Peace Players International, formerly Playing for Peace (in Northern Ireland)

Norma McDonald Ewing, MA 1992, BA 1987

Passionate about the field of recreation, Norma began her career at the City of Kitchener. After a decade in municipal recreation Norma combined her passion for recreation with her desire to positively impact the lives of others and ensure excellence in the field by accepting a teaching position in the Recreation and Leisure Services diploma program at Conestoga College. Norma has been honoured with a number of awards including the YWCA Women of Distinction in Education award, the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities Leadership in Faculty Teaching award and Conestogas Aubrey Hagar Distinguished Teaching award.

  • Instructor, Recreation and Leisure Services Program, Conestoga College, Kitchener
  • Active volunteer with Cambridge YWCA, Rockton World's Fair, Hamilton Wentworth School Board, and Ontario Summer Games
  • Has won the 2008 Aubrey Hagar Distinguished Teaching Award; 2007 LIFT Award, Ministry of Training, Colleges & Universities, and the YWCA Women of Distinction in Education award

Jim McKinlay, BA 1973

Jims career in recreation focused on youth organization, municipal recreation and government consulting in youth development and volunteer management. He was one of the co-founders of the Haines Centre for Strategic Management, and has co-authored three books on planning, leadership and change . He is currently completing a book on human resources management. His career goal is to be valued by his clients and customers as the change agent that really made a difference. Jim has served on a number of boards for non-profit organizations in the communities in which hes lived. He and his wife celebrate their 40th anniversary of world travel together next year and have visited 31 countries to date.

  • Co-founded the Haines Centre for Strategic Management (1990) an international organization operating in 15 countries
  • Co-author of three books including Enterprise-wide change: Superior results through systems thinking in 2004
  • Government consultant in Nova Scotia, Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta, British Columbia, Yukon and North West Territories

Per Nilsen, MA 1987, BA 1984

Per is currently a special advisor to the chief administrative officer, Parks Canada. Over the last 20 years, he has held a variety of positions in planning, resource conservation, and resource protection. Through policy initiatives, projects, conferences and publications, Per has promoted the role of social science in decision-making and developed improved planning methods for offering opportunities for visitor experiences in protected areas. He has worked closely with universities and resource management agencies in Canada, the United States, Australia and Argentina by sharing best practices and advocating integrated approaches to park planning and management.

  • Currently a special advisor to the chief administrative officer of Parks Canada, and has served with the National Search and Rescue Secretariat, Parks Canada, Ottawa
  • He is an active researcher and author who has worked with resource management agencies in Canada, the United States, Australia, and Argentina

Karen Park, BA 1998

Karen was extremely involved in the Recreation Students Association, helped co-found AHSUM, the faculty's integrated student society, and the Applied Health Sciences Endowment Fund during her undergraduate studies. She then obtained her J.D. from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law, where she was awarded the John Willis Award (for the student who best embodies the spirit of leadership) and Gordon Cressy Student Leadership Award (for substantial contribution to life at the law school). She is currently living and practising corporate law in New York City, where she contributes her time to pro bono matters and continues her perennial search for flow.

  • Co-founded Applied Health Sciences Undergraduate Members (AHSUM), our Faculty’s undergraduate student society
  • Obtained her Juris Doctor (J.D.) from the University of Toronto and is now an attorney with Shearman & Sterling LLP, in New York City, a firm specializing in diversity issues
  • She contributes a good deal of pro bono work and is still searching for “flow”

Don Reid, MA 1978

Don is a professor of rural planning and development at the University of Guelph. An internationally recognised expert on community development, leisure studies (including tourism and recreation) and social development, Don might rightfully claim the title of social conscience among southern Ontario academics. He has also published extensively on topics related to work, leisure, and unemployment. With respect to professional service, he has held numerous positions on the Ontario Research Council on Leisure, is on the editorial board of Leisure/loisir, the Board of Directors for Canadian Association for Leisure Studies and the Canadian Institute of Planners.

  • Professor of Rural Planning and Development, University of Guelph
  • Internationally recognised expert on community development, leisure studies (including tourism and recreation) social development, and relationships between work and leisure
  • He is on the editorial board of Leisure/loisir, Board of Directors for the Canadian Association for Leisure Studies and the Canadian Institute of Planners


In 1992 Lori left hospital recreation therapy to start a grass roots community program, Adult Recreation Therapy Centre (ARTC). The program eventually became fully funded through the Ontario Ministry of Health and provides adult day services to support adults in remaining independent. ARTC offers therapeutic recreation and social activities, an exercise component facilitated by a kinesiologist, and an aphasia program supported by a speech language pathologist. Lori has been an annual guest speaker in the TR senior seminar class for several years where she encourages students to be innovative in the field of TR and think beyond traditional settings.

  • Executive Director of the Adult Recreation Therapy Centre in Brantford a grass roots community program
  • She is active with the Community Care Access Centre, the Ontario Community Support Association, and the Ministry of Health
  • Regular contributor to our Department’s Senior Therapeutic Recreation Seminar in a guest speaking/facilitating capacity


Rein worked with seniors as a recreation consultant, leading to an appointment as executive director of the Alberta Council on Aging. During this time he helped establish the Retirement Planners Association of Canada (RPAC) and formed the registry for Professional Retirement Planners (PRP). He has taught professionally, and operates his own private retirement education practice. He created “The Joyful Noise,” a children’s choir, which celebrates its 30th anniversary and a fifth (live) recording this year. Involving over 500 children, the choir has raised funds for camp facilities for mentally handicapped children and adults in Alberta. He is married with three children and is anxiously awaiting his first grandchild.

  • President, Retirement/Life Challenge, Ltd. and Founder in 1981 of Foresight magazine (Canada's first pre-retirement planner)
  • Active in International Society of Retirement Planners, Canadian Association of Pre-Retirement Planners
  • Has served as Director of Joyful Noise (a children's choir) for 30 years, including 5 live recordings which serve as fund-raisers for mentally handicapped children to attend camp


Jerry is professor of leisure studies, Dalhousie University, cross appointed with nursing, sociology and social anthropology. He completed his Bachelor of Arts at the University of Waterloo (1975), Master of Arts at Pennsylvania State University (1977) and his PhD at the University of Maryland (1981). Dr. Singleton is certified as a Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification - NCTRC) and has been involved with therapeutic recreation and older adults for 30 years. He was made a Fellow of the World of the World Demographic Association in 2006 and was named Canadian Therapeutic Recreation Association Professional of the Year in 2007. Jerry is a founding member of the Leisure and Aging Research Group.

  • Professor of Leisure Studies, Dalhousie University (cross appointed with Nursing, Sociology and Social Anthropology)
  • He is a fellow in the World Demographic Association (elected 2006) and was voted Canadian Therapeutic Recreation Association Professional of the Year in 2007
  • He is a founding member of the international Leisure and Aging Research Group

BRYAN SMALE, MA 1980, BA 1976

Professor of recreation and leisure studies at the University of Waterloo, Bryan returned to his alma mater after earning a doctorate in geography from the University of Western Ontario. An eclectic researcher whose research spans the gamut from spatial issues to parks, tourism, and aging, perhaps his most visible claim to fame is creation of REC 371 and REC 672, our outstanding quantitative analysis courses. A passionate advocate for our discipline, Bryan edited the Journal of Applied Recreation Research from 1989-1993 and served as president of Canadian Association of Leisure Studies (CALS), the Ontario Research Council on Leisure (ORCOL), and the Lifestyle Information Network (LIN).

  • Has served concurrent terms as President of the Canadian Association of Leisure Studies; President of the Ontario Research Council on Leisure, and the Lifestyle Information Network
  • Editor, Journal of Applied Recreation Research (1989-1993)
  • He created and taught REC 371 and REC 672, our outstanding quantitative analysis courses. He is widely sought by graduate students for his conceptual and methodological expertise


Terry is currently the information technology manager for Applied Health Sciences at UWaterloo, keeping the Faculty’s computing infrastructure on the leading edge of technology. He first worked with the Leisure Studies Data Bank where he developed a world-class data archive of recreation studies and edited such landmark publications as the Canadian Outdoor Recreation Demand Study. In the early 1980s, he developed one of the first microcomputer labs at UWaterloo. Terry has served as a school board member and chair, museum board member, community association president and minor sports coach. Terry and his wife are celebrating their 35th anniversary this year and have two children.

  • Manager, Information Technology, Applied Health Sciences, University of Waterloo
  • He worked with colleagues to create the Leisure Studies Data Bank, an innovative and world-class archive of recreation research, and developed one of the first microcomputer labs at UWaterloo
  • Terry volunteers with the school board, museum board, as president of his community association and coaches minor sports


Julie is the program coordinator and creator of the Stride Program of Community Justice Initiatives of Waterloo Region. Stride supports the successful reintegration of women from prison following restorative justice principals. She is keenly interested in the process of putting into practice life changes upon reentry into community after treatment/incarceration, and has involved students in the program. Julie has previously worked in addictions treatment and mental health services for children and adults with developmental and physical challenges and geriatrics. She has also volunteered with several community organizations and advocates for individuals within the community.

  • Community Justice Initiatives, Stride Coordinator, grounded in restorative justice theory, a unique program for federally incarcerated women in Canada
  • She has pioneered and managed recreation services for people with addictions
  • Active in the community as an academic author, community advocate, and participatory action researcher


Susan had a 20 year professional career before returning to UWaterloo Recreation and Leisure Studies as a member of our inaugural doctoral class. Three years later she became our first doctoral graduate and the first person to earn a leisure studies PhD in Canada. She is associate professor of leisure studies at Dalhousie University and director of graduate studies for the School of Health and Human Performance. A respected scholar in the area of leisure for those living at the margins of Canadian society, Susan also served the discipline as chair of the NLPRA Recreation Inclusion Committee and as associate editor for the Journal of Leisure ResearchLeisure/loisir, and Leisurability. She has two children.

  • Our Department's first doctoral graduate (and first in Canada)
  • Associate Professor of Leisure Studies, Dalhousie University. Director of Graduate Studies, School of Health and Human Performance
  • Chair, NLPRA Recreation Inclusion Committee (1999-2000); Associate Editor for the Journal of Leisure Research, Leisure/loisir, and Leisurability