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1968

Biderman, Beverly (BA Sociology - Glendon)

Deaf since childhood due to hereditary hearing loss, Beverly (née Cloth) was a scholarship student at York who struggled to hear the classes she took at Glendon. She never told her professors of her disability, thinking there was no point. But she worked hard, becoming a computer analyst following graduation. At age 46, she received a cochlear implant and learned how to hear again with a bionic ear, the subject of her 1998 book Wired for Sound: A Journey into Hearing. Revised in 2016, Wired for Sound was the inspiration behind an opera entitled On the Threshold of the Outside World, which debuted in Lisbon, Portugal, the same year. A past chair of the Board of the Canadian Hearing Society, Bev remains a strong advocate for people with disabilities, through articles and lectures.

1970

Bulger, John (PhD Chemistry)

After graduation, John returned to Montreal to work for DuPont of Canada, followed by local natural gas distribution utility Gaz Métropolitain as director of gas supply, among other positions. In 1998, after working for Maritimes and Northeast Pipeline in Halifax, he was appointed by the federal government to the National Energy Board in Calgary, where he served two terms, until 2008. As a retirement project, he attended the University of Calgary, graduating with a BA in music in 2018. “It was a great experience,” he says. “I had the chance to study music theory and history, perform in the University Chorus and even do a little composing.”

1972

Ward, Arnold (BA Schulich)

Following graduation, Arnold completed the Certified General Accountant program, and has since worked with many corporations in the role of finance manager. A self-published author, he is the recipient of several honours for his poetry and plays, including silver and bronze medals from the Barbados National Cultural Foundation and an award from the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation. Arnold currently lives in Barbados where he says he enjoys life immensely.

1974

Leclerc, Serge (BA Political Science - Glendon)

Serge is currently retired from owning a GM dealership. A resident of Saint-Bruno, Que., he enjoys golf and reconnecting with fellow Glendon graduates.

1975

Kilmer, Scotty (BA Anthropology)

At age 65, car expert Scotty runs an eponymous YouTube channel that, to date, has garnered close to 700 million views and amassed a following of nearly three million subscribers. “This is the people’s automotive channel,” he says. “The most honest and funniest car channel on YouTube.” Check it out.

Rousseau, André (BA Political Science - Glendon)

André is a lawyer practising banking litigation with the firm Lapointe Rosenstein Marchand Melançon in Montreal.

1977

Tremblay, Andrée (BA Psychology - Glendon)

Since graduation, Andrée has lived in Montreal, where she now works with Héma-Québec, a non-profit organization supplying blood to hospitals in Quebec. Her hobbies include travelling and skiing in the nearby winter resorts of Saint-Sauveur and Mont-Tremblant.

1979

Periard, Richard (BA Philosophy)

After serving as artistic director of the PrettyFeet Theatre Company in Toronto, Richard now writes for film and TV. One of his current projects is a sitcom entitled In My Life, based on the places he remembers from his time at York University and Stong College.

1986

Orford, Neil (BA History - Glendon)

In 2017, after a 31-year teaching career in Dufferin County, Ont., Neil launched Defining Moments Canada, a digital heritage education platform providing Canadian students, teachers and communities with the tools they need to tell the stories of major Canadian historical events. A winner of both the Governor General’s and Ontario Premier’s awards for history teaching, Neil has, for the past 30 years, been married to Laurie Henderson (BEd - Glendon, ’85), with whom he has two grown daughters. He resides in Orangeville, Ont.

1988

Rizi, Fabio (BA Hons. History)

Born in Italy, Fabio served as president of the Dante Alighieri Society of Toronto for several years and worked for the Toronto Public Library until his retirement in 1995. He then returned to York University, receiving his PhD in 2000. His dissertation became a book, Benedetto Croce and Italian Fascism, published by University of Toronto Press in 2003. His second book, Benedetto Croce and the Birth of the Italian Republic, 1943-1952, came out in hardcover in January.

1992

Picard, Frank (BA Political Science - Glendon)

Frank is vice-president of real estate and store development at Save-On-Foods in Chilliwack, B.C., where he lives with his wife Christine McCay (BA ­Psychology - Glendon, ’92) and their two teenage children. In 1997, Frank and Christine were among the first to get married on campus at Glendon Hall.

Sharp, Cynthia (BA Hons. English)

Cynthia is the newly appointed Richmond Public Library 2019 Writer in Residence in Richmond, B.C. Her poetry books Rainforest in Russet, Poetic Portions and How to Write Poetry, along with her children’s story, The Light Bearers in the Sand Dollar Graviton, are available in Canadian bookstores and on Amazon. She is forever grateful for the support of her York friendships through the years.

1999

Bruce, Karen (BSc Hons. Applied Math, BEd ­Mathematics)

After graduation, Karen worked as a high school math and science teacher at Huron Heights Secondary School in Newmarket, Ont. In 2000, she moved to Ottawa to work for Statistics Canada as a methodologist. Presently, she works as the collection manager of a high-impact survey for the Census of Population.

2001

Chau, Jeannette (MBA - Schulich)

Jeannette is an engineer who manages key province-wide outreach programs for Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO). Prior to her work with PEO, she worked in the telecom industry for over 20 years. Recently, she was re-elected to her second term as president of the Mississauga Arts Council.

2004

Charis-Molling, Erica (BFA Specialized Hons. Music )

In 2008, Erica received her master’s in library and information science from Simmons University in Boston, Mass. After working as a librarian at Berklee College of Music for nearly a decade, she recently completed her second master’s, an MFA in creative writing from Antioch University. She now works part-time for the Boston Public Library while completing the manuscript of her first book of poetry.

2011

Silver, Jess (BA Specialized Hons. - Glendon)

After graduating from York, Jess attended the Humber School for Writers, where she pursued graduate studies in creative writing. Presently, she works in healthcare as a research assistant for a prominent Toronto hospital. Jess is also an entrepreneur and the executive director of a registered non-profit organization, Flex for Access, whose advocacy for adaptive fitness and sport promotion garners global reach. Jess is passionate about helping to change the lives of those with physical challenges and injuries.

2016

Nagatu, Ermias (BSc Specialized Hons. Kinesiology and Health Science)

Ermias is the co-founder of Wishplay, a virtual reality platform dedicated to providing patients with the resources they need to live beyond their illness or disability. He has also built an app that aims to educate patients and health professionals about chronic pain. An accessibility and diversity advocate, he sits on the boards of the Regent Park Community Health Centre and the Black Health Alliance.

2017

Silver, Matthew (LLM Osgoode)

Since graduation, Matthew has started his own immigration law firm based in Ottawa, providing U.S. immigration services. He recently wrote the book Navigating US Immigration in Modern Times: A Review and Analysis of Work Visas, which is available on Amazon.

2018

Mamaeva, Svetlana (BBA - Schulich)

Svetlana is serving as a national delegate for Miss Universe Canada 2019 while completing a graduate certificate program in business communications at Harvard University. Svetlana balances her studies with her work in the energy sector as an associate technical account manager. A native of Moldova, she has been involved with the Canadian Cancer Society for three years, holding various leadership roles for the largest volunteer-led breast cancer event in Canada.

2019

Daniel, Cherie (LLM Osgoode)

Cherie has been a practising lawyer since 2005. After years of practice, she started teaching paralegals at colleges across the GTA and surrounding areas. Last year, she obtained her LLM from York University and her master’s in education from the University of Toronto. In the fall, she started a PhD program in social justice education at OISE. Recently, Cherie was named one of 100 Accomplished Black Canadian Women. She will receive her award at a gala event in Toronto in September.

IN MEMORIAM

Buchbinder, Amnon (Professor)

A Genie Award–winning filmmaker, Amnon started teaching at York University in 1995, receiving a tenure-stream appointment in 1996. A former Chair of the Department of Cinema and Media Arts (CMA), he played an instrumental role in developing the curriculum in the University’s production and screenwriting programs. A gifted screenwriter and director, he died in Toronto from cancer on November 30, 2019. He was 61 years old.

Verney, Douglas V (Professor)

The first Chair of York’s Political Science Department, Professor Verney was a past director of the Social Science Research Council of Canada and president of the Canadian Political Science Association. The Verney Room at the Ross Building is named in his honour. He died in Philadelphia on July 24, 2019. He was 95.

Winandy, George J (MBA Schulich ’71)

A native of Chicago, George took his MBA at York University before launching his successful printing ink business in the U.S. Committed to higher education, he funded many scholarships in math and science studies during his lifetime. He passed away in Arlington Heights, Ill., on September 23, 2019. He was 82.