Shirley Horn Named First Chancellor of Algoma University
(SAULT STE. MARIE, ON – March 27, 2015): Algoma University is pleased to announce that Shirley Horn has been named Chancellor of the post-secondary institution.
“I am delighted that Shirley Horn will be returning to Algoma University, on the site of the former Shingwauk School, as our first-ever Chancellor,” said Dr. Richard Myers, President of Algoma U. “Shirley has a terrific amount of talent and expertise, and has kept in close contact with Algoma University since graduating, including in her role with the Children of Shingwauk Alumni Association. She brings national experience and connections, and has deep roots in the Anishinaabe communities of Northern Ontario.”
Horn is from Chapleau, Ontario, and at the age of five was sent to St. Johns Indian Residential School. She was then transferred to the Shingwauk Indian Residential School at the age of seven, where she remained for six years. In 1981, she helped found the Children of Shingwauk Alumni Association, a constructive organization that has been a leader at the national level on the residential school issue. She remained in a leadership position with the organization for 34 years. In 2005, Horn returned to the Shingwauk School site – now the home of Algoma University – to enroll in the Bachelor of Fine Arts program. As a rare graduate of both the Residential School and the University, she received a standing ovation at Convocation in 2009. Horn has been Chief of her own community, the Missanabie Cree First Nation for 10 years, and has also been a member of the Missanabie Cree Elders’ Council. Horn is also co-founder of the Echoes of the World Drum Festival, a former member of the Shingwauk Education Trust, and an accomplished artist. Her piece, Project of the Heart, is on permanent display outside of the Doc Brown Lounge at Algoma U.
“I’ve spent so many years here, I have a relationship with Algoma University from the time I was seven years old to today,” said Horn. “I’m still on the Children of Shingwauk Alumni Association executive today, so it’s been a long journey. It’s an honour to represent Algoma University.”
Algoma U’s Chancellor serves as the titular head of the institution. The Chancellor participates in major ceremonies and events, including the annual September Induction as well as Convocation. The Chancellor confers all degrees. By acting as an ambassador of Algoma U, the Chancellor also helps to raise the profile of the University as well as assist in both relationship-building and fundraising initiatives. The Chancellor provides support to the University President, as requested, and promotes the University’s special mission in regards to Anishinaabe education.
Algoma University’s Charter includes provisions for the appointment of a Chancellor. The Board of Governors determined that the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the post-secondary institution as an opportune time to appoint the first Chancellor.
Horn will be sworn in officially at the University’s annual Convocation ceremony, slated for Saturday, June 13, at which time she will begin her four-year term.