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Women accomplish many things. Most go without recognition, but all have an impact on our lives – and should be celebrated.


Mary Elizabeth Masterman Church is known to friends and family as Babs. We honour her for her spirit of adventure and energy. She hitchhiked through Europe for a year in her twenties, taught school in her thirties and forties, became a television producer and documentary maker in her fifties, trekked the Himalayas in her sixties and paddled the Nahanni River for her seventieth birthday. Yet home has always been her centre. She gathers people together for splendid meals and lively conversations, and holds all close to her with an unwavering belief in her marriage and her family, friends and community.


Mama/Grandma/Nanny, wouldn’t you laugh to think of your name on a wall in a university? This wall honors women, and certainly you deserve to be honored. Throughout a lifetime of learning through reading and listening and just plain living, you majored in loving, and family was always the centre of your life. You were hard to beat at Wheel of Fortune or Scrabble - remember how amazed you were that people couldn’t spell? And you learned to laugh even when times weren’t easy and life was hard. Three generations of your family have been Mount students, but the lessons of love and laughter learned from you and passed down to and by all of us will remain the foundation of their education for life.



We honoured our daughter Jennifer because she is bright, ambitious, and determined to be a woman who has, and will continue to make a difference in both her personal and professional pursuits. She understands “that planted within every child are the seeds of a beautiful harvest.” Jennifer absolutely radiates caring, love and fun both personally and professionally. No matter how young or old, she is always willing to extend a helping hand or a shoulder to lean on.

As we grow older, it is wonderful to realize that in Jennifer we have a daughter who demonstrates kindness in so many ways. Remarkable women come in many forms and for us our daughter inspires us every day - we are blessed for what she brings to us which is some of life’s most important things: love, happiness and laughter.


I wasn’t able to attend university right out of high school but rather went to work full time.  I always felt something was missing. I longed for a university education but did not think it was possible. So when an advertisement appeared in the paper for a non- credit evening class at Mount Saint Vincent University, I signed up. The instructor for this class was Dr. Mairi St. John Macdonald.

During our sessions, Dr. Macdonald saw my desire to learn and encouraged me to take a credit class. She helped build my confidence and showed me the way to obtain my goal as a mature student. Dr. Macdonald was always there with a smile and support when I needed it. It took a great many years but I succeeded and I owe it all to that first non credit class and Dr. Macdonald’s kindness, reassurance and faith. Thank you Dr. Macdonald.


My mum and granny taught me the value of education, the importance of family, the need for diplomacy, and the restorative benefits of a strong cup of tea.  They are the unsung heroes of my family and I thought this would be a fitting tribute to permanently recognize their influence and my love for them.

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HONOURING Mothers and wives


 When our Mom passed away in 1995 the Daily News headline read “Dartmouth Loses Former First Lady”...it was a most deserved title, but one we are certain she would have shied away from.

Mom never wanted the spotlight that came with being the wife of Dartmouth's Mayor ( Dad was Mayor from 1976-1985). We can recall one time when she and Dad were going to this special dinner and she said “Danny can we sit at the back of the room”....Dad replied “we can't they are honouring me”.

Mom was always there for us no matter how young or old we were. We learned a great deal about how to treat one another, as well as others in society. In our house everyone was treated equally and we were taught that was what you did with others in society.

She felt her role as a homemaker was certainly one of her choosing. It was Mom who helped us settle our little disputes, passed on advice and always made certain we were home safely from a school dance or outing.

For Mom (and Dad) her faith was most important and she wanted to make certain that this instilled in her sons. We can remember getting outfitted for our altar boy uniforms. Making certain we went to Mass on time and this presented certain challenges of walking the two plus miles to serve an early morning church service before we went to school.

She was always our biggest supporter, no matter if it was a hockey game, a football game and of course school graduation.


Lorri Neilsen glenn

Why have I placed Lorri Neilsen’s name on the Wall of Honour?

Most obviously, for her tireless work as a respected scholar, esteemed teacher, and valued colleague at The Mount for nearly thirty years.

Less obviously, but perhaps more importantly, for the way in which she has worked in these roles and relationships – with fairness and respect, compassion and generosity, intellectual and moral courage, openness and wonder, with humour and affection.

And with grace, always with grace.



I do not often express my personal feelings but this is an opportunity that should not be missed. I am delighted to recognize Gwen Haliburton as a most appropriate nominee for the Women's Wall of Honour at Mount Saint Vincent University. More than 50 years ago, I fell in love with Gwen. In the years since then I have always been proud of her commitment as a wife, mother and volunteer. Our community has benefitted greatly from Gwen's leadership and I have watched as she quietly mentored many young women, her only reward being their success. She is part of me and I feel exactly the same today as I did those many years ago.



My father and I have decided to recognize my mother Ruby Blois for the Women’s Wall for many reasons and we could write a book on why she deserves this recognition, but in simple words, it is our love for her. Ruby Blois is a kind, caring woman who has spent her life in service to others. Leadership is at the core of her nature and from her beginnings as a brownie leader to her years at the IWK as a Nurse leader, she has always shown both of us, that you always dig deep for those in need. Ruby is a focused volunteer, and has been involved in helping countless organizations, most recently raising money to build Brigadoon, a camp for chronically ill children. Now, she is chairing the Leading Women committee for Project 2012. Outside of this, she never turns down a call for help from friends, family and strangers. She will fully jump in if someone is in trouble and needs a helping hand. She is kindness and love in action and deserves to be honored, thanked and recognized for all the good she brings to each and every life she touches. That’s why Dad and I wanted to do this in her honour.



Janet (Pottie) Murray was 18 when she graduated from Mount Saint Vincent College in 1956 as class Valedictorian with an honours degree in Philosophy and an honours diploma in Journalism. She was SMU’s first Director of Public Relations, and went from there to CBC radio as an on-air commentator. She married Dr Jock Murray, and they have four children and seven grandchildren. She chose the role of committed community volunteer, and served on many Boards, including 8 years on the MSVU Board (three as Chair); the Dalhousie BOG; the Voluntary Planning Board, Bryony House and the National Board of the CAC. Nominated by her daughter, she was named one of the Mothers of the Year by Glamour Magazine. At 74, she continues to be an independent scholar, researching and delivering papers on the History of Women in Medicine, and researching and writing books with her husband. She is a woman of imagination, intelligence and integrity.

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womenswallphoto for website

Why Honour a Woman?

Celebrate a remarkable woman in your life…

We all have remarkable women in our lives who have influenced us on personal and professional levels. With the Women’s Wall of Honour, the legacy of women will inspire generations of students.

The Women’s Wall of Honour affords donors the opportunity to recognize significant milestones or accomplishments of important women in their lives such as a significant birthday or anniversary, or achievements or professional awards. Perhaps a remarkable woman has shared a personal triumph and this is a way to say “thank you” or “congratulations.” It is also a way to celebrate the legacy of a woman who has passed.

This is a meaningful way to honour the women closest to you.

Visit the virtual Women's Wall of Honour

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What is the Women's Wall of Honour?

The Women’s Wall of Honour, located at the entrance of the Margaret Norrie McCain Centre for Teaching, Learning and Research, will welcome visitors while honouring women. This unique installation is the only one of its kind in Canada, and its home will be Mount Saint Vincent University, Canada’s leading university primarily focused on the advancement of women.

You have the opportunity to commemorate a special woman by reserving a space in her name on the Women’s Wall of Honour ensuring her legacy for generations to come. Your honouree’s name will appear on a panel to be located in the garden at the entrance to the McCain Centre along with other remarkable women whose lives and contributions are being celebrated.

Donors have the opportunity to share tributes to their honouree on the Virtual Women’s Wall of Honour. Tributes captured will be incorporated in the display for the Women’s Wall of Honour once it is constructed.


Visit the virtual Women's Wall of Honour

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How to honour a woman

Pay homage to a special woman in your life by reserving a space on the Women's Wall of Honour. Each name is the result of a generous $1200 sponsorship. Your honouree's name will take place on the wall along with other great women whose lives and contributions are being celebrated.

More information…

Once you have made your $1,200 donation to the Women’s Wall of Honour, you will receive an e-mail from Mount Saint Vincent University directing you to a secure site.

Here you will have the following options:

     - Send your honouree an e-card notifying her of your tribute.

     - Print a certificate to present to your honouree.

Or, if you would prefer, Mount Saint Vincent University can send notification to your honouree informing her of your tribute.

You will also have the opportunity to submit a tribute and/or your honouree’s photo (max. 600 characters) for the Virtual Women’s Wall of Honour. 

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Number of women honoured: