An innovative leader with significant managerial experience in the post-secondary system, including a strong record in fund-raising; an active teacher and researcher with substantial past and current research programs; a passionate humanitarian and community leader; and a tireless advocate for education and for the role of the post-secondary system as the social and moral conscience of society.


  • 2015 – FCAHS, Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (Canada)
  • 2004 – LLD (Honorary). University of Bristol, Bristol (UK)
  • 2003 – Honorary Diploma, Humber ITAL (Canada)
  • 1981 – PhD. University of Bristol.  Faculty of Science, Bristol (UK)
  • 1977 – BVSc. University of Bristol. Credits in Surgery and Medicine, Bristol (UK)
  • 1977 – MRCVS Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, London (UK)
  • 1974 – BSc (Hons) University of Bristol. First class: Best graduating student (shared)



  • 2017 – President and Vice Chancellor, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada
  • 2003 – 2014 – President and Vice Chancellor, University of Guelph, Guelph, Canada
  • 2000 – 2003 – Provost and Vice President (Academic), University of Guelph, Guelph, Canada
  • 1999 – 2000 – Associate Vice President (Academic), University of Guelph, Guelph, Canada
  • 1997 – 1997 – Acting Associate Vice President (Academic) and Registrar, University of Guelph
  • 1995 – 1998 – Dean of Graduate Studies, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Canada
  • 1995 – 1995 – President, Production Division, Lifelearn Inc., Guelph, Ontario, Canada
  • 1992 – 1994 – Associate Dean, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, Canada
  • 1990 – 2017 – Professor (Tenured), Biomedical Sciences, University of Guelph, Guelph, Canada
  • 1988 – 1990 – Associate Professor (Tenure track), Biomedical Sciences, University of Guelph, Guelph
  • 1984 – 1988 – Veterinary Pre-Clinical Dean, School of Veterinary Science, University of Bristol, UK


  • 2015 – 2017 – Chair of the Board of the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario
  • 2014 – 2016 – Executive Director, Fund the Food, Kirchner Group, USA
  • 2013 – 2016 – Chair, Hunger Solutions Institute, Auburn University, Auburn, AL, USA
  • 2011 – 2013 – Chair Council Ontario Universities, Ontario, Canada
  • 2010 – 2011 – Vic-Chair Council Ontario Universities, Ontario, Canada
  • 2006 – 2008 – Chair of the World University Service of Canada (WUSC)
  • 2004 – 2006 – Vice-Chair of the World University Service of Canada (WUSC)
  • 1994 – 1995 – Vice-President/President (Production) Lifelearn™ Inc., Guelph, Ontario, Canada
  • 1986 – 1988 – Chairman of Wardens’ Committee, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK
  • 1977 – 1988 – Warden Goldney Hall; Hall of Residence, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK


  • President and Vice-Chancellor, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada
  • Emeritus Professor, University of Guelph
  • Professor Biomedical Science (retired) Ontario Veterinary College at the University. Responsibilities include teaching, research and service
  • Director of Research, Lucky Iron Fish Enterprise a social enterprise determined to make a significant difference to the lives and livelihoods of people (especially women and children) living with iron deficiency
  • Visiting chair at the University of Witswatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa (1 month commitment per year 2015-2018)
  • Volunteer activities: chair of various committees including: Chair of the Advisory Committee of the Hunger Solutions Institute (Auburn, AL); educational programs in the refugee camps in Kenya with a particular focus on education for women and girls



  • Extensive undergraduate teaching: basic science (anatomy, physiology, pharmacology) in science, veterinary, medical, dental curricula and interdisciplinary subjects in arts and science baccalaureate programs
  • Undergraduate course development in a variety of different science and interdisciplinary programs. Formats include: CD-ROMs, CDi’s, tape-slide series, Web courses and course notes
  • Graduate course teaching and development in reproductive physiology, commercialization, technology and neuroscience
  • Training program to develop the skills of capital allocators seeking to invest in disruptive agricultural technology
  • Graduate supervision completed under my tutelage (10PhD, 7MSc); extensive graduate student advisory committee experience in physiology, technology, neuroscience, sustainable tourism, HIV/AIDS, micronutrient deficiency and business development
  • Current graduate supervision: (1 PhD [one part-time]: 1 MSc)
  • External PhD examiner in UK (3 PhD): chaired graduate final examination committees in Ontario Veterinary College (27 DVSc; 5 PhD; 5 MSc)
  • Nominated for Norden Teaching award on three occasions in Canada
  • Received University of Guelph Distinguished Teaching Professor Award, (1991)
  • 3-M Teaching Fellowship (2003) – first president elect to receive fellowship
  • Extensive experience with problem-based learning in undergraduate programs including problem development (developed more than 145 cases which are in use in Canada, Finland, Norway, Sweden and the United States)
  • Curriculum innovation (undergraduate): revision of veterinary program at the Ontario Veterinary College; development of major alternate to higher education in Ontario at the University of Guelph-Humber (joint, four-year diploma-degree programs) in applied Arts, Social Science and Science; arts and science first year seminar program
  • Curriculum innovation (graduate): co-developer of distance, electronic Executive MBA programs in Agriculture and Hospitality and Tourism Management (innovative partnership with Athabasca University [Canada] and University of Minnesota [USA])
  • Curriculum development (outreach/professional): principal developer of an ACCESS program for foreign trained veterinarians to gain professional licensure in Ontario
  • Part of the consulting team that lead to the development of the Botswana International University of Science and Technology (BIUST), Botswana, Africa
  • Invited speaker/symposium organizer on teaching and learning, particularly active learning strategies, at international and national meetings


  • Areas of research interests: (1) micronutrient deficiency particularly in women and business opportunities to implement sustainable health interventions; (2) cardiovascular control and water balance during pregnancy; (3) hormonal control of testicular descent; (4) prostate cancer; (5) pathophysiology of relaxin; (6) hormonal and neural control of pregnancy, birth and lactation; and (7) HIV/AIDS and sexual practices among aboriginal populations particularly men whom have sex with men.
  • Approximately $8 M in research support attracted from federal (national) and provincial agencies in Canada, UK, USA and Australia (1981- present).
  • Current funding: Tier II Grand Challenges™ Canada Health Innovation Grant (Co-PI); Saving Lives at Birth Grant (Co-PI) $1.1 million; SolveLab MIT (Co-PI) $500,000.
  • Collaborative research projects with faculty in Cambodia, Canada, Dominican Republic, Germany, Guatemala, India and USA.
  • Publications: 1 book, 15 chapters (+1 in press), 80 full papers (+2 in press), 89 papers in refereed conference proceedings, 33 abstracts read, 18 invited papers in symposia.
  • Joint holder two invention patents, one design patent and two trade-marked products
  • Significant research contributions: (1) first identification of the action of the hormone relaxin on the mammalian brain (Summerlee et al., 1984. Nature 309:372-374) which lead to a new field in relaxin research; (2) demonstration that relaxin affected prostate tumour development in vivo and in vitro (Silvertown et al., 2003. Endocrinology 114:3683-3691) which led to filing of a patent, the capitalization of a start-up company and clinical trials currently underway; and (3) the development of a simple intervention (Charles et al., 2015. Tropical Medicine & Surgery 3: 3 ) that has the capacity to ameliorate iron deficiency and iron deficiency anemia in women – a chronic debilitating deficiency affecting almost 3.5 billion people worldwide.
  • Co-developer of a technique to preserve anatomical specimens: a less expensive and safer form of plastination – effectively the replacement of tissue water with flexible resins.
  • Invited speaker on research in: Australia; Austria; Argentina; Botswana; Cambodia; Canada; China; France; Germany; Hong Kong; Hungary; Kenya; Mauritania; Mexico; New Zealand; South Africa, Sweden, United States; and United Kingdom.
  • International Organizing Committee: Third International Conference on Relaxin, Broome, Australia: October 2000; Fourth International Conference on Relaxin, Jackson Hole, USA: September 2004; 6th Annual Summit, Universities Fighting World Hunger, Guelph, Ontario; 7th Annual Summit, Universities Fighting World Hunger, Honduras and 10th Annual Summit (principal convener), Universities Fighting World Hunger, Guelph, Ontario; Organizing Committee of the PUSH Initiative (President’s United to Solve Hunger) event in the United Nations 2015.


  • Current positions: Chair of the Board of the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) a research and policy advisory arm of the postsecondary education system in Ontario, Canada; Chair of the Hunger Solutions Institute Advisory Board, Auburn, AL, USA (responsible to establishing an international movement to commit universities worldwide to act against hunger poverty (the PUSH Initiative).
  • Academic administration: Pre-clinical Dean of the Bristol Veterinary School, UK 1984-1988  (academic management, admissions and counseling – no direct budgetary responsibility), Associate Dean of the Ontario Veterinary College, Ontario, Canada 1992-94 (academic and financial management: annual budget ~$7 million per annum), Dean of Graduate Studies 1995-1998 (academic management of graduate programs – no prime budgetary responsibility), Associate Vice-President Academic 1998-1999, Provost 2000-2003, and President at the University of Guelph 2003-2008 (academic, financial and managerial responsibilities: current budget responsibility ~$750 million per annum) renewed for second term 2008-2014.
  • Executive Director Fund the Food, a privately sponsored activity to train students in the process of capital investment in agricultural technologies that have the potential to address world hunger.
  • Commercial administration as Vice-President/President of Production, Lifelearn Inc. 1994-95 (multi-media software company) – production budget ~ $2 million per annum.
  • Extensive committee experience within universities, for professional bodies (veterinary education), local schools, cultural organizations and voluntary organizations in the community.
  • Considerable managerial experience in academic management of universities but also university residence, conference and catering businesses, registrarial functions and information system implementation.
  • Development and implementation of a strategic approach to enrolment management (undergraduate, graduate and international) at the University of Guelph: part of several teams receiving a Gold and Silver Awards in North America for the most innovative marketing and advertising campaigns and effective university publications.
  • Fund raising experience: provincial government investment in higher education ($6 billion); more than $200 million in support of university projects through private fund-raising (through management of the team associated with the BetterPlanet Project at the University of Guelph); $28.6 million in support of capital projects at the University of Guelph (prime applicant); renegotiation of the contract with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food (~$375 million over a five-year contract); and $50 million in support of capital projects (co-applicant) from government sources, $2 million for charity (local school); and ~$2.5 million annually for the City and County United Way campaign (North American Charity) 2007-2009: participated in and developed the public offering of University of Guelph ($100 million – 2003).

Information Technology

  • Chair Ontario Universities Application Centre (province-wide coordinated approach to university application in Ontario – approximately 200,000 applicants per year) 2009-2011 – included strategic planning for major system upgrade and renewal.
  • Development of interactive CD-ROM and CD-I multi-media resources for veterinary education: part of a team winning the Best CD-I of the Year Award in Continuing Education and the Best CD-I of the Year 1995 (Gold award).
  • Software developer for Asymmetrix (USA) 1991-1996.
  • Development of an Access-based Database Information System for primary and secondary schools.
  • Management of the project at the University of Guelph to implement a new student information system (purchased from a commercial supplier) in preparation for Y2K (the largest system implementation at the University of Guelph serving more than 25,000 annually in traditional face-to-face programs (including financial aid) and more than 65,000 students registered by distance: implementation included development of on-line and e-business services for students.

Community Service

  • Fund and awareness raising events for refugee camps in Kenya.
  • Founder of Shine-a–Light campaign – solar lamp projects in refugee camps in Kenya.
  • Vice-Chair, Chair and Past Chair World University Service of Canada (WUSC) 2005-2011 – NGO responsible for international development projects in 13 countries around the world – annual budget ~$35 million per year.
  • Chair local City-County United Way campaign 2007-2009 (annual fund-raising ~$2.5 million).
  • Participated in organizing cultural and social events in the Guelph community.
  • Actively involved in personal counselling services in the Guelph community 1998-2005.
  • Member, secretary and chair of the Board of trustees of a local private school 1995-2005.


  • Annual American Association of the Advancement of Science-Hitachi Lecture on Science and Society (2017) New York – date to be confirmed.
  • Lewis Perinbam Humanitarian Award, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council and the World University of Canada (2016).
  • David C Smith 2015 Award for contributions to postsecondary education in Ontario, Toronto.
  • Elected as a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (induction September 2015).
  • Keynote speaker, Maine Hunger Dialogue 2014, University of Maine, Orono, USA.
  • Visiting Chair on teaching (part-time), University of Witswatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.
  • Distinguished visiting scholar, University of Witswatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.
  • YMCA/YWCA Guelph, Humanitarian of the Year Awards (2013).
  • International Quality of Life Award (2012) Laureate, United Nations, New York.
  • Queens Diamond Jubilee Award (2012) for service to the community and society, Canada.
  • Socrates International Award, (2012): European Business Association, Oxford (UK).
  • Invited speaker (2012): Annual Teaching and Learning Symposium, Western University, London, Ontario, Canada.
  • Invited speaker (2011): Kansas Hunger Dialogue, Kansas City, Kansas, USA.
  • Ontario Heritage Award for outstanding contributions to preservation of Ontario Heritage (2010) – led the committee to save the Loretto Convent – a prominent landmark in the City of Guelph and participated in raising funds for its preservation.
  • Mayor’s Award (2009): for outstanding contribution to the City of Guelph, Canada.
  • Invited speaker (2008): International Institute on Education, United Nations, New York.
  • Invited speaker and participant (2008): Oxford Round Table on the future of higher education, Oxford, UK.
  • Joy Goodwin Lecturer (2007): Auburn Veterinary College, Auburn University, AL, USA.
  • Invited speaker (2006): Empire Club, Toronto, Canada.
  • DLT Smith Lecture (2004): University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Canada.
  • 3-M Teaching Fellow (2003): 3-M Canada and the Society for Teaching and Higher Learning in Education, Canada.
  • Honorary Diploma for contributions to education (2003): Humber Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning, Toronto, Canada.
  • Research Lecturer (1999): Atlantic Veterinary College, Prince Edward Island, Canada.
  • Physiological Society Annual Lecturer (1998): Argentine Academy of Physiological Sciences, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
  • Michael Moxon Kaye Lecturer (1992): Western College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Canada.
  • University of Guelph Faculty Association Distinguished Teaching Professor Award (1991): Guelph, Canada.
  • Royal Society of London exchange fellowship with the Romanian Academy of Sciences (1987): Romania.
  • Best graduating student (1977): Marjorie Levie Prize, University of Bristol, UK.


  1. Review of the School of Graduate Studies, University of New Brunswick, New Brunswick, Canada: Chair of a three-person panel of reviewers appointed by the President and Provost of the University.
  2. Invited to Colleges of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Illinois, (1990, 1993), University of Florida (1991), Oklahoma State University (1994, 1995), Swedish Agricultural University (SLU) Uppsala, Sweden (1999), Baylor College and Butler University, Kansas (2011) to take part in/lead faculty retreats to discuss problem-based learning, and alternative teaching and learning strategies.
  3. International team member engaged in planning the new university in Botswana with the Tertiary Education Council – the Botswana International University of Science and Technology (BIUST) 2008-2010.
  4. Program reviewer of the Knowledge Integration Program at the University of Waterloo, Ontario (2015) as part of the quality assurance process for undergraduate degrees in the province in Ontario.