Carleton University Founders Award

“It is people, not buildings, that make an institution; and if we can put our hearts to it we can do something worthwhile.”

Henry Marshall Tory, June 18, 1942

Led by Dr. Henry Marshall Tory, a small group of Ottawa citizens dared to imagine a university in the nation’s capital that would serve Canadians whose education was interrupted by World War II. Carleton University was established in 1942, because of the dedication and commitment of our founders:

Henry Marshall Tory                                Mr. C.C. Gibson

Dr. Hugh Keenleyside                             Mr. E.J. Jenkins Mr. William Connor

Dr. John Robbins                                    Mr. Frank Patten

Mr. C.H. Bland Mr. L.R. Shaw                 Mr. T.R. Montgomery

It is our individual founders – past, present and future – whose commitment has helped build one of Canada’s most respected universities and whose leadership will ascertain our future.

The Award

The Founders Award, Carleton’s highest non-academic honour, was inaugurated in June 1996 to recognize and pay tribute to those individuals who have made significant contributions to the advancement of Carleton through their dedication, generosity, and commitment to the values of the university. It is awarded annually, when merited, at Spring Convocation.

View past recipients


The Advancement and University Relations Committee of the Board of Governors will administer the Founders Award. Any recommendations regarding the Founders Award will be brought forward to the Board of Governors by the Chair of the Advancement and University Relations Committee for approval.

Qualification Criteria

  • Exemplary leadership, dedication and commitment to Carleton University.
  • Service demonstrated through active, involvement in and contributions to the community.
  • A record of exceptional commitment that inspires others to engage in service.
  • Generosity through philanthropy or volunteerism.
  • The recipient cannot be a current Board member.

All nominations will be considered each year for a maximum of three years.


Sept. 13, 2023: Advancement and University Relations Committee appoints the jury.

Nov. 27, 2023: Board Office issues a Call for Nominations through various internal and external media.

March 22, 2024: Deadline for receipt of nominations.

April 2024: Jury to review applicants and identify a successful nominee.

April 22, 2024: Advancement and University Relations Committee receives the Jury’s recommendation.

April 29, 2024: Board of Governors receives a report from Advancement and University Relations Committee on the recommended recipient.

June/Nov. 2024: Presentation of Award at Convocation and feature news story.

Application Requirements

  • Application Form
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Nominee’s CV
  • Summary of Contributions

Composition of the Founders Award Jury

  • Chair or Vice-Chair or designate of the Board of Governors, as Chair of the Jury
  • President, Alumni Association
  • Chief Advancement Officer
  • One BoG Faculty Representative
  • One BoG Staff Representative
  • One BoG Student Representative
  • One BoG Alumni Representative

Nomination deadline was March 22, 2024.

Additional supporting documentation may be sent to:
Carleton University Founders Award Committee
c/o Department of the University Secretariat
Carleton University
607 Pigiarvik (ᐱᒋᐊᕐᕕᒃ) – formerly Robertson Hall
1125 Colonel By Drive
Ottawa, ON K1S 5B6 Canada


For more information regarding the award or the application process, please contact Amanda Goth, University Secretary at or 613-520-2600 ext. 2386.