Carleton University’s School of Public Policy and Administration (SPPA) is pleased to announce that Ann Dale is the 2009 recipient of its alumni award for distinctive contributions to the public sector.

This award is named after James (Joe) Bissett who, in 1956, became one of the first students to graduate from Carleton University with a master of arts in public administration. He went on to a long and distinguished career in public service in both Canadian and international contexts.

In granting the award, the director of SPPA, Susan Phillips, said: “During her 23 years in the federal public service, Ann Dale has made enormous contributions to the public sector which makes her an obvious choice for this year’s award. We are very proud of this Carleton alumna.”

Dr. Dale is Canada research chair in sustainable community development and professor of environment and sustainability at Royal Roads University. She graduated from Carleton with a masters degree in public administration (directed studies in environmental policy) in 1994 and a BA (psychology) in 1973. She was president of the Carleton University Students’ Association from 1972 to ‘73.

Dr. Dale has spent over three decades exploring the complexities of sustainable community development. Her book, At the Edge: Sustainable Development in the 21st Century, received the 2001 Policy Research Initiative Award for outstanding research contribution to public policy. Her latest publication for UBC Press, A Dynamic Balance: Social Capital and Sustainable Community Development, co-edited by Jenny Onyx, provides a compendium of academic research in sustainability and explores the concept of social capital as an important sustainability resource.

Dr. Dale has contributed to several critical policy issues affecting Canadian society. She was considered a leader in the implementation of the Government’s Regulatory Agenda Program in the 1980s and the streamlining of reporting requirements for industry. While at the Privy Council Office, she developed a strategy to help revitalize senior management. In 1987, she was instrumental in working with the Deputy Minister in the creation of the first federal government department outside of Ottawa-the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency. Her last assignment, before leaving the Federal Government, was the creation of the National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy (NRTEE) in 1987. As one of the two civil service architects behind its creation, she became one of this country’s foremost experts in multi-stakeholder processes. As one result of her work with the NRTEE, she created and continues to lead the Canadian Consortium for Sustainable Development Research.

Dr. Dale is also known for her leadership in the environmental community and her efforts to build greater capacity, especially through the creation of National Environmental Treasure. She was named a research fellow by the Trudeau Foundation in 2004 and a fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science in 2003.

In 2008, Carleton’s School of Public Policy and Administration was ranked number one in Canada by Corporate Knights magazine for its curriculum and research in environmental and social sustainability. “We are proud to have alumni like Ann Dale who put its work into practice,” says Dr. Phillips.