Gala 2023

Awards of Excellence 2023

A proud Alumni Association tradition, the Awards of Excellence honour those who’ve distinguished themselves in different places and at different stages of their career, all for the betterment of society.  

Meet our winners

Every year, we gather as a uOttawa community to celebrate our outstanding alumni. With awards recognizing alumni achievement, our alumnus or alumna of the year, commitment to the University, an exceptional young alumni and community service, our annual awards ceremony is an inspiring affair. Here are the 2023 winners:  

Ian Telfer

Meritas Tabaret Award for Alumni Achievement - Ian Telfer (MBA'76, DU'15)

An astute business figure and visionary entrepreneur, Ian Telfer (MBA ’76, honorary doctorate ’15) has founded, led and scaled some of the world’s most prominent mining and resource companies. His professional accomplishments and philanthropic support of uOttawa and the School of Management have made him stand out as one of the University’s greatest ambassadors. 

Michelle Obonsawin

Alumna of the Year Award — Hon. Michelle O'Bonsawin (LLB'98, PhD'22)

The Hon. Michelle O'Bonsawin (LLB ’98, PhD ’22)  has dedicated her distinguished career to making progress in law, as it pertains to several areas, including mental health, the Gladue principles and human rights. In 2022, Justice O’Bonsawin became the first Indigenous person to be appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada.

Duane Green

Award for Commitment to the University — Duane Green (BSocSc'94)

Award-winning financial services leader, philanthropist and uOttawa alumnus — these are three titles that Duane Green (BSocSc ’94) wears with pride. Green currently serves as president and CEO of Franklin Templeton Canada and Fiduciary Trust Canada. An active contributor to the uOttawa community, he has spoken with hundreds of students and alumni interested in pursuing a career in economics. 

 Myrtha Lapierre 2

Award for Community Service - Myrtha Lapierre (BScN'61, MEd'75)

As a pioneer, nurse and woman dedicated to supporting immigrants seeking to work in health care, Myrtha Lapierre (BScN'61, MEd'75) is an inspiration who has garnered a well-deserved reputation. For over 50 years, she has helped over a thousand Francophone immigrants succeed in the province’s educational and health care systems, thereby helping them to become compassionate, productive members of society. In 2018, in recognition of her volunteer work, she was awarded the province’s most prestigious honour: the Order of Ontario. 

Mathieu Gamache-Asselin1

Young Alumni Award - Mattieu Gamache-Asselin (BASc'12)

Software engineer-turned-entrepreneur Mattieu Gamache-Asselin ​(BASc ’12) is revolutionizing the way doctors and patients prescribe and receive medication. His digital health startup lets people access lower cost, same-day medication, and does so in a way that’s more efficient and seamless for all involved. In 2022, his company surpassed the $1 billion revenue mark. 

Sibel Aydin1

Honorary Member of the Alumni Association - Sibel Aydin

A professor of medicine and rheumatology at uOttawa, Dr. Sibel Aydin built the University’s research program in inflammatory arthritis from the ground up. In addition to her research interests, Dr. Aydin supervises doctoral- and master’s-level trainees and has helped recruit national and international talent to the Faculty of Medicine by creating several fellowship programs. 

Mélanye Boissonnault

Mélanye Boissonnault (BEd ’98)

Mélanye Boissonnault studied journalism at Université Laval and holds a Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Ottawa. On joining Radio-Canada, she worked as a cultural reporter, first in Toronto and then in Montreal. She now hosts Les matins d’ici, the number one morning radio show in the Ottawa-Gatineau region.

Jesse Jones

Jesse Jones (BA ’03; Gee Gees Men’s Basketball ’00-’02)

While Jesse Jones’ studied in communications at the University of Ottawa, he played basketball as a Gee-Gee for several years. Now, he is a creator, executive producer, host, speaker and head of Jones & Jones Group. He's also appeared as host of the inaugural season of Bachelor in Paradise Canada as well as co-hosting duties on Entertainment Tonight Canada.



Ryan Vis, Viola
Justin Azerrad, Violin
Ember-Leah Reed, Violin
Vinci Chen, Cello.

Vinci Chen playing the cello

Soloist: Vinci Chen, Cello

Vinci Chen began playing the cello at the age of 11. She completed two years of the Young Artist’s Collegiate Program at the Vancouver Academy of Music, learning under Prof. Joseph Elworthy, before joining the studio of Prof. Paul Marleyn for her studies at the University of Ottawa.

Throughout her university education, Vinci has played for guests such as Cameron Crozman, Johannes Moser, Colin Carr, Christopher Costanza, Yuri Hooker, and more. Outside of university, she participated in various summer musical programs, including the Gryphon Trio workshop at Orford Music Academy, the Cello program at Le Domaine Forget de Charlevoix, the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, and most recently, Prisma festival.

Vinci is currently enrolled in a Master of Music degree at the University of Ottawa.