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Honorary degree citation - Alan B. Gold*

By: P. André Gervais, November 1992

Mr. Vice-Chancellor, we honour Alan B. Gold for his distinguished and formidable contributions to law, labour relations, education, human rights, culture and society in Canada. His participation in, and support of, a wide range of social, cultural, judicial and economic activities have set an example of which he can be proud and which we and our children can look to as a role model.

Après l'obtention de son baccalauréat à l'Université Queen's à Kingston en 1938 ainsi que de sa licence en droit (cum laude) à l'Université de Montréal en 1941 et son admission au Barreau du Québec, Alan Gold a servi son pays dans l'Artillerie royale canadienne de 1942 à 1946. Ayant alors quitté l'armée et réintégré le droit, il a occupé au cours des années 50 divers postes au sein de l'Association du Jeune Barreau de Montréal, du Conseil du Barreau de Montréal et du Barreau des examinateurs du Barreau de la Province de Québec et a été l'un des directeurs et officiers fondateurs du Bureau de l'aide juridique de Montréal.

Alan Gold's judicial career includes many distinguished offices including Associate Chief Judge and Chief Judge of the Provincial Court of the Province of Québec; and President of the Judicial Council of the Province of Québec. In 1983, Alan Gold rose to the position of Chief Justice of the Superior Court of the Province of Québec, the highest judicial office in this province, where he served until this past July.

Throughout this period the 1960s, 70s and 80s, Alan Gold made important contributions to labour relations in Québec. He held the posts of Vice-Chairman of the Québec Labour Relations Board; of Chief Arbitrator between the Government of Québec and its employees; and of Chief Arbitrator between the Shipping Federation of Canada, the Maritime Employers Association and the International Longshoremen's Association for Montréal, Québec and Three Rivers. These positions and those held as Special Mediator in a wide range of public, para-public and private sector labour disputes earned Alan Gold the respect of businessmen, politicians and labour unionists.

Dans les domaines éducatif, culturel et social, les contributions d'Alan Gold ne sont pas moins remarquables. De 1957 à 1971, il a été professeur à la Faculté de droit de l'Université McGill qui a pu ainsi bénéficier de son savoir et de son expérience; il y est retourné comme juriste invité en 1982. A titre, d'une part, de membre du Bureau des gouverneurs, de président du Bureau des gouverneurs et de gouverneur émérite de l'Université McGill (1983) et, d'autre part, de chancelier de l'Université Concordia de 1987 à septembre 1992, cet homme d'une sagesse et d'une pondération exceptionnelles a prodigué des conseils judicieux durant de nombreuses années aux communautés de McGill et de Concordia. Sa prédilection pour les arts, notamment la musique, l'a amené à assumer diverses responsabilités au sein des conseils d'administration de la Régie et de la Société de la Place des Arts, de la Société Pro Musica et du groupe I Musici de Montréal.

The list of honours given to him for all of these contributions is long and impressive: the Montréal Medal of Queen's University; the Médaille du Premier Ministre du Québec; the Bar of Québec Medal; the Médaille de l'Assemblée Nationale; the Médaille de l'Université de Montréal; the Human Relations Award of the Canadian Council of Christians and Jews; the Distinguished Bora Laskin Award; Officer of the Ordre nationale du Québec (Alan Gold is now President of the Conseil de l'Ordre). His academic honours are also numerous, with LL.D. (honoris causa) from the Université de Montréal, McGill University, Queen's University and Yeshiva University.

Judge Gold and I follow similar paths with respect to our appointments at the University, he as Chancellor and I as Chairman of the Board of Governors. We were both appointed in June 1987 and retired from those positions after more than five years on September 30, 1992. This has given me an opportunity to become very well acquainted with Alan Gold. I can say with assurance that his finest qualities go far beyond his numerous achievements and I took full advantage of that in seeking his counsel and advice on many occasions over the last five and a half years. Alan is a kind, sincere and caring man who always takes the time for a wise word and a warm handshake with everyone he meets. It is an honour and a pleasure to know him and to call him a friend.

Mr. Vice-Chancellor, it is a privilege to present to you, on behalf of the Senate, and by the authority of the Board of Governors, Alan B. Gold, that you may bestow upon him the title of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa).

* deceased

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