Donald A. MacPherson, BA 82
Member of the Order of Canada
“For his long-time advocacy of harm reduction and evidence-based approaches to drug policy reform.”
Donald MacPherson is an acclaimed human-rights advocate and one of Canada’s leading figures in drug policy.
For more than three decades, he has advocated for renewed local, national and international drug policies that are based on principles of public health, scientific evidence and social inclusion.
In 2000, MacPherson became the City of Vancouver’s drug policy coordinator, the first position of its kind in North America. Since 2020, he has served as chair of the Amsterdam-based International Drug Policy Consortium.
The Faculty of Arts and Science graduate is additionally the founding executive director of the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition, a non-partisan, policy advocacy group comprised of more than 50 organizations.
Among MacPherson’s awards are the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal (2013) and the Kaiser Foundation National Award of Excellence in Public Policy in Canada (2007). He is currently an adjunct professor in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University.