Honorary degree citation - Leo Goldfarb* (Posthumous)
By: Clarence Bayne, June 2005
Mr. Chancellor, I have the honour to present to you Mrs. Shirley Goldfarb representing the late Leo Goldfarb, successful businessman, philanthropist, dedicated volunteer and courageous fighter of cancer.
Leo Goldfarb's contribution to the Montreal community and to society was nothing less than extraordinary. He was President of Ringold Enterprises, a company that he founded. He was a former President of Place Bonaventure in Montreal as well as Executive Vice-president and Senior Operating Officer of Trizec Corporation. But, it is as a volunteer and a philanthropist that he contributed the most.
His involvement with the Sir Mortimer B. Davis-Jewish General Hospital and Corporation is indicative of a substantial and long-term commitment to health care and community. He served as President of the Hospital, President of the Corporation, President of the Foundation, Chairman of the Audit Committee and Chairman of the Budget Control Committee.
Pour couronner son leadership remarquable et son dévouement passionné, il a reçu en 1997 la médaille de service méritoire exceptionnel de l'Hôpital général juif Sir Mortimer-B.-Davis, créée pour récompenser et honorer les personnalités extraordinaires qui ont eu une influence profonde sur le développement de l'hôpital.
In presenting the award, Leonard Ellen said: "Through the leadership roles he has undertaken at the Jewish General Hospital, Leo has been an influential voice in shaping the hospital's vision."
Tout au long de sa vie, Monsieur Goldfarb a été un bénévole assidu, militant en faveur des soins de santé, de l'éducation et de la culture.
Among his many roles as citizen of Montreal, he was a governor of this university, and he dedicated much of his time to ProCure Alliance and to the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. He brought his prodigious energies and empathy to the service of the sick of our city, earning the admiration and affection of many in this community.
A U.S. congressional representative and pastor, Walter Fauntroy, once spoke the following words of inspiration: "The past is yours, learn from it. The present is yours, fulfill it. The future is yours, preserve it. Knowledge is yours, use it. Cancer is yours, cure it. Racism is yours, end it .... Do not be blinded by prejudice, disheartened by the times, or discouraged by the system. Do not let anything paralyze your mind, tie your hands, or defeat your spirit. Take the world - not to change it, but to enrich it - take the dream and inherit the earth." He could have been writing the script for the remarkable life of Leo Goldfarb.
Mr. Chancellor, on behalf of the Senate and the Board of Governors, it is my privilege and an honour to present Mrs. Shirley Goldfarb, wife of Leo Goldfarb, so that you may confer upon Leo Goldfarb posthumously the degree of Doctor of Laws Honoris Causa.