Former Deputy Health Minister to Speak at Last Lecture

March 31, 2008 - News Release

Jeff Lozon, one of Canada's most influential health-care administrators, will be among the speakers at the seventh annual Last Lecture for graduating students April 3 at 6 p.m. at the University of Guelph's War Memorial Hall.

The event gives members of the class of 2008 the opportunity to come together to reflect on their experiences and achievements during their time at the University and features talks by a U of G graduate, a faculty member and a graduating student.

The theme of this year's Last Lecture is "Changing Lives, Improving Life." In addition to Lozon, the speakers are bachelor of arts and science student Holly Shrumm and School of Environmental Design and Rural Development director Maurice Nelischer.

Lozon, a U of G graduate and member of Board of Governors, is known for positioning Canadian health care on the international stage. He served as the deputy ministry of health and long-term care for Ontario from 1999 to 2000 and is currently president and chief executive officer of St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto.

Lozon was also recently appointed by the prime minister as the inaugural chair of the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer, a national agency devoted to improving cancer control across Canada.

"We are excited to have Jeff Lozon because he truly fits with this year's theme," said Jennifer Maddock, leadership education and development adviser in Student Life. "He has helped change lives and improve life not only throughout his career but also through his civic engagement in a number of health-related initiatives. He is an example of a U of G graduate who has taken the culture of community here at the University and translated it into the way he lives his own life."

Shrumm has been an active volunteer with Interhall Council, Meal Exchange and a number of local social justice organizations during her time at U of G. She has also served as the co-ordinator of Student Volunteer Connections and initiated the first annual Positive Social Action Conference on campus.

"The Last Lecture is not just about reflecting on our individual and collective experiences at Guelph but also about looking ahead to the future and being confident about our own abilities to make that big jump into the 'real world'," said Shrumm.

Nominated by students to speak at this event, Nelischer has been active in educating the University community about the amount of pollution that is produced daily, even in less obvious places like campus, and encouraging individuals to recognize ways of reducing their own carbon footprint. He is also focused on community design and the facilitation of public input in the decision-making process.

"There is enormous value in graduates taking time to reflect on their time at Guelph," said Nelischer. "Not what have you learned but how have you changed -- or better still, how have you learned to change."

For media questions, contact Communications and Public Affairs: Lori Bona Hunt, 519-824-4120, Ext. 53338,, or Deirdre Healey, Ext. 56982,

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