Montreal Gazette - France names McGill grad to Légion d'Honneur


A McGill University graduate and the founder of several prominent Quebec environmental groups has been named to the Legion of Honour, France's oldest and most distinguished award. Hélène Connor has been selected by French President Nicolas Sarkozy as a knight of the order, in recognition of her four decades of work to protect the environment and promote sustainable energy.

Connor, a French economist, earned a doctorate at McGill in 1986, and founded the Société pour vaincre la pollution, the James Bay Defence Committee, the Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility, and the Centre d'analyse des politiques énergétiques. She also taught at the Université du Québec à Montréal, and was a member of Canada's first National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy.

Connor now lives in France, where she heads HELIO International, a non-profit think tank on energy issues that she also founded. The Légion d'Honneur was created by Napoléon Bonaparte in 1802 to honour outstanding individuals who have contributed to France and its ideals.