Gerald Butts, Peter Coughlin, Samuel Minzberg join McGill’s Board of Governors

Published: 27 January 2011

Stuart H. (Kip) Cobbett, Chair of McGill University’s Board of Governors, is pleased to announce the appointment of Gerald Butts, Peter Coughlin and Samuel Minzberg as members of the Board, effective Jan. 1, 2011.

“Our three new members bring with them a range of expertise that will be of considerable value to the Board in overseeing the affairs of the University,” Cobbett said.

Gerald Butts is President and CEO of WWF-Canada, one of the country’s largest conservation organizations. WWF is a national charity, with 125 people working in seven offices across Canada. As a leader within WWF’s global network, WWF Canada contributes to global efforts to conserve the Arctic, catalyze a transformation in the seafood industry and conserve biodiversity around the world.

Prior to joining WWF, Mr. Butts was Principal Secretary to Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty where he worked directly with the premier, cabinet and public service to develop, implement and communicate the government’s agenda. He was intimately involved in all of the government’s significant environmental initiatives, from the Greenbelt and Boreal Forest Conservation Plan to the coal replacement strategy and green economy initiatives.

Mr. Butts is a director of the Trudeau Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies at the Munk School of Global Affairs. He holds an Honours BA and MA from McGill and has taught Literature, Communications and Political Science at McGill and York universities.

Peter Coughlin is the co-founder of Redbourne Properties Inc., a Montreal-based real estate and investment company formed in 1995. Prior to forming Redbourne, Mr. Coughlin was President of Claridge Properties Inc., the real estate holding company for the Charles R. Bronfman family.

Mr. Coughlin holds a BComm from Carleton University and an MBA from the University of Western Ontario. He is the former Chair of the Board of Lower Canada College and is currently Chair of the Montreal General Hospital Foundation.

Samuel Minzberg, a McGill graduate, is a partner with Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP, and a member of that law firm's Management Committee. Mr. Minzberg served as a sessional lecturer in taxation at McGill. He is Chairman of the Board of Directors of HSBC Bank Canada, a Director of HSBC North America Holdings Inc. and of HSBC Finance Corporation. He is also a Director of Reitmans (Canada) Limited, Quebecor Media Inc. and Richmont Mines Inc.

Mr. Minzberg is a Director and past President of the Sir Mortimer B. Davis – Jewish General Hospital Centre Board, and a past Chairman of the Jewish General Hospital Foundation.

The Board of Governors is the University’s highest governing body.  It is composed of 25 voting members, including members at large, student, staff and faculty representatives, and two observers. It generally meets six times per year.


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