Annual Report 2005-2006


Having celebrated its 30th anniversary, the James McGill Society looks forward to another successful year as a forum for meeting people and exchanging information and ideas about McGill University and its history.

The Executive Committee has put together what we are confident will be an interesting program, covering a wide range of topics. I have accepted an invitation to continue my saga of the Principals of the 1970-2002 era, as part of my work on v. III of the history of McGill.

Proposed Meetings for 2006-2007

  • 134th Meeting, September 25, 2006

    Professor Peter F. McNally on “The Shapiro Years: Dr. Bernard Shapiro 15th Principal and Vice-Chancellor, 1994-2002."

  • 135th Meeting, November 13, 2005

    John Hobbins "Presidential Address

  • 136th Meeting, February 12, 2007

    Dr. Stanley Frost will present “James McGill Revisited.”

  • 137th Meeting, April, 2007

    Honora Shaughnessy will present the Annual Maysie Macsporran Lecture on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the McGill Alumni Association.

Last year, four speakers gave presentations on topics of great interest:

130th Meeting, Monday, September 20, 2005

Professor Peter F. McNally, “A Commitment to Excellence: David L. Johnston, 14th Principal and Vice-chancellor, 1979-1994." (Faculty Club).

  • 131st Meeting, Monday, November 14, 2005

    Chris Milligan and Wes Cross. “Sacrifice and Commemoration: McGill Remembers World War II." (School of Architecture).

  • 132nd Meeting, February 6, 2006

    Jarrett Rudy. “Going up in Smoke: McGill and Tobacco." (Faculty Club).

  • 133rd Meeting, April 24, 2006

    Deborah Buszard. “Macdonald College: a Tale of Revolution and Evolution.” The Annual Maysie MacSporran Lecture

    Presidential Address and Maysie MacSporran Lecture. (Faculty Club).

Red Horizontal Rule GIF (1K)

Membership and attendance remain major concerns of the Society. The response has been positive to the new web sites: James McGill Society, and the History of McGill Project.

In addition, the Executive Committee is considering a number of new initiatives to bring the Society’s work to the attention of a broader community. Suggestions and advice from the membership in this regard are always appreciated, as are suggestions for future presentations.

A number of important centennials in McGill’s history are occurring this year: the establishment of McGill University College in Vancouver – the predecessor of the University of British Columbia; the opening of the Student Union in what is now the McCord Museum; and establishment of the School of Commerce. In 2007, the 100th anniversary of the opening of Macdonald College will take place.

Our Past-President, Ms. Johanne Pelletier, is now Secretary-General of the University. At Spring Convocation, she received an M.A. in Communications Studies. We wish a speedy recovery from his recent illness to Dr. William Feindel, a past president of the Society.

The Society welcomed members of other societies to our meetings: the McGill 1821 Society to the September meeting on Principal Johnston; and the Alumni Association to the February meeting on tobacco. We are pleased to report that the project initiated by Professor Milligan and Mr. Cross, commemorating McGill and World War II, is moving forward.

As always, appreciation must be expressed for the support of members and friends in ensuring the continued success of the James McGill Society in its endeavours on behalf of the University’s historical heritage and institutional memory. Dr. Stanley Frost remains a beacon of inspiration to us all. Susan Button’s efforts ensure that the wheels continue turning in the right direction. Mr. John Hobbins’s effective leadership is greatly appreciated.

With your support, we look forward to another interesting and successful year.

Respectfully submitted,

Peter F. McNally
Executive Secretary