Carleton University today conferred a Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, on Robert Wyatt in recognition of his thoughtful leadership in philanthropic innovation and careful custodianship of volunteer agencies.
Wyatt was honoured on the first day of Carleton’s Spring Convocation, where approximately 3,580 students are receiving their degrees over four days of ceremonies.
“We live in a society, not an economy; values are more important than value,” said Wyatt. “You have the chance to change the world – do it – in a society and reflecting the values for which you will want to be remembered.”
Wyatt joined The Muttart Foundation as its executive director in 1989 after a career in journalism, public relations and government relations. For more than 20 years, he has worked on issues related to regulating charities, initiating processes for problem-solving techniques to resolve issues of concern to the sector and governments.
He has served as co-chair of the Joint Regulatory Table, a part of the unique Voluntary Sector Initiative created by the federal government.
Under Wyatt’s executive directorship, The Muttart Foundation became the first non-American foundation to be named an Association of Fundraising Professionals Outstanding Foundation.
He has served on the boards of numerous organizations, including Philanthropic Foundations Canada and Imagine Canada. Wyatt is a co-editor of a recently released book examining charity regulation in five common-law countries.
Wyatt has been recognized with the Alberta Centennial Medal and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal.
“As the president of a national voluntary organization told me: ‘Whether you think the sky is falling, the rug is being pulled out from under you, or the opportunity of the century is before you, you call Bob. He will always listen and help you reframe the issue,’” said Susan Phillips, professor in the School of Public Policy and Administration.
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