Carleton is mourning the passing of the Honourable Gordon Robertson, P.C., C.C., LL.D., F.R.S.C, D.C.L., who served the university as its fifth Chancellor between 1980 and 1990.

“Gordon Robertson was a remarkable man whose dedication to Carleton University was boundless,” said Carleton President Roseann O’Reilly Runte. “He served as our Chancellor throughout the 1980s, providing skilful leadership and outstanding contributions to the advancement of the university. A building on campus and a national Inuit scholarship carry his name and he will be remembered with the greatest admiration and respect. We offer our most heartfelt condolences to his family, friends and our nation. We have lost a great leader.’’

Gordon Robertson had a long and distinguished career in the Canadian federal government after entering the public service in 1941. He was Clerk of the Privy Council, Commissioner of the Northwest Territories and Secretary to the Cabinet. In 1970, he won the Vanier Medal of the Institute of Public Administration of Canada, and in 1976 he was made a Companion of the Order of Canada. He retired from the public service in 1979, after 38 years of service. He later recounted his career as a senior public servant under several different administrations in the 2000 book Memoirs of a Very Civil Servant.

In a statement, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Robertson was “one of the most influential public servants of his day.”

“Mr. Robertson will be remembered as a great Canadian and a devoted public servant,” said Harper.

He served on the Board of Governors at Carleton from 1962 to 1971. He established the Gordon Robertson National Inuit Scholarship with the aim of encouraging higher rates of post-secondary completion for Inuit students. In 1992, he was appointed Chancellor Emeritus by the university. Robertson Hall, Carleton’s administrative building, is named in honour of his admirable leadership to the Carleton community.

The funeral will take place at MacKay United Church, 39 Dufferin Road, Ottawa at 1:30 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 21, 2013.


For more information:
Chris Cline
Media Relations Co-ordinator
Carleton University
613-520-2600, ext. 1391

Thursday, January 17, 2013 in
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