Cape Breton University to Confer Honorary Degrees on Four Extraordinary Individuals

On Thursday, May 18, and Friday, May 19, during three separate spring convocation ceremonies, Cape Breton University will confer honorary doctorates on four individuals who have made a significant impact in their field and whose commitment to their community will leave a positive impact for generations to come. CBU will confer honorary degrees on Ms. Andrea Rosen, Mr. Jack Graham, K.C., Mr. Stephen Muise and Dr. Phil Smith over the course of two days during CBU’s largest convocation ceremonies in its history.

“CBU’s Honorary Degree recipients for the Spring 2023 convocation ceremonies are resilient, tenacious and dedicated to their professions and their community. We are thrilled to be able to recognize their hard work and welcome them into our honorary degree family,” says President & Vice-Chancellor David C. Dingwall. “From advocacy for equity and equality in the workforce to commitment to healthcare and community wellbeing, to dedication to sport, recreation and the arts to creating change through law and policy, our new honorary degree recipients are deserving and making real change through their respective work.”

Ms. Andrea Rosen earned her joint MBA and Law Degree from York University. After graduation, she entered the male-dominated world of finance and banking – often as one of the only women in the room. Ms. Rosen rose through the ranks of both CIBC Wood Gundy and TD and was Vice Chair of TD Bank Financial Group and President of TD Canada Trust. Ms. Rosen has held many Chair and Director positions throughout her career and has spent her time advocating for equity and equality for women in the workforce. She has been a mentor and role model for many young women throughout her career.

Mr. Jack Graham is Chair of the Board of Directors and a Senior Partner in the 220 lawyer firm, McInnes Cooper.  Jack has been recognized as a leading Canadian labour and employment lawyer by Best Lawyers in Canada, Chambers Global and Lexpert.  He has also served as President of the Canadian Association of Counsel to Employers, which is the National Association of management side labour and employment lawyers.  He is known for having outstanding strategic abilities and over the past 34 years, he has represented clients in some of the most complex public and private sector labour matters throughout Atlantic Canada.

In addition to his achievements in the practice of law, Jack has been extensively involved in the sport of tennis locally, nationally and internationally.  He served as Chair of the Board of Tennis Canada from 2006 until 2009 and is widely regarded as one of the key architects of the success of Canadian tennis over the past fifteen years.  In 2009, Jack became the first Canadian ever elected to the Board of Directors of the International Tennis Federation (ITF), which is the world governing body of tennis.  He has since been re-elected on four occasions and is currently the longest serving member of that prestigious Board.  Since joining the ITF Board, Jack has led major governance reforms and has played a leading role in transforming the ITF’s signature competitions and global sport integrity systems.

Mr. Stephen Muise has been a full-time educator for over 25 years and holds degrees in both music and education, with a Master of Education Administration. In January 2017, Stephen accepted the role of Conductor for the world-famous Men of the Deeps, North America’s only coal miners’ chorus. Stephen strives to connect the world of professional entertainment to his students, providing unlikely opportunities by pairing them with performing artists. In recognition of his many collaborations, in December 2022, Stephen was the recipient of the Canadian Band Association Community Builders Award, a national honour for his community work with students and professional musicians.

Dr. Philip Michael Smith was born and raised in Halifax and is a graduate of Dalhousie University with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and a Doctor of Medicine. He has served on a variety of boards, including the president of Nova Scotia General Surgeons, the Executive Board of the Canadian Association of General Surgeons, the Board of Directors for Doctors Nova Scotia, Rural Specialist. He has a fellowship from The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in General Surgery and has been a strong advocate for timely patient care. Dr. Smith has been a long-serving member of the Royal College Examination Board. He has led such fundraising initiatives as the Northern Yacht Club Junior Sail Program and the Sail Able Program and co-chaired the $5.5 campaign for the development of the radiation wing of the Cape Breton Regional Cancer Centre.

Cape Breton University has been awarding honorary degrees since 1989, and during that time, has welcomed people from around the world in numerous sectors into the Alumni family.

The Spring 2023 convocation will be celebrated at C200 Sydney due to construction taking place at the Canada Games Complex on the CBU campus. The convocation ceremony will be live-streamed at on Thursday, May 18 at 10:00 am and 2:00 pm and Friday, May 19 at 10:00 am.