2017 Distinguished Service Award Recipients


CCAE is very pleased to announce the recipients of Distinguished Service Awards for 2017.

2017 CCAE Friend of Education Award

Lynton Wilson

Supported by Offord Group


For his exceptional personal leadership in strengthening Canada’s education sector, Lynton (Red) Wilson has been selected to receive the 2017 CCAE Friend of Education Award, supported by Offord Group.

Throughout his extensive career as a Canadian public servant, business executive and philanthropist, Red Wilson has fostered a love for education as the ideal route to develop outstanding leaders and an engaged citizenry The Wilson Foundation that he founded has donated nearly $30 million to worthy causes in Canada.

He has shown particular generosity and devotion to his alma mater, McMaster University, which he served as its 17th Chancellor from 2007 to 2013.

Red Wilson has donated over $18 million to McMaster - including a $10 million gift to the liberal arts. He endowed the L. R. Wilson Institute for Canadian History; the L.R. Wilson Chair in Canadian History; and the Wilson Leadership Scholar Awards program, which provides mentorship and experiential learning along with a $50,000 prize. And he chaired the Changing Tomorrow Today Campaign, which exceeded its goal by 27 percent.

Dr. Wilson demonstrated his commitment to ensuring Canadians have a deeper understanding of their history, and its importance in shaping their future, by co-founding the Historica Foundation of Canada in 1999.

Along with Richard J. Currie, Chancellor of the University of New Brunswick, Red Wilson established the $3 million L.R. Wilson/R.J. Currie Chair in Canadian Business History at the University of Toronto’s Joseph L. Rotman School of Management. He established the LR. Wilson Chair in Information Technology and E-commerce Law at the Université de Montréal.

His career has moved across both public-service and corporate roles. He began as a foreign service officer in the Canadian Public Service. He was vice president and director for MacMillan Bloedel Enterprises Inc. In 1977, Red Wilson joined the Government of Ontario as executive director of policy & priorities, and then deputy minister, for the Ministry of Industry & Tourism.

Dr. Wilson was president and chief executive officer of Redpath Industries Ltd. He served as managing director, North America for Tate & Lyle PLC, a British-based agribusiness. In 1990 he joined BCE Inc., serving for a decade as president, chief executive officer and ultimately, chairman.

Seven honorary degrees are among Red Wilson’s extensive honours, which include appointment as an Officer of the Order of Canada; a Companion of the Order of the Business Hall of Fame; and recipient of the Vanier Medal from the Institute of Public Administration of Canada.

Dr. Wilson has served as a director on more than 50 corporate boards, chairing more than a dozen; and served on arts- and health-related boards; among them, the Board of Governors of McGill University.

As Richard J. Currie stated: “Red Wilson is the quintessential student, teacher, mentor and leader. And he is truly a tremendous friend to education.”

CCAE extends congratulations and the education sector’s gratitude to Lynton Wilson, the 2017 CCAE Friend of Education.


Recipient's Remarks


2017 CCAE Outstanding Achievement Award

Marc L. Weinstein
Vice-Principal, University Advancement, McGill University

Supported by Manulife


Praised as one of the most open and collegial leaders in Canadian advancement, Marc Weinstein has made major contributions to Canada’s advancement profession that earn him recognition as recipient of the 2017 CCAE Outstanding Achievement Award.

As Vice-Principal, University Advancement at McGill University since 2008, Marc manages an integrated advancement team in Development, Alumni Relations and Communications. McGill raises over $100 million per year in private support from individuals, corporations and foundations.

Marc spearheaded McGill’s 9-year comprehensive campaign, completed in 2013, that raised over $1.026 billion. “More than 95,600 individuals from 115 countries, including some 50,000 first-time donors, made a philanthropic gift to the University over the course of the Campaign,” wrote The Honourable Michael A. Meighen, McGill’s Chancellor. “His passion for McGill – his alma mater – motivates all that Marc does.”

Noted Chancellor Meighen: “Marc has increased the University’s average annual philanthropic revenues by almost 50% over his eleven-year tenure at McGill. A consummate advancement professional, Marc never misses a chance to pursue a philanthropic opportunity. I am sure that if someone were to tell him that a donor in Antarctica was interested in making a gift, he would reply ‘I’ll be there’ and book a seat on the next available flight.”

In his roles as Vice-President of Development and General Counsel for the McGill University Health Centre Foundation (2000-2005) and Foundation Director and General Counsel and Director of the Capital Campaign for Sir Mortimer B. Davis-Jewish General Hospital Foundation (1997 - 2000), Marc employed both fundraising skills and the knowledge gained through his LL.B and a B.C.L. (Bachelor of Civil Law) from McGill. He also holds a B.A. in History from McGill and M.A. in Art History from York University.

Marc helped create the Advancement Leadership Forum to foster a spirit of community and excellence among Canada’s top post-secondary institutions. He has worked with other senior advancement colleagues and the MasterCard Foundation to bring the MasterCard Scholars program to Canada.

As well as being an active member of CCAE, Marc is a member of CASE and the Conference Board of Canada’s National Council of Fundraising Executives (NCOFE). He has presented dozens of acclaimed talks on philanthropy and fundraising. This year, he served as a faculty member for the 2017 CASE Conference in New York on “International Advancement: Global Strategies for Alumni Relations and Fundraising”. Marc has also volunteered his time and expertise as Co-Chair of the 2015 CCAE National Conference in Montreal and on the 2012 CASE Summit for Leaders in Advancement Advisory Team.

Said Mary Williams, Vice-President, University Advancement at McMaster University – and 2015 recipient of the CCAE Outstanding Achievement Award: “Marc is a progressive thinker who regularly develops rising stars in a competitive advancement environment. He gives his colleagues opportunities to excel and shine.”

For his advancement expertise, philanthropic ethos and collegiality, Marc Weinstein richly merits the 2017 CCAE Outstanding Achievement Award.


Recipient's Remarks


2017 CCAE Rising Star Award

Alexandra Farley, University of Waterloo


An “exceptional young leader” of great energy, determination and vision, Alexandra Farley is an enthusiastic champion of Advancement for the University of Waterloo. As Alumni Officer, Volunteer Engagement, her hard work and perseverance on the creation and implementation of a Volunteer Engagement Strategy is moving Waterloo forward to engage alumni across the globe. Alex has been named as a 2017 CCAE Rising Star.

Alex first got involved in Advancement in 2012, when she took on the role of Volunteer Coordinator for the Reunion program. Alex’s experience as a student leader made her extremely successful in building relationships with Waterloo students and providing a positive volunteer experience for them. She also learned about the crucial role advancement plays for the university. When the position of Program Coordinator opened in 2013, it was a natural fit.

As Program Coordinator, Alex created tools and processes to streamline advancement work. She supported every team member in this role and was always willing to help on projects.

Next, Alex moved into her current position of Alumni Officer, Volunteer Engagement. The program was in its infancy when Alex became responsible for it, and she has been instrumental in taking it from an idea to a full-fledged, robust program.

Alex shows outstanding dedication and commitment to alumni volunteers and to Waterloo’s overall volunteer program. One example of her accomplishments is the Volunteer Toolkit. Designed to be a “one-stop shop” for everything volunteers need to know, or may just be curious about, this comprehensive suite of information and tools is hosted both online and in printed format (in a slightly different version, the Volunteer Handbook).

Another example was her creation of a highly-detailed volunteer sign up form. Rather than simply ask for volunteers’ names and contact information, and randomly assign them tasks, this form includes insightful questions designed to match volunteers with roles that will give them a truly meaningful volunteer experience.

Alex previously served as the Advancement representative in the campus United Way campaign, and now sits on the campus-wide committee. She is currently completing a Volunteer Management Certificate at Conestoga College.

As a professional who has demonstrated her passion for education and the advancement of the alumni relationship, and her strategic impact on volunteer management, Alex truly merits the designation of 2017 CCAE Rising Star.



2017 CCAE Rising Star Award

Natasha Rego, University of New Brunswick


In her role as Young Alumni Coordinator with the University of New Brunswick's Associated Alumni Office, 2017 CCAE Rising Star Natasha Rego develops innovative programs that keep young alumni engaged with UNB.

Natasha has been instrumental in increasing UNB’s young-alumni engagement through the design, implementation and ongoing measurement of UNB's U35 Young Alumni Network.

In the past, the under-35 contingent of alumni was difficult to engage; fresh out of university, they were focused on building careers. Natasha designed a program that quickly built networks of active and involved young alumni in major centres across the country, and online U35 networks around the globe.

Natasha began her advancement career with the UNB Alumni Office in April 2014 as an intern from Nova Scotia Community College's Advanced Diploma in Public Relations. She chose to do her required internship at UNB Saint John. The campus was planning celebrations for its 50th anniversary, so Natasha quickly immersed in coordinating activities for the year-long events. At the end of her six-week internship in June, she was asked to continue with the office, where she created an innovative social media marketing campaign for the 50th that far exceeded expectations.

Natasha - who holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from UNB - has superb writing skills that caught the attention of colleague s in Communications. She became a key resource across both UNB campuses, writing profiles and articles for the Alumni News magazine.

In November 2014, Natasha accepted the new position of Young Alumni Coordinator. Since the official launch of U35 in 2015, Natasha has organized over 13 successful events across the country. She created a quarterly U35 e-newsletter that promotes U35 events; shares job tips, career and financial resources; and features stories and Q & A's from young alumni.

Her expertise in marketing and communications has been a valuable asset. Natasha has produced a Facebook page and social media plan focused on U35 graduates. She works with other advancement units to keep recent graduates engaged with UNB. Natasha has implemented grad class and young-alumni surveys and created an innovative campaign to obtain updated contact information from alumni. She has proven herself adept at integrating digital media and communications into all alumni engagement initiatives.

With her depth and breadth of skills and her unflagging attitude, Natasha Rego has earned the designation of 2017 CCAE Rising Star.



The CCAE Distinguished Service Awards

Nomination form Distinguished Service Awards Outstanding
Friend of

Distinguished Service Awards recognize the accomplishments of advancement professionals and friends of education, in three categories.

Deadline: Friday, March 2, 2018

Friend of Education Award

The Friend of Education Award, supported by Offord Group, recognizes outstanding service or commitment to post-secondary or independent school education by a volunteer, organization, foundation, corporation or publication. The recipient will have made a significant contribution in a leadership role to the cause of institutional advancement or education in Canada. This award is made possible by Offord Group.

The Offord Group

Back to top

Outstanding Achievement Award

The Outstanding Achievement Award, supported by Manulife, recognizes a current or recent CCAE member who has made extraordinary contributions to the field of educational advancement over a number of years. The recipient is recognized both for exemplifying the highest ideals of the advancement profession and for dedicated mentoring of others in the field. This award is made possible by Manulife.


Back to top

Rising Star Awards

Rising Star Awards are designated for professionals with three to five years’ experience in educational advancement who demonstrate achievements, accomplishments, early success and commitment in the advancement field. A $2,000 Presidents’ Scholarship is presented to each Rising Star and is used to support further professional development in the year following their receiving the award.

Back to top