Duff Roblin Award Dinner

Thursday, September 29th, 2022 - RBC Winnipeg Convention Centre - York Room

                                          5:30 p.m. Reception / 6:30 p.m. Dinner 

After moving online for both 2020 and 2021, The University of Winnipeg and University of Winnipeg Foundation are pleased to announce the Duff Roblin Award Dinner will be held in-person on September 29th at the RBC Convention Centre Winnipeg.

Having taken place in one form or another since 2007, this highly-anticipated event has seen a whole host of incredible Manitobans recognized for their inspiring work—with each award recipient following the example set by our first award recipient, former Premier Duff Roblin. A dedicated public servant and patron of education, Duff Roblin worked tirelessly to improve the lives of his fellow Manitobans. Honouring his legacy by highlighting the individual achievements made in service of this province by those who have come after him is what makes this evening so special.

This year’s award recipient is Dr. Lloyd Axworthy, PC, CC, OM. A dedicated politician for the first half of his professional life, Dr. Axworthy entered the public sphere as an MLA for Fort Rouge in 1973. After serving for 6 years at the provincial level, he spent the remaining 21 years of his political career as a member of the Canadian Federal Parliament—during which he held several cabinet positions, including Minister of Employment and Immigration, Minister Responsible for the Status of Women, Minister of Transport, Minister of Human Resources Development, Minister of Western Economic Diversification and Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1996-2000. While serving under Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, he was nominated for the Nobel Peace prize for his steadfast commitment to the banning of landmines and assistance in establishing the International Criminal Court and Protocol on child soldiers.

As President of UWinnipeg, Dr. Axworthy helped transform and expand our campus, our programs, and further strengthen our ties to the surrounding community. The leading force behind the growth and renewal of our downtown campus, Dr. Axworthy’s vision was instrumental in creating a socially and environmentally sustainable campus with excellent academic programming and enduring communal ties. Through the “A World of Opportunity” capital campaign that took place from 2007 to 2011, the Richardson College for the Environment and Science Complex, McFeetors Hall and Great-West Life Student Residence, Bonnie and John Buhler Centre, and the Asper Centre for Theatre and Film were all added to UWinnipeg’s fast developing campus map. In addition to the capital projects he helped guide,

Dr. Axworthy also broadened the university’s community learning initiatives. UWinnipeg’s Pathways to Education efforts continue to help students from the surrounding neighborhoods succeed in their academic studies by providing social, educational, and financial programming designed to help them reach their potential. Dr. Axworthy’s involvement in expanding accessibility on our campus also encompasses the Opportunity Fund he inspired, a bursary designed to bridge the graduation gap for Indigenous students, new Canadians, refugees, and students from inner-city neighbourhoods with the goal of supporting a university-bound identity for everyone.

A storied politician and campus visionary, Dr. Axworthy has no doubt played a part in shaping our university, our province, and Canada on the world’s stage. As someone whose educational journey and professional career has seen him enter our halls as both a student, professor and President, Dr. Axworthy has become as a trusted community member and dedicated donor in the years since 2014. This year he will be joined by his wife and fellow UWinnipeg donor, Ms Denise Ommanney as the pair share in a fireside chat, led by acclaimed journalist and former nightly news anchor, Peter Mansbridge.

Proceeds from the 2022 Duff Roblin Award Dinner will benefit the Duff Roblin Scholars Fund, Wii Chiiwaakanak Learning Centre and the Opportunity Fund.

Click here to purchase individual tickets and/or a table of ten. 

If you would prefer to make your purchase over the phone or are interested in sponsoring the dinner please call 204-415-2472. For more information, click here.

The Duff Roblin Scholars Fund

Duff Roblin Tribute Video

Duff Roblin Dinner Photo Gallery

About The Honourable Duff Roblin PC, CC, OM, LLD, DCL (1917 – 2010)

Born and raised in Manitoba, The Honourable Duff Roblin was a revered citizen admired by his community. In 1954, Roblin was chosen as leader of the provincial Progressive Conservative Party. Following victory in the 1958 election, Roblin served as Premier of the Province for nine years until 1967. After retiring from provincial politics, he was appointed to the Senate in 1978, later serving as Senate Leader from 1984 to 1986. He remained an active member until 1992. The University of Winnipeg, McGill University, and the University of Manitoba awarded Honorary Degrees to Roblin. He also received a Doctorate of Canon Law from St. John’s College.

Roblin was a visionary leader who advocated for education as the path to a brighter future for all citizens of our province. In addition to overseeing the granting of The University of Winnipeg Charter in 1967, his contributions to education included restoring of the use of French in Manitoba schools and increasing the accessibility of post-secondary studies for Manitobans.

Established by The University of Winnipeg and its Foundation in 2007, the Duff Roblin Award recognizes outstanding Manitobans who, like inaugural recipient The Honourable Duff Roblin, are patrons of education and have demonstrated exemplary citizenship and lifelong commitment to their communities.

Meet the Past recipients of the Duff Roblin Award

Student Thank You Video

Since the Duff Roblin Dinner’s inception, guests and sponsors of the annual event have supported hundreds of students pursuing postsecondary education. The video below is their message of gratitude.