Faculty, students, staff and friends of the University of Manitoba are invited to the official naming and dedication of
William Norrie Centre.
The new educational facility on Selkirk Avenue in Winnipeg’s North End will be officially named and dedicated in honour of William Norrie, the university's twelfth Chancellor and the longest-serving mayor of Winnipeg (1979-1992).
The dedication will take place Friday, 21 October 2005, at 1:00 p.m. at 485 Selkirk Avenue.
William Norrie Centre — home to the University of Manitoba's Inner City Social Work ACCESS Program and the University of Winnipeg's Bachelor of Education ACCESS Program — is contributing to community revitalization efforts already taking place in the historic neighbourhood.
The William Norrie Centre at 485 Selkirk Avenue provides space consistent with the needs of adult learners for two degree programs for students who have not traditionally considered post-secondary education: an education degree, through the Faculty of Education at the University of Winnipeg, and a social work degree, offered through the Faculty of Social Work at the University of Manitoba.
Born in St. Boniface in 1929, William Norrie attended schools in Winnipeg and entered United College at the University of Manitoba on an Isbister Scholarship. On completion of his Bachelor of Arts in 1950, he entered the University of Manitoba Law School where he served as President of the University of Manitoba Students' Union.
In 1953 he won the Manitoba Rhodes Scholarship. Upon his return from Oxford, he received his Bachelor of Laws degree in 1955 and entered the private practice of law, eventually rising to a senior partner.
In 1962 he began a long career in public service with his election to the Winnipeg School Board, serving as Chairman from 1965-71. In 1971 he was elected to city council, and elected as Deputy Mayor in 1977. He was elected Mayor in 1979, winning re-election four times and serving until 1992.
During his tenure as Mayor, the Core Area Initiative was negotiated resulting in the redevelopment of the Forks and North Portage and providing funding for inner city employment, housing and neighbourhood revitalization. He has been active with many organizations throughout his life including key roles with health, ethnic, arts, sport, education, philanthropic and community groups.
He served 24 years on the Board of Regents of the University of Winnipeg including a term as Chairman. Among his many honours are membership in the Order of Canada and the Order of Manitoba, Honourary Knight Commander of the Order of Rizal, Officer of the Military and Hospitalier Order of St Lazarus of Jerusalem, honorary degrees from the universities of Manitoba and Winnipeg, and the B'Nai Brith Humanitarian Award.
He has served as the twelfth Chancellor of the University of Manitoba since taking office in 2001.