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1995: Doug Wilson Award established

Larger Version

In March 1995 the Doug Wilson award was established by Gays and Lesbians at the U of S (GLUS) to “honour those individuals who have shown leadership and courage in advancing the rights of gays & lesbians at the University of Saskatchewan”.  Peter Millard, a former Professor of English, was the first recipient.  At the same time, the Peter Millard Scholarship Fund was announced – a university-managed scholarship fund for gay, lesbian and bisexual studies, the first in Canada.

The Doug Wilson Award is named in honour of a former student who was at the centre of a controversy about human rights in 1975, and died in 1992.  Doug Wilson was a graduate student at the College of Education.  After Wilson placed an advertisement organizing a gay students’ association using his College of Education address, the Dean removed Wilson’s name from the list of students eligible to supervise teaching interns.  Almost immediately, the Committee to Defend Doug Wilson was formed.  The Committee took Wilson’s case to the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission, which ruled that discrimination on the grounds of “sex” included sexual orientation, and a formal inquiry was scheduled.  However, upon appeal from the University, the Court of Queen’s Bench ruled that the Commission did not have the jurisdiction to make that interpretation

In the meantime, a Special Council Committee Concerning Discrimination on Sexual Orientation was struck “to propose a policy for the University regarding discrimination on sexual orientation and other areas of possible discrimination.”  The main recommendation of this committee, passed by Council, read: “University faculty shall be employed, assigned to duties, and evaluated on the basis of academic qualifications and competence.  Personal conduct and qualities of a faculty member, including the fact that he or she is heterosexual or homosexual, shall not be considered unless they affect the performance of his or her functions or the proper activities of the University.”

Related Collections

P.T. Millard fonds, MG 47.


1995a: Sheaf article, 26 September 1975, breaking the story that Wilson had been removed from supervision duties.


The Sheaf, 30 March 1995.
P.T. Millard fonds, MG 47, file 2a.
President’s Office fonds, RG 2001, Series V, file II.8.Y.i.
President’s Office fonds, RG 2001, Series V, file II.7.E.iii.b.
Council minutes, 22 March 1976.

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