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CALGARY, AB --(Marketwired - January 21, 2016) - It is with deep regret that the University of Calgary learned of the passing of Ron Southern, a true friend to the university and to Calgary. "On behalf of the university community I wish to pass our condolences on to the Southern family," said Elizabeth Cannon, president of the University of Calgary. "Ron and the Southern family -- wife Marg and daughters Nancy and Linda -- have been long-time supporters of the university, providing for athletics, scholarships, professorships and research."
The ATCO Group of Companies, of which Mr. Southern was a founder, has also been a generous donor to the university.
Ron Southern was a Director of ATCO Ltd and Canadian Utilities Limited and served as Chairman of the Board of ATCO Ltd and Canadian Utilities Limited until 2012. He remained a director of both companies until his passing. Mr. Southern is credited with transforming the ATCO Company into what it is today -- one of Canada's leading corporations, with assets of approximately $19 billion and employing nearly 8,000.
In the early 1970s, the Southerns began creating Spruce Meadows, one of the world's most renowned equestrian tournament and training facilities. It quickly became the most important show-jumping competition and training facility in Canada and has since gained a world-wide reputation.
In 1976, Mr. Southern received an honourary Doctor of Laws from the university in recognition of his contributions to the university. Mr. Southern also served as a member of the Chancellor's Club from 1992 through 2013. Mr. Southern has been recognized by many organizations throughout his life and in 2007 received the Companion of the Order of Canada, and was an inductee to the Alberta Order of Excellence in 2012.
About the University of Calgary
The University of Calgary is making tremendous progress on its journey to become one of Canada's top five research universities, where research and innovative teaching go hand in hand, and where we fully engage the communities we both serve and lead. This strategy is called Eyes High, inspired by the university's Gaelic motto, which translates as 'I will lift up my eyes.'
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Media Relations Advisor
University of Calgary