Jan. 4, 2023

Leaders in UCalgary medicine and business appointed to Order of Canada

Michael Hill, William Sembo, Mac Van Wielingen recognized for outstanding accomplishments and service
Michael Hill
Michael Hill UCalgary files

A trailblazer in stroke care and treatment and two business leaders and philanthropists — all three with strong University of Calgary connections — have been appointed to the Order of Canada, one of the country’s highest civilian honours.

Dr. Michael Hill was named an Officer of the Order, while William Sembo and Mac Van Wielingen were appointed as Members in the annual honours list announced by Governor General Mary Simon on Dec. 29. Presented across three ranks — Member, Officer and Companion — the Order of Canada recognizes outstanding commitment, accomplishments and service in areas including politics, medicine, Indigenous communities, LGBTQ2S+, sports and the arts.

Michael Hill, MSc’90, MD, is a professor in the departments of Clinical Neurosciences, Community Health Sciences, Medicine and Radiology at UCalgary. His is also the director of the Stroke Unit with the Calgary Stroke Program under Alberta Health Services. As stated in the appointees announcement, Hill was named an Officer of the Order of Canada (OC) “for his major contributions to the advancement of acute stroke care and treatment at the provincial, national and international levels.”

William Sembo, BA’77, was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada (CM) “for his expertise in energy investment banking, and for his dedicated philanthropy in support of community causes in Calgary.” His commitment to UCalgary includes sitting as chair of the Strategic Advisory Board for the Snyder Institute for Chronic Diseases at the Cumming School of Medicine and the Dean of Medicine’s Advisory Board; he also chaired the Calgary Health Foundation in the late 2010s.

Mac Van Wielingen receives an honorary doctorate from the University of Calgary in 2014.

Mac Van Wielingen receives an honorary degree from the University of Calgary in 2014.

UCalgary files

Honorary degree recipient Mac Van Wielingen, Hon. LLD’14, is acknowledged in his appointment as a Member “for his visionary leadership in ethical governance and corporate responsibility, and for his transformative advocacy of collaborative philanthropy.” A founding partner in UCalgary’s Creative Destruction Lab – Rockies, he is also a co-founder of the Canadian Centre for Advanced Leadership in Business at the Haskayne School of Business and established the Mac Van Wielingen Distinguished Business Leader Award.

The three honourees join a diverse group of appointees that includes iconic actor Eugene Levy (promoted to Companion of the Order — the highest category), hockey legend Sidney Crosby and impressionist Rich Little (both named Officers), and Lorraine Segato (leader of the rock group Parachute Club, named a Member of the Order for her music and LGBTQ2S+ advocacy).

“Celebrated trailblazers in their respective fields, they are inspiring, educating and mentoring future generations, creating a foundation of excellence in our country that is respected throughout the world,” Simon noted in a press release. In total, 99 appointments were announced; since its creation in 1967, more than 7,600 Canadians have been honoured by the Order of Canada.

The official induction ceremony will be held at a later date.