Oct. 10, 2023
Class of 1983 celebrates 40th anniversary
UCalgary Law's Class of 1983 recently celebrated its 40th anniversary in Kelowna. This class has been holding regular events since the day they graduated, making them one of our most collegial classes in our school's history.
Submitted by Thea Lynn Paul
The Class of 83 has always been unique. Our average age in 1980 was 27 – and we ranged from 20 years old to well over 40. And that means some of us are now over 80 but we are still keen to get together.
We celebrated our 40th Anniversary with a four-day reunion in Kelowna in early September 2023. Doug Mills and Bruce Harvey have homes in Kelowna so they were a great help in setting up a plan. It’s also an easy drive from Calgary and Vancouver where many of our classmates live. The organizing committee (Thea Paul, Judy Miller, Doug Mills, Dave Sevalrud and Bruce Harvey) started planning a full year ahead with a “save the date” email. At one point we thought we might have 38 participants but life intervened as did Covid and other health issues (did we mention we are getting older) and we ended up with 21 of us. During our time together, Doug and his wife Mavis hosted a spectacular wine and appy party, we biked the Kettle Valley Railway trestles, had a lovely dinner at Quail’s Gate Winery, golfed and had brunch at the Eldorado. The weather cooperated and although we saw evidence of the recent fires, thankfully it wasn’t an issue.
Kim Kobayashi encouraged us to submit a recent picture as well as an update and a brief memory from law school. She also collected other pictures from earlier reunions and law school and put together a wonderful scrapbook that has been shared digitally with the class. We’ve had many reunions over the years including our five year reunion at Canada Olympic Park, our ten year reunion in Kananaskis, camping trips, a cruise to Greece and Italy in 2008, a trip to Victoria in 2013 and to Pleasanton in 2015 and another cruise in 2018. We have also had regular Calgary get togethers at Dave Sevalrud’s home.
We are very proud of our class! We put together the Class of 1983 Law Award, the first scholarship from a graduating law school class. Up to $1500 is awarded annually to a student entering third year who shows initiative and leadership qualities as evidenced through commitment and contribution to extra-curricular activities within the law school or the community. We started with $30,000 made up of donations from almost everyone in the class on our 30th anniversary and the fund has grown to $40,000 for our 40th anniversary. We are also proud of the Baker/Billington Cup that is awarded to the best individual debater at the Faculty of Law’s Blackstone Debates. The cup was donated by our classmates, the late Geoff Baker, QC (1953-2011) and Rick Billington, KC. After they won the Blackstone Debates in all three years (to date, the only team to have done so!), they saw the opportunity to start a new tradition by recognizing the top individual oralist, and in so doing, to support excellence in the law school’s advocacy program. The Baker/Billington Cup has been awarded annually since 1984.