June 3, 2019

Class of 2019: Chen Fong and Susan Marks honoured during convocation ceremonies

Honorary degree for community leader; Order of the University of Calgary for workplace champion

Chen Fong and Susan Marks.

At convocation, the University of Calgary recognizes a number of exemplary individuals with honorary degrees and Orders of the University of Calgary (OTUC). The honorary degree, the Doctor of Laws, is the University of Calgary’s highest academic honour, bestowed upon individuals whose notable achievements and community service merit recognition. The OTUC is a highly prestigious recognition honouring University of Calgary community members who have contributed in an impactful manner to the university over a period of time.

These distinguished individuals will address our graduating class during the June convocation ceremonies, sharing words of wisdom gained through years as leaders in their field.

Dr. T. Chen Fong, MD, will have the honorary degree conferred upon him at the June convocation ceremony for the Cumming School of Medicine and Faculties of Law, Nursing, Veterinary Medicine and Graduate Studies. Susan Marks will be conferred with the OTUC.

Entrepreneur, community leader and radiologist

Chen Fong was instrumental in starting the Imaging Research Group at the Cumming School of Medicine and is one of the founding members of the Hotchkiss Brain Institute. He is currently professor emeritus at the University of Calgary.

Fong’s passion is in technology transfer, taking discoveries from universities and helping to implement them into real practice. He funded 43 startups, mostly in medical devices. He is involved in implementing the Creative Destruction Lab at the Haskayne School of Business and is currently the co-chair of the Global Strategy Board for the Creative Destruction Lab. Fong is also a Fellow at Creative Destruction Lab locations in Toronto, Montreal, Calgary and Vancouver.

In 2017, Fong was invested into the Order of Canada for his contribution to medical technology innovation and philanthropy. Fong was also inducted as a laureate of the Alberta Business Hall of Fame.

UCalgary advocate and workplace champion

UCalgary alumna Susan Marks, BEd’73, is the manager of operations in the Faculty of Law. Along with managing the faculty budget, staff, and facilities, Marks has overseen and directed a number of expansions and renovations in the faculty during her tenure.

Marks is dedicated to developing a culture of excellence within the university community. Her commitment to education extends into her faculty as she has developed in-house programs for support staff, including lunch-and-learn sessions, retreat days and half-day courses.

Throughout her years at the university, Marks has fostered collaboration and co-operation. Her passion for the university is immediately noticeable and this quality pushes her to find synergies between the faculty, university and broader community. 

Outside of work, Marks is involved with numerous community activities, most notably as a volunteer with Rockyview General Hospital since 2009.

Nominations for honorary degree and Order of the University of Calgary recipients are open year-round. Nominations forms and other important information are available on the Senate website