Prairie Post (West Edition)
Businesswoman, philanthropist, community supporter Nancy Southern to receive honorary degree
One of Canada’s most powerful women in business never wavered from her core values of philanthropy and community spirit — attributes the University of Lethbridge will celebrate at Fall 2022 Convocation by presenting Nancy Southern with an honorary degree.
As the Chair and Chief Executive Officer of both ATCO and Canadian Utilities, Southern possesses all the qualities that make for a successful leader — courage, collaboration and humility, a passion for diversity and human rights, and an unwavering desire to create a better future for all constituents.
“Nancy Southern is to be admired for her keen business acumen and her ability to lead some of the world’s most successful companies, all while staying true to her roots as a southern Albertan who honours her family and supports her community,” says ULethbridge Chancellor Charles Weaselhead. “She has long advocated for the rights of Indigenous Peoples worldwide and the role of women in business and it is with great respect we are recognizing her with an honorary degree.”
Southern will be presented with an honorary Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, at Fall 2022 Convocation, Saturday, October 15, at 10 a.m. in the 1st Choice Savings Centre for Sport and Wellness.
Southern is a southern Albertan through and through. She was born and raised in Calgary, studied economics at the University of Calgary and has established a career that has seen her serve with some of the world’s most influential organizations. She is the Chair and Chief Executive Officer of ATCO Ltd., which was founded by her father, R.D. Southern, in 1947, and Canadian Utilities Limited, an ATCO company. In this position, she is responsible for executing the strategic direction and ongoing operations for both companies and, under her deft leadership, the ATCO group of companies has seen extraordinary growth and demonstrated an enduring commitment to the communities and customers it serves.
Philanthropy and community spirit are core values for Southern. Alongside her business leadership, she has advocated on matters of global importance, including the rights of Indigenous Peoples and the role of women
in business. She is an Honorary Chief of the Kainai (Blood Tribe of Alberta) and was given the name Ak sis to ow a’ pa akii,o rB rave Woman, in 2012. In 2015, at the request of thenGerman chancellor Angela Merkel, Southern joined 100 other global leaders for the G7 Forum for Dialogue with Women. As a passionate believer in enterprise as a powerful force for good, she has advised domestic and international governments alike. She honours her family and supports her community, embracing her father’s definition of excellence — ‘going far beyond the call of duty, doing more than others expect.’
The accolades Southern has earned during her career are numerous. In 2012, she received the Peter Lougheed Award for Leadership from Canada’s Public Policy Forum. In 2013, she received the T. Patrick Boyle Founder’s Award for Entrepreneurship from the Fraser Institute. She was named to Fortune Magazine’s list of 50 Most Powerful Women in Business in 2016 and inducted as a Companion to the Canadian Business Hall of Fame in 2017.