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Mss 142 (A.00-37, A.03-116, A.04-72), MC 9, PC 176, and TC 108

Title: Jennifer Shay fonds

Dates: 1955-1999

Extent: 27 m of textual records and other materials

Biographical information: Dr. Jennifer Shay, the daughter of Frank and Kathleen Walker, was born on March 27, 1930, in Hull, England. Dr. Shay was interested in natural history at a young age, discovering her passion for biology on high School field trips to Flatford Mill Field Centre. This experience, the encouragement of a High School biology teacher and her predisposition towards science made it possible to become one of the pre-eminent ecologist in Canada.Upon graduation from Newland High School in 1948, Dr. Shay attended London University where she obtained a Bachelor of Science in 1952. She immediately accepted a position at the Flatford Mill Field Centre in Suffolk; however, due to a desire to expand her experience, she moved to Canada in 1957 where she worked as a research associate at the University of Manitoba (U of M). At the U of M, Dr. Shay completed her Masters of Science in 1959 and her Doctor of Philosophy in Sciece in 1964, while lecturing for the Department of Botany. She became an assistant professor in 1965 and was promoted to associate professor in 1967 and a full professor in 1975. In 1966, she was appointed founding director of the University Field Station at Delta Marsh (now Delta Marsh Field Station), a position she held until 1986. In addition, she fulfilled a joint appointment in the Departments of Landscape Architecture and Botany from 1975 to 1986 and again from 1989 to 1993. Although Dr. Shay retired from the U of M in 1993, she stayed on as a Senior Scholar and was awarded the title Professor Emerita in 1995.

The significance of Dr. Shay's academic career as both a student and a professor is punctuated by her long list of awards and distinctions. These include the Shikar-safari Conservation Award, 1970; Life-time membership to the Manitoba Naturalist Society, 1976; Canadian Nature Federation Douglas Pimlott Conservation Award, 1979; Manitoba Naturalist Society Ernest Thompson Seaton Distinguished Naturalist Award, 1982; Honorary life-time membership to the Manitoba Museum of Man and Nature, 1982; Canadian Botanical Association Distinguished Service Award, 1984; Peter D. Curry Chancellor's Award, 1987; Member of the Order of Canada, 1988; Honorary life-time membership to the Manitoba Association of Landscape Architects, 1990; University of Manitoba Outreach Award, 1990; University of Manitoba H.H. Saunderson Teaching Award, 1992; Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society J.B. Harkin Medal, 1992; Manitoba Eco-network Environmental Award, 1993; Honorary Member of the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects, 1994; Canadian Healthy Environment Award for Lifetime Achievement, 1996; YWCA Woman of Distinction, 1997; and, Officer of the Order of Canada, 2001. In addition, she has headed and been a member of various boards and councils throughout her life.

Scope and Contents of the Papers: This fonds consists of three accessions. Accession A.04-72 contains one series of letters written by Jennifer Shay and received by her mother, Kathlene Walker. Accession A.03-116 contains thirteen series relating to Jennifer Shay's personal and professional life including Personal and Professional Correspondence; Awards; Publications and Research; Childhood Materials; University Education Records; Flatford Mill; Lectures and Affiliations; Biographical Material; Committees and Philanthropic Activities; and, PhD Student Records. A large portion of the manuscript collection consists of correspondence of a personal and professional nature from a colleagues and family. A.03-116 includes one map, 130 photographs, 13 slides, one video tape, and two reel-to-reel tapes. Accession A.00-37 contains forty series related to the professional life of Jennifer Shay including correspondence, course information, research material, talks and lectures, publications, committee information, student theses, and awards.

Custodial History: Jennifer Shay donated the contents of the fonds to the University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections in 2000 (A.00-37), 2003 (A.03-116), and 2004 (A.04-72)

Restrictions on Use: There are no restritions on this material.

Accruals: Further accruals expected.

Finding aid available


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