WUFA honours Dr. Anne Forrest for contributions to equity  Banner Image

WUFA honours Dr. Anne Forrest for contributions to equity

April 7, 2016

The Faculty Association is proud to announce that Dr. Anne Forrest, Women's and Gender Studies is the 2016 recipient of the "Mary Lou Dietz Equity Leadership Award."  The reception will be held on Thursday May 12th from 4:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the Kerr House, located at 366 Sunset Avenue.  R.S.V.P. by May 6,2016 to the Association office ext: 3365 or email wufa@uwindsor.ca

Dr. Anne Forrest’s life-work truly embodies the spirit of the Mary Lou Dietz Leadership in Equity Award. Her early initiatives included creating the notable “Friends of Women’s Studies – Distinguished Women’s Series” which attracted students, staff and faculty with similar interests in equity and diversity.  The highly successful “Bystander Initiative” has brought men and women together with the aim to prevent sexual violence on campus in order to ensure that all women have equitable access to education.  Dr. Forrest has been the force (albeit a modest one) behind the powerful and comprehensive vision for Women’s Studies over the past 20 years.

As the Director of Women’s Studies, Dr. Forrest led the way in equitable hiring, not only to ensure the representation of formally designated groups, but also to complement existing scholarship and training in order to strengthen Women’s Studies. She has also made successful revisions to the Women’s Studies curriculum that reflect the lives of women of indigenous, racialized, and Muslim backgrounds and that include sexual diversity and disability scholarship.

Dr. Forrest was an early pioneer of Employment Equity on campus, earning the “President’s Equity Award” in 1999. She implemented the “Positive Action Plan for Achieving Equity in Hiring Women Faculty”; was an Equity Assessor; and a member of PCEE, RCEE, and NAGS (Non-Affiliated Action Group for Equity).  She also chaired WUFA’s Status of Women Committee and was VP Women’s Issues.

Dr. Forrest has also encouraged and supported women’s rights outside the university.   For example, she was involved in the “Inquest Action Group”, which endeavored to ensure that Lori Dupont’s murder was not in vain by contributing to public conversation and by challenging the provincial government to remedy workplace safety regulations to address concerns of women about partner violence.

On a more personal level, Dr. Forrest has proved to be someone who is both approachable and caring.  Colleagues have gone to her for guidance on a variety of matters ranging from conflict resolution to career and teaching.  Students know that Dr. Forrest has their best interests at heart because she encourages them to express their ideas in class.  She has also provided support to students who have been struggling outside the classroom.  Dr. Forrest created the WS emergency fund for single mothers and students experiencing poverty so that they could continue with their education.  She has even reached out to refugees and has bought them tickets to the Distinguished Visitor series, not because she wanted them to learn from the event, but because “It is we, all the other participants who need refugees to be part of this event”. To further quote Sister Helen Petrimoulx, “Anne Forrest’s vision of education has inclusivity, as just one of her many effective priorities.”

For all of these reasons, Dr. Anne Forrest deserves to be the 2016 Mary Lou Dietz Leadership in Equity Award recipient.

Mary Lou Dietz Equity Leadership Award - This award is given by the University of Windsor Faculty Association in honour of Mary Lou Dietz, BA.MA. PhD., who was a faculty member and Deapartment Head of Sociology and Anthropology at the University of windsor.  Dr. Dietz served on WUFA's Executive and council numerous times.