Professor Emeritus in Mathematics and Statistics
Encaenia Ceremony C: May 28, 2009
Jon Thompson’s contributions to UNB and to the promotion of mathematical science and academic values are truly exceptional.
Soon after his arrival at the University of New Brunswick in 1970, he became a force in curriculum development at all levels of the university. As chair of mathematics and statistics for 17 years, he transformed the department’s scholarly culture. He hired faculty from some of the world’s leading institutions, supported them, revitalized the graduate program, and was instrumental in the department achieving a national research profile.
Dr. Thompson helped to establish the Atlantic Association for Research in the Mathematical Sciences and has been active in numerous professional and learned societies.
His involvement with the Association of University of New Brunswick Teachers, from the first collective agreement – when he was association president — through the negotiations during the latest bargaining cycle, is a contribution of extraordinary importance to the academic community.
However, it is Dr. Thompson’s exemplary work with the Canadian Association of University Teachers which has singled him out as one of the foremost defenders of academic freedom and due process in Canada. Dr. Thompson is one of only seven people chosen to receive the association’s prestigious Milner Award for outstanding contributions to the defense of academic freedom, and his ground breaking study of the Olivieri Case has changed the foundations of medical research ethics worldwide.