Here are seven names you need to know this year at the U of O
- Jacques Frémont – President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ottawa
Since taking over for Alan Rock in 2016, Jacques Frémont is the University of Ottawa’s President and Vice-Chancellor. Being the U of O’s figurehead, Frémont is also a member of the Board of Governors and Chair of the Senate and is Vice-Chancellor to elected Chancellor Calin Rovinescu in the case of absence.
This past February he was re-elected by the Board of Governors for a second term till 2026. During his first term, the university has faced severe criticism from students in regards to the handling of the mental health crisis on campus, racism on campus, and the Student Federation of the University of Ottawa allegations of fraud.
- Jill Scott – Provost and Vice-President of Academic Affairs for the University of Ottawa
Elected by the Board of Governors in September 2019 for a five-year term, Jill is U of O’s highest-ranking officer after the President, responsible for its academics, budgets, and setting its priorities.
Born in Winnipeg, Scott has a BA from the University of Manitoba, MA from Carleton, and a Ph.D. from the University of Toronto, and was a professor in the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Culture at Queen’s University, where she also served as the vice-provost (Teaching and Learning) and Interim associate vice-principal (International) at Queen’s University in Kingston.
She said in U of O’s Gazette, that her work led her to Indigenous language cultural identity and is working with the Mohawk community of Tyendinaga on issues of language revitalization.
In her role, she is in charge of accomplishing, in collaboration with the faculties’ deans, setting the University’s broad academic directions; designing and regularly evaluating programs; recruiting and retaining professors; establishing student-recruitment strategies. She also chairs the Standing Committee on Francophone Affairs and Official Languages, she is responsible for all sectors that play a strategic role in the University’s Francophone mission.
Trilingual in English, French, and German and an avid cyclist, Jill can be found in her office in Tabaret and featured in news interviews.
- Babacar Faye – President of the University of Ottawa Student Union (UOSU)
Entering his fourth year in political science and second year in common law, Babacar Faye was elected as the UOSU’s first Black President this past March on his main approaches of reliability, wellness, representation, and inclusivity.
Born in Kamsar, Guinea, Babacar and his family moved to Mississauga, Ont. as refugees when he was young. During his high school years in Markham, he was president of the student council and represented his school at the school board.
It was not until his second year when the university made the switch from the SFUO to the UOSU that he became involved in post-secondary politics, specifically working on the International Political and Policy Studies Student Association’s (IPPSSA) public administration committee.
During this, he says he was able to learn more about student governments and began to become frustrated by the lack of participation despite everything going for students on campus. As a result, he got involved with the Board of Directors for the UOSU and the rest is history.
His main reason for running for president? It was an extension of his desire to help rebuild the U of O’s student union, while also contributing to making a better experience for his peers around him.
When not studying and in meetings, he’s cooking or doing yoga and one day wishes to work in human rights.
- Charley Dutil – Editor and Chief of The Fulcrum, University of Ottawa’s Independent News Outlet
A 2020 U of O grad in Digital Journalism, Dutil, is a walking encyclopedia when it comes to facts about music, cars, politics, hockey, and baseball, he is the current Editor-in-Chief of the Fulcrum.
Originally from Milton, Ont., he’s lived in both Quebec and Ontario.
Alongside continuing the investigative journalism efforts of past Editors-in-Chief, he aims to broaden the horizons of the outlet “beyond a simple news source for students.” He believes the Fulcrum should not only be a news source but a beacon of entertainment on campus hosting live music and comedy nights in its offices.
He was previously the Sports Editor of the Fulcrum in 2019-20 and the Fulcrum’s Associate Sports Editor in 2018-19.
He encourages the student body to follow the Fulcrum’s social media platforms for campus news coverage, events, and public meetings. Office hours with all editors are available in person or virtually.
- Tim Gulliver – Advocacy Commissioner of University of Ottawa Student Union (UOSU)
Appreciating older bands like Oasis, Tim insists he is anti-K-Pop. Born in South Korea, he says he had a unique cultural-linguistic experience growing up having moved with his family to Sherbrooke, QC with his family.
Elected in March, Tim is in his third-year of Political Science with the goal to decolonize campus and work with mental health groups. He says he remains steadfast to these goals, advocating to help reduce the challenges students are now facing with online learning since the entry of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In his role as advocacy commissioner he says at the defence for students his strategy is to balance between challenging and cooperation of working with the university administration and governance including the President’s Advisory Committee on Mental Health to find the best outcome solutions for students.
Tim says while he appreciates the opportunity to be living at the heart of politics for his studies, he says that he craves what the program is missing – less Eurocentric politics of governance and wishes to engage in more learning opportunities in Indigenous history and governance.
Inspired by them he says he looks forward to attending another ‘good protest’. He says he is very approachable and wants to hear directly from students, you can find him around campus or in his office UCU 035D.
- Caroline Fabre – Editor-in-Chief of La Rotonde, University of Ottawa’s Independent French Newspaper
Caroline Fabre is an international student from Senlis, France, entering her final year in Honours Bachelor of Arts and has been the Editor-in-Chief of U of O’s independent french newspaper, La Rotonde, since December 2019.
While the core editorial team has also been adjusting to COVID-19 restrictions including more online interviews, the paper remains open and active this school year as it has over the summer.
She says she would like La Rotonde to do more to address the inequalities that exist in our daily lives, whether we are aware of them or not.
Whether you are practicing learning French or fluent, La Rotonde, founded in 1932, offers the space for everyone to learn about Francophone issues. She says their duty is to share everyone’s concerns and propose solutions to remedy them.
La Rotonde is located on the corner of Osgood and King Edward, across from Father and Sons.
- Elder Claudette Commanda, Elder-In-Residence & Special Advisor to the Dean on Reconciliation
With wisdom and leadership in her veins, Elder Claudette Commanda is an Algonquin Anishinaabe from Kitigan Zibi Anishinaabeg First Nation, Que. She is also the granddaughter of the renowned late Algonquin elder William Commanda.
Elder Commanda is also a U of O alumna from the Faculty of Arts in 1993 and Faculty of Law, Common Law Section in 1997. Since, she has taught at U of O’s Institute of Women’s Studies, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Education, and the Aboriginal Studies Program, teaching courses on First Nations Women, Native Education, First Nations People and History, Indigenous Traditions, and Decolonization.
In August of 2017, Claudette was invited and hired as U of O’s first Elder-in-Residence to provide guidance, advice, and counselling for Indigenous students. From this, she has also been the first First Nations person to serve on U of O’s Board of Governors and is also on U of O’s Indigenous Education Council.
She is also the Executive Director of the First Nations Confederacy of Cultural Education Centres, a national organization with the mandate of protecting, promoting, and revitalizing First Nations languages and cultures, and has previously served on the Board of Governors for the First Nations University of Canada. She has served on the Kitigan Zibi band council on three separate occasions. In 2009, she was inducted into the Common Law Honour Society.
She welcomes persons of all backgrounds to reach out to her.
Editor’s note (07/09/2020): The original draft of this article included the sentence “During his first term, he dealt with the dismantling of the SFUO, the U of O mental health crisis, and racism on campus, ” in reference to Jacques Frémont. This sentence was not meant to mean that these issues were resolved as it was interpreted by many it simply meant that these are issues that defined his first term. This sentence has been changed to “During his first term, the university has faced severe criticism from students in regards to the handling of the mental health crisis on campus, racism on campus, and the Student Federation of the University of Ottawa allegations of fraud.”