Royal Society of Canada will honour two Lakehead University professors for their remarkable contributions

September 7, 2021 – Thunder Bay and Orillia, Ont.

Two Lakehead University professors will soon be part of the Royal Society of Canada.

On Friday, Nov. 19, Dr. Lori Chambers will be elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada (RSC) and Dr. Ruth Beatty will be inducted into the RSC’s College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists.

Dr. Chambers, Professor of Gender and Women’s Studies in Thunder Bay, is only the second Lakehead professor to become a Fellow of the RSC, joining Dr. Roger Mitchell, Professor Emeritus of Geology, who was elected as a Fellow in 1994.

Photo of Dr. Lori Chambers

Fellows of the RSC are distinguished Canadians from all branches of learning who have made remarkable contributions in the arts, the humanities and the sciences, as well as in Canadian public life.

The RSC elected Dr. Chambers as a Fellow for her research, which has transformed understandings of the history of Canadian law, particularly with regard to women and gender. Her original and ground-breaking research includes discussions of property law, unwed parenthood, adoption, violence against women, and, more recently, Indigenous histories in the North. Highly esteemed by historians and law professionals, her work has revealed how the past continues to shape our legal present.

“I am honoured to receive this award and thank my colleagues and Lakehead University for their wonderful support over the past two decades,” she said.

Dr. Chambers joined Lakehead University in 1999. Chair of the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies, she is a former Lakehead University Research Chair on Gender, Law, and Equity, and was the Chair of the President’s Task Force on Sexual Assault Education, Prevention, and Support.

She has won numerous awards, including Lakehead’s Distinguished Researcher Award and awards from the Ontario Historical Society and the Canadian Journal of Law and Society.

The author of four monographs, Dr. Chambers has edited four books and published numerous refereed journal articles and book chapters. She is currently President of the Canadian Law and Society Association.

Dr. Beatty, Associate Professor of Education in Orillia, is one of several new members of the College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists, which recognizes those who have demonstrated a high level of achievement at an early stage of their career.

Photo of Dr. Ruth Beatty

Members of the College represent the emerging generation of Canadian intellectual leadership and will provide new advances in understanding, resulting from the interaction of diverse intellectual, cultural and social perspectives.

She is the third Lakehead professor, and the first from Lakehead Orillia, to be inducted into the College since it was launched in 2014, joining Dr. Christopher Mushquash, Psychology, inducted in 2017, and Dr. Pauline Sameshima, Education, inducted in 2020.

Dr. Beatty was selected for the College as a result of her collaborative and community-based research on the connections between Indigenous ways of knowing mathematics and the Western mathematics found in the Ontario curriculum.

“I am honoured to receive this award for our work, which is primarily about building reciprocal relationships with Indigenous knowledge keepers, leaders, artists, and educators as we investigate the mathematics inherent in cultural practices.”

Dr. Beatty joined Lakehead University in 2009 and is a mathematics education researcher who works with Anishnaabe, Cree, and Métis communities to decolonize education. She does this by collaboratively designing culturally responsive mathematics instruction for all students, and emphasizing learning from and incorporating Indigenous pedagogical perspectives in inclusive classroom settings.

She has received a number of awards for this work, including Lakehead University’s Community Engaged Research Award and Indigenous Partner Research Award and an eagle feather presented to her by Colinda Clyne, who is Anishinaabe kwe (Kitigan Zibi First Nation) and the First Nations, Métis and Inuit Curriculum Lead for the Upper Grand DSB.

She presented it to Dr. Beatty for her leadership in Indigenous mathematics education during the Relationships and Reciprocity: Indigenous Education and Mathematics conference held May 3-5, 2019 at Lakehead Orillia.

“I extend sincere congratulations to Lori and Ruth. I am so impressed with the work that they are doing and the contributions they have made to their respective scholarly disciplines. Thank you to the RSC for recognizing their important achievements,” said Dr. Moira McPherson, Lakehead’s President and Vice-Chancellor.

Founded in 1882, the Royal Society of Canada recognizes excellence and makes significant and substantial contributions of knowledge, understanding, and insight to help build a better future in Canada and around the world.


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Lakehead University is a fully comprehensive university with approximately 9,700 full-time equivalent students and over 2,000 faculty and staff at two campuses in Orillia and Thunder Bay, Ontario. Lakehead has 10 faculties, including Business Administration, Education, Engineering, Graduate Studies, Health & Behavioural Sciences, Law, Natural Resources Management, the Northern Ontario School of Medicine, Science & Environmental Studies, and Social Sciences & Humanities. Lakehead University’s achievements have been recognized nationally and internationally, including being ranked, once again, among Canada’s Top 10 primarily undergraduate universities in Maclean’s 2021 University Rankings; as well as included in the top half of Times Higher Education's 2020 World Universities Rankings for the second consecutive year, and in the top 100 of 1,115 universities from around the world in THE's 2021 Impact Rankings (which assesses institutions against the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals). Visit