A university professor who grew up in Ballymena has been given one of Canada’s highest honours for his contributions to peace work.
John McGarry, a professor in the Department of Political Studies at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, has been named as an Officer of the Order of Canada for his efforts to promote peace and stability in some of the world’s most dangerous and conflicted regions.
The Order of Canada is the cornerstone of the Canadian Honours System and recognizes outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation.
The honour was given by the office of the Governor General of Canada to recognize McGarry’s “scholarly contributions to the study of ethnic conflict and for designing governance frameworks that promote peace.”
Dr. McGarry will be formally presented with the Order of Canada insignia by His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, at a ceremony to be held at a later date.
Born in Belfast, Dr McGarry grew up in Ballymena and attended St MacNissi’s College.
Over the past 30 years, he has been a leading expert in the study of how political systems are ordered in countries or regions facing deep divisions along racial, ethnic, or religious lines. He has been sought as an adviser or expert by governments and agencies around the globe. Most recently, he has served as lead adviser on power-sharing and governance in the UN-backed negotiations in Cyprus that aim to reunify the island.
Dr McGarry has also been named the 2016 recipient of the Thomas Henry Pentland Molson Prize by the Canada Council for the Arts, in recognition of his contributions to understanding the politics of some of the world’s most divided and conflicted regions.
His peace work and scholarly efforts are further being recognized with the 2016 Distinguished Scholar Award, presented by the International Studies Association’s Ethnicity and Migration Studies section. He will be presented with this award jointly with long-time friend and collaborator Brendan O’Leary at the 2017 ISA Convention.