Triple honours for Brandon University geography professor

Profile picture of a man in a sport coat in front of trees and grenery.
Dr. Doug Ramsey

It’s been a strong end to 2023 for Brandon University geography professor Dr. Doug Ramsey, who teaches in rural development.

Following two significant awards in November, from his geography peers, Dr. Ramsey capped the year by being named to the Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries Corporation board of directors.

“I’m not normally a fan of November,” laughed Dr. Ramsey, recalling two accolades in the span of two weeks.

On Nov. 14, he was presented the John Welsted Award for Service to Geography in the Western Interior by the Prairie Division of the Canadian Association of Geographers at their AGM. This award recognizes his two dozen years of service in the community, which has included terms with executive responsibilities on the boards of the Brandon Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation, the Keystone Centre, Travel Manitoba, and Friends of Riding Mountain National Park, in addition to membership on numerous other committees.

“In addition to collaborating on projects with colleagues across Canada, I led the research in the Manitoba communities,” Dr. Ramsey said. “I am particularly proud of this award as it is named after a former BU Geography Professor (now deceased) Dr. John Welsted.”

But he didn’t have much time to bask in the pride, as just a week later, on Nov. 23, Dr. Ramsey was honoured as a Life Member of the Canadian Rural Revitalization Foundation, recognizing years of national impact to a national, SSRHC-funded project called the New Rural Economy (NRE) from 2001–07 as well as his co-founding of the Journal of Rural and Community Development (JRCD), which is housed here at BU.

“I was very surprised by the honour,” Dr. Ramsey said. “However, at the AGM, many people spoke about the NRE and the Journal, and in particular, the impact the Journal has had on our field, globally.”

In an interesting twist, BU’s Rural Development Institute will be co-hosting the CRRF national conference at BU in 2025, which will also be the 20thanniversary of the first issue of the Journal. An anniversary celebration is planned as part of the conference.

Finally, this month, Dr. Ramsey was tapped by the provincial government to join the board of directors of the Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries Corporation, which oversees alcohol sales and gambling in the province. It looks to be a nice fit for someone who has researched and written about related rural development and tourism elements for decades — including a 2007 retrospective on historic beverage rooms in Brandon titled “Called to the Bar“.

“I am looking forward to working with the board to ensure that MLLC continues to be strong,” Dr. Ramsey said. “And in doing so, I hope to be a voice for rural and small town Manitoba.”


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