University Secretary and General Counsel Maureen Armstrong to retire

Vari pond

York President and Vice-Chancellor Rhonda L. Lenton has issued this message to the University community:

I am writing today to share the news that Maureen Armstrong, university secretary and general counsel of York University, will be retiring at the end of June. As well as being a strong leader and wonderful colleague, Maureen has worked tirelessly to advance the vision and values of York University.

Maureen Armstrong

Maureen joined York after a distinguished career in the federal and provincial public services, holding senior roles at the Canadian Human Rights Commission, serving as vice-president of Legal Aid Ontario for central and eastern Ontario and as Chair of the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board. She began at the University in 2014, and has since served three Board Chairs, four Senate Chairs and two presidents in addressing a wide range of complex governance matters, including two labour disruptions, a presidential search and renewal of the chancellor. I have appreciated her exceptional strategic and legal advice to the Board, to Senate and to me.

In addition to her work on university governance, Maureen has also overseen a wide variety of significant legal matters for York, including the completion of major construction projects such as the Lions Stadium, the Second Student Centre, the Rob and Cheryl McEwen Graduate Study & Research Building, and the opening of two new subway stations on campus.

Her record of promoting human rights, equity and inclusion on campus is equally impressive. As a strong supporter of official bilingualism, Maureen played an important role in obtaining partial bilingual designation for Glendon Campus under the French Language Services Act. She also played a key role in the creation of York’s Sexual Violence Policy and chaired our AODA Coordinating Committee.

As a leader, Maureen is dedicated to the growth and professional development of her team, and she helped drive a new service culture within the Secretariat and General Counsel.

It is always sad when a valuable member of the University’s senior team leaves. But I am heartened to know that Maureen is looking forward to retirement where she will have the ability to pursue her own projects, including a burgeoning interest in non-human animal rights. Please join me in thanking Maureen for her record of service to York, and wish her all the best in her next adventure.