University of Saskatchewan Press Release
October 6, 2016
SASKATOON – He is one of Canada’s best-known novelists, an award-winning crime writer who has also been lauded for his work as a lawyer, journalist, environmentalist and civil rights activist.
On October 22, the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) will pay tribute to alumnus William Deverell when he receives an honorary Doctor of Letters during Fall Convocation ceremonies at TCU Place.
“Mr. Deverell is widely regarded in literary circles as a national treasure and we hold great admiration for all he has accomplished as an award-winning author, lawyer, environmental activist, and as a champion of civil rights,” said U of S president Peter Stoicheff. “We are pleased to have this opportunity to celebrate his many achievements since graduating from the University of Saskatchewan and we are extremely proud to call him one of our own.”
Born in Regina, Deverell earned a Bachelor of Arts and a law degree at the U of S, while serving as editor of The Sheaf student newspaper as well as working as a night editor for the Saskatoon StarPhoenix. He went on to earn numerous national writing honours, including the Dashiell Hammett Award for Literary Excellence and twice winning the Arthur Ellis Award for Best Novel. Deverell, who has written 18 novels, earned a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Crime Writers of Canada and was twice short-listed for the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour.
Deverell was the creator of the hit CBC TV series Street Legal, which has been aired in more than 50 countries, and he was one of the 100 individuals honoured as Alumni of Influence on the 100th anniversary of the College of Arts and Science in 2009. Deverell, who was a founding director of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association and a member of Greenpeace, has also donated all of his manuscripts, notes and letters to the U of S.
Deverell will be honoured in the afternoon convocation ceremony (2 pm) at TCU Place on October 22.