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Media Release

$63,000 award for medical students keeps legacy alive

 The Thunder Bay Community Foundation and the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM) are pleased to announce the creation of a bursary in honour of two individuals who made significant contributions to the community of Thunder Bay. The Dr. Stephen Morton Award will benefit students of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM) in perpetuity.

The award honours the lives of Dr. Stephen Morton and Mrs. Prue Morton. Dr. Morton practiced in Thunder Bay from 1953 to 1961. He moved to Thunder Bay from England and eagerly embraced his new community engaging in a wide variety of interests. In 1961 he was killed tragically, leaving behind his wife, three sons and a daughter.

Mrs. Prue Morton chose to remain in Thunder Bay and raise their children. She worked as a nurse at the Port Arthur General Hospital and as a librarian with the Lakehead Regional School of Nursing. In 1971 Mrs. Prue Morton, through an anonymous donation, established the Thunder Bay Community Foundation to provide opportunities for the citizens of Thunder Bay to invest in the enrichment of their community. She stipulated that only after her death could her contribution be made public.

Following the passing of Mrs. Morton in February 2006, family members resolved to honour her and Dr. Morton’s memory in the establishment of this award. The Thunder Bay Community Foundation matched the family’s contributions. The resulting $31,500 is matched by the Ontario Trust for Student Support, for a total endowment balance of $63,000. Each year beginning in 2007, one NOSM medical student will receive a Dr. Stephen Morton Award in the amount of $3,150.00.

Mr. Cliff Friesen, President of the Thunder Bay Community Foundation says today’s announcement is testimony to the love Dr. and Mrs. Morton felt for the community they called home. “This bursary corresponds with the Morton’s goal of supporting initiatives that generate long-term benefits to the community as a whole,” he explained. “The Thunder Bay Community Foundation supported the Dr. Stephen Morton Award with the aim of encouraging emerging medical professionals to excel in their profession and to become more socially aware of the changes people can make within their communities.”

Dr. Dan Hunt, NOSM Vice Dean, Academic Activities, believes this award will help bring NOSM medical students the same level of community appreciation that existed in Dr. Morton and his family. “NOSM strives to cultivate an appreciation for Northern communities through a community-based learning curriculum,” noted Dr. Hunt. “The Dr. Stephen Morton Award helps to build a better understanding of the mutually supportive relationship that exists between a physician and the community.”

The Thunder Bay Community Foundation provides opportunities for the citizens of Thunder Bay to invest in the enrichment of their community. Today, the Thunder Bay Community Foundation holds in-trust assets over $4.1 Million and is continuing to grow through the generous donations of forward-thinking citizens.

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The Northern Ontario School of Medicine is committed to the education of high quality physicians and health professionals, and to international recognition as a leader in distributed, learning-centered, community-engaged education and research. 

Kimberley Larkin
Communications Officer
Phone: 705-662-7243
Email: klarkin@nosm.ca 


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