Title: Jennifer Shay fonds.
Extent: 27 m of textual records and other material.
Biographical sketch: Dr. Jennifer Shay, the daughter of Frank and Kathleen Walker, was born on March 27, 1930, in Hull, England. Dr. Shay was interested in natural history at a young age, discovering her passion for biology on high school field trips to Flatford Mill Field Centre. This experience, the encouragement of a high school biology teacher, and her predisposition towards science made it possible to become one of the pre-eminent ecologists in Canada. Upon graduation from Newland High School in 1948, Dr. Shay attended London University where she obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in 1952. She immediately accepted a position at the Flatford Mill Field Centre in Suffolk however, due to a desire to expand her experience, she moved to Canada in 1957 where she worked as a research associate at the University of Manitoba. At the U of M, Dr. Shay completed a Masters of Science degree in 1959 and a Doctor of Philosophy in Science degree in 1964, while also lecturing for the Department of Botany. She became an assistant professor in 1965 and was promoted to associate professor in 1967 and a full professor in 1975. In 1966, she was appointed founding director of the University Field Station at Delta Marsh (now Delta Marsh Field Station), a position she held until 1986. In addition, she fulfilled a joint appointment in the Departments of Landscape Architecture and Botany from 1975 to 1986 and again from 1989 to 1993. Although Dr. Shay retired from the U of M in 1993, she remained a Senior Scholar and was awarded the title Professor Emeritus in 1995.
The significance of Dr. Shay's academic career as both a student and a professor is punctuated by her long list of awards and distinctions. These include the Shikar-safari Conservation Award, (1970), life-time membership to the Manitoba Naturalist Society (1976), the Canadian Nature Federation Douglas Pimlott Conservation Award (1979), the Manitoba Naturalist Society Ernest Thompson Seaton Distinguished Naturalist Award (1982), honorary life-time membership to the Manitoba Museum of Man and Nature (1982), the Canadian Botanical Association Distinguished Service Award (1984), the Peter D. Curry Chancellor's Award (1987), Member of the Order of Canada (1988), honorary life-time membership to the Manitoba Association of Landscape Architects (1990), University of Manitoba Outreach Award (1990), University of Manitoba H.H. Saunderson Teaching Award (1992), the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society J.B. Harkin Medal (1992), the Manitoba Eco-network Environmental Award (1993), Honorary Member of the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects (1994), the Canadian Healthy Environment Award for Lifetime Achievement (1996), YWCA Woman of Distinction (1997), and Officer of the Order of Canada (2001). In addition, she has headed and been a member of various boards and councils throughout her life.
Custodial history: Jennifer Shay donated the fonds to University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections in 2000 (A.00-37), 2003 (A.03-116), and 2004 (A.04-72).
Scope and content: The fonds consists of three accessions. Accession A.00-37 contains forty series related to the professional life of Jennifer Shay including correspondence, course information, research material, talks and lectures, publications, committee information, student theses, and awards. Accession A.03-116 contains thirteen series relating to Jennifer Shay's personal and professional life including personal and professional correspondence, awards, publications and research, childhood materials, university education records, Flatford Mill records, lectures and affiliations, biographical material, committees and philanthropic activities, and doctorate student records. A large portion of the manuscript collection consists of correspondence of a personal and professional nature from colleagues and family. A.03-116 includes one map, 130 photographs, 13 slides, 1 video tape, and 2 reel-to-reel audio tapes. Accession A.04-72 contains one series of letters written by Jennifer Shay and received by her mother, Kathlene Walker.
Restrictions: There are no restritions on this material.
Accruals: Further accruals are expected.
Finding aid: A printed finding aid is available in the Archives reading room and an on-line finding aid is available at the link below: