The Peter Corren Awards for Outstanding Achievement

Six of the seven recipients of the Peter Corren Award were present at the 18th Annual Breaking the Silence Conference on March 21, 2015.
Peter Corran Award Winners
(From left to right) Don Cochrane (2014), Patti Rowley (2013), Neil Richards (2011), Pat Atkinson (2015), Kay Williams (2012), and Jim Komar (2013).   

peter corren winners
(From left to right) Tony Bidulka, Herb McFaul, Fran Forsberg (2017), Alex Wilson (2016)


  1. This award may be given annually at the Breaking the Silence conference
  2. The award should be granted to that person, persons, or organization whose efforts have had a long-term impact on social justice for sexual minorities. It could be granted posthumously
  3. The award should be granted to those whose service/work was performed in Saskatchewan, or to those who have had a close relationship with communities in this province. The service/work may have been done outside of our province but would have affected us in Saskatchewan directly
  4. The work undertaken by a nominee should be done in a field of education broadly define

Recipients of the Award:

2016 - Alex Wilson Alex's ground-breaking work on the identity development of two-spirit people is recognized internationally and has become a touchstone for many LGBTQI Indigenous people. Her scholarship has greatly contributed to building and sharing knowledge about two-spirit identity, history, and teachings; Indigenous research methodologies; and the prevention of violence in the lives of Indigenous peoples. Her current projects include research into two-spirit and Indigenous feminisms, two-spirit identity development, "Coming In" theory that impacts pedagogy and educational policy, and working with the Aboriginal HIV/AIDS Community-Based Research Program.

2015 – Pat Atkinson When an undergraduate student in the College of Education, she was an active member of the 1975 Committee to Defend Doug Wilson. As a member of the provincial cabinet in 1993, she was a vigorous advocate for revisions to Saskatchewan Human Rights Code that made it illegal to discriminate against a person on grounds of “sexual orientation.”  As Minister of Education, she addressed the first Breaking the Silence conference in 1998 decrying discrimination in schools based on sexual orientation.

2014 - Don Cochrane developed the undergraduate course Gay and Lesbian Issues in Education in 1995 - the first course in the history of the university to be devoted exclusively to sexual orientation issues. Don founded the Breaking the Silence Conference in 1998 and has been its chief organizer since that date.

2013 - Patti Rowley was the teacher-liaison for the first Gay-Straight Alliance in a Saskatchewan high school and has led vibrant groups for thirteen consecutive years in Saskatoon.

2013 - Jim Komar is a long-time activist for sexual minority rights including being a charter member of Affirm United at Grosvenor Park United Church and Integrity, an Anglican Church support group--both in Saskatoon. As well, he was an official complainant to the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission more than ten years ago regarding hate speech, a case that led to the landmark judgment by the Supreme Court of Canada in 2013.

2012 - Kay Williams, activist in many progressive causes, member of the national board of directors for PFLAG beginning in 2004, co-founder of the PFLAG-Saskatoon, and member of the Breaking the Silence advisory board since 1997.

2011 - Neil Richards, Librarian, Member of the Committee to Defend Doug Wilson, Archivist of materials that document the gay, lesbian, and trans communities in Saskatchewan.

2010 - Gens Hellquist (October 12, 1946-September 28, 2013), Community activist, Executive Director of the Canadian Rainbow Health Coalition, and for many years Director of the Gay and Lesbian Health Centre in Saskatoon.


Nominations for this award may be sent to

Please describe briefly your reasons for your recommendation.