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Fedoruk, Sylvia Olga (1927–)

Born in Canora May 5, 1927, and educated at the University of Saskatchewan, Sylvia Fedoruk pursued a distinguished career in medical physics, specializing in radiation therapy for cancer patients. For thirty-five years she was associated with the Saskatoon Cancer Clinic, where she served as chief medical physicist, and the Saskatchewan Cancer Foundation, where she was director of Physics Services. Fedoruk held the positions of professor of Oncology and associate member in Physics at the University of Saskatchewan. At the end of 1986 she took early retirement. Fedoruk was involved in the development of the world’s first Cobalt 60 unit and one of the first nuclear medicine scanning machines. She was the first woman member of the Atomic Energy Control Board of Canada. She also served as a consultant in nuclear medicine to the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna. An avid sportswoman and curler, Sylvia Fedoruk was inducted into the Canadian Curling Hall of Fame in 1986. She was Chancellor of the University of Saskatchewan from 1986 to 1989. In 1986 she was voted Saskatoon’s YWCA Woman of the Year and was appointed to the Saskatchewan Order of Merit. In 1987 she was named an Officer of the Order of Canada. She was the first woman Lieutenant-Governor of Saskatchewan, from 1988 to 1994. Sylvia Fedoruk faced the issue of the use of special warrants by the Progressive Conservative government of Grant Devine. She came under pressure to refuse her signature to the warrants but concluded that it was up to the electorate to render final judgement. Continuing as Lieutenant-Governor during the NDP administration of Roy Romanow, she and the Premier agreed that they would hold regular monthly meetings; Saskatchewan thus became the only province where the practice existed.

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Further Reading

Hryniuk, Margaret and Garth Pugh. 1991. A Tower of Attraction: An Illustrated History of Government House, Regina, Saskatchewan. Regina: Government House Historical Society/Canadian Plains Research Center; Leeson, Howard A. (ed.). 2001. Saskatchewan Politics: Into the Twenty-first Century. Regina: Canadian Plains Research Center.
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