Alumni Association of Lakehead University

David Shannon

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Thunder Bay lawyer and human rights activist, David Shannon, has dedicated himself to policy development and legal advocacy for the protection of human rights and inclusion for people with disabilities in the community.

After graduating from Lakehead University (BA’86), David studied law at Dalhousie University (LLB’91), and later received a master's degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Shannon was called to the bar in 1996 and began his practice in Thunder Bay in 1998. In January 2011 David and 29 other appointees were invested to the Order of Ontario by Lieutenant Governor David C. Onley at a ceremony at Queen’s Park.

David is the author of Six Degrees of Dignity: Disability in an Age of Freedom, (Creative Bound Inc., 2007), in which he examines equality and the promotion of dignity for people with disabilities, as well as the barriers that still exist in Canadian society.

In 2009, David became the first person in history with quadriplegia and in a wheelchair to reach the North Pole. He and expedition co-leader and fellow lawyer, Chris Watkins, marked the achievement by planting a Wheelchair Access Parking sign on the North Pole along with a United Nations, Canadian, and Ontario flag.

David is the recipient of numerous awards including the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal for significant contributions to fellow Canadian citizens and the Thunder Bay Law Association’s Service Award for service above and beyond usual or normal expectations or standards, for the benefit of the citizens of Thunder Bay.

The Lakehead University Alumni Association congratulates David Shannon on his remarkable achievements in advocating for the human rights and dignity of people with disabilities.


To read more about David Shannon and read the full media release please click here to be redirected to the Governor General of Canada website.