From left: Bruce Thordarson, Leo Thordarson (Photo: Conrad Thordarson)

The Leo and Bruce Thordarson Social Economy and Co-operatives Award is offered annually to a student who is enrolled in the Graduate Certificate in the Social Economy and Co-operatives program through the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy.

Value: $1,500

Established by family members, the Leo and Bruce Thordarson Social Economy and Co-operatives award was created in memory of father and son and their contributions to the co-operative sector. Raised in Mozart, Saskatchewan, Leo was the first in the family to attend university at the University of Saskatchewan. There, Leo received three degrees, including one in education, which led to a lifelong career in teaching and leadership in the field. Like his father, Bruce Thordarson attended the University of Saskatchewan. Bruce then devoted his life to serving the co-operative sector, including taking up posts as the executive director at the Co-operative Union of Canada (1979-1985) and the Director General for the International Co-operative Alliance (1988-2001), amongst roles in numerous other national and international co-operatives. 

The goal of the award is to support students in becoming the next generation of leaders in the co-operative and social economy sector. The successful application will be chosen based on: academic performance, demonstrated financial need, and the merits of the written submission.

Application procedure: Submission of a statement of no more than one page providing personal insight into the role(s) played by co-operatives, non-profits, and social enterprises in shaping your professional and/or academic career, and how this award will assist you in shaping your career. 

Application deadline: September 30, 2021

Please submit applications to:

The Canadian Centre for the Study of Co-operatives
101 Diefenbaker Place, University of Saskatchewan
Saskatoon, SK, S7N 5B8
Email: jsgs@usask.ca