Dr. John Ashton (1952-2008)
|Sir Wilfred Grenfell College (SWGC) Principal Dr. John Ashton died Saturday, September 20. Born in Barnsley, Yorkshire, England, Ashton began his studies at Memorial University of Newfoundland in 1975 and went on to become an internationally recognized scholar in the field of Folklore.
During his time at Grenfell, Ashton championed the cause of increased autonomy for the College — a vision realized in April 2007 when the government of Newfoundland and Labrador announced its plans to implement a new governance structure that would give the College “increased university status”. From the SWGC news release:
“John believed that Grenfell was a significant force in the western region’s economy, and made great strides in promoting higher education and research activities as being key to the region’s socioeconomic wellbeing,” said Dr. Holly Pike, acting principal, Grenfell College. “He was instrumental in the development of our newest programs – business administration, tourism studies and sustainable resource management, and these programs reflect his view that Grenfell College should offer relevant programming to the students who will be our future leaders. John’s leadership and support enhanced the profile of Grenfell College regionally, nationally and internationally. We will miss him very much.”