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Dr. Ron Francis?

By SooToday.com Staff
SooToday.com
Tuesday, June 03, 2008

NEWS RELEASE

ALGOMA UNIVERSITY

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Algoma University - Convocation 2008

SAULT STE. MARIE, ON - (June 3) - Algoma University will celebrate the awarding of degrees at Spring Convocation 2008 to be held on the campus of Algoma University on June 14, 2008.

The university is proud to confer degrees to over 200 graduates, the largest spring graduating class in the history of the institution.

Family and friends will join in the celebration beginning at 2 p.m. in the George Leach Centre.

Also honoured during the ceremony will be Mr. Ron Francis who will be awarded an honourary degree, Doctor of Letters, honoris causa; Mr. Errol Caldwell to receive the Senate Award (Honourary Member of Algoma University) and Dr. Thomas Allaway with the Distinguished Faculty Award.

Mr. Ronald Francis, Honourary Doctorate of Letters

Ron Francis completed his second season in a management capacity with the Carolina Hurricanes in 2007-08, and his first as the team's assistant general manager and director of player development.

Following a career in which he established himself as the greatest player in Hurricanes franchise history, Francis re-joined the Carolina Hurricanes organization in November 2006 as the team's director of player development.

In that role, Francis works with and assesses players in the Hurricanes system.

On October 4, 2007, Francis was named assistant general manager, further enhancing his role in hockey personnel decisions for the team.

Francis announced his retirement on September 14, 2005, following a 23-year NHL career with Hartford, Pittsburgh, Carolina and Toronto.

In 1,731 NHL regular-season games, Francis scored 549 goals and earned 1,249 assists, to rank him fourth all-time on the league's points list behind Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier and Gordie Howe.

Francis' 1,249 assists rank second only to Gretzky (1,963) and he ranks third on the games-played list behind Howe (1,767) and Messier (1,756).

The Hartford Whalers drafted Francis in the first round, fourth overall, in the 1981 NHL entry draft.

Francis played with the Whalers for 10 seasons before joining Pittsburgh at the trading deadline of the 1990-91 season.

He spent seven full seasons with the Penguins before rejoining the organization that drafted him, when the relocated Carolina Hurricanes signed him as a free agent on July 13, 1998.

In 16 seasons with the Hartford/Carolina franchise, Francis played in 1,186 games, scoring 382 goals, earning 793 assists for 1,185 points, all of which are franchise records.

The Hurricanes officially retired Francis' Number 10 jersey to the RBC Center's rafters on January 28, 2006; and on November 12, 2007, Francis was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

During his playing career, Francis played in four NHL All-Star games, won the Lady Byng Trophy (sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct) three times (1995, 1998, 2002), the Frank J. Selke Trophy (best defensive forward) in 1995 and the King Clancy Memorial Trophy (leadership/ humanitarian/ community work) in 2002.

He also won the Alka-Seltzer Plus Award in 1995 when he led the NHL in plus/minus, and was a key member of the Penguins' Stanley Cup-winning teams in 1991 and 1992.

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