Mary-Lou Florian

Conservation scientist earns honourary degree from UVic

In her James Bay garden, amidst freshly-planted nasturtiums, Mary-Lou Florain finds inspiration for her sketches, vegetables for her dinner plate and plenty of flowers for her neighbours.

The 85-year-old conservation scientist also finds fodder for her work, which has resulted in more than 50 academic publications and, as announced last week, an honourary doctor of science degree from the University of Victoria.

“It was quite an honour, quite a surprise, and I’m going to cherish it very much,” said Florian, who continues to lecture at UVic as well as at schools in the U.S.

She is currently editing the fourth book since her retirement. The book looks at biofilm (a kind of slime) found on heritage materials.

“We haven’t paid much attention to (biofilm), so I thought I better write a book and bring us up to snuff,” she said. “I like to pass on my information, that’s why I write … all this information I worked so hard to get.”

Long-time friend Shirley Brodeur, finds inspiration in Florain’s continued success.

“She’s still teaching, still writing books, still helping young people understand this world of conservation. I think it’s inspiring,” Brodeur said. “Good God, I hope I’m still doing that when I’m 85.”

Florian was the first biologist hired by the Canadian Conservation Institute before she joined the staff of the Royal B.C. Museum in 1978, where she focused much of her career on artifact conservation – especially First Nations’ totems, basketry and wooden cultural objects recovered from waterlogged archaeological sites. The degree will be conferred upon Florian during a June 14 ceremony at UVic.

nnorth@saanichnews.com

 

Just Posted

Sidney Concert Band strikes up seasonal note with fundraiser for young musicians

Money raised from the Dec. 9 show benefits 676 Kittyhawk Air Cadet Band program

House fire in View Royal sends one to hospital Saturday morning

View Royal Fire Rescue says fire is now out

Camosun student starts bursary program for low-income students

The Jor-Dawn Smith Bursary will go to one Greater Victoria graduate in spring 2020

Victoria property company plans to replace Saanich apartments with townhouses

Abstract Developments plans 26 townhouses for Gorge Road West

VIDEO: Boys help rescue Cariboo bear cub

The cub, weighing just 24lbs, has been taken to wildlife sanctuary in Northwest B.C. for the winter

Greater Victoria 2019 holiday craft fair roundup

Get a jump on your holiday shopping

$578: that’s how much your first distracted driving ticket will cost with recent premium hikes

Over 50 per cent of Canadians admitted to using phone while driving last year, according to study

Kelowna man attempts to steal bait bike from RCMP parking lot

38-year-old Brian Richard Harbison is facing several charges

‘Things haven’t changed enough:’ Ecole Polytechnique anniversary prompts reflection

Fourteen women were fatally shot by a gunman at the Montreal school on Dec. 6, 1989

Bear raids freezer, gorges on Island family’s Christmas baking

Hungry bruin virtually ignored meat and fish, focused, instead, on the sweets

Second warning on romaine lettuce from California region as another E. coli case reported

Two cases of E. coli have been reported in relation to the illness in the U.S.

Residents in B.C. city could face 133% tax hike in ‘worst case’ lawsuit outcome: report

An average home could see a tax increase of $2,164 in one year

Most Read