We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Marjorie Anne Sauder, CM on November 20, 2021. Known for her consummate generosity, respect and genuine kindness, Marjorie Anne’s abundant support of her community touched the lives of countless people throughout British Columbia and Canada. A treasured volunteer and a considerate philanthropist, Marjorie Anne had a long history of supporting initiatives in health, business, and education at UBC, and beyond. I would like to express my heartfelt condolences to Marjorie Anne’s family on behalf of the entire UBC community.
Marjorie Anne and her late husband William L. Sauder (Bill) first met as UBC students in the 1940s. After graduation, Bill joined his family’s business, Sauder Industries, which grew into one of British Columbia’s industry leaders. Mindful of their good fortune and the importance of sharing it with others, Marjorie Anne and Bill went on to become one of British Columbia’s most philanthropic families.
A member of the Order of Canada, Marjorie Anne was committed to helping those in need, including children and women from marginalized communities. With genuine warmth and compassion, she gave generously to children’s health initiatives, establishing research chairs in the areas of pediatric infectious diseases and viral diseases of children. Marjorie Anne spent decades serving on the board of BC Children’s Hospital and supported the Dalai Lama Center for Peace and Education and the Vancouver School of Theology.
Notably, Marjorie Anne was the largest benefactor of UBC’s Institute of Mental Health. Her extraordinary support of mental health research came at a time when very few people recognized mental health as one of the most profound health challenges facing Canadians. Her giving helped to bring this urgent issue out of the shadows, inspiring others to give and destigmatizing mental health, while ensuring improved quality of care for the many who are affected.
Marjorie Anne’s exceptional commitment to UBC has been felt across campus with gifts supporting key educational and healthcare priorities, including the Botanical Gardens, opera students, and the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health. In 2003, Bill and Marjorie Anne established the Sauder School of Business. Their philanthropy has inspired a culture of generosity that will continue to provide lasting support of our communities for generations to come.
Marjorie Anne’s incredible contributions enabled the university to grow into the world-leading institution that it is today. She will be greatly missed at UBC by all those who knew her, and her legacy of making a difference will live on in perpetuity.
Santa J. Ono
President and Vice-Chancellor