Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Leo Friman Kristjanson (1932-2005)

Professor, community activist.

Born at Gimli on 28 February 1932, he attended Gimli Public School and received a BA degree at United College and an MA degree at the University of Manitoba, finishing his education with a PhD from the University of Wisconsin. In 1959, he became a researcher, professor and later administrator at the University of Saskatchewan. Retiring in 1989 after nine years as the President of the University of Saskatchewan, Kristjanson returned to his hometown of Gimli, where he heavily invested himself in giving to his community, including coordinating the full restoration of the Gimli Public School building as a community space. Kristjanson received many honors during his life, including the Order of Canada (1990), Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal (2002), an honorary Doctor of Laws from the University of Winnipeg, Lieutenant-Governor’s Medal of the Institute of Public Administration, Regional Volunteer Award from the Manitoba Heritage Federation, and many other awards and recognitions. He died on 21 August 2005.

See also:

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Thorson House / Kristjanson House (32 Lake Avenue, Gimli)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Gimli Public School No. 585 (Second Avenue, Gimli)


Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 25 August 2005, page 27.

This page was prepared by Kris Keen and Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 2 November 2021

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society. We acknowledge that the collection contains both reputable and disreputable people. All are worth remembering as a lesson to future generations.

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