Paralympic gold medallist Danielle Campo McLeod, a 2004 graduate of the University of Windsor’s Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, will receive an honorary doctorate during the institution’s spring Convocation ceremonies, the University announced Monday.
Campo McLeod, a world-record holding swimmer, was on campus to celebrate the release of her memoir, Resurrections: My Will to Survive is Olympian, which chronicles her life overcoming the debilitating effects of muscular dystrophy through competitive swimming, to rising to the height of her sport, marriage and family, and triumphing over a near fatal medical ordeal with the support of family, friends, and faith.
“Danielle is a natural choice to receive an honorary doctorate from the University of Windsor,” says Vincent Georgie, acting vice-president external.
“As a UWindsor alumna she demonstrates the type of indominable spirit and determination that have shown her to be an inspiration to everyone she touches — in sport, in her community, and within her family. It will be our honour to honour her.”
Campo McLeod calls the book a love letter to the many people in the Windsor-Essex County community who offered support to her and her family during her health crisis and the long road to recovery.
In nominating her for the honorary degree, the book’s co-author and former Windsor Star publisher Marty Beneteau said the decorated champion and MD advocate tells an inspiring story of determination in the face of adversity.
“In her role with Muscular Dystrophy Canada, Ms. Campo McLeod worked tirelessly to improve the lives of children suffering from this catastrophic neuromuscular disorder, raising countless thousands of dollars for research and advocacy,” he said. “Despite her medical ordeal, she aspires to launch a foundation which supports families encountering unexpected health crises.”She is a mother, social worker, child and family consultant, motivational speaker, and director of culture and engagement with Muscular Dystrophy Canada. Beneteau calls her road to wellness a story of faith, love, survival, and triumph, told with a unique blend of candour, ethos, and humour.