The Jeffery Williams Prize was inaugurated to recognize mathematicians who have made outstanding contributions to mathematical research. The first award was presented in 1968.
The Jeffery-Williams Prize is an Inuit soapstone sculpture. Each sculpture is different, granting the recipient a unique Canadian piece of art. As well, the recipient of the Jeffery-Williams Prize presents a plenary lecture at a CMS meeting.
Featured sculpture: "Young Walrus" by Peter Parr.
Selected with the generous assistance of Ian Wright from The Snow Goose Ltd., Ottawa.
Ralph Jeffery was the fourth president of the Canadian Mathematical Society from 1957-1961. Though he left school in the middle of Grade 8 to join his father as a fisherman, he graduated from Acadia University in 1921 and completed his Ph.D. in mathematics at Cornell in 1928. He served as Head of Mathematics at Acadia from 1924-1942 and Head of Mathematics at Queen's University from 1942 until his retirement in 1960. He then returned to an active teaching role at Acadia until his death, teaching three full courses in his 85th year. A dedicated member of the Canadian Mathematical Congress, he established its popular Summer Research Institute (SRI) which he directed each year from 1950-1965. By creating the SRI and by consistently encouraging research he made an outstanding contribution to mathematics in Canada.
Lloyd Williams was the treasurer of the CMS from 1945-1965. He taught at McGill University from 1924 until his retirement in 1954. Lloyd's vision of a forum which would bring Canadian mathematicians together contributed greatly to the formation and success of the Canadian Mathematical Congress. He oversaw the financial development of the Congress, securing donations from a wide variety of government, corporate and individual sources. As well, he worked hard to ensure that the Congress served all members of the mathematical community equally. He was the first to supervise a Ph.D. thesis in mathematics for a black student.