The following are bios of just some of our alumni!
Catherine Clune-Taylor, BA '06, Assistant Professor
After earning a BA ('06) and MA ('08) in Philosophy, as well as a BMSc ('05) in Microbiology and Immunology at Western University, Catherine Clune-Taylor (she/her) went on to complete a PhD ('16) in Philosophy at the University of Alberta, under the supervision of Dr. Cressida J. Heyes. From 2016-2019, Clune-Taylor was a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Program in Gender and Sexuality Studies at Princeton University, before moving on to hold the position of Assistant Professor of Feminist Science and Technology Studies in the Department of Women's Studies at San Diego State University. In Fall 2021, she will take up the position of Assistant Professor in the Program in Gender and Sexuality Studies at Princeton University – making her the first junior hire in the program's history.
David Isaac, BA '14, Lawyer
Since graduating from Western’s philosophy program, David earned his MA in philosophy from the University of Waterloo where his thesis supervisor was Heather Douglas, before returning to Western for law school. David puts the analytical skills he developed in his philosophy degree to use in his health law, personal injury and class actions work at Lerners LLP. Website
Kathryn MacKay, BA '06, Lecturer
Since completing her undergraduate degree in philosophy, minor in ethics, at Western in 2006, Kate has had a varied career. She completed a master's degree in philosophy and then worked as an intern in the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. She was employed for the following four years as a Health Promotion research officer for the OMA, before starting her PhD in 2014 and returning to academia. As Kate's career attests, a huge range of career options is open to students of philosophy, and the skills it provides are extremely transferrable in the current employment market.
Joseph Rotman, BA '57, Businessman, Philanthropist, Chancellor
Born in Toronto, Rotman earned a BA from Western in 1957 and an M.Comm. from the University of Toronto in 1960. During 1960-61, he studied at the Columbia University Graduate School of Business in the
Katie Stockdale, BA '11, Assistant Professor
Katie found her love for philosophy after taking a course on Ethics and Emotions at Western. After graduating in 2011, she went on to complete her Master’s and PhD in Philosophy at Dalhousie University, where she kept thinking and writing about the emotions. In 2016, Katie joined the Hope and Optimism Project at Cornell University while writing her dissertation on hope. She then took up a tenure-track position in Philosophy at Sam Houston State University in Texas. Katie is now an Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of Victoria. Website
Kadie Ward, BA '06, International Economic Developer
Kadie Ward has built a busy career helping communities position themselves to compete in the global marketplace. Ward launched her consulting business, Build Strong Cities, in May 2012, and has already established close working relationships with municipalities in the Ukraine, Vietnam and the Caribbean. Read more Western Alumni Spring 2014
Emily Kress, BA '12, Assistant Professor
After completing her BA at Western, Emily attended Yale University for her PhD. She is currently an Assistant Professor at Brown University, where she studies and teaches ancient Greek philosophy. At the moment, she is especially interested in Aristotle's views on capacities and change, and the development of these views in his biological works. Website
Steve Pearce, PhD '16, Software Developer
Steve Pearce is the Manager at the Centre for Digital Philosophy, which is run out of the Department of Philosophy at Western. He is primarily responsible for the development and maintenance of our web services, including PhilPapers.org, PhilPeople.org, PhilEvents.org and PhilJobs.org. During his PhD at Western, most of Steve’s TA hours were spent programming at the Centre. After graduating, he decided not to pursue academia, and instead transitioned full time into this role.
Steve says his philosophical training has helped immensely in his work as a software developer. Philosophy has taught him how to break up intractable problems into well-defined units, how to communicate complex ideas effectively, and how to think through possible states of affairs in order to anticipate issues and edge cases. Website
Matthew Leisinger, BA '12, Assistant Professor
Matthew graduated from Western in 2012 with an Honors BA in philosophy (Scholar's Electives Program). After graduation, Matthew went on to earn a PhD in philosophy from Yale University (2018) before spending two years as a Research Fellow at Emmanuel College, Cambridge. Matthew is now an Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy at York University.
You can find more information about Matthew's philosophical research here.
Rob Paterson, BA '90
From his earliest days on campus in the
“Think of all those global consulting companies where everyone went to biz school. What are you looking for in those companies when you hire them?” asked the CEO of Alterna Savings & Credit Union. “You are looking for people with problem-solving skills – the ability to frame problems, solve problems, resolve problems.
“Biz school is fine. But I am a big proponent of arts degrees because of the critical-thinking skills they
Michael Del Monte, BA’08, Filmmaker
Winner of Best Documentary Feature and the Audience Choice Award at the Austin Film Festival this past fall, Transformer made its Canadian debut at the Canadian International Documentary Festival – better known as Hot Docs – earlier this month where it received the Rogers Audience Award for Best Canadian Documentary, which included a $50,000 cash prize. Del Monte also picked up the Emerging Filmmaker Award at the festival.
Western News reporter Paul Mayne chatted with Del Monte about his work on the documentary, just days after one of the biggest moments in the young filmmakers’ career. Read more here
Jed Schneiderman, BA’92, may sound like a self-help guru, but the founder and president of Tapped Mobile
Shauna Sexsmith, BA '08, International Project Development for the World Education Foundation
“As we go through life, experience teaches us to either develop a thicker skin or be really soft. A lot of times it tends to be the former and not the latter. But for me, it was about developing that ability to be soft within the world, to be present with someone while they tell you what they have lived through." Alumni, Gazette, Winter 2017
Karen Hunter Quartz’s “interesting story of failure” has led to a chance at success for hundreds of kids in one of the most disadvantaged areas of Los Angeles. Read more in Alumni Gazette, Fall 2014
Wendy Freeman, BA'86, President of CTV News Bell Media
Wendy Freeman is a 17-year veteran with CTV and the former executive producer of CTV
The seeds of alumni Vandana Shiva's future were planted four decades ago in the thinning forests of the Garhwal Himalayas in Uttarakhand, India. On March 24, 1974, generations of frustration over resource pillaging in that region culminated in a grassroots effort to save both trees and a way of life from disappearing. On that day, the women simply linked arms and refused to let go. Alumni Gazette, Fall 2011
Kevin Abrams, BA '94, Asst. GM for New York Giants
Safe to say Kevin Abrams’ dream job didn’t just fall into his lap. A high school player with a love for football, Abrams, BA’94 (Philosophy), tried to walk-on with the Western Mustangs in his first year at university. He didn’t make the cut. But that doesn’t seem to matter today. Funny what two Super Bowl trophies can do for a guy. Alumni Gazette, Fall 2012
Aaron Barth launched Dialectic Strategies in 2010 to offer workshops on critical thinking skills to organizations. Barth uses his training in philosophy to help prepare 21st-century executives for managing a modern business. Read Guelph Mercury
Antony Hare is something of an anomaly in the artistic world. His degree was in philosophy and economics, not visual arts. His artistic tools are little more than a computer and a tablet. And he credits his communication skills more than his artistic ones for earning him a living. Read more Western Alumni Winter 2011