2021 AMS Great Trekker Award

Congratulations to Dr. Ken & Susan Chow on winning the 2021 AMS Great Trekker Award!

The Great Trekker Award is presented each year to an alumnus or alumnae who has made unique contributions to UBC and the wider community. It was first established in 1950 to commemorate the Great Trek of October 28, 1922, when UBC students marched to pressure the government to complete work on the university’s buildings.

2021 marks the first time this award has been presented to a couple who are both UBC Alumni. Dr. Ken Chow, BSc 1987 & Mrs. Susan Chow, BA 1987 are active community supporters and philanthropists of UBC and other important local organizations. The Chow Family alumni legacy also includes their three children, Kennedy, Kaitlin and Kaileigh.

Within UBC Dentistry, Dr. Chow greatly enjoys teaching the undergraduate oral surgery modules. His mentorship and keen connection with the students has been recognized in past teaching awards voted on by our students. Ken and Susan have also established the Chow Family Bursary, an award for each of the four-year DMD programs which supports students facing financial hardship.

Dr. Chow was an active member of the past Dean’s advisory board for 10 years, -played a critical role in providing guidance and advocacy to the school, and was involved with the building of the Nobel Biocare Oral Health Centre. Most recently, both Ken and Susan helped the Faculty raise $100K, in a record four days, to support a new one-chair dental clinic in the Villa Cathay long term care facility. This program not only provides on-site care to seniors, but  is also a critical component for the geriatric dental rotations, essential for students to learn the complexities of treating seniors.

In 2019 UBC Dentistry awarded Dr. Chow with our alumni affiliate award – honouring those who have not received their professional degree from UBC, but show a deep commitment to the Faculty of Dentistry.

Both Ken and Susan Chow are also great advocates for UBC Athletics: they have been supporters of the UBC Women’s Field Hockey program since their daughters joined the team in 2017.  Susan in particular has used her incredible gala skills to organize fundraising events and initiatives for the team with incredible organization and passion for fun! Susan and Kenneth’s energy and excitement is infectious and the UBC Women’s Field Hockey program greatly appreciates the support for their small but mighty program.

Within the Vancouver community, the Chows have been deeply engaged in making a difference with a commitment of both their time and philanthropy. Susan has chaired many committees and spent countless hours volunteering. In addition to the Vancouver Chinatown Foundation and BC Children’s Hospital Foundation, the Chows have also been activity involved in supporting the BC Cancer Foundation, CLICK Society and Christmas Family Ball as well as supporting both St George’s and Crofton House Schools. In 2018 Susan Chow was nominated by AFP Vancouver for a Giving Hearts Award.

The Great Trekker Award is also said to commemorate the spirit of the Great Trek of 1922, something both Ken and Susan Chow have embodied in their advocacy, and shared extensively within our UBC community and beyond.


To see a list of past Great Trekker Recipients, click HERE