Dr. Shiv Ram Sharma
Doctor of Laws, honoris causa
Today, Cape Breton University confers the degree Doctor of Law, honoris causa, on a man whose contributions to Cape Breton’s Indian history and his dedication to the community’s well-being has impacted thousands of Cape Bretoners, Dr. Shiv Sharma.
Dr. Shiv Sharma graduated from SN Medical School in Agra, India, in 1962, with an MBBS Medical Degree. He completed his medical internship in Kampala, Uganda, in 1964. For the first year of his medical career, Dr. Sharma worked as a medical officer for the Government of Uganda.
Dr. Sharma and his wife, Shashi, moved to Canada in 1965 with their son, Robin, and would have their second son, Sanjay, a few years later. Dr. Sharma specialized in family medicine and obtained his certification from both the College of Family Physicians of Canada and the American Board of Family Practice.
From 1965 until his retirement in 2016, Dr. Sharma worked in medical practices throughout Canada. Dr. Sharma established medical practices in both Port Hawkesbury, Nova Scotia, and Toronto, Ontario. He developed a strong reputation in the community as a trusted doctor and community leader.
He is a past president of the Rotary Club of Port Hawkesbury and contributed significantly to the creation of one of the first Hindu temples in North America in Auld’s Cove, Nova Scotia. In the summer of 1971, a group from across the province met in Truro, N.S., to form the first Hindu Society in the Maritimes. Dr. Sharma and his wife were two of the founding members.
Dr. Sharma has volunteered extensively in Africa with those suffering from leprosy, ensuring their welfare and human rights were at the forefront during their care. He has been involved in the youth exchange program through his work with the Rotary Club and has hosted students from South Africa, India and China. Dr. Sharma has served on the boards of the Dartmouth General Hospital and the Cole Harbour Hospital. As well, Dr. Sharma served two terms as the Human Rights Commissioner for the government of Nova Scotia.
For his contributions to the medical community, Dr. Sharma was recognized at the age of 70 by the College of Family Physicians of Canada for his outstanding service to the profession. He also was given honorary Emeritus status from the Canadian College of Physicians and Surgeons.
Dr. Sharma encouraged his children to follow their dreams. They indeed followed his advice. His son, Robin, is a world-famous author and motivational speaker. His son, Sanjay, is a successful Retina Surgeon with a fellowship from Harvard University.
Dr. Sharma’s contributions to Cape Breton’s Indian history and his dedication to the community and the medical community across the country is outstanding, and the impacts will be felt for generations to come.