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In Memoriam

Cathy Daminato
Cathy Daminato

It is with deep sadness that we share the loss of Cathy Daminato, cherished friend and inaugural Vice-President of Advancement and Alumni Engagement, who passed away in late February, after a courageous battle with cancer.

A person of many talents, Cathy is remembered for her warmth, compassion, and humour, as well as for her extraordinary leadership in the fundraising community.

Cathy held a BSc from Queen’s University in Ontario, an MBA from the University of British Columbia, and an ICD.D designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors in Toronto. She met her husband Paul while working in Yellowknife, N.W.T, and after raising a family with him in Coquitlam, the couple retired to Osoyoos, interior B.C.

Throughout her successful career in philanthropy, Cathy held executive roles at Simon Fraser University, Douglas College, BCIT, and the Royal Columbian Hospital Foundation, and inspired widespread support in aid of health and education initiatives throughout the Metro Vancouver area. In 2014, the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) recognized her longstanding contributions with their Giving Hearts Lifetime Achievement Award.

At SFU, Cathy was a tremendous leader and champion for our community. With wise counsel and integrity, she guided our institution through times of immense growth and change. She led SFU’s 40th and 50th anniversaries and coinciding fundraising campaigns with marked enthusiasm—personally contributing with her husband, Paul, to numerous initiatives. Cathy inspired countless people to join her in shaping SFU and we simply would not be the leading university we are today without her incredible dedication and generosity.

Cathy left an indelible mark on all who had the privilege to interact and work with her and we extend our heartfelt condolences to the Daminato family.

SFU is honoured to have established the Cathy Daminato Memorial Fund, which pays tribute to Cathy’s life and her remarkable dedication to higher education by supporting SFU students and programs as they reach their goals. Learn more about making a contribution to this fund, here.

This story is part of our summer 2024 edition of Engage, our magazine celebrating the impact of SFU’s donor community.
To read more stories, please visit the Engage landing page.