The Massey Medal was established to honour those who have contributed to the exploration, development or description of Canada’s geography.
Established in 1959 by the Massey Foundation, the Massey Medal is awarded annually by the Society. Its purpose is to recognize outstanding career achievement in the exploration, development or description of the geography of Canada. Eligibility is restricted to Canadian citizens, although in special circumstances, the Medal may be awarded to a non-Canadian, subject to agreement by the Massey Foundation. It is always awarded to an individual, never a group. In a year in which no nominee is deemed to qualify, the Medal may be withheld.
The presentation of the Massey Medal is usually made at Rideau Hall by the Society’s Patron, the Governor General, when His/Her Excellency’s schedule permits. In years when this is not possible, a special award ceremony is held in conjunction with the College of Fellows Annual Dinner in Ottawa, with the President of the Society presiding.