Trailblazing tech innovator Julia Elvidge receives honorary doctorate from the Faculty of Engineering

Faculty of Engineering
Dean of the Faculty of engineeirng, Honorary Doctorate recipient Julia Elvidge, and President of the University of Ottawa
With the return of in-person convocation celebrations for the first time since 2019, the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Ottawa had the pleasure of awarding tech trailblazer Julia Elvidge an honorary doctorate for her tremendous work in the industry both in Ottawa and around the world.
engineering- Jacques Beauvais

“It has never been more crucial for universities such as ours to train the leaders of tomorrow. Elvidge is an inspiring role model for the class of 2022 as they embark on their exciting next chapter.”

Jacques Beauvais, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering

Elvidge has over 30 years of high-technology business experience. An electrical engineer, she designed microchip circuits before moving to the business side of technology. As Chipworks co-founder and president from 2003 to 2016, Elvidge helped make the company an industry leader delivering patent and technology analysis products and services to electronics companies worldwide. Chipworks was sold in 2016, but she stayed on as senior vice-president until her retirement in 2017.  

Since retiring, Elvidge has remained active in the tech community by working with companies and founders as an advisor and investor.  

Elvidge is a member of the Canadian Institute of Corporate Directors and is committed to supporting women entrepreneurs and women in the STEM sector. She works part-time at Invest Ottawa as an adviser, is a co-founder of the SheBoot bootcamp program for women entrepreneurs and is also a board member of the Capital Angel Network, where she invests her time and energy to make a difference. 

During her career, Elvidge achieved success in a male-dominated industry environment. She brought her own personality and perspective to Chipworks, creating an open communication environment that stood out in the industry. She has been recognized for her strategic insights and her leadership style.  

“As is the case for many of Ottawa’s internationally recognized leaders in technology, and in particular as a woman leader in her field, Julia’s continuing impact and dedication far exceed the recognition that she has received to date,” says Jacques Beauvais, dean of the Faculty of Engineering. “It is one of the fundamental reasons we are honoured to award her an honorary doctorate.”  

Elvidge has been involved in a wide range of activities outside of the formal organizations noted above, including STEM outreach programs in primary and secondary schools. She continues to play a key role in supporting young women entrepreneurs and engineers, by helping to open doors as a role model, mentor and investor. 


Woman at podium wearing graduating robe - onorary Doctorate recipient Julia Elvidge

“One of my take-aways for you today is: Speak up for diversity in your organizations and find ways to ensure that everyone feels included.”

Julia Elvidge, honorary doctorate recipient

Recently, Elvidge took part in a Faculty of Engineering taskforce that aided the development of the new School of Engineering Design and Teaching Innovation. The school will expand our capacity to bring real-world interdisciplinary problems to the engineering learning environment and increase the impact of our students’ projects, bringing entrepreneurship and innovation to the forefront of the academic community. 

Honorary doctorates are given to individuals who have made substantial contributions to the University of Ottawa, to their profession or to society at large.