Mr. Donald MacLaren Sr. was a fur trader from Peace River, Alberta, Canada who became one of Canada's ace pilots during the First World War and founded the first commercial airline on the Canadian west coast, Pacific Airways. He later piloted the inaugural flight of Trans-Canada Airlines, which later became Air Canada. Mr. MacLaren passed away in 1988 at the age of 95.
This award is named in memory of Major MacLaren's son, Donald MacLaren Jr., the former Public Affairs Manager of Air Canada, who was an avid supporter of closer working relationships between all cooperative education institutions throughout the world. This prestigious award is to be presented at the biennial World Conference on Cooperative & Work-Integrated Education to an individual in recognition of high achievement and continuing commitment to the enhancement of international cooperative education.