FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE SEPTEMBER 10, 2010
CAFA DISTINGUISHED ACADEMIC AWARDS, 2010
(EDMONTON) – The Confederation of Alberta Faculty Associations (CAFA), the provincial organization representing academic staff associations at the University of Alberta, the University of Lethbridge, and Athabasca University, is pleased to announce the recipients of the CAFA Distinguished Academic Awards for 2010.
Dr. Carole Estabrooks, Canada Research Chair in Knowledge Translation in the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Nursing, has been chosen to receive this year’s CAFA Distinguished Academic Award.
Dr. Paul Hayes, Associate Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Lethbridge, is the recipient of the 2010 CAFA Distinguished Academic Early Career Award.
The CAFA Distinguished Academic Award recognizes academic staff members who through their research and/or other scholarly, creative or professional activities have made an outstanding contribution to the wider community beyond the university.
The CAFA Distinguished Academic Early Career Award recognizes academic staff members who, at an early stage of their careers, through their research and/or other scholarly, creative or professional activities have made an outstanding contribution to the wider community beyond the university.
“The CAFA Distinguished Academic Award and the CAFA Distinguished Academic Early Career Award are special because the honorees are chosen by their peers,” notes Dr. Walter Dixon, the President of CAFA. “These awards highlight exceptional contributions made by our colleagues, through their research, scholarly and creative activities, to the wider community beyond the academy. This year we are proud to celebrate the outstanding achievements in this regard of Dr. Carole Estabrooks of the University of Alberta and Dr. Paul Hayes of the University of Lethbridge.”
The 2010 CAFA Distinguished Academic Awards will be presented at a banquet at the Shaw Conference Centre, Edmonton, on Thursday, September 16, 2010.
John Nicholls, Executive Director, CAFA
Tel (780) 492-5630 e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Carole Estabrooks
Dr. Carole Estabrooks, Professor and Canada Research Chair in Knowledge Translation in the Faculty of Nursing at the University of Alberta, has been chosen to receive this year’s CAFA Distinguished Academic Award. The Award recognizes the outstanding contribution Dr.
Estabrooks has made to the wider community beyond the academy through her innovative and influential program of research focusing on knowledge translation in nursing, in which she is credited not only with advancing the science of knowledge translation – that is, our theoretical understanding of the factors that determine the use of new knowledge in a specific context – but also with helping to move research into practice to improve healthcare processes and outcomes for Canadians.
Dr. Estabrooks, who received her PhD and joined the U of A’s Nursing Faculty in 1997, has attracted over $19 million to the university in peer-reviewed research grants for her scholarly work on knowledge translation, and her many publications in the field have been widely cited. She is the holder of a number of active research grants, including major funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) for a five-year (2007-2012) program of research, Translating Research in Elder Care (TREC). One phase of a larger study of the use of research knowledge in health care, TREC is designed to examine the role modifiable elements of organizational context play in establishing best practice and instituting new evidence-based practices in long-term care facilities across the Prairie provinces.
The scientific objective of the TREC program is to develop an empirically-based theory of knowledge translation in long-term care, but other goals include developing and piloting innovative interventions to increase the uptake of research, contributing to better use of new knowledge in long-term care, and capacity-building for the implementation of research and quality improvement in nursing homes. This fundamental concern with practical healthcare outcomes is a hallmark of Dr. Estabrooks’ research. She has been particularly successful in engaging with community partners, including direct care providers, senior decision makers, and policy makers, involving them at every step of the research process, from the design of research questions and methods, to data collection, to the interpretation, dissemination and implementation of results. Intended to promote better use of new knowledge, this integrated and collaborative approach is helping to build capacity in the system for practical improvements in nursing and health services delivery, and importantly, quality of care and quality of life outcomes for frail older adults.
Dr. Estabrooks’ innovative research methods have garnered international recognition. Her Alberta Context Tool (ACT), already available in French, Swedish and Dutch, is about to be translated into Chinese. Apart from TREC, Dr. Estabrooks is currently engaged on a number of other major research projects, including a five-year CIHR Team grant in Children’s Pain and a European
Union 7th Framework Study, Facilitating the Implementation of Research Evidence, involving
elder care in five countries. In both of these studies, she is a co-investigator responsible for streams examining “the interactions of organizational context and knowledge translation.”
In Dr. Estabrooks’ work, the highest scholarly standards are combined with a strong commitment to improving health outcomes through increased use of scientific findings. As one of her colleagues notes, “Dr. Estabrooks has changed the face of knowledge translation science in Canada and indeed around the world, and has had a major impact on care for the elderly.”
DR. PAUL HAYES
Dr. Paul Hayes, an Associate Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Lethbridge, has been chosen to receive this year’s CAFA Distinguished Academic Early Career Award in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the wider community beyond the academy through his research into the way polymerization reactions work at the molecular level, with the aim of finding a cost-effective, environmentally-sustainable ‘green’ alternative to conventional plastics.
Paul Hayes’ academic career has been nothing short of stellar. He received his undergraduate education at Mount Allison University, in Sackville, New Brunswick, and completed his Ph.D. in Synthetic Organometallic Chemistry at the University of Calgary in 2004. From 2004 to 2006, he undertook post-doctoral research at the University of California, Berkeley, on a Post-Doctoral Fellowship from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).
In July 2006, Dr. Hayes took up an appointment as Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and earlier this year received promotion to the rank of Associate Professor and the grant of tenure.
Building his research programme at the University of Lethbridge from scratch, Dr. Hayes has been able to attract top-quality students and postdoctoral fellows to his lab. As Principal Investigator, he has secured multi-year external funding, including grants from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI), Alberta Ingenuity, NSERC, the Canada School of Energy and Environment, and GreenCentre Canada. Dr. Hayes’ research is receiving wide attention in the scientific community, and already has resulted in an impressive string of high-profile publications in leading peer-reviewed chemistry journals, in addition to numerous invited presentations at scholarly conferences across Canada and abroad.
Dr. Hayes’ research in the field of organometallic chemistry, focusing on fundamental questions in catalysis and polymer science, addresses the need to develop new technologies for chemical conversions, which are crucial to drug development, materials synthesis, and the production of value-added chemicals. Specifically, Dr. Hayes’ work on polylactide polymerization catalysis advances our understanding of the synthesis of ‘green’ polymers, that is, biodegradable polymers that can be prepared from inexpensive renewable sources, such as corn. This research holds the key to the challenge of producing viable alternatives to many conventional materials, such as ‘green’ plastic for food packaging. Lactone polymers also have many possible medical applications, for example in absorbable sutures, matrices for the slow release of pharmaceuticals, and polymer scaffolds for tissue engineering.
In only four years at the University of Lethbridge, Dr. Hayes has made remarkable progress in his work on lactide polymerization catalysis. The possible industrial and environmental implications of his discoveries in this field are wide-ranging, and will be of major importance to the general public. As one of his colleagues has commented, ‘Prof. Hayes is one of the leading academics in Alberta who is focused upon tackling problems that affect every Albertan.’ Another colleague has stated that ‘the scholarship of Dr. Paul Hayes is pointing to the future for all Albertans and has great potential for assisting us in achieving sustainability…He is a rising star and will be a great tribute to academia in Alberta as his career develops.’