Lakehead University Celebrates Research and Innovation

Lakehead University Research Week
Lakehead University Research Week President Stevenson addresses audience with Mayor Hobbs
Lakehead University Research Week
Lakehead University Research Week President Stevenson addresses audience with Mayor Hobbs

THUNDER BAY – TECH – Lakehead University’s Research and Innovation Awards Reception was held on Thursday, March 12 to celebrate the dedication and excellence of researchers and students.

Dr. Mary Lou Kelley from the School of Social Work received the SSHRC Distinguished Researcher Award, and Dr. Peter Hollings from Geology received the NSERC Distinguished Researcher Award.

The Distinguished Researcher Award is the highest honour conferred by Lakehead for research and scholarly activity.  

“I am honoured to be recognized as a Distinguished Researcher. My research focuses on a topic of high social importance: improving quality of life for people who are dying,” Dr. Kelley said.

“I work to create partnerships with patients, families and health care providers to develop new models of care and practical resources,” she said.

“My community partners, my research staff and graduate students based at the Centre for Education and Research on Aging and Health are integral to the success of my research, and I want to acknowledge them for their tremendous passion, dedication and talent. My research career at Lakehead University has been a privilege,” Dr. Kelly said.

Dr. Kelley started teaching at Lakehead University in 1980. Her community-based participatory action research aims to improve access and quality of palliative care for people living in rural and First Nations communities, and nursing homes.

Her capacity development approach includes developing interdisciplinary education and resources for health care providers.

She was the recipient of the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association’s 2011 Award of Excellence and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee medal in 2012 in recognition of her contribution to Canadian palliative care practice, education and research.

Dr. Hollings, Chair of the Department of Geology, was also honoured to receive this recognition.

“I have spent the last 13 years building a research team at Lakehead that focused on the origin of ore deposits around the world – and to have that work recognized in this way is a huge honour,” Dr. Hollings said.

“I have always worked to build teams and collaborations. This award would not have been possible without my research and industry partners, and most of all, my students,” he said.

Dr. Hollings is also the Director of Lakehead’s Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Mining and Exploration launched in 2013.

In 2008, Dr. Hollings was awarded the William Harvey Gross medal by the Mineral Deposits Division of the Geological Association of Canada. He has published50 peer-reviewed publications in internationally recognized journals, 22 of those as first author, and has been successful in securing major research funding from government and industry while at Lakehead University.

“Congratulations to all of our researchers and thank you for everything you do,” said Dr. Andrew Dean, Vice-President (Research, Economic Development and Innovation).

“The impact of research and innovation at Lakehead University is even more significant because of your contributions,” Dr. Dean added.

Award recipients

High Output and Publication Excellence (HOPE) Awards

  • Xin Chang, PhD Chemistry and Materials Science
  • Mary Jane Moses, MSc candidate, Biology
  • Alexander Penney, 2014 Graduate, PhD Psychological Science

Best of the Best Awards

  • Patrick Gauthier – Oral Presentation
  • Sultanah Albalawi – Poster Presentation

Postdoctoral Fellows Poster Awards


  • First: Sapanbir Singh Thind
  • Second: Aram Teymurazyan
  • Third: Maduraiveeran Govindhan


  • First: Kelly Skinner

Building Research Capacity Award for 2014

  • Dr. Aicheng Chen, Department of Chemistry

Innovation Award

  • Dr. Wilson Wang, Mechanical Engineering

ERA Award

  • Dr. Pedram Fatehi, Department of Chemical Engineering

Senate Research Committee Awards

Contributions to Research Award

  • Dr. Daniel Hannah, Department of English

Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Distinguished Researcher Award

  • Dr. Peter Hollings, Department of Geology

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Distinguished Researcher Award

  • Dr. Mary Lou Kelley, Department of Social Work
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