Alumni Award for Excellence in Teaching

Gala Award

In recognition of the primary importance of teaching excellence at Queen's University, the Alumni Association and the Senate will offer the Alumni Award for Excellence in Teaching. Presented annually to a Queen’s teacher who shows outstanding knowledge, teaching ability, and accessibility to students. 

The recipient of the award will receive $5,000 presented at the Queen’s University Alumni Association’s annual Gala Awards Dinner, and the Teaching Award statuette, presented at Convocation.

A candidate must be a teacher at Queen's University who has the primary responsibility for a course offered to registered Queen's students (i.e. organization and presentation). For this purpose, classrooms are not limited to lecture halls but include other teaching environments such as laboratories, seminars and tutorials.

  1. Students, alumni and/or faculty may make nominations, individually or collectively. Nominations from students and student perspective are especially valued.
  2. Teachers may not nominate themselves.
  3. A prior nomination does not disqualify a teacher. Many excellent candidates are not selected for an award simply because there is only one award given annually. Nominations for candidates who are shortlisted will be brought forward for one year. Members of the University community are urged to submit additional information for previously shortlisted candidates or re-nominate candidates who were unsuccessful in previous years and who continue to show excellence in teaching performance. 

For more information about alumni awards, please contact Nikki Remillard, 613-533-6000 ext 78691. 

2018 - Steven Lamontagne, Department of Psychology

2017 - John Allingham, Department of Biomedical and Molecular Sciences

Dr. Allingham has received praise from his students for his dedication to teaching and going above and beyond.

He is not the type of teacher who stands in front of the classroom and talks for an hour. He believes in active learning. He creates eye-catching videos and brings in props to help explain complex topics. He also spends countless hours working with students outside the classroom on projects such as the Queen’s Genetically Engineered Machine Team (QGEM).

Dr. Allingham was honoured at the QUAA Gala Awards Dinner on April 7, 2018.

2016 - Michelle Gibson, Department of Medicine

It’s not every day that students nominate their professor for an award, but Department of Medicine Professor Dr. Michelle Gibson, MEd’13, is clearly exceptional. Dr. Gibson will be receiving the Alumni Award for Excellence in Teaching Award. Her passion goes beyond simply teaching students; she is invested in curriculum development and student assessment. Her nomination is a true testament to her dedication to her students and her impact in the classroom.

Dr. Gibson was honoured at the QUAA Gala Awards Dinner on April 8, 2017.

2015 - Jacqueline Davies, Department of Philosophy

With an unparalleled dedication to the craft of teaching and learning, Jacqueline Davies, Artsci’83, MA’85, PhD’97, has inspired countless students since she began teaching at Queen’s in 1990. 

Her heroes – Socrates and Ms. Frizzle, the eccentric, adventuresome ¬third-grade teacher from the “Magic School Bus” cartoon series – indicate the wide range of thought and consideration Dr. Davies devotes to her teaching approach. 

As continuing adjunct professor in the Department of Philosophy with a cross-appointment in gender studies and affiliations with cultural studies and Jewish studies, Dr. Davies’s consistently inspires her students to learn fearlessly and embrace their mistakes.

While she specializes in topics ranging from feminist thought to critical thinking she believes the subject matter is always secondary to the ¬students. “It’s really important to keep in mind that you’re not teaching a subject. You’re teaching people.”

Students love her honesty and bravery for, as student Galen Watts puts it, sharing “her own adventurous and somewhat fraught personal journey through various religious traditions—specifically Judaism and Buddhism.” They are inspired by her ongoing concern for social justice. She regularly speaks up in support of the plight of Aboriginals in Canada and many other marginalized voices.

Dr. Davies strives to engage her students in many ways, using film, music, and even Buddhist meditation techniques to stimulate thought and inquiry.  Her friendly and welcoming demeanor make her easy to talk to, and her quick-witted, razor-sharp mind brings a sparkling quality to any lecture-hall discussion or intimate conversation.

Unlike her cartoon hero, Ms. Frizzle, Dr. Davies may not lead her students on field trips to the ocean floor or the inside of a beehive, but she keeps them eagerly anticipating their next learning adventure. “It was ¬always a fun surprise to arrive at Jackie’s class,” ¬Mr. Watts says. “You never knew precisely what she would come up with next.”

Dr. Davies was honoured at the QUAA Alumni Awards Gala on April 2, 2016.

2014 - Catherine Donnelly, School of Rehabilitation Therapy

Dr. Catherine Donnelly began teaching at the School of Rehabilitation Therapy in 2004. Her current teaching focuses on the physical determinants of occupation, the lived experience of disability and clinical reasoning. Dr. Donnelly’s commitment to active learning has led her to the discovery and development of new teaching and learning strategies that move away from the traditional lecture-based format. 

Dr. Donnelly’s ability to create a learning environment designed to involve students in the course material while providing ample support and guidance is what has taken her teaching style beyond the traditional classroom or clinic, putting theory into everyday practice. 

In addition to teaching and clinical work, Dr. Donnelly conducts research in the interrelated areas of primary care, knowledge translation and interprofessional education, and collaborative practice. Her dedication to teaching, clinical work and research is the hallmark of Queen’s excellence.  

Dr. Donnelly was honoured at the QUAA Alumni Awards Gala on March 28, 2015.

2013 - Daniel Lefebvre, Department of Biology

2012 - James Fraser, Department of Physics, Engineering Physics and Astronomy

2011 - George Bevan, Department of Classics

2010 - David Strong, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, Integrated Learning Centre

2009 - Les MacKenzie, Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology

2008 - John Hanes, Geological Sciences and Geological Engineering

2007 - Patrick Oosthuizen, Mechanical and Materials Engineering

2006 - Richard Jackson, School of Business

2005 - Bruce Tufts, Department of Biology

2004 - Donato Santeramo, Department of Italian and Spanish

2003 - Bill Newstead, Department of Chemistry

2002 - Richard Ascough, Department of Theology

2001 - Jim Whitley, Department of Mathematics and Statistics (deceased)

2000 - Leo Jonker, Department of Mathematics and Statistics

1999 - Terry Krupa, Faculty of Health Sciences

1998 - Lynda Jessup, Department of Art

1997 - Paul K. Christianson, Department of History

1996 - W. Alan Gorman, Geological Sciences (deceased)

1995 - Joan E. McDuff, Faculty of Education

1994 - Virginia Walker, Department of Biology

1993 - Barrie Frost, Department of Psychology

1992 - Katherine Wynne-Edwards, Department of Biology

1991 - Robert E. Hawkins, Faculty of Law

1990 - Patrick J. O'Neill, Department of German

1989 - David H. Turpin, Department of Biology


Sandra L. McBride, Department of Geological Sciences
Alistair W. MacLean, Department of Psychology


Rita Maloney, School of Nursing
Frank D. Collom, School of Business (deceased)


Stanley Sadinsky, Faculty of Law
Caroline M. Miller, Department of Sociology


Frederick W. Gibson, Department of History (deceased)
Robert G. Crawford, Computing & Information Science


Gerald S. Marks, Pharmacology and Toxicology (deceased)
Josephine M. Reddick, School of Nursing


Colette Y. Tonge, Department of French (deceased)
D. Catherine Brown, Department of History (deceased)

1982 - Ronald J. Delisle, Faculty of Law (deceased)

1981 - William T. Cannon, School of Business

1980 - David J. Mullan, Faculty of Law

1979 - William C. Reeve, Department of German

1977 - Alastair R. C. Duncan, Department of Philosophy (deceased)

1976 - H. R. Stuart Ryan, Faculty of Law (deceased)

1975 - William D. Gilbert, Department of Mechanical Engineering (deceased)