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Anti-bullying expert Wendy Craig promoted to Officer of the Order of Canada

Queen's University psychology professor recognized for groundbreaking youth research.

Wendy Craig, Queen's anti-bullying expert on the playground with school children.

On June 29, Queen’s University’s Head of Psychology, Wendy Craig, was appointed an Officer to the Order of Canada by Governor General Julie Payette. Dr. Craig’s appointment was in recognition of her seminal research on bullying and its impact on youth, as well as her groundbreaking efforts to link basic research, public policy, and community action together to solve the issue.

“I am very humbled to be named to the Order of Canada,” says Dr. Craig, who is seen as one of the world’s preeminent experts on bullying prevention and the promotion of healthy relationships. “I see it really as a recognition of a network of researchers, national organizations, grad students, and others who have continued to put science into practice to address bullying and promote healthy relationships.”

Dr. Craig, alongside her mentor Debra Pepler of York University, were the first scholars worldwide to capture the naturalistic interactions of bullying, demonstrating that bullying is a relationship problem arising from complex interpersonal dynamics. They documented from longitudinal research that children do not ‘grow out’ of bullying problems, but that they instead develop into patterns of behavior that transform into academic problems, sexual harassment, dating aggression, or criminal activity.

The quality and breadth of her research is evident in her extensive published work, which has also secured her and her collaborators 70 peer-reviewed grants (as principal/co-investigator) totaling over $32 million.

“Congratulations to Dr. Craig on this tremendous national honour,” says Daniel Woolf, Principal and Vice-Chancellor, Queen’s University. “Her trailblazing work continues to make a positive difference in communities across Canada, and exemplifies the combined power of science, practice, and collaboration.”

In 2006, Dr. Craig and Dr. Pepler co-founded the Promoting Relationships and Eliminating Violence Network (PREVNet), a network that includes 130 leading scientists and 62 national youth-serving organizations who are working collectively to stop bullying in Canada.

“Along with all of our PREVNet partners, Dr. Pepler and I have sought to affect government and educational policy with evidence-based research and programs,” says Dr. Craig. “Ultimately, we want to promote mental and physical health, healthy relationships, and strengthen our society – so that children and youth can live in an environment in which they can rise to their utmost potential.”

According to Dr. Craig, national surveys have shown that bullying rates have decreased up to 50 per cent since PREVNet was first established. Most recently, the network was awarded a $550,000 contract with the Public Health Agency of Canada to evaluate how best to educate teachers and teachers-in-training about teen dating violence and healthy relationships.

Dr. Craig is one of 105 new appointments to the Order of Canada – one of the country’s highest civilian honours, created to recognize achievement, dedication to the community, and service to the nation.

Other Order of Canada recipients with Queen’s connections include:

Beverley McLachlin (LLD’11), Former Chief Justice, Supreme Court of Canada

Suzanne Fortier (Former Vice-Principal (Academic)), Principal and Vice-Chancellor, McGill University
Sheila Fraser (LLD’05), Former Auditor General of Canada and Corporate Director

Alan Latourelle (MBA’94), CEO, Parks Canada (Retired)
Barry Wellar (Artsci’64, Artsci’65), President, Wellar Consulting