Ronald G. Calhoun Science Ambassador Award Winners


Dr. Douglas Jones 2018
Dr. Jones has been a long-time member of the Partners In Research National Board and is currently finishing his tenure as Past President. Dr. Jones is the first person to receive both a research and lay award from Partners In Research Canada after having received the Biomedical Science Ambassador Award in 2002. In addition to his dedication to Partners In Research as a board members, Dr. Jones has been a promoter, fundraiser and educational outreach participant.

Dr. Jones’ research focuses on determining physiology and pathophysiology of cardiovascular function. Recent studies have focussed on substrates associated with arrhythmia in atrial fibrillation, mechanisms of, and development of procedures and tools for minimally-invasive, robotically-assisted cardiac surgery, and neurophysiological regulatory mechanisms of cardiovascular control.

 Doug Jones
 Ms. Michelle Brownrigg  2017
 Michelle Brownrigg received her M.Sc from the University of Toronto where she now acts as Director of Physical Activity and Equity in the Faculty of Kinesiology and Physical Education. A former CEO of Active Healthy Kids Canada, she also does independent consulting in various areas of health promotion and school development. Instrumental in the MoveU campaign, she helped enable critical health research to be conducted and improve the health of the student body of University of Toronto, and was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal as tribute to her dedication. Ms. Brownrigg has been a revelation in health promotion, helping graduate students with analysis and implementation of ideas and initiatives. Alongside research support, she also facilitates linkages with Health and Wellness at the University of Toronto to support physical activity programming as well as overseeing data collection for the National College Health Association which enables the University health care professionals to gain information on the wellbeing of the students in comparison to others in North America.  2017 - Brownrigg
 Ms. Colleen McGavin  2016

Colleen McGavin is a retired business educator having taught courses in communication and office technology for nearly 25 years at Camosun College in Victoria, British Columbia. After graduating with her BA and professional diploma in secondary education, she completed a post-graduate designation in computer based information systems, all at the University of Victoria. In 2014, she completed the training to become a certified member of the International Association of Public Participation (IAP2). Colleen has extensive experience as a cancer patient and as a caregiver to her elderly parents and, since 2010, she has been an active volunteer with Patients as Partners|Patient Voices Network, a program that is supported through the BC Ministry of Health. She is also a patient advisor for Island Health Authority. Through these affiliations, she has worked with organizations such as the BC Patient Safety and Quality Council, Doctors of BC, the Ministry of Health, and the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research. Colleen was a member of the interim governing council for BC’s Strategy for Patient Oriented Research (SPOR) SUPPORT Unit and collaborated on the business plan. She was subsequently hired as the interim patient and stakeholder engagement lead for the SUPPORT Unit, a position she currently holds. Through these associations, Colleen has become very involved in health research itself. She is part of several research teams as a knowledge user, collaborator, or co-investigator.

2016 - McGavin
 Dr. Robert Thirsk  2015

Dr. Robert Thirsk, Chancellor The University of Calgary & Former Astronaut

Bob Thirsk has flown on two space missions as a member of the Canadian Space Agency’s astronaut corps. He first flew aboard the space shuttle Columbia in 1996 as part of the 17-day Life and Microgravity Spacelab Mission.

In 2009 Bob launched aboard a Russian Soyuz spacecraft to the International Space Station. As members of the 188-day Expedition 20/21, Bob and his ISS crewmates performed multidisciplinary research, robotic operations and maintenance of Station systems.

Bob has visited hundreds of schools to talk about his work. He encourages students to participate in hands-on learning and to follow their dreams.

2015 - Thirsk
 Mrs. Janice Filmon  2014

Mrs. Janice Filmon, Chair, CancerCare Manitoba, and recipient of the Ronald G. Calhoun Science Ambassador Award that recognizes a member of the community who has provided outstanding leadership over several years in support of health research.

Mrs. Janice Filmon has devoted countless hours over the past 25 years to speaking, chairing and leading many campaigns and events including the capital campaign that founded the current CancerCare Manitoba Centre.

2014 - Filmon
 Dr. James Low  2013
For Dr. Low, receiving this award served to recognize that his work at the Museum of Health Care at Kingston and its mission to enhance public understanding of the history and science of health and health care is worthwhile. He shares his perspective on why science outreach efforts are so important: “Governments and society, through foundations and individuals, have made a vast financial investment in health and health care research. Accountability requires public understanding of what has been achieved. […] Science outreach efforts are important to assure society that the research undertaken has led to new knowledge that in time may be translated into patient care for the benefit of society.” 2013 - Lowe