2020 Award Winners

2020 SAC Award Winners

Speech-Language & Audiology Canada is pleased to recognize the following award winners.

For more information about SAC’s Awards and Recognition Program, please visit this page

Click here to view a list of past award winners.

Click on an award name to jump to the 2020 winner's biography and photo.

Award 2020 Winners
Eve Kassirer Award for Lifetime Achievement Patricia L. Cleave, Ph. D, S-LP(C)
Mentorship Award

Diane Dacquay, RSLP, S-LP(C)

Kathleen Kennedy, RSLP, S-LP(C)

CJSLPA Editor's Award
Busy Toy Designs Reduce the Specificity of Mothers’ References to Toy Parts During Toy Play with their Toddlers
 
Daniela K. O'Neill
Taylor J. Deglint
Ashley McKinnon
Angela Nyhout
Julianne Scott
National Clinical Certification Exam Award Jessica Niemela, M. Sc., Aud(C)
Brianne Senior, M.Sc., RSLP, S-LP(C)

Eve Kassirer Award for Lifetime Achievement

The Eve Kassirer Award for Lifetime Achievement is awarded to a member or associate of SAC who have demonstrated a long history of distinguished and dedicated service to both SAC and the professions of speech-language pathology or audiology in the areas of education, clinical services, administration or public awareness and has fostered the development and advancement of the professions, nationally or internationally.

Patricia L. Cleave, Ph.D. S-LP(C)
 
Biography
 
Dr. Patricia L. Cleave is a professor in the School of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Dalhousie University. After completing her Master’s degree at the University of Western Ontario, Pat worked clinically in Belleville and London, Ontario. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Kansas. She holds certification as a speech-language pathologist from SAC.
Pat’s teaching and research interests focus on the language and literacy skills of children. This work has included treatment efficacy studies and studies into the nature of monolingual and bilingual language development. Her research has been funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, the Nova Scotia Health Research Fund and the Canadian Language and Literacy Research Network. Pat has served as the Secretary and President of the Speech and Hearing Association of Nova Scotia and chaired the committee that successfully pursued professional licensure in Nova Scotia. She is currently the President of the Nova Scotia College of Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists. She has served on working committees for SAC and as a reviewer for CJSLPA. In recognition of her work establishing the PhD in Health, the Faculty of Health at Dalhousie University created the Patricia Cleave Award for Outstanding Leadership.

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Mentorship Award

Mentorship Award Awarded to an SAC member or associate who has significantly influenced or contributed to the clinical training and/or professional development of a student(s) or colleague(s) in speech-language pathology or audiology, either as a clinical supervisor, a mentor or academic faculty. Nominees demonstrate unique and outstanding individual achievements in the area of mentorship, have contributed to the development of others and have served as a role model for students and colleagues within the profession. This year, the Awards and Recognition Committee has made the decision to recognize two understanding SAC members with this award.

Diane Dacquay, RSLP, S-LP(C)
 
Biography
 
Diane is Franco-Manitoban and originally from the city of Winnipeg. She holds an Honors BA in Psychology from the University of Manitoba and a Master of Science in Speech Therapy from the University of North Dakota. She has worked as a bilingual speech-language pathologist in the school environment since the start of her career. Her first job was with the Child Guidance Clinic in Winnipeg where she was assigned to the Saint-Boniface school division. She was hired by the Division scolaire franco-manitobaine, the first French school division in western Canada, in 1994. This division included 23 schools located in urban and rural communities that were spread across the province. One of the long-term passions of this speech therapist was the provision of bilingual services for the preschool and school population. Together with her colleagues, she was concerned with developing materials; to research tools and best practices as well as to recruit speech-language pathologists to serve a bilingual population. For some time now, with the arrival of newcomer students, multilingual services have also been at the cutting edge. Other interests of this specialist included participation in various projects including the development of procedures for the use of telepractice in the school division.
Kathleen Kennedy, RSLP, S-LP(C)
 
Biography
 
Kathleen (Smith) Kennedy grew up in Delburne, Alberta. She graduated in 1991 from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Science in Speech Pathology & Audiology; Degree with Distinction. While at university, she received the Louise McKinney Scholarship for Academic Excellence (1989 & 1990) and the University of Alberta Board Of Governors' Award (1989 & 1990). Upon graduation, Kathleen began working at Children’s Services Centre (CSC) in Red Deer, AB. Kathleen worked at CSC (now the Aspire Special Needs Resource Centre) for 16 years and was fortunate to have many wonderful mentors on the transdisciplinary team including speech –language pathologist Linda Smith. It was during her time at CSC that Kathleen developed her passion for working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and their families. Kathleen received a Master of Speech-Language Pathology degree from the University of Alberta in 1997. Kathleen later worked in private practice and, since 2011, has been a speech-language pathologist at Children’s Autism Services of Edmonton. Throughout her career, Kathleen has supervised many speech-language pathology students, presented at numerous conferences and was a guest instructor at Red Deer College. In her current position as clinical lead, Kathleen provides mentorship to many new speech-language pathology graduates, a role she finds very rewarding.  Kathleen lives in Sherwood Park with her husband Scott and daughter Katherine.

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CJSLPA Editor’s Award

Recognizes the best paper published in the Canadian Journal of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology in the previous calendar year. SAC membership is not a requirement.

Read the winning paper:

"Busy Toy Designs Reduce the Specificity of Mothers’ References to Toy Parts During Toy Play with their Toddlers"

Authors:

Daniela K. O'Neill
 
Biography
 
Daniela O’Neill (BSc, University of Toronto; Ph.D. Stanford University) is a Professor of Developmental Psychology at the University of Waterloo where she founded and has directed her research lab, the Centre for Child Studies, since arriving in 1995. Her major research interests include children’s early pragmatic language development and its assessment during the toddler and preschool years, early parent-child and peer conversation, and children’s understanding and production of stories. She is the developer of the Language Use Inventory (LUI), a standardized parent-report assessment of children’s early pragmatic language development used by Speech-Language Pathologists and researchers around the world. Her research has been funded by NSERC, SSHRC, CIHR and a Premier’s Research Excellence Award. Her interest in graduate studies and experiential learning has led her to serve as Associate VP, Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs; Associate Chair of Graduate Studies for Psychology; and to develop and serve as Director of the MASC Developmental and Communication Science program, from which many students have gone on to studies in Speech-Language and Audiology programs across Canada. She has also embraced the entrepreneurial spirit of the university by founding a publishing company and bringing the LUI online with the help of Waterloo’s Accelerator Centre.
   
Taylor J. Deglint
 
Biography
 

Taylor graduated in 2016 with a Joint Honours degree in Psychology and Social Development Studies from the University of Waterloo. During her undergraduate studies, she participated in research with the Lab for Infant Development and Language as well as the UW Centre for Child Studies. She received the Child Language Research Award, Honours Thesis Award and President’s Award for Academic Achievement. After this, she completed her Master of Clinical Science in Speech-Language Pathology at Western University in London, Ontario in 2018. She currently works for WeeTalk Preschool Speech and Language Program and HearSay Speech and Hearing Centre.
   
Ashley McKinnon
 
Biography
 

Ashley completed her MASc training in the Child Development program at the University of Waterloo. She has worked with the Strong Start Charitable Organization, to help develop and coordinate the Get Ready for School program. Currently, Ashley performs psychological assessments with a private psychology firm. She has worked with children, adolescents, and adults who have Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Learning Disabilities, and mood and anxiety disorders. 

   
Angela Nyhout
 
Biography
 

Angela Nyhout completed her PhD in Psychology at the University of Waterloo, and a Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Toronto. She is now a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Developmental Psychology at the University of Kent. Angela’s research is focused on the development of children’s abilities to reason about hypothetical possibilities and fictional worlds, and how these abilities are shaped by early interactions with caregivers. She studies how engagement in fictional and hypothetical worlds relates and contributes to academic abilities including reading comprehension and science learning. Angela has received grants and funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, and the J. Albrecht Outstanding Young Scientist Award from the Society for Text and Discourse. 

   
Julianne Scott
 
Biography
 

Julianne Scott has spent the better part of the last decade helping education decision makers find, interpret, and use evidence to improve the achievement and well-being of K-12 students, first at Ottawa-Carleton District School Board and currently at Waterloo Region District School Board. Julianne contributed to the research that has been selected for the 2020 CJSLPA Editor’s Award, Busy Toy Designs Reduce the Specificity of Mothers’ References to Toy Parts During Toy Play With Their Toddlers, during her work as a research associate with Daniela O’Neill at the University of Waterloo. Prior to this work, Julianne completed her Ph.D. in developmental psychology at the University of Waterloo and a postdoctoral research fellowship with Janet Werker at the Infant Studies Centre in the Department of Psychology at the University of British Columbia and her colleagues Barbara May Bernhardt and Caroline Johnson in the School of Audiology and Speech Sciences and Linda Siegel in the Faculty of Education.

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National Clinical Certification Exam Award

Awarded to the SAC member in each profession who attains the highest score on the clinical certification exam during the previous calendar year.

Jessica Niemela, M. Sc., Aud(C)
 
Biography
 
Jessica Niemela is currently a pediatric audiologist at the Vernon Health Unit in Vernon, British Columbia. She graduated from University of British Columbia’s Master of Science Program in Audiology in year 2019. She is a recipient of SAC’s Grace Margaret Harris Scholarship in 2019. Jessica’s previous career was as a registered nurse, most of which she spent in the emergency department at Surrey Memorial Hospital. As a person living with hearing loss, Jessica is a proud member of the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association (CHHA). She volunteers as one of the CHHA-BC board directors and she is the Okanagan event coordinator for CHHA-BC’s Youth Peer Support Program. On her own time, Jessica enjoys being a mother to her three-year-old son. She dedicates this award to her loving partner who provided unconditional support during her aspirations to become an audiologist. 
   
Brianne Senior, M.Sc., RSLP, S-LP(C)
 
Biography
 
Brianne is a graduate from the School of Audiology and Speech Sciences at the University of British Columbia. She also obtained her Bachelor's degree in Honours Speech Sciences from UBC. Prior to graduate school, Brianne worked as a research and teaching assistant in the Department of Linguistics. Her research focused on speech perception. 
Brianne was drawn to the field of speech-language pathology because of her belief that communication is a human right that forms the foundation of our ability to connect with others. Brianne has worked with individuals from 11 months old to 97 years old. Her professional areas of interest include early intervention, augmentative and alternative communication, and language and literacy. She is also passionate about working with children with autism spectrum disorder, an interest which originated in her pre-graduate school days as a Canucks Autism Network volunteer. 
Brianne currently works with families of infants and preschool-aged children with complex communication needs including diagnosed or suspected autism, developmental delays, genetic syndromes, and neurological conditions. She enjoys partnering with families to support their children’s communication and play skills. Brianne is grateful for all her clients which teach her as much as she teaches them.

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