The John McNeill Excellence in Health Research Mentorship Award recognizes outstanding mentorship by faculty members at any stage in their academic career, in any of UBC’s health-related disciplines, who have formally been identified as mentors, and who exemplify a deep commitment to fostering the professional and personal development of faculty colleagues, graduate students, and post-doctoral fellows in the early stages of their academic careers.
Dr. Christopher Overall, Full Professor and Tier 1 Canada Research Chair Emeritus (2000-2022) in the Centre for Blood Research, Department of Oral Biological and Medical Sciences, Faculty of Dentistry, UBC. Dr. Overall has developed an unparalleled research program in biochemistry and molecular immunology and drug target validation. He has developed a diverse, interdisciplinary, supportive training environment and mentored numerous junior faculty members, post-doctoral fellows, and graduate students and fostered their educational, professional, and personal development. His mentorship is characterized by integrity, creativity, and fairness, which has led his 40 trainees to achieve successful scientific careers, with 20 of them holding academic appointments across the world, presenting at international conferences, earning authorships, and holding joint patents. Dr. Overall inspires his students to become distinctive and skilled scientists who pursue ingenious projects and strive to be leaders in their fields.
Dr. Larry Lynd, Associate Dean – Research, Professor, and Director of Collaboration for Outcomes Research and Evaluation (CORE) in the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences. Dr. Lynd has made significant contributions to the mentorship of numerous graduate, post-graduate, and clinical trainees, and his demonstrated abilities in leadership and mentorship of junior faculty have contributed to the success of CORE. A testament to the superb training and mentorship environment that he fosters, Dr. Lynd’s trainees have been recipients of prestigious scholarship awards, published in peer-reviewed journals, and presented in national and international conferences. With the well-rounded experiences facilitated by Dr. Lynd, trainees are poised for success in their future careers—many now hold positions in academia, research, and industry. Dr. Lynd embodies excellence in mentorship, encouraging and inspiring individuals to reach their full potential.
Dr. Teresa Liu-Ambrose is the recipient of the 2020 John McNeil Excellence in Health Research Mentorship Award for her outstanding achievements as a health research mentor and the impact her mentorship has had on her trainees. Dr. Liu-Ambrose is a professor in the Department of Physical Therapy and Co-Director of the UBC Centre for Hip Health, both in the Faculty of Medicine. Her research in healthy aging has made significant contributions to improving the health of older adults by shaping practice and advancing knowledge in the areas of brain health and mobility in aging. Dr. Liu-Ambrose has mentored numerous undergraduates, research graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, clinicians in training, research associates, and faculty members—many of whom garnered funding and continued in their careers to become successful and recognized experts in health research and clinical communities at multiple levels. She encourages and inspires colleagues and students to reach their full potential through tailored mentorship that fosters critical thinking, scholarly rigor, outstanding communication skills, and academic integrity.
Dr. Lara Boyd, Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy with the UBC Faculty of Medicine won the 2019 John McNeill Excellence in Health Research Mentorship Award for her outstanding achievements as a health research mentor and the impact her mentorship has had on her trainees.
She is a world leader in multimodal brain imaging, with expertise in the use of non-invasive brain stimulation and magnetic resonance imaging. Highly regarded as a scientist and a mentor, Dr. Boyd has been sought out for her mentorship by individuals within and outside her home department. She has mentored a large number of trainees and faculty who subsequently continued in their careers to become successful and respected leaders in the health research and clinical communities they serve.
Throughout her career, Dr. Boyd has shown a strong interest in graduate education and the training of future researchers. She runs her lab as a collaboration among all members and integrates graduate and undergraduate students from a variety of disciplines and backgrounds, including occupational and physical therapy, neuroscience, neurology, epidemiology, psychology, kinesiology, education, cellular and physiological sciences, physics, engineering, and music. The individuals, structure, and innovative mission of Dr. Boyd’s lab combine to create a professionally nurturing and stimulating environment for trainees at all levels.
Dr. Boyd is an inspiring role model for trainees, encouraging and supporting the academic research, professional development, and personal growth of her trainees. Her extraordinary mentorship, guidance, and collaborative philosophy are credited for the success of many of her trainees.
Dr. Marcel Bally, Professor in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine in the UBC Faculty of Medicine, is the proud winner of the 2018 John McNeill Excellence in Health Research Mentorship Award for his stellar accomplishments in health research mentorship and the influential impact on his mentees.
Dr. Bally is a prolific scientist whose academic interests in translational research have led to a number of patents and the formation of several biotechnology companies. His research ideas have translated into a number of clinical products that are improving the care of patients with cancer. Over the years, Dr. Bally has demonstrated outstanding mentorship as judged by the successes and achievements of his more than 50 graduate students and post-doctoral fellows. Dr. Bally’s mentorship skills were recognized in 2003 when he was awarded an Excellence in Teaching Award from the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.
Dr. Colleen Varcoe, Professor in the UBC School of Nursing, is the proud winner of the 2017 John McNeill Excellence in Health Research Mentorship Award for her remarkable accomplishments in health research mentorship and the impact on her mentees. Dr. Varcoe’s track record of support for graduate and post-doctoral trainees, active consultations with health authorities and international health organizations, and educational leadership in innovative program development illustrate her invaluable achievements in mentorship.
Dr. Peter C. K. Leung, Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Faculty of Medicine, UBC.