Passion To Share Knowledge Drives UVic Award-Winners

A widely acclaimed poet, a world-renowned astrophysicist, an emerging leader in computerized health records, an accomplished science communicator, a gifted music-computer specialist, and an innovative historian—these are the six recipients of the University of Victoria’s 2012 Craigdarroch Research Awards.

The awards, which honour achievement in research at UVic, were presented May 1 at an evening reception on campus.

“The number and eminence of the nominations this year speaks volumes about the extraordinary investigative and creative activity taking place each day in every corner of our campus,” says Dr. Howard Brunt, UVic’s vice-president research. “These six individuals exemplify UVic’s commitment to excellence and the open transfer of knowledge to the wider community.”

The recipients are:

Gold Medal for Career Achievement (two recipients)

  • Award-winning poet Lorna Crozier is without doubt one of UVic’s most publicly celebrated faculty members. She has captivated readers across Canada and around the world with her writing, including 15 books of poetry and her 2009 memoir, Small Beneath the Sky.
  • Astrophysicist Dr. Don VandenBerg is internationally acclaimed as a pioneer in his field for using computer models to understand the structure and evolution of stars, and for developing tools and techniques now used routinely by stellar astronomers around the world.

Silver Medal for Excellence in Research
Andre Kushniruk is an emerging international leader in the field of health informatics. He’s renowned for his work on computer usability in the health care sector and is an expert on topics such as e-health, telemedicine and computerized patient record systems.

Award for Excellence in Knowledge Mobilization
(Knowledge mobilization is the application of research results for societal benefit.)
Dr. E. Paul Zehr is an accomplished neuroscientist but is equally well known for his efforts to engage general audiences in the wonders of scientific research. Both passions inspired his two popular books, Becoming Batman and Inventing Iron Man.

Award for Excellence in Artistic Expression
Dr. George Tzanetakis blends computer science and the creative arts to advance a new area of research—music information retrieval. His work is leading to more effective tools for manipulating large audio collections and improving musician-computer interactions.

Award for Excellence in Innovation and Entrepreneurship
Through an innovative weave of traditional historical research, community-based fieldwork and popular interactive websites, historian Dr. John Lutz sheds new light on settler-Aboriginal relations in the Pacific Northwest and makes Canadian history fun and accessible for everyone.

To view short videos profiling all of the above winners, visit “Faces of UVic Research” at

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Media contacts

Valerie Shore (UVic Communications) at 250-721-7641 or

In this story

Keywords: award

People: Lorna Crozier, Don VandenBerg, Andre Kushniruk, E. Paul Zehr, George Tzanetakis, John Lutz

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