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Alumni: Giving U of T more reasons to be proud


Ms. Judith Chadwick wins the 2015 Chancellor’s Award – Influential Leader

Judith Chadwick’s leadership is stamped all over the research enterprise of the University of Toronto.

Ms. Chadwick is the recipient of the 2015 Chancellor’s Award – Influential Leader. Over her 32 years at U of T, she has exemplified the personal and professional attributes of leadership, commitment, integrity, accountability, thoughtfulness and generosity. She has been Assistant Vice-President, Research Services, since 2009 and Chief Administrative Officer since 2010.

She said in an interview that she is “very touched and honored” to win the award. “It is an important award that shows the work of so many of us is appreciated” by the university.

Ms. Chadwick has been involved with the Connaught Fund since she started at U of T in 1983. The internal research funding program is well known for its emphasis on supporting young investigators, providing seed funding for innovative thinking and supporting grand challenges research. It is the envy of researchers across the country.

The fund “has been a constant in my life since coming to U of T,” she said. “It’s such a good news thing” because it dedicates funds to aspiring thinkers and investigators. “It is unique to U of T and unique to Canada. It is really betting on our own people.”

Professor Malcolm Campbell, Vice-Principal, Research, at U of T Scarborough, said “Judith’s dedication to the intelligent use of Connaught funds nurtures and sustains the university’s internal research culture, creating a fertile ground upon which new initiatives take root, and bear fruit in the global arena.”

A supporting letter co-signed by 28 senior research and administrative leaders from across the university lauds the work Ms. Chadwick has done on today’s highest priority in research investment – the Canada First Research Excellence Fund. (CFREF) The university has developed a single proposal worth $250 million.

The letter states that Ms. Chadwick’s “leadership on this project has been exemplary and has been performed with her inimitable energy, foresight, fairness, strategy and good humour, especially in light of the extremely tight timelines.”

In 2007 Ms. Chadwick was admitted into the inaugural cohort of U of T’s Higher Education Leadership Master’s program at OISE, graduating in 2010. It has given her a deeper appreciation and understanding of the post-secondary sector that she developed in the program, but she also shares her personal experience in juggling a full-time job and course requirements with her staff who are considering similar commitments.

Ms. Chadwick was the staff representative on the search committee for the next Vice President, Research & Innovation this year and was a key member of the university’s negotiating team for the first collective agreement with CUPE 3902, post-doctoral fellows.

Eliot Phillipson, Sir John and Lady Eaton Professor of Medicine Emeritus at U of T, is chair of an advisory panel to President Meric Gertler on the CFREF program, said Ms. Chadwick’s “determination to ensure a successful panel outcome and her dedication to the project were an inspiration to the panel members.”

Ms. Chadwick she has stayed at U of T because “I really enjoy the work. It is a pleasure to help others in the advancement of new knowledge. It is a privilege, really.”

Ms. Chadwick is one of this year’s recipients of the Chancellor’s Award, which is presented along with several other faculty, staff and student awards under the banner of Awards of Excellence. A complete list of this year’s recipients and their citations can be viewed on the Awards of Excellence website. This award program annually recognizes the outstanding members of the University of Toronto community who have made rich and meaningful contributions to the University, their communities and to the world.

The Chancellor’s Award is adjudicated by the office of Human Resources & Equity in conjunction with the central Alumni Relations office, within the Division of University Advancement. Alumni Relations is the steward of the Awards of Excellence program on behalf of the University of Toronto Alumni Association, and co-ordinates the vital contributions of other University stakeholder groups toward this prestigious award program.

Ms. Chadwick and the other 2015 Awards of Excellence recipients will be honoured at a ceremony at the Isabel Bader Theatre on April 13.