Oct. 18, 2021

Five UCalgary researchers named Killam Annual Professors

Faculty members recognized for excellence in geoscience, sociology, kinesiology, nursing, and arts
Killam Annual professors
2021 Killam Annual Professors, from left, David Eaton, Carolyn Emery, Nicole Letourneau, Penny Pexman and Cora Voyageur.

On Oct 14, 2021, five UCalgary faculty members were named Killam Annual Professors, in recognition of their remarkable achievements in research, teaching and community involvement. The annual professorships are awarded to those who have been nationally and/or internationally recognized in their field, with a record of outstanding teaching and research scholarship over 10 years or more.

This year’s Killam Annual Professors are: Dr. David Eaton, PhD; Dr. Carolyn Emery, PhD; Dr. Nicole Letourneau, PhD; Dr. Penny Pexman, PhD; and Dr. Cora Voyageur, PhD. 

“This year’s Killam Annual Professors are a dynamic group of scholars, whose dedication and hard work have resulted in remarkable accomplishments,” says Dr. William Ghali, vice-president (research). “They have boldly pursued new knowledge, expanded scholarship in their fields and played a critical role in the lives of their students. I am proud to congratulate these five distinguished scholars on this achievement.”

Dr. David Eaton, PhD
Professor, Department of Geoscience, Faculty of Science

David Eaton is a tremendously respected and internationally recognized researcher, outstanding teacher and dedicated mentor, and a professional with highly significant and impactful service contributions to the university and beyond. He is a world-leading seismologist with highly impactful publications in his field. It is largely through Eaton’s research that the public became aware and informed of the relationship between hydraulic fracturing and induced seismicity in Western Canada, the first time globally that this connection was scientifically proven.

Eaton is a dedicated educator and mentor. Scientific training within his interdisciplinary research group features exceptional opportunities for industry networking and building experience in field geophysics, which is instrumental in helping highly qualified personnel (HQP) progress in their academic and professional careers.

Learn more about Eaton’s research with the Microseismic Industry Consortium.

Dr. Carolyn Emery, PhD
Professor, Faculty of Kinesiology and departments of Paediatrics and Community Health Sciences, Cumming School of Medicine; Canada Research Chair in Concussion; chair, Sport Injury Prevention Research Centre

Carolyn Emery has built a highly productive and internationally recognized transdisciplinary research program that has real-world impact in reducing injuries and concussions and their consequences in youth. Emery is a physiotherapist and epidemiologist. Her research in injury prevention targets youth sport and recreational injury and concussion prevention strategy evaluation across policy and rule changes, equipment recommendations and training strategies.

Emery leads multiple national and international initiatives aiming to reduce injury and concussion in youth sport and recreation and their consequences. She has demonstrated excellence in the supervision and mentorship of early career scientists that have contributed to the growth of the field as trainees and have had impact nationally and internationally. Emery is committed to integrated knowledge translation and has established effective community, government, industry and clinical partnerships that will support the impact of her research program.

Learn more about Emery’s research with the Sports Injury Prevention Research Centre.

Dr. Nicole Letourneau, PhD RN FCAHS FAAN
Professor, Faculty of Nursing and departments of Paediatrics, Psychiatry and Community Health Sciences, Cumming School of Medicine; chair in Parent and Child Mental Health, Alberta Children's Hospital Research Institute

Nicole Letourneau’s research and teaching supports vulnerable parents to give their children the best start in life, especially in families affected by depression, violence and poverty. She also seeks to understand mechanisms to explain vulnerable children’s lifespan health, for example, gene by environment interactions and the role of social support. She uses that information to develop and test helpful intervention programs such as the  ATTACH and VID-KIDS parenting programs for vulnerable families. Her research is noteworthy for its interdisciplinarity and genuine engagement with community stakeholders, who often use her programs.

Letourneau has been recognized for this important work by induction into the prestigious Canadian Academy of Health Sciences, American Academy of Nursing, and by receiving Canada’s top nursing honour, the Canadian Nurses Association’s Jeanne Mance Award for career contributions to the health of Canadians. She has published 200-plus peer-reviewed articles, three books and is the world’s most followed nurse on Twitter. She has attained $65 million in research funding and supervises outstanding tri-council-funded trainees. She is an outstanding nursing scholar, role model, and mentor.  

Learn more about Letourneau’s research on the CHILD Program website.

Dr. Penny Pexman, PhD
Professor, Department of Psychology, Faculty of Arts and associate vice-president (research); postdoctoral program director; director of the Language Processing Lab

Penny Pexman is a world-class researcher and a recognized leader in the field of cognitive psychology, whose research program spans the fields of psycholinguistics, cognitive neuroscience, and social-cognitive development. Pexman is one of the leading scientists investigating the human language capacity and the paradox of figurative language. Her excellence in research and leadership within the discipline continue to inspire emerging women scientists for whom Pexman has become a role model.

Pexman’s research examines meaning-making in language. She is working to understand the social and cognitive processes that allow us to derive meaning from language, what influences them, and how they change with context or experience. Her discovery-based work has garnered attention from the international community, features a large body of well-cited and high-quality publications in top journals, and a number of awards recognizing her own research contributions as well as her dedication to the mentorship of others.

 Read more about Pexman’s research in the Language Processing Lab.  

Dr. Cora Voyageur, PhD
Professor, Department of Sociology, Faculty of Arts

Cora Voyageur is one of the leading Indigenous social scientists in Canada, renowned for her inspiring community leadership. As a sociologist and a First Nations person, Voyageur focuses on the Indigenous experience in Canada that includes Indigenous health, women’s issues, politics, employment, community, and economic development, as they relate and contribute to individual and communal wellness. Much of Voyageur’s community-driven research is published in grey literature reports and results in concrete applications and recommendations for action. Focusing on the ways racism, isolation, and economic and social marginalization make impacts on the well-being and health of Indigenous communities, families, and personal histories, Voyageur’s career has significantly benefited Indigenous scholarship and the communities with which she works.

Through her research, partnerships, and publications, she has consistently emphasized the rights of First Nation self-determination for research and information management while promoting First Nation principles of ownership, control, access, and possession (OCAP). Voyageur has advocated for culturally appropriate practices within research and teaching. She has been an admired and supportive mentor to students as well as her junior colleagues within academia and beyond.

Learn more about Voyageur’s research and teaching.