Distinguished Service, Professors and Teaching Award Recipients: Fall 2018

University of Manitoba Award Winners

Adele ParryAdele Parry B.A.(Simon Fraser), M.A., Ph.D.(York)

An esteemed historian and educator, Dr. Adele Perry reaches deep into the past to advance contemporary dialogue on western Canada, Indigenous Peoples, colonialism, and gender. Fellow scholars recognize her research as a model for analyzing race and gender in settler colonial societies. Dr. Perry has been called one of her generation’s foremost historians.
Raised in a non-Indigenous family in British Columbia, she earned her PhD in history from York University, focusing on Canadian and comparative western social history. In 2000, she joined the University of Manitoba as a faculty member and has since sparked important conversations through her teaching and her critically acclaimed books, noted for their original insight and accessible style.

From 2003-2014, Dr. Perry held the Canada Research Chair in Western Canadian Social History, focusing her work on the history of colonialism in North America and beyond. In her role, she invited visiting speakers to share their knowledge, created opportunities for post-doctoral fellows and hosted workshops for young scholars to discuss their own work.

Her professional renown has encouraged students to come to the University of Manitoba to study. She has brought warmth and lively discussion to her classroom, encouraging her students to interpret the past on their own terms and engage in critical debate about Canada’s history.
Her first monograph, On the Edge of Empire: Gender, Race, and the Making of British Columbia, 1849-1871, received the 2002 Clio Prize from the Canadian Historical Association for the best book on British Columbia history. Her second monograph, Colonial Relations: the Connolly-Douglas Family and the Nineteenth-Century Imperial World, was published by Cambridge University Press’ prestigious “Critical Histories of Empire” series. 

In 2011, she co-authored the People’s Citizenship Guide, speaking to public programming for newcomers and social justice movements. For this work Dr. Perry earned a University of Manitoba Outreach Award.

Most recently, she has focused her efforts on educating Manitobans about how the history of water in this province is tied to the history of colonialism. Her book, Aqueduct: Colonialism, Resources, and the Histories We Remember, exposed the cultural, social, political and legal mechanisms that enabled the City of Winnipeg to obtain its water supply by dispossessing the Shoal Lake 40 First Nation.

As evidence of significant contributions in her field, Dr. Perry is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, president of the Canadian Historical Association, vice-president of the International Federation for Research in Women’s History and co-editor of one of the most popular textbooks on Canadian women’s history, Rethinking Canada: The Promise of Women's History.

Pam PerkinsPam Perkins B.A.(Hons.)(Utah), M.A., Ph.D.(Dalhousie)

An internationally respected leader in her field, Dr. Pamela Perkins is widely recognized for her scholarship on eighteenth-century culture and literary history, including topics such as the Scottish Enlightenment, the history of the novel, women’s writing, literary travel writing, and literary conceptions of the North.

She earned her Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from the University of Utah before pursuing a master’s degree and PhD in English at Dalhousie University, where she began her teaching career. Since joining the University of Manitoba in 1994, she has developed a reputation as a generous and dedicated mentor, not only to her students, but to many of her colleagues as well.

Dr. Perkins has published nine scholarly editions of novels and letters, and most recently, edited selections from the journals of Sir Thomas Cochrane, Governor of Newfoundland from 1825-1834. Her work has been published in leading venues of her field, including national and international presses such as Cambridge, Ashgate, and Palgrave. With her breadth of knowledge, she is a trusted contributor for foundational publications such as The Literary Encyclopedia and New Dictionary of National Biography.

Through her monograph, Women Writers and the Edinburgh Enlightenment, Dr. Perkins has inspired her students and colleagues to look at women’s literary history within the Romantic period through a new lens, rewriting the narrative that sees men as the predominant source of literary innovation.
Dr. Perkins brings equal commitment to her research of eighteenth-century travel writers and has unearthed many previously unknown documents. She is currently exploring the travel experiences of early-nineteenth-century Newfoundland, her home province, looking for traces of settler women in the journals of the men they travelled with.

Dr. Perkins is an exceptional and engaging yet rigorous teacher. A leader in innovative pedagogy, she created a course to offer undergraduate students opportunities to conduct their own archival research in the Hudson’s Bay Company Archive, one of Canada’s most important collections, and engage with invited speakers from across the globe.  She uses tools in the classroom, such as satiric portraits and archival letters, which animate the past and engage her students.

Whether editing anthologies or charting genres and trends with her students, she brings to light issues that speak to a broader, cultural current. She has made available texts that can be difficult to access, engaging both academic and non-academic readers. By modelling a deep intellectual curiosity, Dr. Perkins inspires her students to consider the diverse voices that shape past literary cultures and societies, and is admired by colleagues nationally and internationally for her contributions, insight and grace.

Grant PierceGrant Pierce O.M., B.P.H.E.(Hons.)(Lakehead), M.Sc.(Dalhousie), Ph.D.(Manitoba)

Dr. Grant Pierce’s transformative research has improved the well-being of people with cardiovascular diseases and diabetes across the globe.

Born in Welland, Ontario, Dr. Pierce earned a master of science degree from Dalhousie University and a PhD from the University of Manitoba before becoming a professor in physiology in 1986. He currently serves as the executive director of research at St. Boniface Hospital, where he played a key role in establishing the Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences. He also established the Canadian Centre for Agri-Food Research in Health and Medicine, a unique collaboration bringing together Manitoba universities, the St. Boniface Hospital and the federal government (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada) to advance nutraceutical research and position Manitoba as a world leader.

In his pioneering and internationally renowned work, Dr. Pierce conducted research on cardiovascular disease with a focus on diabetes, hypertension and heart failure. Dr. Pierce was among the first to show how diabetes directly affects the heart muscle. By documenting the cellular mechanisms that change diabetic heart muscle membranes, he has changed the way clinicians regularly assess cardiac function in their patients with diabetes.

In another avenue of his research, Dr. Pierce demonstrated in a yearlong clinical trial that in addition to prescription medications, flaxseed consumption could also significantly lower blood pressure.

Dr. Pierce continues to break new ground. Most recently, he prompted a breakthrough in the fight against antibiotic-resistant bacteria through the creation of a new platform of antibiotics that demonstrate great potential to avoid multi-drug resistance.

His students understand the real-world impact of research. Described as an outstanding mentor, teacher and role model, Dr. Pierce inspires his students to bring ingenuity to their work. Many of his former students have gone on to successful careers in academia, medicine, industry and government worldwide. He encourages them to see the potential and promise where others may not.

In addition to mentoring students in his own lab, Dr. Pierce created the RBC Youth BioLab at St. Boniface Hospital. A one-of-a-kind program, 5,000 children across Manitoba are invited to explore science and health through hands-on experiments each year.

Dr. Pierce is a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and the 2016 Research Canada Leadership Award. In 2013, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and this year was inducted into the Order of Manitoba.

University Of Manitoba Graduate Students’ Association Teaching Award

Mojabi PuyanMojabi Puyan B.Sc.(E.E.)(Tehran), M.Sc.(E.E.)(Iran), Ph.D.(Manitoba)

Dr. Puyan Mojabi’s passion for research is matched only by his passion for teaching.

As a Canada Research Chair in Electromagnetic Inversion for Characterization and Design, Dr. Mojabi develops new algorithms and techniques to facilitate antenna design for wireless communication and to improve accuracy in microwave imaging and detection.

He brings this innovation to his students, sharing the world of applied electromagnetics in new ways that inspire. Dr. Mojabi distills the complexities of topics such as advanced circuit analysis and antenna design, into lessons that resonate. 

After earning bachelors and master’s degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Tehran and the Iran University of Science and Technology in 2002 and 2004 respectively, he pursued a PhD at the University of Manitoba. He joined the department of electrical and computer engineering as a faculty member in 2011.

As an advisor, Dr. Mojabi coaches his students to challenge themselves while finding a healthy work-life balance. He encourages them to have fun with the research process, and will often share his own experiences and the wisdom he gained as a graduate student.

He lays the groundwork for his students’ success with his dedication to forging partnerships with industry. Collaborative projects provide them with valuable experience and the opportunity to grow a network of their own while embarking on their professional journey. 

Dr. Mojabi received the Faculty of Engineering’s Excellence in Teaching Award for Electrical and Computer Engineering in 2014, University of Manitoba’s 2016 Falconer Emerging Researcher Rh Award in the Applied Sciences category, and three consecutive Young Scientist Awards from the International Union of Radio Science in 2014, 2015 and 2016. He currently serves as an Early Career Representative of this international union.

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Updated Oct 15, 2018