Tanis Doe Award

2017 CDSA-ACEI Tanis Doe Award for Canadian Disability Study and Culture


The CDSA-ACEI Tanis Doe Award for Canadian Disability Study and Culture was first awarded in 2009, and is named for the activist and professor, Tanis Doe, who passed away in 2004. This award honours an individual who dares to “speak the unspeakable” in advancing the study and culture of disability, and who has enriched through research, teaching, or activism, the lives of Canadians with disabilities. CDSA-ACEI is grateful for the support and permission of Tanis’ family to honour her achievements in Disability Studies with this award.


To be nominated the nominee must be either a Canadian or a Permanent Resident who works in Canada. Any individual can submit a nomination, but an individual may only submit one nomination in any award-cycle year. Self-nominations not accepted.


Letters of Nomination should be 1 to 3 pages in length and include:


  1. Name, affiliation, phone number, complete mailing address, and email address of the nominee.
  2. Name and contact information for the person making the nomination.
  3. The research, teaching, art, service or advocacy achievement or achievements of the nominee that merit consideration for this award.
  4. A brief biographical sketch of the nominee.


Please send your nominations to cdsa.acei@gmail.com. The deadline for nominations is 4:00pm EST on February 17, 2017.


The winner of the 2016 Tanis Doe Award will be acknowledged at the 2017 CDSA-ACEI conference and will receive:

  • $200 cash
  • 2017 CDSA-ACEI Conference registration fee (applicable only if the recipient attends the conference) and an invitation to present at the conference
  • Membership in CDSA-ACEI for 2017-2018
  • Invitation to submit a paper to peer-review for the Canadian Journal of Disability Studies for possible publication in the journal
  • Invitation to write an article for the CDSA-ACEI Newsletter


About Tanis Doe

Tanis Doe did innovative work on participatory action research, disability, abuse, women, employment, assistive technology, and advocacy. She was a professor of social work and disability studies at the University of Victoria, and also taught at Royal Roads University, Ryerson University, and the University of Washington. She was a 2003 Fulbright Scholar in Bioethics at the University of Washington. She conducted research for innumerable organizations in both Canada and the United States, and consulted with organizations around the world.

As a Métis (Ojibway/French Canadian) Deaf woman with other disabilities who was active in disability, queer, and feminist movements internationally, Tanis Doe was widely respected as a disability rights advocate and as an educator that provided leadership training and personal mentorship to untold numbers of scholars and advocates across the Western Hemisphere.

In Tanis’s words, “Some of us have become visible citizens of that other place, using our bodies as our passports. People with disabilities are frightening to the non-disabled because our citizenship is made clear. In and with our bodies, we testify to both the existence and proximity of that Otherland.”


2017 Award Recipients

Gregor Wolbring has been involved in Disability Studies related research for over 20 years. He became a Disability Studies faculty in 2008 at the University of Calgary. He has 6 academic appointments (USA, Germany and Canada) beyond his main disability studies appointment at the University of Calgary, reflecting his reputation in Science and Technology Governance, Disability Studies and Ability Studies.  Gregor has published widely, within peer reviewed Disability Studies journals and peer reviewed book chapters. Gregor believes in open access publishing so that the community can read and engage with his writings.  The focus of Dr Wolbring’s work has been within disability studies, ethics and the field of social robotics.   Dr. Wolbring has lectured across the country, as well as having provided expert testimonials to Canadian Parliamentary Committees.   Dr. Wolbring is actively involved as a PI on a number of national research projects including projects funded by SSHRC, Alberta Innovate and Canadian Paraplegic Association. As a result of his academic scholarship, Dr. Wolbring received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2013, in recognition of the benefit of his Ability Studies and Disability Studies research for the greater community.   During his tenure with the Disability Studies faculty, he has provided supervision of undergraduate and graduate students, supporting their scholarship and research endeavors.   Gregor’s work and mentorship has been recognized having received many awards including the Cumming School of Medicine BHSc Research Mentor Award, the Cumming School of Medicine McLeod Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Dr. Wolbring has actively engaged in community activism and advocacy, having served boards (local, national and international) relative to his expertise in evaluating the impact of emerging science and technology advancements on the lives of people with disabilities.   He sits on Board of the Council of Canadians with Disabilities, the Thalidomide Victims Association of Canada and is Chair of the Science Technology and Innovation Governance Committee of Disabled Peoples International (DPI).  Dr. Wolbring held the position of CDSA President of the Canadian Disability Studies Association.  Dr. Wolbring is also part of the Project Value Initiative and has been featured on television and radio broadcasts in Canada and internationally.


Normand Boucher is a renowned and prolific social scientist in Quebec, Canada and internationally in the field of critical studies on disability since the mid-1990s. He is a sociologist and political scientist by training. His doctorate in sociology at Université Laval focused on the “Implementation of Body Differences in Quebec: for a Sociology of Disability”. He then completed a post-doctorate at the Center for Disability Studies, Department of Sociology and Social Policy, at the University of Leeds in Great Britain in 2003. He is currently a researcher at the University Institute for Rehabilitation in Physical Disability (IRDPQ) and a regular researcher at the Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation and Social Integration affiliated with Université Laval (CIRRIS). He is an Associate Professor in the Department of Social Work at Université Laval.

His research interests are related to transformations in disability practices and policies that revolve around the phenomenon of handicap and citizenship within a participatory research approach. His subjects relate to social policy, disability and the ability to exercise rights in areas such as work, housing, transportation and personal services. He has several book articles and chapters to his credit. For example: “Disability, research and social change: Emergence of the emancipatory paradigm in the study of the social exclusion of people with disabilities” (2003). Social and political link. And “The home support system for people with disabilities: a factor of exclusion? “(2009) PUL. He has been and is a member of several research teams such as the Disability Rights Promotion International (DRPI) led by Dr. Marcia Rioux. He is co-researcher of the team “Right to equality, social participation and inclusive cities” funded by the FRQSC. He has worked with a variety of populations with disabilities including motor, visual, auditory (Deaf), and intellectual and ASD, cognitive (CBT), severe burns handicaps.

The diversity of his academic achievements, his involvement in the autonomous community movement to defend the rights of people with disabilities, his influence, his socio-political analyzes and his numerous communications deserved the Tanis Doe Prize Francophone and the recognition of its peers.


Past Award Recipients

2016: Shelley Tremain, non-affiliated
2015: Patricia Seth and Marie Slark, non-affiliated
2014: Tanya Titchkosky, University of Toronto
2013: Marcia Rioux, York University
2012: Roy Hanes, Carleton University
2011: Jerome Bickenbach, Queens University
2010: Heidi Janz, University of Alberta
2009: Diane Driedger, University of Manitoba/Independent Living Canada

Francophone Tanis Doe Award

2016: Laurence Parent, Concordia University
2015: Patrick Fougeyrollas, l’Université Laval