March 29, 2019 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

As part of the King’s annual Faculty Publications Celebration, held on March 29, 2019, Dr.  Richard (Rick) Csiernik of King’s School of Social Work received the Hugh Mellon Excellence in Research Award and Dr. Andrea Lawlor from the King's Political Science department received the 2019 Early Career Faculty Excellence in Research Award.

As Professor Ramona Alaggia from the University of Toronto has noted about his collaborative approach, Dr. Csiernik “is clearly held in high esteem as a peer and as a mentor for the current and next generation of practicing social workers.”

Dr. Csiernik’s expertise spans a variety of different dimensions of social work practice, with his most extensive research published in the areas of substance abuse and addictions, as well as employee wellness and assistance programs. He has collaborated with more than 100 scholars and students while securing nearly $3.5 million in grant funding.

“In addition to his stellar research productivity, Dr. Csiernik has been a leader in higher education and an exceptional teacher, having earned the King’s University College Award for Excellence in Teaching just last year,” said Dr. Sauro Camiletti, Interim Principal and Academic Dean, during his announcement of the award.

Dr. Csiernik earned his PhD in Social Work from the University of Toronto in 1995 and only a decade later, earned promotion to Full Professor in the School of Social Work at King’s University College. As a scholar, Dr. Csiernik has published exactly 100 peer-reviewed journal articles to date, as well as 10 books and 95 book chapters. He serves on several editorial boards of professional journals while maintaining an equal level of commitment and engagement with community services.

The King’s University College Hugh Mellon Excellence in Research Award is named in honor of Dr. Hugh Mellon, late Associate Professor of Political Science at King’s University College. This award is designed to recognize the scholarly work of a faculty member at King’s which reflects Dr. Mellon’s avid academic engagement, his pursuit of knowledge and its dissemination through publication, and his willingness to ever renew his research through innovative partnerships and consistent commitment to research excellence.

Dr. Andrea Lawlor received her PhD from McGill University in Political Science in 2014, having already distinguished herself as a powerful voice in the field with nearly two dozen peer-reviewed journal articles, 11 book chapters, one co-authored book, and a co-edited monograph. She has been successful in securing major grant funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council to support her work on election spending and the analysis of Canadian political elites.

“In addition to her prolific scholarship, Professor Lawlor’s work has been influential beyond the academy,” said Dr. Camiletti. Dr. Lawlor was selected based on her research productivity, the scholarly and policy impacts of her work, and on her active contributions to the King's community as a colleague and as a mentor for students.

She has contributed several timely pieces in Policy Options (a key forum for provincial MPPs and federal MPs), along with think tank contributions and commentaries for the Globe and Mail, Canadian Press, National Post, and other organizations on issues of national and provincial political interest. Dr. Lawlor has been selected on several occasions to provide commentary on legislative initiatives or regulatory changes to both Elections Canada and the Standing Committee on the (Federal) Budget.

A new award for 2019, the King’s University College Early Career Faculty Excellence in Research Award was established because “we have such a talented crop of new and early career faculty members who are doing outstanding research,” said Dr. Joseph Michalski, Associate Academic Dean.

For more information on the Hugh Mellon Award Excellence in Research Award, please visit