Sept. 22, 2021 The Division of Human Resources & Equity is now called the Division of People Strategy, Equity & Culture.

Simcoe Hall Vice-Presidential Staff Award

Established in 2013, the Simcoe Hall Vice-Presidential Staff Award has recognized outstanding contributions by staff (Confidential, Unionized, or Professional & Managerial at any level) who work in service of either the President’s Office, the Division of the Vice-President & Provost, a Vice-Presidential Division (where the Vice-President is a member of Simcoe Hall Vice-Presidents), or the Office of the Governing Council.

The SVP Staff Awards recognize staff who have contributed to their Division or the broader University in one or more of the following ways. These accomplishments can be recent or demonstrated throughout the duration of their career.

For more details about this award, email  Other contact methods

Hayley Fuller's framed Simcoe Hall Vice-President's Award certificate

Assessment Criteria

Successful nominations will illustrate the specific contribution(s) that the individual made in one or more of the following areas:

Significant Contribution

Recognizes an individual who made an outstanding contribution to their division or the broader University. This category is intended to celebrate milestone accomplishments, such as the completion of an innovative initiative, a large project, or a substantial undertaking, that involved significant effort, complexity, and may set a standard upon which future endeavours will be modelled.

Sustained Service of Excellence

Recognizes an individual with exemplary service to the University and who is held in high regard by colleagues and peers in areas that are core to the University’s values, including excellence, service orientation, citizenship, professionalism, collegiality, integrity, and innovation.

Leads with Equity & Inclusion

Recognizes an individual who consistently demonstrates their commitment to integrating equity, diversity and inclusion into their leadership activities and who is committed to creating an inclusive culture and sense of belonging for their teams and the University community. Must be highly regarded for sponsoring and advancing EDI initiatives that challenge our systems, disrupt our processes and create equity within our practices within their division or across the institution.

Inspirational Attitude

Recognizes an individual who possesses an uplifting and encouraging demeanour who contributes to positive team morale and inspires their peers to do the same. Someone whose presence on a team invigorates their colleagues to work harder, smarter, and more resiliently to achieve their goals.

2021 Recipients

  • Ronald Atkins, Manager, Caretaking Services, Facilities & Services – Building & Grounds
  • Prasanna Nanayakkara, Lead Cook, Red Seal, Food Services
  • David Newman, Executive Director, Student Experience
  • Tania John Pihl, Associate Director, Advancement Professional Development and Placement, Office of the Vice-President University Advancement
  • Elizabeth Church, Director, Stakeholder Relations, Office of the Vice-President – Communications
  • Anuar Rodrigues, Director, Strategic Projects & Initiatives, Office of the Vice-President & Provost
  • Donna Shukaris Walker, Manager, Innovations and Entrepreneurship, Innovations & Partnerships Office
  • Lori-Anne Hill, Director, HR Services, Operations & Real Estate Partnerships

The Nomination Process

Nominations for the 2021 SVP Staff Awards will open on February 22, 2021.

Nominations should describe in detail the specific contribution(s) that an individual has made in relation to the assessment criteria listed above. The rationale for nomination shall not exceed two (2) pages in length.

The nomination package must include:

  • An overview of the rationale for nomination and a description of the nominee’s contribution(s)
  • Two (2) supporting letters

If the lead nominator is not the nominee’s manager or supervisor, one supporting letter must be from the nominee’s manager or supervisor. Supporting letters should not exceed two (2) pages in length, each.

Please do not submit more than the required number of documents and supporting letters. The selection committee will not consider supplementary documents as part of the nomination package.

To submit a nomination for the SVP Award, please visit the True Blue Recognition Platform and use the link in the Recognition Centre. Using the online form, please include any relevant details regarding the nominee’s contribution(s) and insert the text from the two supporting letters into the appropriate fields.

Nomination Deadline:  5:00 p.m. on Friday, April 23, 2021


Any employee or supervisor can nominate another staff member (Confidential, Unionized, or Professional & Managerial at any level) who currently works in service of either the President’s Office, the Division of the Vice-President & Provost, a Vice-Presidential Division (where the Vice-President is a member of Simcoe Hall Vice-Presidents), or the Office of Governing Council with no fewer than three (3) years of continuous service at the University. Self-nominations will not be accepted.

Staff members are only eligible to receive a Simcoe Hall Vice-Presidential Staff Award once in their career.

Nominees must be in good standing and be in active status at the University at the time nominations close. The 2021 SVP Awards will consider the efforts and accomplishments achieved up until February 28, 2021.”

Tips for Completing the Nomination Form

In completing the nomination submission please:

  • Be specific – give examples and the details of what your nominee has done that meet the selection criteria. Not every candidate will exhibit all of the award-winning characteristics, but you should provide evidence of those demonstrated by your nominee
  • Avoid general statements such as: “the nominee has a pleasant personality,” “the nominee is a seasoned professional,” or “the nominee is always helpful.”
  • Include as much qualitative and quantitative information as you can about the nominee’s work and contributions
  • Avoid the use of uncommon or undefined acronyms in the description of your nominee’s work and contributions

Please see our guide How to Write an Impactful Award Nomination for additional details. The committee selects the recipients based on the information provided in the nomination package.


The selection committee, chaired by the Vice-President HR & Equity or her designate, will consist of a minimum of three (3) Simcoe Hall Vice-Presidents or their designate(s). The committee selects deserving staff members, representing a broad range of employee groups and classifications for the award.

Members of the Selection Committee will review the nomination packages and the award criteria in advance of the Selection Committee meeting date. At the meeting, Committee members will discuss each nomination package and select the deserving recipient(s).

The members of the selection committee for the 2021 Simcoe Hall Vice-Presidential Staff Awards consisted of:

  • Kelly Hannah-Moffat, Committee Chair, Vice-President, Human Resources & Equity
  • Scott Mabury, Vice-President, Operations and Real Estate Partnerships
  • David Palmer, Vice-President, University Advancement
  • David Estok, Vice-President, Communications
  • Sheree Drummond, Secretary of the Governing Council
  • Andrew Thomson, Chief of Government Relations
  • Bryn MacPherson, Assistant Vice-President, Office of the President & Chief of Protocol
  • Erin Jackson, Chief Human Resources Officer
  • Heather Boon, Vice-Provost, Faculty & Academic Life
  • Alex Mihailidis, Associate Vice-President, International Partnerships
  • Gwen Burrows, Executive Director, International
  • Lesa Holmes, Communications & Engagement Manager
  • Tom Spence, Employee Recognition & Engagement Advisor

The selection committee will meet in November 2020 to determine the successful applicants. The committee will inform all nominators of the committee’s decision on each submission in December 2020. An announcement of the 2020 winners to the broader U of T community will follow.

Award Prizing

  • Simcoe Hall Vice-Presidential Staff Award Framed Certificate & Gift
  • Luncheon with the Simcoe Hall Vice-Presidents, or their designate, and the lead nominators for each winner (note that the luncheon will be scheduled when permitted and in accordance with the appropriate regulations and public health guidelines)

For more information, please visit the Recognition and Engagement section of Human Resources & Equity’s website.

Should you have any questions about this program, please contact your HR Divisional Office.