W.A. Johnston Award

The W. A. Johnston Award is the highest honour given by the Canadian Quaternary Association (CANQUA) and recognizes outstanding professional achievement in Quaternary Science. W.A. Johnston was an innovator in Quaternary studies in Canada who, in his years with the Geological Survey of Canada, developed many of the concepts of regional Quaternary studies used today. The medal was first awarded in 1987.


CANQUA seeks nominations for its highest award, the W.A. Johnston Medal. This award bestowed by CANQUA recognizes professional excellence in Quaternary research. Nominations for the award are now being accepted. Complete nomination packages must be received by Matthew Peros (email: mperos@ubishops.ca) before April 30, 2024.

Qualifications of Nominees

Nominees for the medal must meet at least two of the following criteria: a) they are a Canadian citizen or a landed immigrant in Canada; b) they currently reside in Canada or resided in Canada for at least 10 years during their professional career; c) their research bears directly on Canadian studies, either through work on Canadian field sites or development of methods applied to Canadian sites; d) they have trained/supervised students who work or have worked in Canada on Canadian projects for extended periods of time.

Preparation of Nominations

The complete nomination package should have a total length not exceeding 20 typewritten pages. Each nomination package must contain:

  1. a 2-3 page letter of nomination, submitted by a CANQUA member in good standing (nominator), clearly identifying which two qualifying criteria the candidate successfully meets
  2. a curriculum vita for the nominee not exceeding 10 pages in length, stressing the person’s contributions to Quaternary science research, teaching and community service
  3. no more than four letters of reference each no longer than 2 pages in length and each containing as many signatures of support as the referee wishes

The nomination package may also contain 1-2 pages of other supporting documentation, at the nominator’s discretion.

Excluding the current President and Past President of CANQUA, all remaining executive officers can be nominators during their terms of office but cannot serve on the selection committee. Unsuccessful nominations will be held for a second term.

E-Mail nominations to: mperos@ubishops.cabefore April 30, 2024

Past recipients:

1987: Vic Prest

1989: Aleksis Dreimanis

1990: Jaan Terasmae

1991: Bill Matthews

1993: Ross Mackay

1995: John Clague

1995: Paul Karrow

1997: Nat Rutter

1999: Jim Ritchie

2001: Wes Blake

2001: Derek Ford

2003:Claude Hillaire-Marcel

2005: John Smol

2007: Henry Schwarcz

2009: Art Dyke
Acceptance speech

2011: John Westgate
Acceptance speech

2011: Jim Teller
Acceptance speech
2013: John England

2015: C.F.M “Mike” Lewis

2018: W. Richard Peltier
Acceptance speech
2020 : Anne de Vernal
2020: Lynda Dredge