STC Gabriel L. Plaa Award of Distinction

STC awards


The Plaa Awardis the STC’s highest distinction and honours an individual who has made outstanding and sustained contributions to the field of toxicology and to the STC.


The Awards committee is chaired by Past President and includes the junior councillor plus two members appointed by the Board from the general membership and who are not members of the Board. In current practice, the Past President as chair of the committee, nominates two members who have familiarity with the candidates work.


To be considered for this award, the nominee must:

  1. be a Canadian citizen;
  2. demonstrate their significant contributions to the field of toxicology and to the STC.


Nominations must be made by two regular members of STC (i.e. the Sponsors), in good standing, but no member may nominate more than one candidate during any one year. Nominations must be accompanied by:

  1. A summary, not to exceed two pages, clearly describing the nominee’s contribution to the science of toxicology in Canada and to the STC, and particularly sustained impact that benefits toxicology in Canada. The summary should include specific examples and aspects that may not be evident from the CV. The summary should also highlight the nominee’s mentoring activities, formal or informal, such as supervision of undergraduate, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows; administrative and/or management responsibilities; support for new colleagues, involvement in outreach programs, involvement in product development programs, etc;
  2. Copies of no more than five manuscripts and other documents considered by the Sponsors to be pertinent to the award. Other documents could include policy briefs, technical reports, patents, proprietary submissions, subcontract reviews, etc. It is acknowledged that it may not be possible for Sponsors to provide copies of proprietary information;
  3. The nominee’s CV and a brief biographical sketch suitable for press release.

For all the STC awards, nominees who are not granted the award in the year of the nomination will be automatically included among the nominees in the two subsequent years unless the Sponsors explicitly request otherwise. Sponsors will be invited to update previously submitted information.


The following weighted criteria will be used by the Selection Committee:

Impact in the field of toxicology 30%
Peer review examples 15%
Mentoring 15%
Productivity 20%
Support for STC 30%

The decision of the Selection Committee shall be final. Only one award will be made annually, and there is no obligation or duty to make the award when, in the opinion of the Selection Committee, there is no qualified nominee. Once the Selection Committee has completed their deliberations, the Chairperson will notify the Board their decision, and will in turn notify the successful nominee as appropriate. Applications should be mailed or e-mailed to STC by July 1st.
The Award takes the form of an engraved plaque plus a cheque for $500. Presentation of the award will be made at the president’s reception following the Annual General Meeting. One of the nominating members will be invited to introduce the awardee and the award will be presented by the President.


If you have any questions, feel free to contact Élyse Caron-Beaudoin ( or Anne Marie Gannon (


Lauren Foster

Lauren Foster, PhD

McMaster University

Dr. Foster is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, at McMaster University, and a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. She is also an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Cellular Biology and Pharmacology at Florida International University and a member of the Department of Reproductive Medicine at the University of California, San Diego. Following undergraduate training and a Master’s degree from the University of Guelph, Dr. Foster obtained a doctorate in medical sciences from McMaster University and subsequently joined the staff at Health Canada where she served as the Head of the Reproductive Toxicology Section transferring positions to the Director of Research and Associate Director of Women’s Health at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles in 1999. Dr. Foster later joined the faculty at McMaster University in the Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology in 2001. Professor Foster is an expert in reproductive biology and toxicology with more than 200 scientific papers and book chapters. She has received several awards including an Ontario Women’s Health Council Career award and the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society Award of Excellence in Reproductive Medicine. She has served on numerous international and national expert advisory panels, editorial boards, as well as grant review committees. Dr. Foster is an associate editor for the Journal of Applied Toxicology, Journal of Ovarian Research, and a past President of the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society. She holds several patents and recently co-founded AIMA Laboratories Inc. to commercialize patents developed over the course of her academic career.


Lauren Foster
McMaster University


David Josephy
University of Guelph


Rekha Metha
Health Canada


Jack P. Uetrecht
University of Toronto


Peter Wells
University of Toronto


Bernard Robaire
McGill University


Genevieve Bondy
Health Canada


Thomas E. Massey
Queen’s University


Daniel Cyr


No awardees


Kannan Krishnan
Université de Montréal


No awardees


Barbara Hales
McGill University


No awardees


George Cherian
University of Western Ontario


Allan Okey
University of Toronto


Gail Bellward
University of British Columbia


No awardees


William Racz
Queen’s University


Barry Thomas
Health Canada


No awardees


Jules Brodeur
Université de Montréal


H. Bruno Schiefer
University of Saskatchewan


Gabriel L. Plaa
Université de Montréal