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BC TEAL Honourary Lifetime Contributors

Through our Honourary Lifetime Contributor Award, BC TEAL seeks to recognize professionals who have made outstanding contributions to the field of English as an Additional Language.

Lifetime Contributors are individuals who have been members in good standing with BC TEAL for over 10 years and who have set a positive example for other members as well as the students that have been served by their contributions.

Nominations Procedure

Nominations for Lifetime Contributors occur every 2 years and selection is announced at the Annual General Meeting (AGM). A Call for Nominations, including requirements for nomination submissions, is issued in the BC TEAL Newsletter or sent via email to the BC TEAL Membership prior to the Annual Conference and AGM. Any BC TEAL member may nominate an individual to become an Honourary Lifetime Contributor.

Submissions are reviewed and a nominee is selected by the BC TEAL Executive Board of Directors. A plaque is awarded to the recipient along with a letter from the President of BC TEAL. Recipients of the Lifetime Contributor Award are published in the TEAL Newsletter following the AGM.

If you would like to nominate a colleague to become an Honourary Lifetime Contributor, please complete the online nominations form.

Recent Award Recipients:

Michael Galli, 2017
Shawna Williams, 2017
Eilidh Singh, 2015
Robin Russell, 2012

Current Lifetime Contributors

The following Lifetime Contributors of BC TEAL are honoured for their numerous and invaluable contributions to the ESL profession in British Columbia and farther afield.

Joan Acosta

Joan Acosta was the editor of The Westcoast Reader, a newspaper for beginning adult readers in British Columbia. She has taught ESL in Canada, Mexico, and Liberia and is the author of several books for ESL and literacy learners. She was instrumental in developing the first plain language version of the Newcomers’ Guide to British [...]

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Mary Ashworth

Mary Ashworth was the Fairy Godmother of ESL in B.C. She introduced the concept of teacher training to our profession and taught 478 for many years at UBC. The graduates of just one of her famous, lively 8:30 a.m. classes produced a TEAL President, 2 TESL Canada Presidents and 5 Doctorates!! On her retirement in 1988, [...]

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Jean N. Benetti

Jean Benetti, B.Ed Sec, M.Ed. One of the founders of BC TEAL in 1967. Member of committee that initiated the first TESL course (478) at UBC. In 1967, seconded from the VSB to head full-time, federal government, Manpower ESL adult courses at VCC. Taught and administered in various levels at VCC until 1991. In 1991, [...]

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Debbie Binnie Smith

Debbie Binnie Smith switched from high school teaching to adult TESL when she lived in London, England in the early 70s. There, she got her RSA and spent five happy years teaching ESL/EFL. Back to Canada in 1975, she continued teaching ESL in various places. Debbie settled in Vancouver in 1983 and has been at [...]

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Virginia Christopher

Qualifications: Secondary Teaching Certificate from SFU; BFA, TESL Certificate and MA in Language Education from UBC. Employment: High-school teacher, ESL teacher and tutor, curriculum developer, teacher trainer, program manager. Volunteer work / contributions to ESL field: Includes President of TESL Canada, BC TEAL and PELSA; Board member of TESOL and CLC. Instrumental in the development [...]

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