Peter A Allard School of Law

Professor Debra Parkes named Jim Taylor, QC Faculty Scholar

Dec 10, 2021

Professor Debra Parkes
Professor Debra Parkes

The Allard School of Law is pleased to congratulate Professor Debra Parkes on being awarded the 2021-2022 Jim Taylor, QC Faculty Scholar Award.

The award honours highly dedicated faculty members who have consistently gone above and beyond to give more than their fair share to the law school. With this award, Professor Parkes is recognized for her critical behind-the-scenes work, which has allowed other faculty members and students to flourish.

“It was an honour to be nominated by my colleagues, and even more surprising and lovely to receive the Taylor award,” says Professor Parkes. “Particularly in these difficult and isolating times, this award feels very meaningful.”

Among her many contributions to the law school, Professor Parkes is recognized as a teaching and research mentor who consistently makes time to support her fellow faculty members in navigating the challenges of academia. She has been committed to mentoring her fellow faculty members who are working towards promotion and supporting their research—contributions that make a meaningful difference at the law school, but that rarely result in formal recognition.

“Professor Parkes joined the law school in 2016 and has had a tremendous impact on our community ever since,” says Allard Law Professor Régine Tremblay, Director of the Centre for Feminist Legal Studies (CFLS) and one of Professor Parkes’ nominators. “She has contributed so much that it’s hard to believe she has only been here at Allard Law for five years—and that she hasn’t already received this award. She is an outstanding faculty citizen and is highly deserving of the Jim Taylor, QC Faculty Scholar Award.”

This past June, Professor Parkes concluded her own five-year term as Director of the CFLS, where she focused on providing opportunities for students, scholars and the wider feminist legal community to come together to build networks, collaborate on research and exchange ideas. The Centre has played an important role in ensuring that feminist and social justice issues remain visible at Allard Law and that the law school remains connected to the larger feminist legal community. Professor Parkes is also Chair in Feminist Legal Studies at Allard Law.

People often talk about those colleagues who are doing the ‘emotional labour’ in their faculty or departments, which as Tracey Lindberg has so astutely pointed out is actually leadership, and Debra is one of those people who is doing leadership work at Allard Law.

Professor Patricia Barkaskas

As her nominators note, Professor Parkes has contributed to far more service work than most, which has included serving on the Faculty Senate Curriculum Committee, Allard Law’s Faculty Advisory Committee, and the board of the Rise Women’s Legal Centre and West Coast Prison Justice Society. Professor Parkes also serves on the editorial board for publications including the Canadian Journal of Law and Society, the Canadian Journal of Law and Justice; the Wrongful Conviction Law Review, and the Canadian Journal of Women and the Law.

Since joining the law school, Professor Parkes has enhanced life and community at Allard Law in immensurable ways, in large part through the relationships she has fostered between students, faculty and staff. During the pandemic, Professor Parkes consistently reached out to others and created opportunities for the Allard Law community to connect. She has also been a champion for equity and diversity within the law school. As her nominators attest, she is appreciated by so many within and beyond the law school community.

“Debra is such a generous and caring colleagueshe is the person who sends you a card out of the blue telling you how much she appreciates you and all you do just because she knows you need to hear it,” says Allard Law Professor Patricia Barkaskas. “People often talk about those colleagues who are doing the ‘emotional labour’ in their faculty or departments, which as Tracey Lindberg has so astutely pointed out is actually leadership, and Debra is one of those people who is doing leadership work at Allard Law. Her leadership, scholarship, and mentorship are all incredible gifts she brings to the Allard community and I feel so fortunate to have her as a colleague.”

About the Jim Taylor Faculty Scholar Award

This award is currently supported by Harris & Co. in the memory of Jim Taylor, QC. Jim played an instrumental role in establishing this award, which provides a deserving Allard Law faculty member with a $5,000 research grant each year. Jim, who passed away in 2016, had close ties to the law school and was a beloved member of the UBC and local law communities. You can learn more about Jim on the Allard Law History Project website.

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