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Timothy R. Parsons Medal

The Timothy R. Parsons Medal was established by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) to recognize achievement in ocean sciences. It honours the outstanding contributions of the late Dr. Timothy R. Parsons (1932-2022) in this field.

Recipients of the medal are recognized for:

  • Distinguished accomplishments in multidisciplinary facets of ocean sciences while working for Canadian institutions or for the benefit of Canadian science; and/or
  • Excellence during the lifetime of the recipient or for a recent outstanding achievement.


Any Canadian can nominate an eligible individual for this award. Nominations are considered annually and no posthumous nominations are considered.

More information about the nomination process can be found here.

The deadline for nominations and submission of supporting materials for the 2024 Parsons Award is April 15, 2024.

Candidate evaluation

Candidates are evaluated on their qualifications in several categories, including:

  • contribution of significant ideas
  • leadership through teaching or mentoring
  • impact on Canadian marine science, such as:
    • recognition of scientific accomplishment
    • impact and/or influence of scientific work
  • significant contributions to multidisciplinary facets of ocean sciences
  • program, disciplinary and interdisciplinary activities, which include outreach activities

The DFO Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) of the Ecosystems and Oceans Science Sector chairs the Adjudication Committee and is accompanied by:

  • a DFO representative
  • a representative of another governmental department or agency
  • a representative of a non-governmental organization, such as a university or the private sector
  • a former Parsons Medal recipient (usually the most recent)

The recipient selected by the Adjudication Committee is announced at the Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society (CMOS) Annual Congress.

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