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Lakehead University Media Release:

Lakehead University Names its 2012 Distinguished Researchers of the Year

(Thursday, Feb. 14, 2013 – Thunder Bay, ON)

Dr. Sonja Grover, Professor in the Faculty of Education, and Dr. Aicheng Chen, Chemistry Professor and Canada Research Chair in Material and Environmental Chemistry, are Lakehead’s 2012 Distinguished Researchers of the Year.

“Dr. Grover and Dr. Chen are excellent researchers – it’s no surprise that they were selected,” said Dr. Rui Wang, Vice-President (Research, Economic Development & Innovation).

“Our researchers help put Lakehead University and Thunder Bay on the map,” said Lakehead President and Vice-Chancellor, Dr. Brian Stevenson. “More importantly, Dr. Grover’s and Dr. Chen’s respective research also brings economic and scientific benefits to our city and Northwestern Ontario in new and innovative ways.”

Dr. Grover’s work is making a significant contribution to the promotion of children’s basic legal and other fundamental human rights internationally.

“It is extremely gratifying and humbling to have the Lakehead University community recognize the social significance of my legal research through this award,” Dr. Grover said. “I am very grateful to Lakehead’s Faculty of Education for providing a supportive environment in which to do my social justice research.”

Dr. Grover’s research focuses on international humanitarian, human rights and criminal law, specifically on children’s fundamental human rights and child rights advocacy.  She has published 11 single authored books, 85 refereed journal articles, and a number of book chapters. Dr. Grover has presented her work at various international conferences including UNESCO.

Her latest book, Humanity’s Children: ICC Jurisprudence and the Failure to Address the Genocidal Forcible Transfer of Children, critiques the International Criminal Court’s failure to prosecute the offence of genocidal forcible transfer of children as child soldiers to armed forces perpetrating mass atrocity.

Dr. Chen is interested in electrochemistry, biosensors, green chemistry, materials science and nanotechnology.

“It’s a great honour to receive this prestigious award,” Dr. Chen said.

With strong support from NSERC, CFI, FedNor, the Ontario Research Fund and industry partners, Dr. Chen established an advanced Electrochemistry Laboratory.

“My research team has made great progress in the development of high-performance electrochemical sensors for biomedical applications and green technologies to address the pressing environmental and energy issues,” Dr. Chen said.

Over the past 10 years, he has supervised/co-supervised more than 60 undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and research associates.

Dr. Chen has published six book chapters and more than 120 peer-reviewed journal articles; he has authored more than 70 industrial reports and filed two patents.

The Distinguished Researcher Award is the highest honor conferred by Lakehead University for research and scholarly activity.

Media: For more information, please contact Brandon Walker, Media Relations Officer, at (807) 343-8177.

Dr. Sonia Grover receives Distinguished Researcher Award at . Streaming at

Lakehead University
Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for a multidisciplinary teaching approach that emphasizes collaborative learning and independent critical thinking. More than 8,700 students and 1,850 faculty and staff learn and work at campuses located in Orillia, and Thunder Bay, Ontario, which is home to the west campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. Lakehead University promotes innovative research that supports local and regional socio-economic needs. In Orillia, development continues on building a campus that meets Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) standards.