Image of award winners standing in front of the LSTM logo

LSTM Staff Awards

Celebrating excellence in all sectors of staff life - from academia and public/ community engagement, to communications and collaboration.

LSTM Staff Awards

The LSTM Staff Awards are a chance to celebrate and showcase the remarkable work taking place across LSTM.

The Staff Awards 2023 ceremony took place in February 2023 in Liverpool, celebrating excellence in all sectors of staff life - from academia and public/ community engagement, to communications and collaboration.

The Awards, nominated by staff, showcased the breadth of talent within the LSTM community.

Read on for more detail about each of our Award winners.  

Contribution of the Year – Malaria Epidemiology Group
This award was presented to recognise an exceptional contribution from an individual or team that has brought about a significant positive outcome for LSTM. It was awarded to the Malaria Epidemiology Group for the impact the group has made on shaping WHO malaria guidelines over the last year. As a result of the Group’s research and through presentations at several WHO Guideline Development Group meetings in 2022, WHO has made four significant policy updates on the treatment of malaria in pregnancy, prevention of malaria in children with severe anaemia and intermittent preventive treatment in school children. 

Mentorship Award – Dr Daire Cantillon
The Mentorship Award was presented to recognise an individual who has shown an outstanding commitment to mentoring, developing and supporting staff and/or students. Dr Daire Cantillon received four separate nominations from colleagues expressing appreciation for his excellent example to early career researchers and willingness to help others achieve their career objectives. He was commended as an invaluable member of the department, mentoring colleagues in new techniques, discussing project ideas and sharing his ideas, be it in applying for grants or working with industry partners. One nomination stated “his experience in science and in the working world influence his research and are passed onto those around him. He is truly humble and thoroughly deserves the recognition for being a fantastic mentor to all in our group and others throughout LSTM. He's made my time so enjoyable here and his support means so much to so many people.”

Equity Champion – Dr Julie Anne Tagena
The Equity Champion prize was awarded to recognise outstanding achievements in promoting and enhancing equity and inclusion activities. Dr Julie-Anne Tagena was nominated for the huge amount of analysis she undertook to support LSTM’s successful Silver Athena Swan application. In addition to her full-time postdoc role, she liaised with teams across LSTM to collect, clean and organise the data, planning and conducting analysis and developing analytical code in R to make it visually compelling. The nomination acknowledged “There is no doubt that we would not have been able to complete our application without Julie-Anne’s high quality work and commitment to quality”

Runner up – Graham Devereux

Citizenship Award – Vicky Cowley
Vicky Cowley received two separate nominations for the Citizenship Award – presented to celebrate acts of compassion and kindness within the LSTM community and reward individuals who have gone beyond their job description to act as a catalyst for change or challenge the status quo. Throughout her career at LSTM Vicky has supported multiple teams across LSTM, making a positive difference and is known throughout the School for her collaborative approach to working. She is recognised as a colleague who sticks to her word and communicates with honesty and compassion. The nominations recognised the enormous support Vicky has provided to her colleagues and her willingness to go the extra mile, noting she works “with a gusto and a drive that is emblematic of her loyalty to LSTM.

Collaboration Award – Liverpool Vaccine Group
The Collaboration Award was presented to recognise individuals or teams who have formed collaborations to effect change or break down internal silos. The Liverpool Vaccine Group set up ‘LSTM Plus’ (LSTM and Partners across Liverpool Region United to Support Vaccine Research) in 2020 which now has 27 partner organisations in regional hospitals and primary care sites across the north west. Over the last year this partnership has continued to lead the way in collaborative working, making an outstanding contribution to LSTM’s work by further enhancing and accelerating highly impactful respiratory vaccine research excellence internationally and breaking down regional NHS silos.

With innovative solutions to trial design and implementation and a large combined, agile, multi-skilled and adaptive team, LSTM-PLUS have delivered safe clinical research with huge positive impact at the cutting edge of government immunisation policy decisions. LVG set up LSTM-PLUS to work cross-institutionally, championing a culture-shift in equitable and fair remuneration (accrual and financial), research training and co-authorship. They supported and trained 10 new-to-research GP sites, meaning more infection and respiratory researchers to improve regional and international lung health; vital globally and for our region of poor lung health, ensuring future pandemic preparedness. Active stakeholder engagement with Parent Public Involvement through community groups embedded in their studies and innovative recruitment techniques and study visit locations mean they are able to recruit a socio-economically and ethnicity diverse population ensuring equitable and inclusive study access to all.

Runner up – LSTM’s REF team

Communication and Engagement Champion – Amina Ismail
This award recognises exceptional contributions in efforts to reach out to others, increasing knowledge on what is happening in their sphere of work.vAmina was presented with the Communication and Engagement Champion thanks to the huge impact she has made in her short time at LSTM. Two separate nominations applauded the valuable work she has done with Liverpool communities, working in a culturally sensitive way. Her work has made significant contributions to reducing vaccine inequities in the local area and embody LSTM’s values of inclusivity, integrity, partnership and impact.

Runner up – Centre for Snakebite Research

Sustainability Award – Martina Savio
Martina Savio was presented with the Sustainability Award in recognition of the significant work she has done as part of the Sustainability and Environment Committee. Two separate nominations commended Martina’s commitment to the environment, noting her courage in challenging the status quo and making difficult decisions which highlight and reduce the carbon footprint of the projects she works on. Martina brings her own personal values on sustainability and climate justice to the workplace and thinks creatively and persistently about ways these can be embedded in her own work at LSTM. Her actions raise awareness and change behaviours, embedding sustainability when selecting hotels and meeting venues, in decisions about travel and in offsetting carbon impact. One nomination noted “Martina is a longstanding champion of issues of environmental sustainability, with an energetic and inspiring approach and a remarkable capacity to bring colleagues and partners along with her thinking in this space.

Runner up – the Sustainability and Environment Committee

Partnership of the Year – LVCT Health
This award was presented to celebrate an external partner who has made an outstanding contribution to LSTM's work. It was presented to LVCT Health in Kenya, who have just celebrated 20 years of research excellence in partnership with LSTM. With longstanding and well-established links with LSTM and a distinguished track record of its own, LVCT Health makes a positive difference through research and implementation, harnessing its trusting relationships with stakeholders, including the Kenyan government.

LVCT Health focuses on inclusivity and have an excellent track record in health equity. They implement services in some of Kenya’s most disadvantaged communities and work with vulnerable populations in Kenya including child headed households, older people, people with disabilities, men who have sex with men, adolescent girls, young women and pregnant teenagers.

In the past year LVCT health have continued to drive forward impactful work in informal settlements (ARISE) whilst sustaining the legacy of previous LSTM grants (REACHOUT; SQALE) through community quality improvements that have been taken up in national guidelines and rolled out by the MoH in 12 counties. LVCT were a go-to partner for four grants submitted by LSTM (DIPH and DOCs) in the past year including in mental health, health systems, community health and human resources. LVCT also led two successful NIHR grants that have LSTM staff as co-investigators. They mentor and support other LSTM partners as they take on these greater leadership and management roles.