Professor Sheila Embleton earns two separate distinctions on same day

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York University Professor Sheila Embleton in the Department of Languages, Literatures & Linguistics of the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies was acknowledged for her work and contributions by two important organizations – on the same day.

Sheila Embleton
Sheila Embleton

Awarded the Bernice Schrank Award from the Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) on Nov. 26, Embleton was recognized for her “outstanding contributions to the enforcement of academic staff workplace rights through grievance/arbitration.”

The award is given to a candidate who has: demonstrated a consistent and active defense of collective agreement provisions through the grievance process over a long period of time; shown leadership within local, provincial or national associations; and been involved in educational initiatives associated with the transmission of grievance handling knowledge and skills.

Embleton was unable to attend the CAUT council meeting where the award was presented due to a prior commitment to be present for the Royal Society of Canada’s (RSC) annual meeting in Calgary. At the conclusion of the meeting, which celebrated the theme “Celebration of Excellence and Engagement,” RSC announced Embleton’s appointment as president of the academy of arts and humanities, as well as RSC vice-president-designate. She has been a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada since 2010.

“The Schrank Award is very meaningful to me because the nomination was assembled by people I work closely together with, and the promotion of the collegial rights and responsibilities of academic staff has been central to my career, whether in senior administration as associate dean or provost, or in the various roles I’ve had at YUFA at various points, most recently as chief steward since 2011,” said Embleton.

“To be able to take on a further leadership role in the RSC, after being secretary for six years, is for me a great honour,” she added. “The RSC has just released an ambitious strategic plan for 2023-25 with the themes inclusive excellence, independent expertise, and international engagement, and I look forward to reinforcing the pivotal roles of the arts and humanities in these priority areas.”

At York, Embleton is a Distinguished Research Professor with teaching and research interests in historical linguistics and language change, quantitative linguistics, sociolinguistics, dialectology, onomastics, Finnish literature, and women and language.

She is the author of Statistics in Historical Linguistics (1986), editor of the Fourteenth LACUS Forum (1988), Twenty-Fourth LACUS Forum (1998), and Thirty-Ninth LACUS Forum (2022), and co-editor of Indo-European and the Indo-Europeans (1992, 1993),  of the two-volume The Emergence of the Modern Language Sciences: Studies on the Transition from Historical-Comparative to Structural Linguistics (1999), Names in Contact: Names in a Multi-Lingual, Multi-Cultural, Multi-Ethnic World (2009), Language and Text: Data, Models, Information, Applications (2021), and Quantitative Approaches to Universality and Individuality in Language (2022).