Award for Excellence in Open Education: Debra Flewelling

We are pleased to present Debra Flewelling, Open Education & Emerging Technologies Librarian at Douglas College, with the BCcampus Award for Excellence in Open Education for May. As a fierce advocate for open education at Douglas College as well as for the pivotal role that librarians can play in promoting open education initiatives, Debra brings her warmth, inclusiveness, and desire to share knowledge with others. She has been, and continues to be, a model for other librarians.

Nominated by Brenda Smith, Open Education Librarian, Thompson Rivers University, Leva Lee, Manager, Learning + Teaching, BCcampus, and Jennifer Kirkey, Senior Instructor, Physics and Astronomy, Douglas College

Debra has been a pioneer and leader in bringing awareness, advocacy, and collaboration to open education initiatives in B.C., as illustrated by her efforts to establish Open Douglas at her home institution and by her role as one of the founding members and later inaugural chair of the BC Open Education Librarians (formerly BCOER Librarians).

She has played a leading role in all of BCOEL’s innovative activities since its founding in 2013. For example, she was one of the key organizers and hosts of the first provincial professional development events for librarians about OER, which was held at Douglas College in October 2014. She was a member of a BCOER subgroup that created OER LibGuides in 2014, and helped lead the conversion of these guides into a MediaWiki in 2015 that has since been retired. Over the years, she has attended and actively participated in all of BCOEL’s sprints to create resources.

Debra has also presented at multiple events, such as Festival of Learning, BCLA Academic Librarians Section(BCALS), and Ontario OER Librarians Day at Ryerson University. She has provided leadership not only in embracing open at her own institution, but also for other librarians interested in becoming more engaged in open education. She has been a staunch advocate for open education at her home institution and for the crucial role that librarians can play in working with faculty, staff, and students to further the use of open textbooks and open educational practices. Debra is a shining star who has led the open education community by example for years, and we thank her for everything that she does for open. 

Relevant Links:

2014: BCOER Spring Hackathon

Previous honourees

Jennifer Kirkey, Rajiv JhangianiCindy UnderhillMichael PaskeviciusMaja KrzicGrant PotterIrwin DeVriesTara RobertsonChristina HendricksTannis MorganInba KehoeDiane PurveyErin Fields, Arley CruthersChad Flinn, Aran ArmutluTerry BergWill EngleFlorence DaddeyBrenda SmithLindsay TrippMary Shier, and Brad Bell