Celebrating the 2021 recipients of PLAIN’s awards

2021 Awards Ceremony

This year, PLAIN has presented its two awards virtually at the Access for All conference! We share here our congratulations and gratitude to the organizations recognized and the individuals that carry out the valuable and inspiring work we celebrate.

Christine Mowat Plain Language Achievement Award

We present this award to recognize an outstanding contribution to advancing plain language. The award is in honor of Christine Mowat, a past president of PLAIN and winner of the former PLAIN International Award which was subsequently renamed the Christine Mowat Plain Language Achievement Award.

The recognition can go towards a variety of contributions including:

  • Significant research in the field of plain language
  • Extensive experience in developing and presenting plain language training
  • Extensive experience in writing or editing documents using plain language
  • A body of publications about plain language
  • Successful leadership in public plain language projects, or
  • Significant volunteer contribution to a plain language organization

This year’s winner has demonstrated prowess in several of those fields, in particular, successful leadership in public plain language projects, developing and presenting plain language training and editing documents into plain language in the area of health literacy. Health literacy is one of the front lines of the campaign for plain language and this organization has achieved what plain language is meant to achieve – delivering clear information to those who need it most. They deliver health information to people with literacy and language challenges in order to improve their health outcomes.

It is with great pleasure that we presented the 2021 Christine Mowat Award to Enliven Victoria!

Christopher Balmford (left) presenting the award on behalf of PLAIN to Cinzia Theobald (center) and Rob Mcindon (right) from Enliven Victoria.

Cheryl Stephens Plain Language Innovation Award

The Cheryl Stephens Award honors Cheryl Stephens (co-founder of PLAIN) and encompasses the recognition to the intellectual contribution of the awardee, as well the gratitude from our plain language community for that contribution. This award is generously sponsored by the Skritswap organization founded by Melissa Kargiannakis, CEO at Skritswap, who is an outspoken and dynamic advocate for plain language.

The Cheryl Stephens Innovation Award is intended to recognize a person or organization whose plain language activities have brought significant benefit to the community through one or more of the following areas:

  • Technology–adapting emerging technology to develop new services and systems
  • Advocacy–extending the scope and influence of plain language internationally
  • Research–strengthening the knowledge base for plain language, or
  • Professional development–helping to develop the skills of plain language practitioners and the institutions supporting them

The winner this year has gone above and beyond with development of an online plain language program that addresses an array of needs in plain language training, reflects the plain language process from start to finish, and provides stand-online introductory and advanced courses as well a certificate of combined courses in different languages, starting with English, Spanish, and French, and with plans to add more languages in the near future! Last year, during the height of the pandemic, this team planned the first coordinated multilingual courses in alignment with the upcoming ISO Standard 24495 on Plain Language Principles.

It is with great pleasure that we presented the 2021 Cheryl Stephens Award to Plain Language Academies!

Cheryl Stephens Award 2021
Kate Harrison-Whiteside, Co-Founder and Director at Plain Language Academies,
receives the award from PLAIN’s President Margrethe Kvarenes