2024 - James H. Graham Award of Merit

This honorary award of merit was named for Dr. James H. Graham, secretary-general of the Royal College from 1953 to 1979. In 1987, the Council of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada recommended that an award of merit be given to a person whose outstanding career achievements reflect the aims and objectives of the Royal College.

General Policies

  • The Awards Committee of the Royal College, which selects the recipient annually may add to the list of nominations.
  • The Awards Committee may also conduct its own research regarding the proposed nominees.
  • Only one award recipient will be named in any given year; however, the award may not necessarily be bestowed annually.


  • This person need not be a physician.
  • Self-applications are ineligible.
  • The recipient’s career achievements must be outstanding, enduring, and must be reflective of the Royal College strategic priorities. Potential candidates, who need not be physicians, could be long-serving contributors in a wide variety of areas including, but not limited to:
    • Patient Care
    • Societal Health / well-being
    • International / Global Health
    • Post-graduate Medical Education
    • Continuing Professional Development
    • Health policy
    • Professionalism / Volunteerism (e.g., Royal College volunteer, NSS volunteer)
    • Physician / Resident health and well-being
    • Etc.

Further information on the Royal College strategic priorities can be found in the Strategic Plan.

Nomination Process

  • Nominations come from members of the Royal College Council and the standing committees and sub-Committees of Council.

Nomination Requirements

In order to assist the Awards Committee in evaluating the merits of a nominee, the following guidelines and documentation are recommended for the preparation and submission of nomination packages.

  • A cover letter from a primary nominator outlining the rationale for the nomination and the contributions of the individual.
  • One to three additional letters that support the nomination and focus particular attention on how the nominee’s contributions are aligned with Royal College strategic priorities, and the impact of these contributions. If possible, the letters should come from diverse audiences. (i.e., if a nominee’s contribution is in the area of teaching and mentoring, letters of support should come from, a student/mentee, a colleague within the nominee’s department, and/or a colleague from outside the nominee’s department).
  • Reference letters:
    • should be clear, succinct, intentional and one page in length (Calibri or Open Sans font, size 10 if possible but not mandatory).
    • Furthermore, letters shouldn’t be provided by friends, relatives, or close relationships.
    • Letters shouldn’t have institutional logos.
    • Letters shouldn’t be endorsed or submitted by Royal College staff.
  • A current curriculum vitae, please include accomplishments from the past 10 years, maximum 20 pages, without profile photo.
  • Any other relevant items/information that would support the assertions in the nomination, such as teaching awards, presentations, research abstracts, patient or student evaluation summaries. Only include items that are relevant to the nomination, and provide supporting information that would otherwise not be documented in the nomination package.


  • The recipient will be presented with an engraved memento at Royal College event.
  • Travel and related expenses of the award winner will be paid in accordance with Royal College guidelines.

Please submit your application via our online platform – James H. Graham Award

Submission deadline: September 6, 2023 – late submissions will not be considered.

Questions about this award, please contact us via email

Past recipients