Honorary Life Membership of ALT

Many thanks to Martin Hawksey for sharing this picture of Helen O’Sullivan announcing the award.

I’m hugely honoured to have been awarded Honorary Life Membership of the Association for Learning Technology at ALT’s 30th Annual Conference Gala at the University of Warwick.  Unfortunately I wasn’t there to receive the award in person because, in a stroke of spectacularly bad timing, I’ve come down with a really horrible cold. Though as Maren pointed out, the great thing about Honorary Life Membership is that you can celebrate it any time! 

For almost three decades Lorna has been a champion of equitable higher education and an open education activist. Lorna ‘s lifelong commitment to and passion for equality and diversity clearly is evident in her work, yet Lorna tends not to push herself forward and celebrate – or even self-acknowledge – her many achievements. 
~ ALT press release.

ALT has been a significant part of my professional life for over 20 years.  I attended my first ALT Conference in the late 1990s, joined the Board of Trustees in 2016, and was awarded Senior CMALT in 2022.  Serving on the ALT Board, and various committees, including the ALT Scotland SIG and the COOL SIG, has been immensely rewarding to me on both a personal and professional level.  I learned a huge amount from my fellow trustees and ALT colleagues and benefited enormously from working with a diverse group of people from a wide range of backgrounds, who I might not have had the opportunity to work with otherwise. I really appreciated having the opportunity to engage with the wider learning technology community at a senior level and to contribute to sector level strategic initiatives. But perhaps most importantly, working with ALT gave me an opportunity to give something back to the Association in return for their dedicated commitment to openness and ethics in learning technology. I’m really humbled that this award acknowledges my open practice and open education advocacy. Open education is a cause that I have a deep personal commitment to, and though at times it has felt like a bit of a quiet up-hill struggle, it has also been immensely rewarding. 

I’m also really touched to be following in the footsteps of other Honorary Life Members who have been a real inspiration to me throughout my career, including Josie Fraser, Linda Creanor, Frances Bell and Teresa MacKinnon.  However I can’t reflect on this award without acknowledging the exemplary leadership of ALT’s outgoing CEO Maren Deepwell, who successfully steered the Association through many changes and challenges. Throughout her tenure as chief executive, Maren has really embodied ALT’s core values.  It’s been a privilege and a pleasure to work with Maren over the years. I’ve learned a great deal from her and been continually inspired by her professionalism, commitment, and compassion.  I have no doubt that ALT will continue to go from strength to strength under the leadership of CEO Billy Smith and I look forward to seeing new directions ALT will take with him at the helm.

Photograph of L. Campbell presenting at ALTC 2019.

Picture by Chris Bull for Association for Learning Technology, CC BY-NC 2.0, 2019.

 

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