Building Evidence to Improve Practice & Health

Established in 1988


To recognize or support individuals who are committed to the research-related development or testing of theory in occupational therapy with priority given to work in the area of sensory processing. The award is given in honor of A. Jean Ayres, PhD, OTR, whose concentration on developing theory in support of practice was of great significance to the profession of occupational therapy.  

Click here for a list of A. Jean Ayres recipients


  • Be initially certified by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy, formerly the American Occupational Therapy Certification Board.
  • Not be serving as a member of the American Occupational Therapy Foundation Board of Directors.

Nomination Procedures

Individual American Occupational Therapy Association members or a group of members are eligible to submit nominations.

Email nomination package to the Chair of the AOTF Awards and Recognition Committee in care of Jeanne Cooper, AOTF Awards Program Coordinator.

Deadline for receipt of 2017 nominations for awards to be given at the AOTA 2017 Annual Conference and Exhibition is September 18, 2016.


Please include:

  • nomination form completed by the candidate.
  • letter of nomination.
  • two (2) letters of support.
  • current curriculum vitae of candidate which must include a list of publications, and/or presentations (seminars, symposia, workshops, scientific papers, awards, and honors.)
  • reprints of publications published in external professional journals if applicable.
  • a recent photograph of nominee (hi-resolution 300 dpi or greater)
  • an addendum to the nomination letter, a short paragraph of no more than 100 words to appear in professional publications citing the nominee's contributions.
  • Individuals nominated but not selected may be re-nominated in succeeding years.

Criteria for Selection 

  • Type of contribution (practice, education, or research)
  • Extent of contribution (scope and depth)
  • Quality of contribution
  • Sphere of influence
  • Recognition by others
  • Benefit to the profession



Contact Jeanne Cooper, AOTF Awards Program Coordinator.


A. Jean Ayres Award Recipients

 2017    Elizabeth (Beth) A. Pfeiffer, PhD, OTR/L, BCP  1998    L. Diane Parham, PhD, OTR, FAOTA
             Charlotte Brasic Royeen, PhD, OTR, FAOTA
 2016    Alison E. Lane, PhD, OTR  1997    Anne C. Mosey, PhD, OTR, FAOTA
 2015    Patricia Bowyer, EdD, MS, OTR, FAOTA  1993    Anita C. Bundy, ScD, OTR, FAOTA
 2014    Dottie M. Ecker, MA, OTR/L, FAOTA
             Susan H. Knox, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
 1992    Georgia DeGangi, PhD, OTR
             Lucy Miller, PhD, OTR
 2013    Patricia L. Davies, PhD, OTR, FAOTA  1991    Sharon A. Cermak, EdD, OTR, FAOTA
             Anne G. Fisher, ScD, OTR, FAOTA
 2012    Shelley E. Mulligan, PhD, OTR/L
             Grace Baranek, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
 1990    Elizabeth J. Yerxa, EdD, OTR, FAOTA
 2011    Ellen S. Cohn, ScD, OTR/L, FAOTA
             Jane A. Koomar, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
 1989    Janice Burke, MA, OTR
             Gary Kielhofner, DrPH, OTR, FAOTA
 2010    Erna Imperatore Blanche, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
             Mary L. Schneider, PhD, OTR/L
 1988    Lela Llorens. PhD, OTR, FAOTA
             Kenneth Ottenbacher, PhD, OTR, FAOTA
 2009    Shelly Lane, PhD, OTR/L
             Susanne Smith Roley, MS, OTR/L, FAOTA
 2008    Beatriz Abreu, PhD, OTR, FAOTA
             Roseanne Schaaf, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
 2005    Paula Kramer, PhD, OTR, FAOTA
             Zoe Mailloux, MA, OTR/L, FAOTA
 2004    Catherine A. Trombly, ScD, OTR/L, FAOTA  
 2003    Winifred Wiese Dunn, PhD, OTR, FAOTA  
 2001    Jane Case-Smith, PhD, OTR, FAOTA
             Wendy Coster, PhD, OTR, FAOTA