Diana Tindall: Dedicated Evaluator Honoured With 2021 Service To CES Award
Diana Tindall, Program Evaluator at Praxis Spinal Cord Institute, was drawn to working in evaluations early on in her career. “Using evidence-based data to design and manage programs resonated with me right from the start,” she says.
Her volunteer days go back to the 1995 International Conference on Evaluation where, as a wayfinder, she helped participants navigate three separate venues in downtown Vancouver. Since then, she has been on the national Canadian Evaluation Society (CES) Board twice, co-chaired several provincial conferences, coordinated volunteers, and supported learning events. “For me, volunteering has meant I’m always learning about evaluation,” says Diana, “it’s meant connecting to other evaluators – who volunteer a lot! – and witnessing the changes in CES and the BC Chapter.”
CES is the only Canadian organization dedicated to the advancement of evaluation theory and practice in Canada. Thirty years ago, as a new organization, it was concentrated in central Canada. Now it’s active in all provinces and territories.
At the CES Annual Conference this past May, Diana was honoured with the 2021 Service to CES Award for her contributions to the society over the past 26 years. The award coincided with Diana’s workshop on “Gender-based Analysis+ Evaluation of Praxis Spinal Cord Institute Activities,” co-presented with Cassandra Adjetey, Praxis Evaluation Assistant, and Thea Bracewell, Evaluation Consultant.
I see achieving reconciliation, equity/ diversity/ inclusion, and environmental sustainability as some of the greatest challenges evaluation is facing over the next five years.
The Praxis evaluation was used to raise awareness and initiate changes at the Institute in the development and evaluation of policies and programs. At Praxis, Diana works on the entire performance management cycle – from planning through monitoring, through evaluation and then planning again.
Over the next five years, the evaluation field has exciting transformations ahead. “I see achieving reconciliation, equity/ diversity/ inclusion, and environmental sustainability as some of the greatest challenges evaluation is facing over the next five years,” says Diana. CES has already committed to actively working on all of these. It offers professional development activities, advocacy, and membership initiatives designed to respond to them. “If I could create a vision for the future of evaluations at Praxis, it would be providing opportunities for organizational learning in addition to accountability.”
Through various awards, CES celebrates contributions to the evaluation community and to CES each year. During its first ten years, CES Contribution to Evaluation awards went solely to male evaluators. Since 2011, nine women have received these awards, reflecting how CES has been transforming over time. The Service to CES Award is an honour that marks greater recognition for Diana’s work and for all women in the field of program evaluation.