FIPLV International Award

FIPLV International Award Recipients


Professor John Hayek (AFMLTA, Australia)

Professor John Hajek has a distinguished and lengthy career as a languages educator, and has made exceptional and outstanding contributions to the field as a leader of languages education throughout his career.

His contributions to community languages in Australia; to the professional engagement of teachers of languages in schools and universities; to the learning of languages in pre-schools, primary and secondary schools, in universities and in community schools; and his involvement in numerous projects to promote languages education and the importance of language recognition nationally and internationally in the political arena give him prominence that is recognised through many keynote presentation invitations, including several at AFMLTA international conferences and notably the Horwood Address in 2017, as well as consultation invitations from government, education departments, professional associations, and community organisations.

His work with schools and teachers of languages in schools is extensive, including consultations on pre-school and early years languages programs, with AFMLTA, with education departments and governments across Australia, and, of critical importance, with individuals and groups of languages teachers. His willingness to share and collaborate, to engage and give unlimited time to the profession has had a profound effect on languages teaching over the past decade. He is currently engaged in collaboration for a Vietnamese-English bilingual school, and has been active in bilingual schools networks, including for Italian-English schools and pre-schools. His work on literacy in these areas informs the collaborations and programs adopted in the schools, as well as engaging local communities.

His work in the school languages education space has led to development of new curricula, approaches to languages education, language teacher preparation, and community attitudes to learning languages and plurilingualism. He has provided extensive professional learning sessions for teachers of languages, across all the states and territories of Australia.

In summary, Professor Hajek has made exceptional contributions to the languages education field in Australia, that clearly meet the criteria for the FIPLV International Award. These contributions span community, school and university programs, and involve work with students, teachers, schools, departments, government, industry and communities. We believe him to be a highly deserving recipient of this award.



Dr András Szöllösy-Sebestyén (HALLT, Hungary)

András Szöllösy-Sebestyén has served as General Secretary in the Hungarian Association of Applied Linguists and Language Teachers (HAALLT), a long-time member of FIPLV, since 1994. In this capacity, he has been making efforts to promote research on the use, teaching and learning of foreign languages in the Hungarian context in order to support the practice of language teaching and create a link between theory and practice by providing a nation-wide forum for practising language teachers, experts and researchers in applied linguistics.

Dr Szöllösy-Sebestyén has played an active role in representing and acting in the interest of Hungarian applied linguists, language teaching experts and practising teachers both in Hungary and outside Hungary since the beginning of the 1990s. His contribution to raising awareness, in various Hungarian stakeholder groups, of the importance of language learning and teaching has made him an acknowledged expert in the field.

Besides his active role in HAALLT, Dr Szöllösy-Sebestyén has had his significant share in the development and improvement of tertiary level foreign language teaching as a respected lecturer at several universities in Hungary, his main base being the Foreign Language Institute of the Budapest University of Technology for more than three decades. He is recognised as an expert practitioner in teaching English for Specific Purposes, Hungarian as a Foreign Language and Hungarian for Special Purposes.

Kari Jukarainen (SUKOL, Finland)


Mr Kari Jukarainen has had a long and successful career in language teaching in upper secondary schools in Finland. From the beginning of his professional life, he has had an active role in teachers’ associations. During his presidency of SUKOL, Jukarainen promoted the importance of language skills and lobbied nationally for language teaching on several levels from political and administrative authorities to media and schools.

Mr Jukarainen’s network of contacts is wide and he is highly appreciated for his expertise. Therefore, he has been asked to participate in many language working committees at the National Board of Education, University of Jyväskylä, and the Finnish Matriculation Examination Board. Working as a language teacher and a principal he has always been willing to share his knowledge in order to support language learning and teaching in Finland.

Prof Martin East (NZALT, New Zealand Association of Language Teachers)

Martin East has significantly influenced the pattern and quality of language pedagogy in Aotearoa New Zealand over many years through countless exceptional and outstanding contributions to the field. A revised curriculum for New Zealand’s schools alongside revised national assessments to match new curriculum expectations have led to significant changes for teachers. Both professionally and academically, Martin has played leading roles in supporting and enhancing teachers’ work in these times of change. Pedagogically, languages teachers are encouraged to consider Task-Based Language Teaching as a way of fulfilling revised curriculum requirements. However, this innovation can be challenging for teachers. Martin has dove-tailed his work as a language teacher educator with his publications as a leading scholar in the field to ensure that beginning teachers enter the profession with a solid research-informed understanding of how to enact TBLT. Martin has also supported teachers of te reo Māori through invited workshops about TBLT at Ministry of Education funded national conferences.

As an invited contributor to national assessment renewal, Martin played a significant role in the development of interact – a radical new assessment of students’ speaking skills. The innovation was not universally welcomed. Always keen to question decisions in which he has played a part, Martin researched teachers’ and students’ perspectives on the new assessment, highlighting issues that would require attention moving forward.

Martin has also contributed considerably to the work of NZALT. He was editor of our peer-reviewed journal, The New Zealand Language Teacher, from 2007 to 2016. He has served on NZALT’s Executive since 2012, including four years as President. In this leadership role he was an active interface between languages teachers and government agencies as teachers worked to implement curriculum and assessment reforms. Martin’s significant and sustained contributions to language education make him a worthy recipient of a FIPLV International Award.

Dr Zhivka Stoyanova Ilieva (BETA Bulgaria)

Zhivka Ilieva has been working in the sphere of ELT and teacher training for nearly 20 years. She is an associate professor of Methodology of English Language Teaching at Dobrich College, Shumen University. She presents at conferences dedicated to language teaching and teacher education in Bulgaria and across Europe. She gives seminars and workshops for student teachers and in- service teachers connected to storytelling and using picture books, communicative skills development, lexical approach with young learners. In 2014 she had a closed course at SEETA. As part of her investigation, she works with young learners at kindergarten and primary school at various institutions in Dobrich.

She has been a member of BETA since 2000. Since IATEFL EAST Plovdiv 2001 she has been a regular participant of BETA conferences. She has presented her ideas at LATEUM 2001, 2011, 2013; TESOL France 2007 and 2009, IATEFL 2014 and 2017, TESOL Macedonia Thrace Northern Greece 2012, 2016, 2017, ELTA Serbia 2014, NBR 2016 and many others. She was BETA official representative at some of them.

Zhivka has been part of BETA Organizing committee since 2010. In the period 2010-2014, she was BETA Membership Secretary and 2014-2018 – BETA President. As president, some of her responsibilities are: BETA web site, coordinating the organization of the annual conferences, communication with the US Embassy in Sofia, British Council Bulgaria, publishers and sponsors. In 2015 she was responsible for the RELO grant for travel expenses of Bulgarian teachers to attend BETA 2015. She was responsible for the US Embassy travel grant for Bulgarian teachers to attend BETA 2016 and for the plenary speakers Dian Larsen-Freeman and Elka Todeva for The 1st FIPLV East European Regional Congress and The 26th BETA-IATEFL Annual International Conference 2017.

Zhivka Ilieva is a member of the Union of Bulgarian Scientists, BETA, BSBS, IATEFL, IATEFL Young Learners SIG, TESOL, AILA.

Professor Liudmila Verbitskaya (MAPRYAL, International Association of Teachers of Russian Language and Literature, Russian Federation)

Liudmila Alekseyevna Verbitskaya is one of the first contemporary scholars to provide description to modern pronunciation norms of Russian language. She had an outstanding academic career in Saint Petersburg State University from assistant to Full Professor in the Phonetics Department. Author of more than 300 research papers and textbooks on Russian language, phonetics, phonology and methodology of teaching Russian language. Her research on the problems of contemporary pronunciation became the basis of a new direction in the study of language – “The Norms of Pronunciation and how Phonetics interfere”.

For 14 years Liudmila Verbitskaya served as rector of Saint Petersburg University and initiated the opening of two new faculties there. She has been a member of the presidium of the College of Rectors of St Petersburg of the North-West Region of Russia. In 1999 she founded the Russian Society of Teachers of Russian Language and Literature, in 2003 she was elected President of the International Association of Teachers of Russian Language and Literature, and in 2013 she became President of the Russian Academy of Education. As President of MAPRYAL, she stood at the origins of innovative projects in the field of Russian language study: the world festival of Russian language; a series of seminars for language instructors held worldwide – “MAPRYAL  – to the Russian world”; projects – “Russian language in the field of manpower training for international infrastructure projects”, “Duty, responsibility, time: a modern worldview as seen by contemporary Russian writers”, as well as sociolinguistic research in the field of lingo-didactic testing.


Dr Ray T Clifford (ACTFL, USA)

FIPLV is pleased to recognize the many accomplishments of Dr. Ray T. Clifford in the field of language teaching, learning, and assessment by awarding him the FIPLV International Award. Dr. Clifford’s contributions to the field include transforming language teaching to focus on a proficiency approach, aligning curriculum, assessment and instruction to focus on learner outcomes, developing language tests using innovative validation methods, and contributing to language policy and effective procedures for increasing the language capacity both in the U.S. and internationally. He has served the international language field with his research, publications, and professional presentations. He has been a powerful voice for positive change and in promoting international understanding and the development of global competence.

His devoted colleagues call him the Godfather of the proficiency movement in the U.S., the consensus builder, who was needed to bring the language field together on this very important issue—defining and articulating the goal of language programs that would truly reform language teaching and learning in the U.S. and would bring us into the global arena as a player in developing linguistic and cultural competence. The language field is indebted to Dr. Ray T. Clifford for his numerous contributions and steadfast commitment to making a difference in how languages are taught, learned, and assessed.

Melba Libia Cárdenas (ASOCOPI, Colombia)

Melba Libia Cárdenas is one of the most outstanding scholars in Colombia and Latin America. Her career spans from teaching experience in all levels of Colombian Educational system (from elementary school to graduate programs) to being a lecturer in many national and international events; a consultant; a book writer; a researcher; editor; co-organizer of many national and international academic events; president of ASOCOPI, among many other. She has also been in administrative positions; the most recent being the Academic vice-dean at the School of Humanities at Universidad Nacional, the largest university in the country.

Her achievements and contributions to the field are countless. She has taught hundreds of teachers and has instilled in them the passion, the love, the humanity, and the commitment for the profession. As a researcher she has conducted several studies that inform our practices from a glocal perspective; she has also contributed to strengthen qualitative research to make it more and more valid and trustworthy. As a scholar she created the PROFILE Journal, the highest ranked peer reviewed journal in Colombia, which has opened opportunities for teachers around the world to publish their work. She also took under her wing the edition of HOW Journal, the journal of our association, and turned it into the second peer reviewed journal that publishes teachers research, innovation and pedagogical experiences. (PROFILE and HOW are the only Colombian Journals that publish exclusively in English). As an activist she has always fought for teachers rights; she has inspired generations to value the profession and stand for what they think is right. During the years she was in the board of directors of ASOCOPI she worked very hard to promote the participation of school and university teachers in the annual conference not only as attendees but as presenters.

Leena Hämäläinen (SUKOL, Finland)

Ms Leena Hämäläinen has had a long and successful career in language teaching in a vocational college. Throughout her career, Ms Hämäläinen has taken an interest in pedagogical development of foreign language teaching. We would particularly like to emphasize her active role in developing vocational teaching during recent decades.

From the beginning of her professional life, she has played an active role in various language teachers’ associations organising and participating in seminars and training sessions in Finland and abroad (teaching in numerous pre- and in-service training courses for language teachers organized by e.g. National Board of Education, Faculty of Education at Tampere University, language teachers’ associations (1987–2015); running workshops in FIPLV/NBR conferences and seminars (2000–2010) and participated in various international projects funded by ECML, European union and NordPlus.) She has always been willing and ready to share her expertise and findings with SUKOL and language teachers. From 2005-2007 she also served as Treasurer General and member of the Executive Committee of FIPLV.

Through Ms Hämäläinen’s wide networks within the language teachers’ organizations her expertise serves the teaching of all languages.

Eglė Šleinotienė (LKPA, Language Teachers’ Association of Lithuania)

Eglė Šleinotienė was one of the initiators and a long-term President of the Lithuanian Language Teachers’ Association, who has duly won acclaim both on the national and international levels. Since the year of its foundation in 2006, the Lithuanian Language Teachers’ Association has played an active role in implementing the high social mission of teachers and educators in Europe and worldwide.

At present, as FIPLV Nordic Baltic Region secretary, Eglė devotes all her energy to fostering mutually beneficial cooperation among teachers’ from various education traditions and cultures, with a view to enabling language education practitioners and policy makers meet the needs of the modern society.

Eglė’s passion and creativity are evident in whatever tasks she undertakes, be it delivering a regular workshop or representing  the Lithuanian teachers at international events at the highest level.

Eglė’s in-depth knowledge, experience and incredible commitment to her profession and LKPA mission motivate others and promote the teachers’ involvement in campaigns and decision making processes far beyond the classroom. Her colleagues know Eglė as a critical thinker who can challenge the status quo and find a better way to meet the needs of the teachers’ community.

ABraPA – Associação Brasileira de Professores de Alemão (Brazil, proposed by IDV)

Der ABraPA-Vorstand

ABraPA wurde am 03. Juli 1988 im Rahmen des 2. Nationalen Treffens der brasilianischen Deutschlehrer/innen gegründet und fungiert seitdem als Dachverband für die sieben Regionalverbände, die brasilienweit die Deutschlehrenden in ihrer jeweiligen Region unterstützen. Im Jahre 1989 wurde ABraPA in den IDV aufgenommen.

Eine der Hauptaufgaben von ABraPA ist die Organisation des alle 3 Jahre stattfindenden Brasilianischen Deutschlehrerkongresses. Die durchschnittliche Teilnehmerzahl beläuft sich auf 500 Teilnehmer/innen pro Kongress. Der 9. Kongress fand im Juli 2015 in Ivoti/Rio Grande do Sul statt. 2017 wurde zudem die 1. Deutschlehrertagung Südbrasilien veranstaltet. Derzeit beschäftigt sich der ABraPA-Vorstand mit den Vorbereitungen auf den X. Brasilianischen Deutschlehrerkongress, der im Juli 2018 in Rio de Janeiro stattfinden wird.

Jedes Jahr organisiert ABraPA ein Arbeitstreffen mit den Vorsitzenden der sieben brasilianischen Regionalverbände. Da wird die Situation in den verschiedenen Regionen Brasiliens diskutiert und es werden Maßnahmen ergriffen, die bei auftauchenden Problemen und Schwierigkeiten eingesetzt werden können. Brasilien ist ein Land mit kontinentalen Dimensionen und vielen kulturellen Unterschieden, die die in sich sehr unterschiedlichen Arbeitsbedingungen der Deutschlehrer/innen beeinflussen. In dieser Hinsicht spielt ABraPA eine sehr wichtige Rolle als Dachverband, indem er die Verbandsarbeit tatkräftig unterstützt und nicht selten bei wichtigen Veranstaltungen die Regionalverbände mit seiner Anwesenheit vor Ort fördert.

ABraPA spielt zunehmend eine wichtige Rolle in der Sprachenpolitik Brasiliens. Als ständiger Gast bei den Netzwerk-Deutsch-Treffen der deutschsprachigen Mittlerorganisationen verschafft sich ABraPA Gehör bei wichtigen Entscheidungen, die die brasilianischen Deutschlehrenden betreffen. Sein Engagement für die deutsche Sprache bei brasilianischen Bildungsbehörden sei auch hier zu erwähnen. Beispielhaft ist eine von ABraPA im ganzen Land initiierte Unterschriftenaktion für die Einführung des Deutschen in ENEM, einer nationalen Vergleichsprüfung, die zum Hochschulzugang berechtigt.

ABraPA sieht sich zudem als wichtiger Partner der süd- und mittelamerikanischen Deutschlehrerverbände und nimmt regelmäßig an Veranstaltungen teil, die im Großraum Süd- und Mittelamerika stattfinden. Als größter Verband in der Region zeichnet sich ABraPA durch seine aktive Mitwirkung aus.

ABraPa genießt bei den Deutschlehrerverbänden weltweit und beim IDV ein hohes Ansehen. Seine konstante Teilnahme an allen vom IDV initiierten Wettbewerben, Veranstaltungen und Arbeitstreffen verdient höchste Anerkennung.

Anlässlich seiner ersten Vorstandssitzung in Südamerika nahm der IDV im Oktober 2016 an einer gemeinsamen Sitzung ABraPA-IDV teil, bei der die brasilianischen Regionalverbände und der IDV ihre Aktivitäten vorstellten, so dass der IDV nochmals von den großen Arbeiten Kenntnis nahm, die vor Ort von ABraPA und seinen Mitgliedsverbänden geleistet werden. Diese Leistung bewog den IDV dazu, ABraPA zum FIPLV International Award 2016 zu nominieren.

Professor Halina Maria Widła (PTN, Modern Languages Association of Poland – Polskie Towarzystwo Neofilologiczne)

Konferencja “Innowacyjność w uczeniu się i nauczaniu języków obcych”. Miejsce: aula im. M. i G. Dietrichów.

Konferencja “Innowacyjność w uczeniu się i nauczaniu języków obcych”. Miejsce: aula im. M. i G. Dietrichów.

Halina Widła, a full professor at the Institute of Romance Languages and Translation Studies at the University of Silesia, Sosnowiec, Poland, has been actively involved in promoting and developing theoretical and practical knowledge of modern languages and cultures. She has given numerous conference presentations and invited talks/plenaries (65) in Poland and abroad (in Belgium, France, Germany, Romania, Sweden); she is the author (and a co-author) of high-quality articles dealing with different aspects of language learning and teaching which have been published in recognized academic journals. She has also been an initiator and an organiser of a number of conferences focussing on the theory and practice of language teaching in Poland, in particular the teaching of Romance languages. As her recent interests include the use of IT technology in language education, she has been actively involved in developing and implementing computer-based materials in distance learning as well as developing the Distance Learning Platform at the University of Silesia (as a part of a European Project). Prof. Widła has been an organiser of workshops for teachers of Romance languages in the Silesia region; the workshops focussed primarily on the use of new technologies in language teaching and learning. In addition, she serves as an examiner on a committee certifying e-teachers for the purpose of university education.

As far as the practice of language teaching is concerned, prof. Widła has been active in supporting language learning contests, namely French Language Contests and the Spanish Language Contests. She served as a member of the Committees in the years 2011-2016 (also as a representative of the Modern Languages Association of Poland); she was responsible for and supervised the on-line part of the contests.

On the whole, her initiatives in the area of promoting Romance languages and culture have contributed to the increase of interest in French, and, as a result, led to the increase in the number of hours of French taught in schools.

Prof. Widła’s involvement in the promotion of Romance languages and culture included such events as meetings with prospective employers of the graduates of philology (since 2013), events organised in cooperation with the French Embassy in Poland, collaboration with schools in the area, guest lectures, workshops for teachers preparing students for language contests (2002-2016), etc.

Prof. Widła was a member of the Presidium of the Modern Languages Association of Poland (2001-2016). She served as vice-President in the years 2004-2007 and was President for two consecutive terms (2007-2013). In 2016 she was awarded a medal in appreciation for her work and involvement. In 2009 she was elected Secretary General of FIPLV for Western/Central European Region.

Prof. Halina Widła is active in many other areas – she is a member of several professional organizations, serves on editorial/advisory boards of academic journals, and, above all, is an academic teacher. In this capacity she teaches numerous courses, including M.A. and Ph.D. seminars in the area of IT, among others. She has supervised 5 Ph.D. theses, served as a reviewer in 14 Ph.D. assessment committees, and took part in other procedures connected with the conferment of academic degrees. Her involvement has been recognized and appreciated by the authorities at the university and the ministerial levels.

Dr Zarina Markova (BETA-IATEFL, Bulgaria) 

Zarina Markova has been part of BETA-IATEFL Committee since 2008: five years as a co-opted member (2008-2010; 2014-2017) and four years as an elected member (2010-2014). As an elected committee member, Zarina was in charge of the international relations, and she put effort into strengthening the links with partner associations. She represented BETA at six conferences of partner associations, two of which were the annual IATEFL conferences in the United Kingdom. Her IATEFL talks were selected for SIG Days twice (in the Young Learners and Teenagers’ SIG Day in 2013, and in the Research SIG Day in 2015). She was BETA’s Official Representative in the SEETA Community (2008-2014), where she moderated open forums, conducted (together with Nina Tsvetkova) a SEETA event on intercultural education and young learners (February 2009), and was in charge of the network etiquette and the community article bank. Together with Desmond Thomas, she was an academic adviser to the SEETA Small-scale Teacher-led Research project (2014-2016); as such, she conducted several webinars on data collection and analysis, and online sources of research findings, and guided the participating teachers during both the collaborative and the individual stages of the project. Zarina was part of the BETA Conference Organizing Committee in the period between 2009 and 2016, and the Conference Secretary at the conferences in 2009 and 2014. Since April 2014, she has been coediting (with Sylvia Velikova) BETA-IATEFL E-Newsletter, the bimonthly magazine of BETA, and the annual BETA Conference Selections. Zarina is a member of the C Group – a group of EFL professionals whose aim is to promote creativity in English language teaching and learning.


1 AFMLTA Joseph Lo Bianco

2 LATEUM Ekaterina Mikhailovskaya

3 STIL Hafdis Ingvarsdóttir

4 SUKOL Annukka Kosonen


1 IDV InDaF – Indo-German Teachers Association

2 APLV Christian Puren

3 BETA Sylvia Velikova

4 EVOL Ene Peterson

5 SUKOL Kirsti Santaholma


1 LALT Elena Berdnikova

2 STIL Audur Torfadóttir

3 SUKOL Anna-Kaisa Mustaparta


1 ANILS Gianfranco Porcelli

2 SUKOL Tiina Primietta


1 SUKOL Sinikka Marila

2 VLLT Christien van Gool


1 LALT Valija Vahere

2 SUKOL Anu Parikka


1 LATEUM Natalia Gvishiani

2 SUKOL Marja Martikainen

3 NZALT Gail Spence


1 LALT Olga Ozolina

2 HALT György Szépe

3 SUKOL Kyllikki Vilkuna


1 LMS (Norway) Rita Gjørven

2 VLLT Alex Riemersma

3 LALT Diana Rumpite

4 AFMLTA Angela Scarino

5 SUKOL Leena Vaurio


1 LATEUM Olga Alexandrova

2 AFMLTA Marjory Ellsmore

3 NZALT Mairi Ferguson

4 SUKOL Raili Hilden

5 LALT Anita Vanaga


1 SUKOL Anja-Liisa Alanko

2 AFMLTA Marg Gearon

3 NZALT Mary Gray

4 RALMLT Irina Khaleeva

5 MAPRYAL Vitaly Kostomarov

6 LALT Laimdota Trinkuna

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