2024 ACPE Service Award Recipients

Distinguished Service Award

ACPE is proud to announce that their member Chaplain David C. Johnson, D.Min, ACPE Certified Educator, has been named the 2024 Distinguished Service Award (DSA) honoree. The DSA is awarded for long, outstanding service and leadership to the association.

Chaplain  Johnson retired in 2017 as the Director of Spiritual Care and Education at Carolinas Medical Center (CMC), a 900-bed Level One trauma center in Charlotte, NC.  In his retirement, he continues to contribute significantly to the field, serving as an ACPE Educator with several online CPE Programs and as the Executive Director of the Journal of Pastoral Care and Counseling, an esteemed online journal.

Johnson received his Bachelor of Arts degree with a focus in Social Work from La Grange College in La Grange, Ga.  His Master of Divinity focused on Pastoral Care was received from  Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois on the Northwestern University Campus.  He received his Doctor of Ministry at The Graduate Theological Foundation.  The focus of his Doctor of Ministry was in the area of Pastoral Counseling. He is ordained by the United Methodist Church.

David has 50 years of experience in ministry, the last 40 years as a chaplain, CPE Educator, pastoral counselor, and administrator.  He trained at Georgia’s Central State Mental Hospital in Milledgeville, Ga.  He received his ACPE Educator’s training at the Academy of Pastoral Education at the South Carolina State Mental Hospital in Columbia, South Carolina.  He first worked as a chaplain and educator with the Charter Hospital System.  From there, he joined Cabell Huntington  Hospital in Huntington, West Virginia, as the Spiritual Care and Education Department Director.  He provided counseling to employees, supervised CPE students, and chaired the Medical Ethics committee.

He has been certified as an Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE) Educator since 1986 and has been certified by the Association of Professional Chaplains (APC) and its predecessor organizations since 1984. He remains active in both organizations.

Chaplain Johnson's leadership and contributions to ACPE are noteworthy. He has served in various key roles, including Chair of the Mid-Atlantic Region’s Accreditation Committee, Chair of ACPE’s Accreditation Commission, member of the ACPE Board of Directors, and member of the finance committee. His tenure as President of the ACPE Board of Directors from 2014 – 2015 is a testament to his unwavering leadership and commitment to ACPE. Currently, he is a member of the Leadership Development Committee, continuing to contribute to the growth and development of the organization.

In APC, he served on the Board of Directors, first as Chair of the Professional Ethics Commission and then as President from 2010 to 2012. Currently, he serves as a Professional Ethics Investigator.

Dr. Johnson has been married to Susan for fifty-two years.  They have two children and five grandchildren.

ACPE is honored to recognize Chaplain David C. Johnson, D.Min, with the 2024 Distinguished Service Award.

Helen Flanders Dunbar Award

ACPE proudly announces that its member Tere Tyner Canzoneri, M.Div, LCSW, has been named the 2024 Helen Flanders Dunbar Awards honoree. The award is presented for pioneering and innovative contributions to the Psychotherapy and CPE movement and the association. 

Tere has always been curious about the world and how spiritual matters shape our lives.   As a child of clergy educators, her life was shaped by spiritual awareness, religious practice, curiosity, and a commitment to intellectual rigor.  When she was ten years old, her family moved to Asia, where she lived until she graduated from high school. Having grown up in a country that was not her passport country and having traveled extensively, Tere knows there is always more than one way to see and understand any circumstance. 

Tere’s formal education includes a BA in Human Services from Mercer University, an M.Div from Candler School of Theology at Emory, and an MSW with a mental health focus from the University of Georgia. She completed her residency in Pastoral Counseling at Georgia Baptist Medical Center, where she was later Director of the Training Program. She has also served as part of the training faculty of the Georgia Association for Pastoral Care.  She has been a pastoral psychotherapist and licensed clinical social worker in the metro Atlanta for 41 years.  In 2003, she joined the staff of the Emmanuel Center for Pastoral Counseling of St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church in Atlanta, GA, where she provides counseling and psychotherapy to individuals, couples, and families; clergy consultation; spiritual direction, as well as supervision to pastoral psychotherapists and clinical social workers. She has also managed a wellness program for an international religious organization. She was ordained to the ministry in 1988 at Oakhurst Baptist Church in Decatur, GA.

Tere’s passion for pastoral counseling and her exceptional contributions to spiritual care and education have earned her the respect and admiration of her peers. She was a Diplomate in the American Association of Pastoral Counselors (AAPC). She held many positions within AAPC, including chairing both the Southeast (SE) and the Association certification committees, and chairing the SE region. As the final president of AAPC, Tere helped facilitate the consolidation of AAPC and ACPE. This critical partnership honored a shared history and highlighted both organizations’ joint mission and values.  Since becoming an ACPE Psychotherapist, she has been a Spiritually Integrated Psychotherapy (SIP) trainer, a member of the Psychotherapy Commission, and part of the ACPE Psychotherapy Commission Working Group.

It is with great honor that ACPE recognizes Tere Tyner Canzoneri with the 2024 Helen Flanders Dunbar Award.

Inspiration Award 

ACPE is proud to announce that Rev. Robert Brooks Heard, ACPE Certified Educator, has been named the 2024 Inspiration Award honoree. The Inspiration Award recognizes outstanding contributions to the ACPE community through initiative, innovation, and leadership.

Rev. Robert Brooks Heard is the Manager of the Clinical Pastoral Education Program at MD Anderson, training the next generation of oncology-based Spiritual Care Practitioners. Before MD Anderson, he was a Certified Educator Candidate at Prisma Health in Columbia, SC, where he coordinated student training programs and provided spiritual care in behavioral health and hospice settings. Heard is a board-certified chaplain with the Association of Professional Chaplains and a Certified Educator with the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education. Rev. Heard is an emerging leader in the field of spiritual care, education, and training. He has a wide range of educational, cultural, and spiritual experiences that influence his approach to his work. He is passionate about assisting patients, caregivers, staff, and students to achieve spiritual wellness.

Rev. Heard is an ordained Baptist pastor who has served in various settings, including community development, international teaching, and youth and young adult ministry. He lives in Houston, TX, with his wife, Ricki, and their two children, Brooklyn (4) and Brooks Jr. (2).

It is with great honor that ACPE recognizes him with the 2024 Inspiration Award.

Emerging Leader Award

ACPE is proud to announce that their member, The Rev. Dr. M. Colette Gaffney, ACPE Certified Educator, has been named the 2024 Emerging Leader Award honoree. The Emerging Leader Award recognizes early-career professionals who have already begun to exhibit significant leadership qualities in service to ACPE.

Colette Gaffney (formerly known as Megan Alleman) works with Ochsner Health System as the Supervisor of Clinical Pastoral Education since December 2021. Since taking root in New Orleans, Colette has come into more knowledge of themself, the geographical placement connecting them more deeply with their Cajun and Creole ancestors and descendants. Colette is agender in gender identity and queer in sexual orientation and has bloomed in the long-standing New Orleans LGBT2SQIA+ community, living amongst chosen family that they have been finding throughout their life. 

Colette came to New Orleans via Oklahoma City where they joined the VA chaplain team as a second-year chaplain resident focusing on in-patient mental health spiritual care. After a year in discernment, they entered the ACPE Certified Educator Candidate process under the mentorship of Tammy Wooliver on their 28th birthday. They continued as the mental health fellow focusing on outreach to Veterans experiencing homelessness and outpatient mental health and overseeing the intern program. In 2019, they were hired as a staff chaplain providing spiritual care in palliative care, a community living center, suicide prevention, and moral injury, continuing to supervise the intern program. At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, they became the administrator of the CPE program at the Oklahoma City VA. From 2020-2021, their clinical responsibilities included in-patient COVID-19 units, out-patient tele-spirituality groups like an interfaith women’s spiritual community, and Spiritual Recovery for LGBTQIA+ Veterans who are recovering from spiritual/religious trauma.

In Winter 2020, Colette was certified by ACPE as an Educator, in January 2021 they were board certified by NAVAC, and in April 2021 they completed their doctoral research at Union Theological Seminary entitled Spiritual Formation in the Practice of Spiritual Care Education and Supervision.

Colette has served in the military for a total of 8 years, which includes as an US Army Reserves Chaplain with the 368 th Civil Affairs Battalion in Grand Prairie, TX. Colette has been physically chronically ill since their time in the US Army Reserves, disabled by a social context that exacerbated a rheumatic condition. This change in ability has resulted in a greater awareness of a need for balance and self-compassion for Colette.

Colette has served as senior pastor of a Disciples of Christ Church, associate pastor for families, youth, and children, and spiritual care provider to those in need of support for grief, mental health, substance use, and suicide interventions in local churches. 

In October 2022, Colette became National Faculty and soon after began volunteering with ACPE as a theory mentor, accreditation portfolio reviewer, serving on the Professional Well-Being Committee as a liaison to the psychotherapists integrated into the ACPE community, supporting the development of Anti-Bias task force webinars related to Sexuality in Supervision, the Queer experience of CPE and disability, started the Education and Consultation on Disability Community of Practice and co-convening the Anti-Ableism Task Force that challenges ACPE in its work to become more accessible to the disabled community. 

Colette currently enjoys as their main creative outlets: improv, creating their own clothes, quilting, and making space for their clown, Tinsel the Truth Teller, creating a one-clown show on the irony and power of truth.

It is with great honor that ACPE recognizes The Rev. Dr. M. Colette Gaffney with the 2024 Emerging Leader Award.

2024 Emeritus Educator

Julie’s ACPE journey began in 2001 with a residency at the Portland VA Medical Center, and then transitioned into supervisory training. She has been the Educator and Director of Spiritual Care at a county and university teaching hospital in Seattle, and not-for-profit hospitals in Arizona and San Francisco. In 2019, she shifted to semi-retirement and worked as a contract educator at a university teaching hospital in San Francisco and a for-profit hospital in Salt Lake City. Her last unit was in 2022. 

As an ordained Pure Land Buddhist priest, Julie served as a temple priest for 12 years, before finding a home in ACPE. She is committed to nurturing and cultivating interreligious conversations in our association. As a third-generation Japanese American, Julie has become passionate about bringing forward and lifting up the contributions and indigenous gifts of underrepresented demographics in ACPE. These two focuses keep her active in the Buddhist and AAPI CoP. She also is dedicated to the work of the Professional Ethics Commission.

Julie lives in the Pacific Northwest and rounds out her life by volunteering at a local community garden that provides organic produce for the local food bank, exploring the outdoors in her travel trailer, and chasing meteor showers and trout & salmon with her fly rod. Her spiritual community is in Los Angeles, and is a part of their music group that performs ancient Japanese court music and dance and Buddhist ceremonial music.