Christine Norton, PhD

2017 John J. Humpal Award Presented to Professor Christine Norton at Innovating for Continence Conference


The John J. Humpal award was presented to Professor Christine Norton at the Simon Foundation for Continence’s sixth biennial Innovating for Continence: The Engineering Challenge conference, hosted April 19-21 at the Millennium Knickerbocker Hotel, in Chicago, IL, USA.

Christopher Payne, MD, Emeritus Professor of Urology at Stanford University presented the John J. Humpal award to Christine Norton, PhD, MA, RN. Dr. Payne asked the conference attendees, “What makes a young, talented nurse scientist choose the field of fecal incontinence? While I don’t have the exact answer to that question, we are certainly lucky that she did. I first met Christine at the WHO International Consultation on Incontinence in 2005 and was struck by the clarity and insightfulness of her committee’s findings. Christine achieved the classic goal for medical faculty with major contributions in teaching, education, and clinical care. In fact, there is practically nothing in the entire field to which she has not contributed. For this she was awarded an endowed professorship. I’m a bit jealous, but very proud to be her colleague, and to present her this well-deserved award.”

Professor Norton is the Florence Nightingale Professor of Clinical Nursing Research at King’s College London. She has worked with people with incontinence for 35 years, specializing first in urinary incontinence and for the past 20 years in faecal incontinence. In the past she was a co-chair of the International Continence Society Continence Promotion Committee and of the International Consultation on Incontinence Faecal Incontinence Committee. She chaired the UK national guidelines on faecal incontinence and was an editor for the Cochrane Collaboration Incontinence Group. She has authored seven books and over 100 articles on incontinence.

Professor Norton is a member of The Simon Foundation for Continence’s Advisory Board, and served as the Honorary Conference President for the Foundation’s 2015 Innovating for Continence conference. At this year’s conference she co-hosted a workshop with Jeannette Potts, MD on “What Challenges Do the Bladder and Bowel Present?” and a podium presentation entitled, “What’s New in the Bowel World”, which provided a review of recent and ongoing international work, and drew on the experiences of her patients to identify the unmet needs and priorities of those who rely on continence technology to manage the challenges of faecal (bowel) incontinence.

Upon receiving the award, Professor Norton noted, “I feel very honored to receive this award as recognition of the part I have played to raise awareness of continence issues around the world. Unlike 35 years ago when I started this work, there is increasingly something to celebrate as slowly, slowly we are starting to bring incontinence to the attention of the public and health professionals. As a nurse, I am also delighted that all health professionals are making a contribution to improving the health and wellbeing of people with bladder and bowel problems.”

The John J. Humpal Award is named in honor of the Simon Foundation for Continence’s first chairman of its Governing Board. Professor Humpal was a professor at the University of Chicago Business in Organizational Development. Professor Humpal, until his death in 1990, gave above and beyond to the cause of promoting continence.

About the Simon Foundation for Continence

The Simon Foundation for Continence (, located in Chicago, Illinois, USA, is a 501(c)(3) corporation whose mission is: to bring the topic of incontinence into the open; remove the stigma associated with incontinence; and provide help and hope to individuals with incontinence, their families, and the professionals who provide their care. The Simon Foundation for Continence is the world’s oldest patient-led organization devoted exclusively to incontinence, having been founded in 1982. The Foundation’s mission is supported by an Advisory Board of professionals, many of whom have dedicated their careers to improving the clinical treatment of incontinence and advancing medical science through bladder and bowel research. To learn more about the Innovating for Continence Conference, visit the conference site at

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