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(Front L-R) Provost Joe Rallo, Polly Radosh, Carolyn Tripp, Sharon Butcher (Back L-R) John Carlson, Chris Sutton, Don Johnson, James Caldwell
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Western Illinois Provost's Awards of Excellence Winners Announced

November 10, 2005

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MACOMB, IL - - Western Illinois University Provost and Academic Vice President Joe Rallo hosted the 2005 ProvostÂ’s Awards for Academic Excellence Reception in October, where he presented seven excellence winners and recognized 22 finalists across the seven categories.

Faculty Development, under the direction of Mandeep Singh, organized colleagues who made up the six-member committees charged with determining excellence in the following areas: teaching; teaching with technology; scholarly/professional activities; University/community service; internalizing the campus; and multicultural teaching. A committee of faculty, students and academic advisers worked with the outstanding academic adviser area.

The Provost’s Award for Excellence in Teaching was presented to School of Music Professor James Caldwell. The committee said his ability as a teacher was perhaps best summarized in a student’s quote: “Dr. Caldwell has a great understanding of the material we are learning and is able to convey it so that even people with no musical background could understand it.” Other material in his application attested to his enthusiasm for teaching, as well as his ability to inspire students, to present information in an organized fashion and to help students achieve success in their classes and their careers.

Excellence finalists in teaching were Susan Martinelli-Fernandez, philosophy professor and associate dean, College of Arts and Sciences; Mari Loehrlein, agriculture associate professor; and Karen Zellman, social work associate professor.

The ProvostÂ’s Award for Excellence in Teaching in Technology was presented to Christopher Sutton, chair and associate professor of geography, who has extensively incorporated emerging technologies into all of the courses he teaches. He has been recognized not only for adding technology to the classroom and laboratory environments, but also for his development of synchronous and asynchronous applications of internet technology to supplement his course. Sutton also has become one of the key campus resources for educational applications of web technologies.

Excellence finalists in teaching with technology were Samuel Edsall, communication associate professor; and Greg Montalvo, educational and interdisciplinary studies associate professor.

The ProvostÂ’s Award for Excellence in Scholarly/Professional Activities was presented to Don T. Johnson, finance professor. Over the past three years, Johnson published multiple articles in prestigious finance, marketing and library science journals; one article won national recognition. He was awarded a University Research Council grant for the study of journal and non-journal materials used in doctoral finance classes; he served as editor for a special issue of Managerial Finance; he served as a reviewer for five separate journals; and he orchestrated a 70 percent increase in registrations as program chair for the Academy of FinanceÂ’s annual conference.

Excellence finalists in scholarly/professional activities were Mark Boley, physics professor; Dale Hample, communication professor; Ritchie Gabbei, kinesiology assistant professor; and Felix Chu, libraries professor.

The Provost’s Award for Excellence in University/Community Service was presented to Carolyn Tripp, marketing professor. The selection committee said, “Her leadership and participation in service has made a significant impact within the University, the local community, nationally and internationally. Specifically, Dr. Tripp’s continuing involvement in the Amethyst Project carries significant social consequences as it address alcohol abuse, one of the most serious social issues on American college campuses today.” Tripp was recognized for her civic engagement, which “literally consumes hundreds of hours of her time” and ranges from leading local efforts to raise funds for cancer research to assisting and leading the evaluation and development of marketing plans for U.S. governmental agencies and non-profits.

Excellence finalists in University/community service were Charles Helm, political science chair and professor; Sharon Evans, broadcasting chair and professor; Terry Mors, law enforcement and justice administration associate professor; and William Thompson, libraries assistant professor.

The ProvostÂ’s Award for Excellence in Internationalizing the Campus was presented to John Carlson, agriculture professor, whose academic emphasis is international agriculture. A unanimous committee selection, Carlson has secured various external grants, including a $300,000 Global Business and Learning Partnership Grant through the U.S. Department of State to establish this partnership program with Ryazan. Since 1995 he has visited Russia 26 times participating in various volunteer efforts with Agricultural Cooperative Development International (ACDI) and Volunteers in Overseas Cooperative Assistance (VOCA). He was named the 2004 ACDI/VOCA Volunteer of the Year. Carlson serves on many University and college committees related to internationalizing campus.

Excellence finalists in internationalizing the campus were Walter Kretchik, history assistant professor; and Gloria Delany-Barmann, educational and interdisciplinary studies associate professor.

The ProvostÂ’s Award for Excellence in Multicultural Teaching was presented to Polly Radosh, WomenÂ’s Studies chair and professor, for her longstanding commitment to the infusion of multicultural perspectives into the WomenÂ’s Studies curriculum. She was cited as a tireless in promoting diversity and multiculturalism throughout the curriculum and promoting multicultural teaching through the development of the WomenÂ’s Studies major. Radosh has been serving as director of the program since 1995, when six students had declared womenÂ’s studies minors. Western began offering a bachelorÂ’s degree program in WomenÂ’s Studies in Spring 2002, and WomenÂ’s Studies received departmental status on campus in January 2005.

Excellence finalists in multicultural teaching were Mikhail Grachev, management associate professor; and Richard Henriksen, counselor education assistant professor.

The Outstanding Academic Adviser Award was presented to Sharon Butcher, academic adviser in WesternÂ’s College of Education and Human Services (COEHS) Advising Center, where she has served since 1990. She was cited for being a dedicated employee and instrumental to the departmentÂ’s advancement. She was also credited with the creation and implementation of the planning guides for elementary education, early childhood, bilingual and special education majors. The teacher education handbook that Butcher helped create has been used as a model for other programs within the college.

Excellence finalists for outstanding academic advisers were Dianne Fullenwilder-Bracey, University Advising and Academic Support Center; Sharon Keeling, political science; Dana Moon, College of Business and Technology advising center; Ellen Poulter, English and journalism; and Karen Zellmann, social work associate professor and adviser.

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