University recognizes faculty, staff for advising, research, teaching, outreach work

May 3, 2013 | News, UToday, — Education, Health Science and Human Service, — Languages, Literature and Social Sciences, Alumni, Business and Innovation, Engineering, Law, Medicine and Life Sciences, Natural Sciences and Mathematics
By Vicki L. Kroll

UT outstanding advisers, researchers and teachers, and recipients of the Edith Rathbun Award for Outreach and Engagement were recognized last week.

Dr. Kristen Keith, left, and Christina Hennen won Outstanding Adviser Awards.

Dr. Kristen Keith, left, and Christina Hennen won Outstanding Adviser Awards.

Recipients of the Outstanding Adviser Award are:

Christina Hennen, associate director of student services for the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department in the College of Engineering. The UT alumna has worked at her alma mater since 2007.

“Christie has made this past five years at UT a lot easier. Her guidance, kindness, encouragement and enthusiasm are things I will never forget,” one nominator wrote. Another noted, “Students regard Christie as being both professional and a friend. She has been responsible for starting a Peer Mentoring Program in the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department. She identifies upperclassmen who work with students in freshman laboratories and who spend extracurricular time with them. The program has greatly improved student retention.”

Dr. Kristen Keith, associate professor of economics and undergraduate adviser for the Department of Economics in the College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences. She joined the University as an assistant professor in 1994.

“Her availability, commitment and care toward her students have contributed to my success at UT. Dr. Keith always executes professionalism, respect and dedication toward her students. She is approachable, understanding and knows her facts,” one nominator wrote. “Dr. Keith has helped me overcome my math fears while helping my analytical skills grow stronger.” Another wrote, “Her open-door policy, upbeat personality and nurturing attitude have made my experience at UT rewarding and academically fulfilling. Because of her caring attitude, Dr. Keith forms long-lasting academic relationships; past students regularly stop by her office.”

Outstanding Researcher Awards went to, from left, Dr. Stanislaw M. Stepkowski, Jane Bradley and Llewellyn Joseph Gibbons.

Outstanding Researcher Awards went to, from left, Dr. Stanislaw M. Stepkowski, Jane Bradley and Llewellyn Joseph Gibbons.

Recipients of the Outstanding Researcher Award are:

Jane Bradley, professor of English and director of creative writing in the College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences. She joined the UT faculty in 1990.

Since Powerlines was named a notable book of the year by The New York Times Book Review, Bradley has published Living Doll and Are We Lucky Yet?

“The reception to her latest novel, You Believers, has been broadly enthusiastic: ‘a compelling crime story and a credible picture of the intersection of rural poverty and the New South’ declared Library Journal, and Booklist celebrated Bradley’s ‘unending compassion and chilling assessment of the kind of harm that people are able and willing to inflict on one another,’” one nominator wrote. “You Believers was selected by Barnes & Noble as one of the best books of 2011. Translated into both Slovak and French, the novel has gained worldwide attention.”

Llewellyn Joseph Gibbons, associate professor of law in the College of Law. He has been teaching at UT since 1998.

“Professor Gibbons’ articles have been cited by courts in California, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Wisconsin and Virginia. He has given presentations on topics relating to intellectual property or ecommerce in the United States, Argentina, China, the United Kingdom, Finland, Italy, Lithuania and Switzerland,” one nominator wrote. “Professor Gibbons is the author of more than 25 law review articles, book chapters and other publications. He is a co-author of a book, Mastering Trademark Law (Carolina Press 2013), and is writing a book, Trademark Myths: The Law, Science and Economics of Trademark Law.”

He is an elected member of the American Law Institute and a fellow of the Center for Intellectual Property Rights at Zhongan University in Wuhan, China.

Dr. Stanislaw M. Stepkowski, professor of medical microbiology and immunology in the College of Medicine and Life Sciences. He joined the UT faculty in 2008.

“Dr. Stepkowski is an internationally recognized expert in the field of transplantation immunology, especially in the rapidly growing and clinically important area of immunosuppressive therapeutics,” a nominator wrote. “Over the last 20 years, he has unveiled various mechanisms by which rapamycin and cyclosporine affect immune responses. His group also has developed several novel immunosuppressive agents to prevent graft rejection.”

He has published more than 200 papers in highly ranked, peer-reviewed journals and delivered more than 300 presentations at international and national meetings. He holds four U.S. patents in the areas of immunosuppressive therapeutics. His research has been supported continuously by grants from the National Institutes of Health.

Jennifer Rockwood, left, and Dr. Lynne Hamer received the Edith Rathbun Award for Outreach and Engagement.

Jennifer Rockwood, left, and Dr. Lynne Hamer received the Edith Rathbun Award for Outreach and Engagement.

Recipients of the Edith Rathbun Award for Outreach and Engagement are:

Dr. Lynne Hamer, associate professor of foundations of education in the Judith Herb College of Education. She joined the UT faculty in 1994.

“Since 2007, Dr. Hamer’s work in community engagement is based out of the Padua Alliance for Education and Empowerment, which is a collaboration between the Padua Community Center and the UT Department of Educational Foundations and Leadership. Its current work is to support educational opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students in college classes, and for pre-school through 12th-grade students through extracurricular educational activities,” one nominator wrote.

“The Padua Alliance provides opportunities for future professionals in service professions (education, counseling, social work) to learn how to be actively engaged in communities and thus to experience self-growth, both personally and professionally. It provides neighborhood residents access to high-quality educational opportunities.”

Jennifer Rockwood, senior lecturer in theatre and film in the College of Visual and Performing Arts. She has worked at UT 27 years.

“Jennifer’s contribution to theater, and thus to the arts, in northwest Ohio is unparalleled. The sheer number of projects in which she has been involved is testimony to her commitment, her intensity and her devotion to theater,” one nominator wrote.

“From her direction of ‘8,’ the controversial play dealing with the rights of same sex partners to marry in California, with its thought-provoking examination of a highly sensitive and emotionally charged topic, to her direction of ‘God of Carnage,’ an adult comedy staged to benefit the Toledo School for the Arts, Jennifer’s latitude within, and mastery of, her medium is evident.”

The Outstanding Teacher Awards went to, from left, Dr. Robert Yonker, Dr. Jerry Van Hoy, Dr. Matthew Franchetti, Julie Coyle, Dr. Glenn Lipscomb and Dr. Anthony Quinn.

The Outstanding Teacher Awards went to, from left, Dr. Robert Yonker, Dr. Jerry Van Hoy, Dr. Matthew Franchetti, Julie Coyle, Dr. Glenn Lipscomb and Dr. Anthony Quinn.

Recipients of the Outstanding Teacher Award are:

Julie Coyle, lecturer of health and recreation professions in the College of Health Sciences. She taught at the former Community and Technical College from 1992 to 1997 and came back to UT in 2007.

“I am so privileged to have had her for three classes because I’ve never had another professor or instructor that got more people excited to come to class than Ms. Julie Coyle,” one nominator wrote. “Her vast and comprehensive life experiences make for fantastically colorful stories that lend to the subjects in class and in her mission to equip us with lessons for life.” Another wrote, “Never have I seen an instructor walk the line with such grace and professionalism between instructor and peer as she sought to make us feel like her intellectual equals and never once allowed us to feel inferior to her.”

Dr. Matthew Franchetti, assistant professor of mechanical, industrial and manufacturing engineering in the College of Engineering. He came to the University in 2007.

“He is able to convey the subject matter clearly. He uses industrial examples from the companies he worked at prior to the University and since receiving his PhD. He listens carefully to students, and he uses his industrial engineering skills of organization and time management to be successful in his teaching, advising and research,” one nominator wrote. “He also conducts funded — to the tune of $375,000 — fundamental research in recycling, supervising three or four students at any one time.” Another noted, “Dr. Franchetti takes the theory, spins it with some real-world applications, and makes it easy to understand and apply.”

Dr. Glenn Lipscomb, professor and chair of chemical and environmental engineering in the College of Engineering. He joined the University in 1994.

“Dr. Lipscomb deserves this award not only for being a great teacher to his current students, but also for continuing to help students when they are no longer in any of his classes. He is an enthusiastic and fun professor who doesn’t just make students learn, but also makes them want to learn,” one nominator wrote. “He has always been kind and courteous, asking how school has been and offering students the opportunity to come to his office anytime for help with any class.” Another noted, “Dr. Lipscomb is a great faculty adviser for the chemical engineering honor society, Omega Chi Epsilon.”

Dr. Anthony Quinn, associate professor of biological sciences in the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. He has been teaching at UT since 2001.

“Dr. Quinn has my nomination due to the fact that he has made two advanced courses seem as though they were basic,” a nominator wrote. “Using rationale as a basis for biology, Dr. Quinn explains difficult concepts by building on previous criteria from the courses that makes it essential to not forget certain topics. He doesn’t stress memorizing random facts, but rather the mechanisms behind the facts.” Another wrote, “Dr. Quinn is a mentor to every student who seeks out his knowledge. Whether that pertains to research in general, intricate job details or biology concepts, Dr. Quinn gives his answers.”

Dr. Jerry Van Hoy, associate professor of sociology, co-director of Program in Law and Social Thought, and director of master of liberal studies in the College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences. He has been a member of the faculty since 2000.

“Jerry is a fantastic professor and adviser. Multiple times I have stopped by his office outside of office hours and without an appointment and he has dropped everything to sit down and help me figure out my future plans, schedule, and to just give me advice on life in general,” one nominator wrote. “He is personable, smart, and really cares about his students. He truly wants them to succeed.” Another wrote, “He teaches his classes from a completely different aspect than many other professors, and he is hilarious and makes even the boring topics interesting.”

Dr. Robert Yonker, associate professor of management in the College of Business and Innovation. He joined the faculty in 2003.



“He is very professional, but also treats his graduate students as equals,” one nominator wrote. “He is not afraid to try new assignments, textbooks or ways of teaching as long as it benefits the students. Even if that means more work for him, he is willing to sacrifice that to make sure the students get the greatest learning experience.” Another noted, “He encouraged his students to do better and to never be afraid to speak. I gained my confidence to be able to explain myself to a superior and my peers while being in his classes. I would not be where I am today without his guidance and encouragement.”

In addition, Beth Eisler, former professor of law who passed away Jan. 12, was honored posthumously with an Outstanding Teacher Award.

For 26 years, Eisler taught in the UT College of Law, mostly in the fields of contracts and evidence. She also served as associate dean for academic affairs in the college from 1993 to 1995 and from 1999 to 2005, and as interim dean from 2005 to 2006. Devoted to and greatly admired by her students, Eisler received the Outstanding Professor Award from the College of Law graduating class three times. In addition, Eisler received The University of Toledo’s Student Impact Award in 2011 and 2012.

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