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[February 12, 2013]
Governor McDonnell Honors 2013 Outstanding Faculty Award Recipients
(M2 PressWIRE Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) RICHMOND - Governor Bob McDonnell today honors 12 Virginia educators as recipients of the 27th annual Outstanding Faculty Award (OFA) for excellence in teaching, research, and public service. The faculty members from public and private colleges and universities across the Commonwealth will be recognized during an awards ceremony at the Jefferson Hotel as part of the annual OFA program administered by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) and sponsored by Dominion Resources. Virginia Secretary of Education Laura Fornash will serve as the keynote speaker.
"The academic work of these 12 outstanding educators benefits not only the students at their respective institutions, but all Virginians," said Governor McDonnell. "Their scholarship is well-known and respected by colleagues throughout the Commonwealth and across the globe. These educators should be commended for their dedication and commitment to training the next generation of Virginia leaders." "Today's award ceremony is unique to Virginia in that we honor educators from both public and private, 2- and 4-year institutions of higher education," said Secretary of Education Laura Fornash. "These outstanding faculty members represent the best and brightest in the Commonwealth and we pay tribute not just to their outstanding accomplishments but to the work they have inspired their students to do." "This year's recipients are among the best and the brightest Virginia has to offer in academic fields as varied as medicine to creative writing," said SCHEV Director Peter Blake. "They truly represent the Commonwealth's commitment to excellence and diversity in its higher education system." "Dominion values the opportunity to honor these distinguished faculty members and to fund this important statewide awards program as we have done since 2005," said Virginia M. Board, president of The Dominion Foundation. "The accomplishments and academic work of these individuals stood out amongst the 109 OFA nominations we received this year." The awards are being made through a $75,000 grant from The Dominion Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Dominion Resources, one of the nation's largest energy producers. Dominion Virginia Power is a subsidiary of Dominion Resources. Foundation grants are funded by shareholder dollars and are not borne by customers.
2013 Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award Recipients Mr. Robert Bausch is a Professor of English at Northern Virginia Community College where he teaches creative writing and American literature. A critically acclaimed author, he has written nine novels, including Almighty Me, which was released in film as Bruce Almighty.
Dr. Rita Chung is a Professor of Counseling and Development at George Mason University. Her research focuses on multicultural and social justice issues in counseling, the psychological impact of racism, and immigrant and refugee psychosocial adjustment.
Dr. Jasmin Darznik is a Rising Star recipient and an Assistant Professor of English and Creative Writing at Washington and Lee University. Her book, The Good Daughter: A Memoir of My Mother's Hidden Life, traces the lives of three generations of women in Iran.
Dr. J. Emmett Duffy , Professor of Marine Science and head of the Marine Biodiversity Lab at the College of William and Mary's Virginia Institute of Marine Science, is known worldwide for his research documenting how biological diversity affects functioning of ecosystems.
Dr. Stephen Edwards is the Teaching with Technology recipient and an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Virginia Tech. His research group produced the Web-CAT, an award-winning open-source tool that gives students feedback about the quality of computer programs they write.
Dr. Paul Hanstedt , a Professor of English at Roanoke College, is an internationally known expert on matters of general education, course design, writing, and assessment. He is the author of two books: Hong Konged and General Education Essentials.
Dr. Erik Hewlett is Professor of Medicine and Microbiology, Immunology and Cancer Biology at the University of Virginia School of Medicine. His areas of interest include pertussis, bacterial toxins, and the promotion of commercial partnerships and technology development.
Dr. Shiv Khanna, Professor of Physics at Virginia Commonwealth University, is internationally recognized for his work on clusters and nanoscale materials. One of his significant research contributions is the discovery of "superatoms." Dr. Olga Pierrakos is a Rising Star recipient and Associate Professor of Engineering at James Madison University. Her research includes biomedical engineering, sustainable energy systems, and investigating students' motivations to persist or to leave engineering.
Dr. Laura Taalman , Professor of Mathematics at James Madison University, is the author of several textbooks and puzzle books, including Taking Sudoku Seriously. Her research interests include singular algebraic geometry, knot theory, and the mathematics of games.
Dr. Eve Torrence is Professor of Mathematics at Randolph-Macon College, where her scholarship includes topics from origami to elementary mathematics education. An accomplished artist, she has exhibited her mathematical sculptures at international juried shows.
Dr. Frances Williams is Associate Professor of Engineering at Norfolk State University. Her research includes acoustic microsensors, MEMS devices and processes, and in-situ monitoring techniques of semiconductor manufacturing. She holds a patent for a micromachined sensor for monitoring electrochemical deposition.
SCHEV has administered the Outstanding Faculty Awards since its inception in 1986. Photos and additional biographical information about each of this year's recipients can be found on the web at www.schev.edu/AdminFaculty/OFAprogramIndex.asp .
Dominion is one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy, with a portfolio of approximately 28,000 megawatts of generation. Dominion operates the nation's largest natural gas storage system and serves retail energy customers in 15 states. For more information about Dominion, visit the company's website at
Additional Contact for this Release: Dominion Resources Contact: David Botkins Phone: (804) 771-6115 Jeff Caldwell Press Secretary (804) 786-2211 Kathleen Kincheloe State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (804) 786-2323 ((M2 Communications disclaims all liability for information provided within M2 PressWIRE. Data supplied by named party/parties. Further information on M2 PressWIRE can be obtained at
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