Twenty-seven faculty members honored for scholarship, service


Editor’s note: The information for this story includes excerpts from the citations written from materials provided by the Rackham School of Graduate Studies, the Office of Research, the Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs and the University Press.

Twenty-seven faculty members are being formally recognized Wednesday at the University of Michigan Museum of Art for their teaching, scholarship, service and creative activities.

Distinguished University Professorships recognize full or associate professors for exceptional scholarly or creative achievement, national and international reputation, and superior teaching skills. Created in 1947, each professorship bears a name determined by the appointive professor in consultation with her or his dean. Each professorship also carries an annual salary supplement of $5,000 and an annual research supplement of $5,000. The duration of the appointment is unlimited, and the title — without the salary and research supplements — may be retained after retirement. In addition, newly appointed Distinguished University Professors are expected to deliver an inaugural lecture. Recipients are:

• Kent Berridge, James Olds Distinguished University Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience and professor of psychology, LSA.

• Sally Camper, Margery W. Shaw Distinguished University Professor of Human Genetics and Internal Medicine, professor of human genetics and professor of internal medicine, Medical School.

• Robert Griess Jr., John Griggs Thompson Distinguished University Professor of Mathematics, professor of mathematics, LSA.

• Sharon Herbert, Charles K. Williams II Distinguished University Professor of Classical Archaeology, professor of classical archaeology and Greek, LSA.

• Alfred Hero III, John H. Holland Distinguished University Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, R. Jamison and Betty Williams Professor of Engineering, professor of electrical engineering and computer science, College of Engineering; professor of biomedical engineering, CoE and Medical School; professor of statistics, LSA.

• Wallace Hopp, C.K. Prahalad Distinguished University Professor of Business and Engineering, professor of technology and operations, and associate dean for learning and design, Stephen M. Ross School of Business; professor of industrial and operations engineering, CoE.

• Melanie Sanford, Moses Gomberg Distinguished University Professor of Chemistry, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor and professor of chemistry, LSA.

• June Manning Thomas, Mary Frances Berry Distinguished University Professor of Urban Planning and professor of urban and regional planning, A. Alfred Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning.

• Valerie Traub, Adrienne Rich Distinguished University Professor of English and Women’s Studies, Frederick G. L. Huetwell Professor of English and Women’s Studies, professor of English language and literature, and professor of women’s studies, LSA.

Distinguished Faculty Achievement Awards honor senior faculty who consistently have demonstrated outstanding achievements in the areas of scholarly research or creative endeavors, teaching and mentoring of students and junior faculty, service, and a variety of other activities. Up to five awards of $1,500 are made each year. Awardees are:

• Rachel Goldman, professor of materials science and engineering, professor of electrical engineering and computer science, CoE; and professor of physics, LSA.

• Dr. Malcolm Low, David F. Bohr Collegiate Professor of Physiology, professor of molecular and integrative physiology, and professor of internal medicine, Medical School.

• Eileen Pollack, professor of English language and literature, LSA.

• Ayyalusamy Ramamoorthy, Robert W. Parry Collegiate Professor of Chemistry and Biophysics, professor of chemistry and professor of biophysics, LSA.

• Paul Resnick, Michael D. Cohen Collegiate Professor of Information, professor of information, and associate dean for research and faculty affairs, School of Information.

The Distinguished Faculty Governance Award was established by the Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs in 1986 and is funded by the Alumni Association. The criterion for the award is distinguished service to faculty governance over several years with an emphasis on universitywide service. A $1,500 stipend is presented. Awardee:

• Richard Friedman, Alene and Allan F. Smith Professor of Law and professor of law, Law School.

Faculty Recognition Awards are intended for faculty early in their careers who have demonstrated substantive contributions to the university through achievements in scholarly research or creative endeavors; excellence as a teacher, adviser and mentor; and distinguished participation in service activities of the university. Eligible candidates include full professors with no more than four years at that rank, associate professors and assistant professors. Up to five awards of $1,000 each are made each year. Recipients are:

• Elizabeth A. Armstrong, professor of sociology, professor of organizational studies and professor of women’s studies, LSA.

• Lilia Cortina, professor of psychology and professor of women’s studies, LSA.

• Michael Flynn, professor of electrical engineering and computer science, CoE.

• Anne McNeil, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor, professor of chemistry, LSA; and professor of macromolecular science and engineering, CoE.

• Yukiko Yamashita, James Playfair McMurrich Collegiate Professor of the Life Sciences, research associate professor, Life Sciences Institute; and associate professor of cell and developmental biology, Medical School.

Research Faculty Recognition Awards honor individuals who hold at least a 75-percent appointment at the rank of research associate professor, research assistant professor, associate research scientist or assistant research scientist. Selection criteria include exceptional scholarly achievements, as evidenced by publications or other scholarly activities in any academic field of study. There is a $1,000 stipend. Awardee:

• Tulga Ersal, assistant research scientist, Department of Mechanical Engineering, CoE.

Research Faculty Achievement Awards honor individuals who hold at least a 75-percent appointment at the rank of research associate professor, research assistant professor, associate research scientist or assistant research scientist. Selection criteria include exceptional scholarly achievements, as evidenced by publications or other scholarly activities in any academic field of study. There is a $1,500 stipend. Awardee:

• Monica Valluri, research associate professor, Department of Astronomy, LSA.

The Collegiate Research Professorship Award honors exceptional scholarly achievement and impact on advancing knowledge in science, engineering, health, education, the arts, the humanities or other academic field of study. The recipient is presented $2,000. Awardee:

• Matthew P. Reed, research professor and head, Biosciences Group, U-M Transportation Research Institute; director, Human Motion Simulation Laboratory; and research professor, Center for Ergonomics, Department of Industrial and Operations Engineering, CoE.

Regents’ Award for Distinguished Public Service recognizes public service activities that relate closely to teaching and research and reflect professional and academic expertise. There is a $1,000 stipend. Awardee:

• Khaled Mattawa, professor of English language and literature, LSA.

University of Michigan Press Book Award is presented to members of the university teaching and research staff, including emeritus members, whose books have added the greatest distinction to the Press List. Selections are made from books published within a span of two calendar years. The stipend is $1,500.:

• Laurence Goldstein, professor of English language and literature, LSA.

University Librarian Achievement Award is presented for exceptional distinction reflected in active and innovative career achievements in library, archival or curatorial services. The recipient will receive a $1,500 stipend. Awardee:

• M. Robert Fraser, associate director for graduate programs, research and scholarly communication; and librarian, Mardigian Library, UM-Dearborn.

University Librarian Recognition Award honors an individual who holds a primary faculty appointment as librarian, archivist or curator with no more than eight years’ practice in the profession. Selection criteria include active and innovative early-career achievements in library, archival or curatorial services. This may include developing specialized services for faculty and students, improving access to information or efficiently managing library and archival resources, or other activities. The recipient is presented $1,000. Awardee:

• Mara Rojeski Blake, spatial and numeric data librarian, Library Research, University Library.

Distinguished University Professorship

Kent Berridge

Affective neuroscientist Kent Berridge has altered the way psychologists understand the neural mechanisms of emotion, motivation, learning and reward with his path-breaking research, including the incentive salience model of motivation, which differentiates between wanting and liking something. His research has applications to human drug addiction, eating and mood disorders, and conscious and unconscious emotion in everyday life.

Berridge, who earned a Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, joined the U-M faculty in 1985. He was the first to delineate the underlying biological and neural organization that separates pleasure and desire, and has shown how destructive behaviors can be reduced and positive ones strengthened. He studies how the brain combines motivation and earlier learning to “want” particular targets such as food or drugs, and his “wanting” studies have elucidated why addictions are so intractable. His “liking/wanting” distinction has been applied to understand other types of dysfunctional behaviors such as schizophrenia, depression, Parkinson’s disease and obsessive-compulsive disorder. He co-edited “Pleasures of the Brain” (2010), has authored or co-authored more than 180 journal articles and book chapters, and has given numerous invited addresses throughout the world.

Berridge has been recognized with two LSA Excellence in Education Teaching Awards, the Michigan Psychological Association Master Lecturer Award for Teaching, and the F1000 Prime Outstanding Faculty Member Award four times.

He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Guggenheim Foundation, and Mind and Life Institute.

He also is an APA fellow and recipient of the 2016 APA Award for Distinguished Scientific Contributions. He was a Fulbright Senior Scholar at the University of Burgundy in Dijon, France, and has been a visiting professor at Cambridge University, University College, London, and other British universities.

Distinguished University Professorship

Sally Camper

A global leader in the study of inherited birth defects, Sally Camper pioneered the use of transgenic mice to study developmentally regulated gene-expression resulting in human genetic disorders. Her studies revealed genetic causes of disease, pathophysiological mechanisms, and potential therapeutics. Under her leadership as founding director of the U-M Transgenic Animal Core from 1989-2011, the facility generated thousands of transgenic models and hundreds of targeted mutants enabling scientists to study human disease mechanisms and develop in vivo therapies.

Camper, who earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry from Michigan State University, was a research associate at Case Western Reserve University and a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Cancer Research and Princeton University before joining the Medical School faculty in 1988. As Department of Human Genetics chair from 2005-15, she strengthened U-M’s reputation as a leader in genomics research and training.

In addition to identifying genes responsible for inherited defects, Camper has carried out elegant functional analyses to define their cell biological role. Her discoveries related to genetics and the pituitary gland, hearing and balance, and skeletal dysplasia have appeared in more than 150 peer-reviewed publications and 28 reviews and book chapters. The National Institutes of Health recognized her many research accomplishments with a 10-year Merit Award in 2002, and she continues to receive funding from NIH and other sources.

Camper received the Women in Endocrinology Mentoring Award and U-M’s Distinguished Graduate Mentoring Award. She has advised 17 doctoral students and mentored 56 undergraduates and 16 postdoctoral fellows. Nationally, Camper has served on the American Society for Human Genetics board of directors, National Human Genome Research Institute board of scientific counselors, and numerous Endocrine Society committees. Camper also received the Endocrine Society’s Roy O. Greep Award for Outstanding Research and U-M’s Sarah Goddard Power Award for leadership and service.

Distinguished University Professorship

Robert Griess

Robert Griess, one of the world’s foremost mathematicians working on finite simple groups and vertex algebra theory, is renowned for co-discovering and constructing mathematics’ largest sporadic simple group, called the Monster because of the large number of elements involved, 54 digits in all. This feat, accomplished without computers, has provided the foundation for new theories involving finite simple groups, arithmetic geometry and mathematical physics.

Griess joined the U-M faculty in 1971, shortly after earning a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. Groups are fundamental in mathematics and offer a powerful way to explore many problems, including those involving symmetry in physics and chemistry. He contributed substantially to the classification of finite simple groups. The classification required finding all the sporadic groups and proving there were no others. Griess conjectured the existence of the Monster in 1973, proved its existence in 1980, then its uniqueness in 1989. In the 1980s and ’90s, Griess became increasingly involved in discrete aspects of Lie theory, vertex operator algebras and lattices. With co-authors, he classified those finite simple groups that embed in the exceptional Lie groups. His book “An Introduction to Groups and Lattices: Finite Groups and Positive Definite Rational Lattices” (2011) offers a fresh introduction to the subject. He has published 89 papers in leading journals.

Griess helped draft math department guidelines for Ph.D. students in the 1970s and set up the department’s first computers in 1980s. He led the department’s King/Chavez/Parks College Day Visitation Program for 15 years and now recruits for U-M’s Center for Educational Outreach. He was recognized with the Harold R. Johnson Diversity Service Award in 2003. Griess is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Science and is an American Mathematical Society fellow. In 2010, he received the American Mathematical Society’s Leroy P. Steele Prize for Seminal Contribution to Research.

Distinguished University Professorship

Classical archaeologist Sharon Herbert is renowned as a Hellenistic Near East scholar and academic leader. As curator of the U-M Kelsey Museum of Archaeology from 1979-93 and director from 1997-2013, Herbert expanded Kelsey’s exhibitions, fieldwork and research, and oversaw the planning and construction of Kelsey’s 20,000-foot Upjohn Exhibition Wing. She is president of the venerable W.F. Albright Institute of Archaeological Research in Jerusalem, the oldest American research center for ancient near Eastern Studies in the Middle East, and vice president of the American Schools of Oriental Research.

Herbert earned a Ph.D. in classics at Stanford University and was a fellow at the American School of Classical Studies at Athens prior to joining U-M’s faculty in 1973. A specialist in the study of pottery to glean information about ancient social and economic practices, she has played a crucial role in several Middle East excavations, including Israel’s Tel Anafa, where she discovered that wealthy ethnically Phoenician residents decorated their villas in the latest Greek style.

Herbert has trained hundreds of students in the techniques of stratigraphic excavation and has chaired or co-chaired 20 dissertation committees and served on 20 others. She directed U-M’s highly ranked Interdepartmental Program in Classical Art and Archaeology for nine years and was one of the first archaeologists to chair a major classics department in the United States.

Herbert has received the Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies John H. D’Arms Award for Distinguished Graduate Mentoring, LSA’s Ruth M. Sinclair Memorial Award for academic advising, the Michigan Association of Governing Boards of State Universities Distinguished Faculty Award, and the Tel Hai College Lifetime Achievement Award for contributions to Galilean archaeology. She has been awarded numerous grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and other funding agencies.

Distinguished University Professorship

Alfred Hero

Alfred Hero, an expert in signal processing theory and methodology, collaborates with colleagues on ingenious ways to extract crucial information from massive amounts of data to solve problems in astronomy, bioinformatics, forensics, genomics and proteomics, national defense, public health, and other fields.

Hero, a U-M faculty member since 1984 and founding co-director of the Michigan Institute for Data Science, earned a Ph.D. in electrical engineering and computer science from Princeton University. He has participated as principal investigator or co-principal investigator in 50 grants and contracts and has co-authored two books, “Big Data Over Networks” (2015) and “Foundations and Applications of Sensor Management” (2007), 26 book chapters, and more than 195 journal articles.

Medical imaging is one of the fields where Hero has made significant contributions. He helped design tomographic instruments to better visualize anatomy and physiology, image registration methods that compensate for patient motion, and techniques to facilitate co-registration of two medical images. His team also is creating ways to predict epidemics in close-knit human communities based on genetic, metabolic and social network data.

Hero has graduated 50 doctoral students and supervised 25 others doing postdoctoral work, and he has strengthened his department and the College of Engineering through his service. He is an Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers fellow, past president of the IEEE Signal Processing Society and general co-chair of the IEEE International Symposium on Information Theory in Paris in 2019. He is a member of the Committee on Applied and Theoretical Statistics, National Cooperative Highway Research Program panel, and Intelligence Science and Technology Experts Group, all administered by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine.

Among other honors, he received the IEEE Third Millennium Medal and IEEE Signal Processing Society Technical Achievement Award, Meritorious Service Award, Distinguished Lectureship, and Society Award, and U-M’s Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award.

Distinguished University Professorship

Wallace Hopp

Wallace Hopp, one of the world’s foremost scholars in the fields of manufacturing and health care operations, has helped revolutionize the teaching of operations management and has had a profound impact on both academic research and industry practice through his work. His “factory physics” principles have become cornerstones of the operations management field.

Hopp earned a Master of Science degree and a Ph.D. in industrial and operations engineering from U-M. He joined the Stephen M. Ross School of Business in 2007, where he has served as senior associate dean for faculty and research and now is associate dean for learning design.

Co-author of the seminal book “Factory Physics: Foundations of Manufacturing Management” (1996, 2000, 2007), Hopp also is known for co-developing the constant work in progress production control system, for helping to pioneer the behavioral operations field, and for introducing operations management principles to health care settings. His other publications include the books “Supply Chain Science” (2008) and “Hospital Operations” (2012), as well as five book chapters and 82 journal articles. He has consulted with more than 40 corporations.

Hopp has a long record of innovative teaching. He helped revise the Ross School’s core M.B.A. operations course and launched the Ross Learning Design Initiative to produce relevant, transformative, and cost-effective learning experiences for students in all Ross programs. He has chaired or co-chaired 25 Ph.D. dissertation committees and works closely with U-M’s Tauber Institute for Global Operations as an adviser and executive committee member.

Hopp has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering and named a fellow by five professional societies. Other honors include the Institute of Industrial Engineers Award for Technical Innovation in Industrial Engineering, Society of Mechanical Engineers Education Award, Ross School Global M.B.A. Teaching Excellence Award, and U-M Alumni Society Merit Award.

Distinguished University Professorship

Melanie Sanford

Organic chemist Melanie Sanford is an expert in the detailed mechanistic study of catalytic reactions. The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Fellowship winner is famous for her pioneering methods used to convert readily available materials such as carbon dioxide and carbon-hydrogen bonds into more complex products through metal catalysis. Her discoveries make it possible to produce agrochemicals, fuels, and pharmaceuticals in a more efficient and environmentally friendly manner.

Sanford, who earned a Ph.D. in chemistry at the California Institute of Technology, was a postdoctoral fellow at Princeton University before joining the U-M faculty in 2003. She has published more than 130 papers. She is considered one of the preeminent researchers working on catalytic processes for the functionalization of carbon-hydrogen bonds.

Sanford was integrally involved in creating U-M’s new Master of Science program in chemistry. Twenty-three of her mentees have earned doctoral degrees, including a large percentage of women, underrepresented minorities and first-generation college students. She has been recognized with a Thurnau Professorship, John Dewey Award for Undergraduate Education and LSA Excellence in Teaching Award. Sanford chairs the Provost’s Student Learning Advisory Committee for the Third Century Initiative and the chemistry department’s long-range planning committee. Nationally, she is an associate editor of the Journal of the American Chemical Society and serves on a number of editorial advisory boards. She also is a member of National Science Foundation Advisory Committee for Mathematical and Physical Sciences and a National Institutes of Health study section.

Sanford is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, American Association for the Advancement of Science, and National Academy of Sciences. Among other accolades, she received the American Chemical Society Award in Pure Chemistry, Ipatieff Prize, and Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award; Raymond and Beverly Sackler International Prize; and Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers.

Distinguished University Professorship

June Manning Thomas

Award-winning author, educator and social justice advocate June Manning Thomas is one of the nation’s pre-eminent scholars on the effects of racial inequality on the planning, evolution and redevelopment of America’s neighborhoods and cities. Thomas, an Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning past president and winner of the U-M Harold R. Johnson Diversity Service Award, builds inclusive communities and encourages her students to join her in working for the common good.

Thomas earned a Ph.D. in urban and regional planning from U-M and joined the faculty of the A. Alfred Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning in 2007. She focuses on economically distressed central cities and community-based planning and has gained partnership-based respect in the communities she studies.

Thomas’ scholarly contributions include the co-authored “Detroit: Race and Uneven Development” (1987) and co-edited “Urban Planning and the African American Community: In the Shadows” (1997). In her book “Redevelopment and Race: Planning a Finer City in Postwar Detroit” (1997, 2013), Thomas provides a history of city redevelopment informed by examination of how urban planners often disregarded African-American citizens’ needs. “Redevelopment and Race” won the ACSP Paul Davidoff Award. Her book, “Planning Progress: Lessons from Shoghi Effendi” (1997), won an Association of Baha’i Studies’ excellence award. Additionally, she co-edited two additional books, and is the author or co-author of 25 book chapters, 18 articles and 15 monographs.

She has served on numerous urban planning program committees and the college’s dean search committee. She also has championed greater racial diversity in the nation’s urban planning schools and is founding co-chair of the ACSP Planners of Color Interest Group, a nationwide advocacy group for urban planning faculty, students and communities of color. Thomas is a fellow of the American Institute of Certified Planners and received the Distinguished Diversity Scholarship and Engagement Award from U-M’s National Center for Institutional Diversity.

Distinguished University Professorship

Valerie Traub

Valerie Traub, renowned scholar in early modern literary studies, feminist and queer studies, and the history of sexuality, has reshaped understandings of gender and sexuality in early modern England with interdisciplinary research that draws on an array of primary sources, including stage plays, poems, medical treatises, maps and anatomical illustrations. She also is a valued contributor to campus conversations on issues, including sexual assault, departmental climate, and the institutionalization of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer studies.

Traub earned a Ph.D. in English literature from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and joined the U-M faculty in 2001. She is the author of “Desire and Anxiety: Circulations of Sexuality in Shakespearean Drama” (1992, 2014); “The Renaissance of Lesbianism in Early Modern England” (2002), winner of the Society for the Study of Early Modern Women best book award; and “Thinking Sex with the Early Moderns” (2015), a finalist for a Lambda Literary Award. Her book in progress, “Mapping Embodiment in the Early Modern West: Anatomy, Cartography, and the Prehistory of Normality,” argues that 16th– and 17th-century representations of the human body contributed to one of the most consequential concepts in modernity — that of normality. She has edited or co-edited the “Oxford Handbook of Shakespeare and Embodiment: Gender, Sexuality, and Race” (2016), “Feminist Readings of Early Modern Culture: Emerging Subjects” (1996), and “Gay Shame” (2009).

Recipient of the John H. D’Arms Faculty Award for Distinguished Graduate Mentoring in the Humanities and Center for Research on Learning and Teaching awards for curricular contributions in English, history and women’s studies, Traub has chaired 19 doctoral dissertations and served on 16 others. For seven years she chaired the Women’s Studies Department. Traub’s honors include U-M’s Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award and Institute for the Humanities A. Bartlett Giamatti Fellowship, as well as fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies, John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, National Endowment for the Humanities, and Huntington Library.

Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award

Rachel Goldman

A leader in electronic and photonic materials research, Rachel Goldman is internationally recognized for elucidating the mechanisms of nanostructure formation and developing tools to map them at atomic resolution. Her model explaining ordering of columns of quantum dots has stimulated growth of three-dimensional ordered arrays of nanostructures for optoelectronics, solar energy harvesting, and other applications. She also has revolutionized the teaching of materials science at U-M.

Goldman earned a Ph.D. in materials science from the University of California, San Diego and was a postdoctoral fellow in physics at Carnegie Mellon before joining U-M’s faculty in 1997, where she is associate director of the Applied Physics Program and education director of the Materials Research Science and Engineering Center. The first to experimentally observe elastic constant bowing in alloys, she pioneered a novel approach to nanoplasmonics and metamaterials, facilitating design of photonic devices ranging from invisibility cloaks to high sensitivity biosensors. She has authored or co-authored 120 publications and has given 175 invited lectures.

Goldman is co-principal investigator for U-M’s Transforming Learning for a Third Century M-Write II grant, which promotes writing-to-learn pedagogies in science and engineering. She has advised 14 postdoctoral fellows and 31 graduate, 83 undergraduate and 20 high school students in research, and initiated a program that embeds high school students in U-M research projects.

Goldman has served on the Senate Advisory Committee for University Affairs and College of Engineering Executive Committee and chaired the Electronic Materials Division of the American Vacuum Society. A fellow of the American Physical Society and AVS, Goldman received the AVS Peter Mark Memorial Award and was named the 50th Anniversary Distinguished Alumna of the Electronic Devices and Materials Group by UC San Diego. She also is a recipient of the Monroe-Brown Foundation Service Excellence Award and Ted Kennedy Family Team Excellence Award.

Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award

Malcolm Low

Dr. Malcolm Low, an authority on gene regulation in the pituitary gland and hypothalamus, uses transgenic and knockout mice strains he engineered to learn how the hypothalamus maintains neuroendocrine homeostasis and energy balance. He also advances science more broadly as director of the Michigan Mouse Metabolic Phenotyping Center, a crucial resource for more than 80 U-M researchers and scientists from other institutions.

After earning his medical degree at Albany Medical College, Low completed an internal medicine residency at Michael Reese Hospital and an endocrinology fellowship at Tufts–New England Medical Center in Boston, and earned a Ph.D. in neuroscience at Tufts’ Sackler Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. He joined the U-M faculty in 2009, where he is affiliated with the Brehm Center for Diabetes Research, Nutrition Obesity Research Center, and the Center for Gastrointestinal Research.

Low combines molecular genetic, endocrine and behavioral approaches to characterize the physiological functions of neuropeptides and G-protein coupled receptors that are expressed in hypothalamic neural circuits and play a crucial role in regulating appetite and metabolism. Low, who holds six patents and has published more than 200 articles, reviews, and book chapters, freely makes his mouse models available to investigators in laboratories worldwide.

Director of U-M’s doctoral training program in systems and integrative biology, Low has served on 68 graduate student candidate exam and theses committees and has mentored postdoctoral fellows from many countries. He also co-organized and taught at two Howard Hughes Medical Institute–funded training courses in mouse molecular genetics in Valdivia, Chile. He regularly conducts grant reviews for the National Institutes of Health and international funding agencies. Low is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and Association of American Physicians, and was inducted into U-M’s Medical School League of Research Excellence in 2011.

Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award

Eileen Pollack

Celebrated novelist, essayist and short-story writer Eileen Pollack is known for her penchant for tackling thorny topics, including the intricacies of interracial love, gender imbalance in the sciences and ethical conundrums stemming from genetics research. She also is an outstanding mentor to other writers, advocate for women in science and champion of diversity.

Pollack, one of the first two women to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in physics from Yale University, studied at England’s University of East Anglia as a Marshall Fellow and earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing (fiction) with honors from the University of Iowa. She joined the U-M faculty in 1994. Pollack has strengthened Michigan’s writing programs through her teaching and leadership, as director first of the Undergraduate Creative Writing Program and then the M.F.A. Program in Creative Writing from 2007-11, during a period of rapid growth.

Since “The Rabbi in the Attic and Other Stories” (1991) debuted, Pollack’s writing has included “Paradise, New York” (1998), a novel dealing with interracial love and bigotry; “Woman Walking Ahead: In Search of Catherine Weldon and Sitting Bull” (2002), a WILLA Literary Award finalist in nonfiction; “In the Mouth: Stories and Novellas” (2008), which won the Edward Lewis Wallant Award; and “Breaking and Entering” (2012), a New York Times editors’ choice selection. Her latest novel, “A Perfect Life” (2016), focuses on ethical situations arising from genetic research.

Her writing is chronicled in 18 anthologies, and appears in top literary journals. She has been recognized with the Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award, two Pushcart Prizes, and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and Massachusetts Cultural Council. LSA has recognized her contributions with its Matthews Underclass Teaching Award, two Excellence in Education Teaching Awards, and an Individual Award for Outstanding Contributions to Undergraduate Education. She also received the Rackham Master’s Mentoring Award.

Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award


Biophysical chemist Ayyalusamy Ramamoorthy is internationally recognized for his path-breaking contributions to solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, which allows scientists to construct detailed images of peptides and proteins, revealing how biomolecules function. His research on cell physiological processes has led to powerful insights into the function of membrane proteins, amyloid proteins, and antimicrobial peptides, and a deeper understanding of how proteins control drug metabolism and energy production.

Ramamoorthy earned a Ph.D. in chemistry from the Indian Institute of Technology and joined the U-M faculty in 1996.

Among his early breakthroughs, Ramamoorthy used NMR spectroscopy to determine the three-dimensional dynamic structure of a protein-protein complex within a lipid bilayer environment, illuminating the structural basis for electron transfer — a fundamental biochemical process in living systems. He has enhanced understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying complex diseases associated with protein aggregation, including Alzheimer’s disease, HIV, and type 2 diabetes, and also works in the forefront of cytochrome P450 enzyme research. These enzymes are essential for the body to produce cholesterol and steroids and necessary to detoxify foreign chemicals and metabolize drugs. He has published 270 journal articles.

Ramamoorthy helped found U-M’s undergraduate program in biophysics in 2007 and, more recently, created a new track — structural biology — within the biophysics major. He has mentored more than 50 undergraduates, 40 postdoctoral fellows and visiting scholars, and 20 Ph.D. students. He has led several faculty search committees, served as associate chair of biophysics and as graduate chair of chemistry, and co-directed U-M’s Biomolecular NMR Core.

Ramamoorthy is an American Association for the Advancement of Science Fellow, a member of the American Chemical Society and Biophysical Society, a Hans Fischer Senior Fellow at Germany’s Technical University of Munich, and a Wilsmore Fellow at the University of Melbourne. Among other honors, he received a U-M Faculty Recognition Award and a National Science Foundation CAREER Development Award.

Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award

Paul Resnick

Computer scientist Paul Resnick is a driving force in the rapidly evolving social computing field. He helped launch GroupLens, one of the internet’s first collaborative filtering recommender systems, which are now familiar at sites like Amazon and Netflix. Also among the first to recognize online reputation as an important research topic, he pioneered methods to protect reputation systems from manipulation.

Resnick, who earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from U-M, completed his Ph.D. in computer science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He joined the School of Information faculty in 1997. He directed the UMSI doctoral program from 2012-15 and now is associate dean for research and interim director of Health Informatics, a joint UMSI and School of Public Health program.

Among other topics, Resnick has explored what motivates people to participate in information sharing online and was among the first to describe effective group moderation systems. Current projects include developing ways to crowdsource rumor tracking and fact correction and to use social computing to promote healthy lifestyle choices. He co-authored the book “Building Successful Online Communities: Evidence-Based Social Design” (2012) and has written 13 book chapters and 61 journal and conference papers.

Resnick has created 15 new UMSI courses. He has developed a free online interactive textbook for learning to program in Python, and participates in the Runestone open source project on which it is built. Resnick has chaired eight dissertation committees and served on 18 others. He co-founded the UMSI Community Information Corps, a student group that shared emerging information technology with public and nonprofit organizations.

In 2010 Resnick and colleagues received the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Software System Award for their GroupLens Collaborative Filtering Recommender System. In 2015, he also received the ACM Special Interest Group on E-commerce Test of Time Award for the paper titled “The Social Cost of Cheap Pseudonyms.”

Distinguished Faculty Governance Award

Richard Friedman

Richard Friedman, an expert on evidence, the Sixth Amendment Confrontation Clause, and constitutional history, has made numerous contributions to faculty governance at U-M, the Law School, and as the Faculty Senate representative to and chair of U-M’s Police Department Oversight Committee since 2010.

Friedman earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Harvard College and a J.D. from Harvard Law School, where he was a Harvard Law Review editor, and a Doctor of Philosophy in modern history from Oxford University. He clerked for Chief Judge Irving R. Kaufman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, practiced law in New York City, and taught at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law prior to joining U-M’s Law School faculty in 1988.

Mandated by the Michigan Legislature as a condition of the university’s authority to maintain a police department, the oversight committee hears and addresses any grievances campus community members may have involving the department. Friedman works to ensure the committee does a fair, thorough job listening to all parties involved and strives to uphold its independence.

Friedman represented his Law School colleagues in the university Senate Assembly in 1988, 1989, 1992 and 1993, served on the Senate Advisory Committee for University Affairs in 2007 and 2008, and co-chaired the SACUA Rules Committee in 2006.

Friedman wrote the textbook “The Elements of Evidence” (1991, 1998, 2004, 2016) and is co-author of “Park & Friedman’s Evidence: Cases and Materials” (12th edition, 2012). In 2004, in Crawford v. Washington, the U.S. Supreme Court transformed the law governing the right of an accused to confront witnesses by adopting a testimonial approach, which Friedman had advocated. He successfully argued before the Supreme Court two follow-up cases, Hammon v. Indiana and Briscoe v. Virginia. Friedman received the Washtenaw County Bar Association Patriot Award in 2010.

Faculty Recognition Award

Elizabeth A. Armstrong

Elizabeth A. Armstrong has pioneered multiple lines of inquiry in areas of sexuality, gender, organizations, social movements and social inequality, including the effects of class and gender on college experiences and outcomes. Her incisive analyses demonstrate how culture, institutional arrangements and inequality shape the choices and actions of individuals.

Armstrong earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in computer science and sociology from U-M and a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California, Berkeley. She taught at Indiana University before becoming a U-M faculty member in 2009, where she is affiliated with the Center for the Study of Higher and Postsecondary Education and Population Studies Center.

She has authored or co-authored two books and 32 journal articles, book chapters, and other publications. Her first book, “Forging Gay Identities: Organizing Sexuality in San Francisco, 1950–1994” (2002), is a model for integrating organizational and cultural analysis in social movement research. Her most recent book, “Paying for the Party: How College Maintains Inequality” (2013), which she co-authored, won the ASA Distinguished Scholarly Book Award and the American Educational Research Association Postsecondary Education Outstanding Publication Award. She was a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University and a recipient of a National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship.

Armstrong has mentored many undergraduate honors students. She has chaired or co-chaired 10 dissertation committees and has served on 25 others.  As the sociology department’s graduate director, she improved the feedback process to students about their graduate program progress. Nationally, she has served on the ASA Program Committee three times and chaired numerous section committees. She is a deputy editor of the American Sociological Review and has served on the editorial boards of multiple journals. She was elected to the Sociological Research Association in 2010.

Faculty Recognition Award

Lilia Cortina

A nationally recognized expert in workplace harassment, Lilia Cortina’s rigorous research has direct implications for policy and practice in a range of organizational settings. She is the author of the selective incivility model, theorizing and finding that acts of incivility are covertly directed at social groups traditionally on the margins of organizations, including women and racial, ethnic and sexual minorities.

Cortina earned a Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and joined the U-M faculty in 2000. She is the author or co-author of 14 book chapters and 50 articles and co-editor of “Feminist Perspectives on Building a Better Psychological Science of Gender” (2016). Cortina researches workplace victimization — everything from subtle social slights to general incivility to blatant harassment and violence. She provides expert testimony on sexual harassment for federal task forces and court cases, translating findings from science to inform policy and legal decision-making.

In her Gender and Diversity in Organizations course, students probe topics ranging from women in leadership to racial stereotyping on the job to practical interventions that promote equity and inclusion in the 21st century workplace. Actively involving graduate and undergraduate students in research, she has chaired or co-chaired 16 doctoral, master’s, and senior honors thesis committees and served on 25 others. 

As associate director of the ADVANCE Program for LSA, Cortina helps promote diversity, inclusion and retention among faculty on campus. She also has chaired Michigan’s unique Joint Doctoral Program in Psychology and Women’s Studies and directed the Department of Women’s Studies graduate program. She reviews grant applications for the National Science Foundation and research submissions for the annual meetings of several professional societies. Cortina has received, among other honors, the Academic Women’s Caucus Sarah Goddard Power Award and Association for Women in Psychology Distinguished Publication Award.

Faculty Recognition Award

Michael Flynn

Michael Flynn is one of the world’s premier scholars in the area of analog and mixed-signal integrated circuits and systems, analog-to-digital conversion (ADC), and other interface circuits, from high-speed serial transceivers to radio frequency transceivers and sensors. His pioneering research and designs have improved the performance and energy efficiency of analog-digital interfaces and transformed the field.

Flynn, who earned a Ph.D. in electrical engineering in 1995 from Carnegie Mellon University, worked at Texas Instruments and at Ireland’s Parthus Technologies and the National University of Ireland prior to joining the engineering faculty at U-M in 2001. His research group was among the first to incorporate an efficient ADC in a complementary metal-oxide semiconductor radio frequency identification tag to make a radio frequency powered sensing system. He has developed wireless sensor networks to monitor the integrity of bridges and roads and a super-regenerative receiver and low-power radio architecture with an on-chip antenna, moving the field closer to full integration of radios, digital processing, sensors, and interface circuits. A single-chip closed-loop stimulation device he designed showcased the potential of integrated brain-machine interface circuits to improve the treatment of Parkinson’s and other diseases. Flynn has published two book chapters and more than 100 journal and conference papers and has received $15 million in research funding from the National Science Foundation and industry.

Flynn received the CoE John F. Ullrich Education Excellence Award and his department’s achievement award for leadership. He has mentored 19 doctoral students. He is an Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers fellow, edits IEEE’s Journal of Solid State Circuits, and is an IEEE Solid-State Circuits Society distinguished lecturer. He also is a Guggenheim Foundation fellow and has received, among other honors, a NSF CAREER Award and the College of Engineering Ted Kennedy Family Team Excellence Award.

Faculty Recognition Award

Anne McNeil

Anne McNeil is internationally recognized for her many influential contributions to organic and polymer chemistry, especially her work in the area of small molecule gels and pi-conjugated polymers. She has developed novel ways to detect disease-relevant proteins, explosives, pollutants and toxic metal ions using the solution-to-gel phase transition. In addition, her more fundamental work led to a new model to more reliably predict what molecules could be effective gelators. McNeil also was the first to synthesize gradient sequence conjugated polymers, which her group has shown can prolong the lifetime and stability of organic solar cells. She has shared her discoveries in 46 articles and more than 70 invited presentations.

McNeil earned a Ph.D. in chemistry from Cornell University and joined the U-M faculty in 2007. McNeil has worked with 11 postdoctoral scholars, graduated eight Ph.D. students and two Master of Science students, and mentored more than 30 undergraduates in her research lab.

She received the Provost’s Teaching Innovation Prize, Class of 1923 Memorial Teaching Award, LSA Excellence in Education Award, Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Teacher-Scholar Award, and, in 2014, was named a Thurnau Professor. She co-initiated a faculty community on inclusive teaching and helped develop a special chemistry-focused workshop for U-M Comprehensive Studies Program students. As a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor, she received a $1 million award for her Real Experiences in Authentic Laboratories program, an introductory laboratory environment that seeks to sustain student interest in advanced science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) courses.

She serves on U-M’s Researching Evidence Based Undergraduate Instructional and Learning Development Leadership Committee to improve STEM education and the Advance Childcare Advisory Committee. She has been recognized with the Army Research Office Presidential Early Career Award in Science and Engineering, Arnold and Mabel Beckman Young Investigator Award, National Science Foundation CAREER Award, and Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award.

Faculty Recognition Award

Yukiko Yamashita

Internationally renowned cell biologist Yukiko Yamashita studies the division of adult stem cells, which supply highly differentiated cells throughout life. Excess stem cell self-renewal can lead to formation of cancerous tumors whereas too much differentiation can deplete the stem cell pool. She seeks to determine which stem cells replace differentiated cells and which ones maintain the pool for future division. She was the first to prove that stem cells can distinguish between identical copies of chromosomes during asymmetric stem cell division and separate in a regulated manner.

Yamashita earned a Ph.D. in biophysics from Japan’s Kyoto University and was a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University before joining the U-M faculty in 2007, where she is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator. She established the Drosophila male germ line as the premier system in which to study the mechanisms that regulate and mediate critical aspects of stem cell behavior. In a landmark paper in Nature, she reported that Drosophila male germ line stem cells form previously unrecognized structures called microtubule-based nanotubes, which she posits contribute to the short-range nature of stem cell signaling. Earlier, she elucidated the role of stem cell division in age-related decline in organ repair and the onset of some cancers. She has published two books and 63 journal articles and has presented at numerous conferences.

In addition to chairing seven doctoral committees and serving on nine others, Yamashita is a member of U-M’s Cell and Developmental Biology Admissions Committee, Biological Sciences Scholars Program Committee, and Life Sciences Institute Director Search Committee. Yamashita was recognized with the prestigious MacArthur Award from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation in 2011. She also has received the ASCB Women in Cell Biology Career Recognition Award, March of Dimes Basil O’Conner Starter Scholar Research Award, and Searle Scholar Award.

Research Faculty Recognition Award

Tulga Ersal

Tulga Ersal, international expert in system dynamics and control, is transforming transportation, networked systems, energy systems and other fields with his algorithms and mathematical models that enhance understanding and control of systems that evolve over time. 

A U-M faculty member since 2011, Ersal earned three mechanical engineering degrees, a Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree from Istanbul Technical University, and a Master of Science degree from U-M, where he leads research integration activities at the Automotive Research Center.

Among Ersal’s many celebrated contributions is a navigation algorithm for autonomous vehicles that maximizes their performance while maintaining safety. The algorithm allows a vehicle traveling at high speed to avoid obstacles, even if the vehicle must operate close to the limits of tire lift-off. The U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research Development and Engineering Center and National Aeronautics and Space Administration Jet Propulsion Laboratory are among the agencies and firms that use the algorithm. With novel techniques to mitigate the impact of time delays in networked hardware, Ersal pioneered an internet-based system that enables researchers separated by geography to interconnect and test physical and virtual prototypes in real time. He won the Semi-Plenary Paper Award at the 2012 Dynamic Systems and Control Conference and Best Presentation in Session Award for his work on internet-distributed hardware-in-the-loop simulation at the American Control Conference in 2011.

Ersal is the author of 17 articles and 34 conference papers and co-author of two book chapters. He is mentoring seven Ph.D. students and a postdoctoral fellow.

Ersal has served since 2012 as vice chair of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers Dynamic Systems and Control Division Model Identification and Intelligent Systems Technical Committee. He also serves as a National Science Foundation panelist, and a reviewer for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy program and 30 journals.

Research Faculty Achievement Award

Monica Valluri

Monica Valluri, an international leader in theoretical galaxy dynamics, uses powerful numerical calculations and simulations to probe galactic phenomena, including supermassive black holes (SMBH) and dark matter halos, two types of invisible matter whose presence is inferred primarily from their gravitational effects on stars and other visible matter. Her work provides important insights into how these components influence the structure and evolution of galaxies.

Valluri earned a Ph.D. in astrophysics at the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore, did postdoctoral research at Columbia University and Rutgers University, and joined the U-M faculty in 2007.

In addition to developing a more accurate method to determine the masses of SMBH, Valluri has transformed our understanding of galactic bars — elongated cigar-shaped clusters of orbiting stars that exist in many spiral galaxies, including the Milky Way. She demonstrated the traditional view of how stars move in bars is incomplete and that neglecting the effects of galactic bars can cause large errors in the measurement of black hole masses and host galaxy properties. Her work soon will be applied to data being gathered by the European Space Agency’s Gaia space observatory and is expected to verify or refute important predictions of the dominant paradigm regarding the nature of dark matter.

Valluri has published 42 journal articles. In addition to creating and teaching undergraduate astronomy and earth and space science courses, Valluri has taught at the Michigan Math and Science Scholars camp for high school students on a number of occasions. She has served on five doctoral committees and mentored 17 undergraduates. She also founded and organizes Conversations on Equity and Inclusion in Astrophysics and has served on the astronomy department’s curriculum committee and Michigan Institute for Research in Astrophysics planning committee. Valluri is chair of the American Astronomical Society Division of Dynamical Astronomy and a member of the Astronomical Society of India and International Astronomical Union.

Collegiate Research Professorship Award

Matthew P. Reed

Matthew P. Reed, a leader in anthropometrics, biomechanics and digital human modeling, develops models of human attributes, capabilities, performance and tolerance to improve the design of engineered systems. His work focuses on injury biomechanics, motor vehicle occupant protection and ergonomic design tools for both vehicle interiors and industrial workplaces.

Reed, who joined the U-M Transportation Research Institute in 1989 and has directed the Center for Ergonomics Human Motion Simulation Laboratory since 2006, holds three U-M degrees: a Bachelor of Science in Engineering in mechanical engineering, and a Master of Science in Engineering and Ph.D. in industrial and operations engineering.

Reed’s research has contributed to many design standards, recommended practices and regulations for vehicles, seats and restraint systems. He developed statistical models to predict driver and passenger postures that are used around the world to improve vehicle ergonomics. His models, which are based on both skeletal and body surface geometry, can be quickly configured to represent child and adult male and female occupants of any age. He also contributed to the Department of Defense Warrior Injury Assessment Manikin Project, the first military test dummy designed specifically to assess injury risks for soldiers in vehicles exposed to blasts.

Reed has been an investigator or co-investigator on more than 100 projects sponsored by industry and by government agencies. He has published 140 journal articles, presented more than 70 conference papers, and co-edited “Child Anthropometry for Improved Vehicle Occupant Safety” (2010).

A fellow of SAE International (formerly the Society of Automotive Engineers), the leading professional society for the mobility industry, Reed has received, among other honors, the SAE Arch T. Colwell Merit Award, Ralph H. Isbrandt Automotive Safety Engineering Award, and Lloyd L. Withrow Distinguished Speaker Award. In 2015, he was presented with the U.S. Department of Transportation Special Award of Appreciation for contributions to traffic safety.

Regents’ Awards for Distinguished Public Service

Khaled Mattawa

Arab-American poet and literary studies pioneer Khaled Mattawa is internationally acclaimed for his poems, masterful translations of Arabic poetry, and support for the arts globally. The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation recognized his many creative contributions with a MacArthur Fellowship in 2014.

A native of Benghazi, Libya, Mattawa immigrated to the United States in 1979 at age 15. After earning a Master of Arts degree in English and Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing from Indiana University and a Ph.D. in English from Duke University, he taught at several universities prior to joining the U-M faculty in 2004.

Mattawa has published four books of poetry: “Ismailia Eclipse” (1995), “Zodiac of Echoes,” (2003), “Amorisco,” (2008), and “Tocqueville” (2010), winner of the Arab American National Museum Arab American Book Award in Poetry and San Francisco Poetry Center Prize. Mattawa, an Academy of American Poets chancellor, has translated nine books of Arabic poetry, including “Without an Alphabet, Without a Face: Selected Poems of Saadi Youssef” (2002) and “Adonis: Selected Poems” (2010), both winners of the PEN Award for Poetry in Translation. He also won the Saif Ghobash Banipal Prize for Arabic Literary Translation for “Adonis.” Additionally, he has published 19 critical essays and has given many readings, including at the London Book Fair and Poets Forum in New York. This fall, Mattawa will participate in the Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival, North America’s largest poetry celebration. He has received an Alfred Hodder Fellowship, Guggenheim Fellowship, United States Artist Fellowship, and three Pushcart Prizes. He and his wife, artist and U-M alumna Reem Gibriel, co-founded the Arete Foundation of Arts and Culture in Libya. As president of the Radius of Arab American Writers from 2005 to 2010, he helped raise the group’s profile significantly.

University of Michigan Press Book Award

Laurence Goldstein

In “Poetry Los Angeles: Reading the Essential Poems of the City” (2014), literary scholar, poet and former Michigan Quarterly Review editor Laurence Goldstein analyzes 40 poems, and excerpts from many others, that describe and ruminate on the city of his birth. In the expanding interdisciplinary field of literature of place, this is the first book to situate poems within a context of the novels, films, art and politics of Southern California.

Goldstein, who earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1965 from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a Ph.D. in 1970 from Brown University, joined the U-M faculty in 1970, where he was a senior fellow at the Michigan Society of Fellows from 1990-94.

Author of “The American Poet at the Movies: A Critical History” (1994), which also received a U-M Press Book Award, Goldstein has published “Ruins and Empire: The Evolution of a Theme in Augustan and Romantic Literature” (1977) and “The Flying Machine and Modern Literature” (1986). Among Goldstein’s collected works are “A Room in California” (2005) and three other books of poetry. His oeuvre includes many poems, short stories, essays and book reviews.

As editor of MQR from 1977-2009, Goldstein guided its transformation from a literary magazine to an interdisciplinary journal of arts and culture, developed theme issues, and introduced many new authors. He mentored student interns who assisted him with the journal and continues to engage with students in his classes and seminars on a range of topics, including modern and contemporary poetry, William Faulkner’s fiction, and the growing academic field of visual culture.

Goldstein has served on numerous English department committees, and he recently edited the department’s alumni newsletter for three years. He also received in 1977 a U-M Distinguished Service Award and in 2007 a Distinguished Achievement Award.

University Librarian Achievement Award

Robert Fraser

Robert Fraser has contributed significantly to UM-Dearborn’s student-centered environment. He has promulgated the technology to enhance teaching and expand research opportunities, bolstered faculty governance, and fostered partnerships across U-M’s Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint campuses.

Fraser earned Master of Arts degree and a Ph.D. in religion from Vanderbilt University and three additional master’s degrees, including a Master of Library and Information Science from Wayne State University. He joined UM-Dearborn’s faculty in 1994, where he has excelled in many roles, most recently as associate director for scholarly resources and then associate director for graduate programs, research, and scholarly communication.

Among other contributions, Fraser championed a “one university” approach to negotiating electronic resource database licensing, lowering costs and tripling the number of databases and online books and journals available at UM-Dearborn. He also advanced library accessibility for patrons with disabilities and strengthened graduate education in myriad ways, including creating a website for doctoral students containing research links, copyright information and connections to library resources. As Dearborn’s campus compliance lead for the responsible conduct of research, he has routinized the teaching of research ethics.

Fraser has served as a member of the UM-Dearborn Faculty Senate and Faculty Senate Council, the university’s Senate Assembly and Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs, and as interim secretary of the Faculty Senate. He edited The University Record Faculty Perspectives page and contributed to discussions regarding the university’s budget and compensation as a member of the Budget Study Committee and Committee on the Economic Status of the Faculty. He also worked with the Office of the Vice President and General Counsel to clarify the copyrights of U-M faculty members. Among other honors, Fraser has been recognized with the Jackie Lawson Memorial Faculty Governance Award, Council for Disability Concerns Certificate of Appreciation, and Dearborn Faculty Senate Appreciation Award.

University Librarian Recognition Award

Mara Rojeski Blake

Mara Rojeski Blake, an authority on spatial and numeric data sources, brings strong leadership skills and an entrepreneurial spirit to the complex tasks of acquiring data and making those resources accessible to library users. In addition to overseeing the spatial data collection, Blake, the library’s liaison to German studies, partners with faculty colleagues on collection development and empowers students to pursue important research questions.

Blake earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in German and social science from U-M and a Master of Science degree in library and information science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She worked at libraries at Dickinson College and Georgetown University before joining U-M’s Stephen S. Clark Library in 2014.

University Library data resources are expanding strategically, thanks to the Library Data Grants Program, which Blake helped launch. The library solicits requests from faculty and students for new data sets, which are acquired when they strengthen the collection. As co-chair of the University Library’s Emergent Research Working Group, Blake helps coordinate a speaker series focused on library services as they relate to campus research. She and colleagues also are assessing use of geospatial data in published research to better understand how various disciplines use and cite spatial data. Blake has given 18 conference presentations and published eight professional articles.

Working in collaboration with Michigan State University and the University of Minnesota, Blake spearheaded the Big Ten Academic Alliance Geospatial Data Discovery Project. Alliance librarians are working to make geographic information system data, imagery, and scanned maps in their collections more easily discoverable through a shared GeoPortal. Blake also contributed significantly to Mapping Black Central Europe, an interactive map that enhances understanding of the history of black people in Central Europe. Students in U-M’s Germany and the Black Diaspora class, taught by Kira Thurman, created the map.


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