2008 President's Award for Outstanding Service Recipients

2008 Recipients of President's Award for Outstanding Service

2008 Recipients of the President's Award for Outstanding Service pictured with Robert Jones, Senior Vice President for Academic Administration.

Kenneth L. Gilbertson

Kenneth L. GilbertsonKenneth L. Gilbertson is an associate professor in the Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, and the director of the Center for Environmental Education, University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD). He received a bachelor's degree (1978) in Teaching Biology and a master's degree (1984) in Outdoor Education at UMD. He went on to earn a Ph.D. at The Ohio State University (1990) in Outdoor Education with a Clinical Counseling emphasis and returned to UMD as a faculty member. He is credited with developing the first Emergency Care curriculum at UMD, a program that thousands of students have gone through. And, because there was no Master's of Education with a concentration in Outdoor Education, he created one. Today, it is called Recreation-Outdoor Education. Under his leadership, the UMD Recreation-Outdoor program has become one of the leading programs in the nation. His tireless efforts to improve environmental education have been expanded to Finland, New Zealand, Australia and Europe. He currently is working with Finland and New Zealand to establish a consortium of outdoor educators interested in developing a partnership for research and teaching practices. It will be the first of its kind. He has effectively created partnerships with state and national parks and corporations to promote the well being of the environment and in the process, enriching the lives of students and citizens. For example, he was instrumental in establishing and maintaining a whitewater recreational area in collaboration with Minnesota Power. Through these efforts, the National Kayak Center at Thomson, Minnesota was developed, construction of the UMD Outpost Building ensued, and the public whitewater sports access/take-out on the shore of Thomson Reservoir was developed. One person wrote, "Dr. Gilbertson has been very much like the mythic Johnny Appleseed, wherever he goes, programs bloom and lives change."

Laurel E. Hirt

Laurel E. HirtLaurel E. Hirt, director, Service-Learning and Community Involvement, Career and Community Learning Center (CCLC), College of Liberal Arts, has provided exceptional service to the University of Minnesota for more than a decade. The core work of the CCLC is to connect University of Minnesota students with community-based organizations through volunteering and service learning. She has been dedicated in her work to recruit faculty members, engage students, and cultivate relationships in the community. Under her leadership, the CCLC has grown and expanded from 20 community organizations to more than 200. She was instrumental in the establishment of the Campus Community Coordinators Alliance (CCCA), a campus group working to connect the campus and the community. She is considered the leading campus figure in developing and implementing a means of acknowledging student success in community engagement. Because of her work, the Community Engagement Scholars Program was launched in 2005, with over 400 students enrolled. Considered to be a highly successful collaborator, Laurel has given presentations about service-learning and civic engagement to new faculty, the Academy of Distinguished Teachers, the Center for Teaching and Learning, the Academic Health Center, the Office for Public Engagement, and the Vice Provosts for Undergraduate and Graduate Education. She is an active member of Educators for Community Engagement, a national service-learning organization. She hosted its national conference at the University of Minnesota in 2003. Her successful participation in a national pilot program with the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching resulted in Carnegie recognizing the University of Minnesota as "community engaged" in categories of "Curricular Engagement" and "Outreach and Partnerships." One person wrote, "Laurel is a valued and trusted colleague. Her input into decision-making is critical, and she is productive and unfailingly available to students, community partners, and her colleagues, far beyond the call of duty."

Gilbert Ben Huie

Gilbert Ben Huie and Robert JonesGilbert Ben Huie, tribal elder in the Fond du Lac Band of the Lake Superior Chippewa, is a laboratory machinist specialist in the Department of Civil Engineering, Institute of Technology. His commitment and dedication to the University and its communities are extraordinary and go well beyond his regular responsibilities. He joined the Department of Civil Engineering in 1991 and immediately began cultivating and developing excellent working relationships with faculty, students, staff, and the broader community. He was instrumental in the design and fabrication of a plane-strain apparatus; in the building of plastic molds for membranes strands, fixtures, and various water reactor tanks used for experiments; and in the renovation of a research space. He has worked tirelessly to cultivate a positive working environment and has served as the public marketing model for the College of Continuing Education in his pursuit of lifelong learning. He has contributed significantly towards the promotion and support of cultural diversity. He was instrumental in collecting information for the University’s comprehensive report on diversity resources for the Sesquicentennial celebration. He provided bibliographic information, contacts, and resources from his own private library and his master’s degree research in liberal studies related to his Chinese and Ojibwe heritage, which can now be found in the University’s archives. He has contributed to the creation of the Master of Liberal Studies (MLS) Student Association and he has served as an active participant with American Indian cultural celebrations within and outside the University. Most recently, he has served as a volunteer technical support liaison for the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition, an outreach event for K-12 students held on the University of Minnesota campus. “He should be recognized for his outstanding service to the department and the Institute of Technology through his machining and engineering skills; his generous contributions to the University and outside organizations through his support of cultural diversity; and his leadership and mentoring of students with whom he has interacted, and the lives whom he has enriched through his numerous activities,” wrote one person.

David R. Johnson

David R. JohnsonDavid R. Johnson, professor of Educational Policy and Administration, is the associate dean for Research and Policy and the director of the Institute on Community Integration in the College of Education and Human Development. He is described as a remarkable person and professional who is committed to the field of disabilities. He has been actively involved in shaping policy and framing practices on behalf of people with disabilities at the local, state and national level for more than 20 years. As an esteemed scholar and expert in the area of employment of people with disabilities, he has been an effective leader. As a principal investigator, he has brought in more than $10 million in federal funding to the University. He has supported hundreds of graduate students through the research assistantships his training and research dollars have generated and he has employed numerous people with challenging disabilities and made sure they were supported and successful. In his role as director of the Institute on Community Integration, he has established projects such as the National Center on School Completion for Students with Disabilities, the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition, and the National Center on Educational Outcomes. As associate dean for Research and Policy in the College of Education and Human Development, he designed an infrastructure to support the College to become a national leader in research and externally-supported programs; established multi-disciplinary affinity groups so the University can respond to federal priorities; established centers of technical support; and had on-going conversations with College-wide Center leadership to identify ways that the College can support the primary grant-getting entities. He has served on nine University-wide committees, 17 committees within the College of Education and Human Development, and a variety of committees outside of the University. One person wrote, "Shaped by personal and professional life experiences and driven by values of opportunity, equity, and personhood, David R. Johnson demonstrates exemplary citizenship in service to his many communities."

Steven H. Johnson

Steven H. JohnsonSteven H. Johnson, deputy chief, Department of Police, retired on May 30, 2008, after more than 30 years of service to the University and its communities. In 1999, after the Chief and the Captain left the University within one week of each other, Deputy Chief Johnson stepped up and served as a "one man administrative team" until the new chief was hired later that year. Over the course of his tenure, he has demonstrated outstanding leadership in his role of serving the safety needs of the campus by representing the University on a national level on the committee for the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Association working on Emergency Operations Plans. During the anti-war protests on campus, he showed his leadership by keeping the campus safe yet allowing demonstrators to exercise their First Amendment rights. He played a key role in the collaborative effort between the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office during the hockey riots in 2001 and the disturbances associated with the 2007 NCAA Hockey Tournament. When the I-35W Bridge collapsed, he was key in the communication between law enforcement agencies and proved to be integral to the rescue and recovery operations. The University of Minnesota Police Department was the first to respond on the east side of the collapse site. He has served as a trusted and able advisor to the Academic Health Center (AHC), specifically on those issues related to security and research. He has effectively and skillfully managed threats to faculty members and institutional officials. He has served as a liaison between the University and the Secret Service, the FBI, local law enforcement, or a combination of different agencies. One person wrote, "He is a trusted advisor, a proven strategic planner, a calm presence in tense situations, a patient negotiator, and an untiring ambassador for the University of Minnesota." The University has truly been fortunate to call Deputy Chief Johnson one of its own.

Mary Hastings Kenyon

Mary Hastings KenyonMary Hastings Kenyon, community relations manager, Academic Health Center (AHC) Office of Communications, is responsible for helping create the face of the AHC within and outside of the University. She has served the University of Minnesota with unusual distinction for more than 30 years. She is given much of the credit for the success of the popular community-oriented AHC program - the Mini Medical School. She is a key supporter of the Harvard Street Forum, a joint venture supported by the AHC, the Center for Arts and Medicine, the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, and Grace University Lutheran Church. It was created to provide a public forum to discuss issues of relevance which were sometimes controversial. She works tirelessly on behalf of the AHC at the State Fair and creating other opportunities to connect the AHC and the community. An example of her outreach efforts is the new lecture series on the brain and neuroscience created for The Study Group based in Wayzata. She has effectively and creatively planned many events for the AHC. Some of these events feature controversial speakers while others recognize those who support animal research, each requiring her expert judgment. She also served as the driving force behind the AHC identification badge roll out. She has served on numerous AHC and University-wide committees including Just One U Homecoming Committee, University Relocation Committee, Blue Ribbon Commission to study Coffman Union, and the AHC Safety and Security Committee, to name a few. In addition, she has served on many community committees such as Bridge for Runaway Youth, American Cancer Society Relay for Life, and Crime Stoppers of Minnesota. One person wrote, "She gets things done and is able to leverage an amazing amount of institutional knowledge that she's developed over a lifetime of experience at the University. She is able to bring people together, not just across the schools, colleges, and departments of the AHC, but across the campus and beyond; and she does so because of the respect she's earned and the success of her outcomes."

Andrew Phelan

Andrew PhelanAndrew Phelan, assistant director, Environmental Health and Safety, has served the University of Minnesota with distinction for 25 years. His exceptional service has consistently been demonstrated in his efforts and commitment to advancing the University's capacity for system-changing projects, practices, and policies that advance the University's environmental health and safety, sustainability, and its mission and its goals. His primary responsibility is for the oversight of the operations and compliance aspects of chemical waste management for the University. He is also responsible for the Chemical Safety Day Outreach Program, which provides hazardous waste services to schools and non-profit organizations throughout the State of Minnesota. He was instrumental in the creation of the University-wide Sustainability and Energy Efficiency Policy. The impact of this policy moved the University to the forefront of efforts to protect the environment in operations and research on local, national and international levels. He has served as chair of the Waste Abatement and Pollution Prevention Committee, which is charged with implementing the Regents' Policy on Waste, Abatement and Pollution Prevention. In addition, he is a member of the Advisory Committee on Sustainability and the TCF Stadium, serves as the staff to the Master Planning Committee's work team on Natural Features and Open Spaces, and serves as a member of the UMore Park Environmental Task Force. One person wrote, "He is trustworthy without restriction, open minded, and a pleasure to work with. He insists on quality, and excellence, and his decisions are made after broad and deep collaboration, introspection, and with long-term thinking on the decisions we make for the University community. Andy's work helps to extend the quality and reputation of the University."

Martin W. Sampson III

Martin W. Sampson IIIMartin W. Sampson III, winner of the Morse-Alumni Distinguished Teaching Award, is an associate professor of Political Science in the College of Liberal Arts who has spent his entire academic career at the University of Minnesota. Prior to starting his 30-year career at the University, he earned a Ph.D. at Indiana University, and then spent five years in the Peace Corps, including teaching in Libya for three years. Over the course of his tenure at the University, he has continuously demonstrated his commitment and dedication to the University. He teaches courses on United States policy toward the Middle East and on the Israeli-Palestinian situation and he is considered to be a leading source for analysis of events in those areas. He played a pivotal role in launching the exchange between the Political Science Department and Bogazici University in Istanbul, Turkey. Under his leadership as the Director of the International Relations program, an environmental studies curriculum was created. The work he has done in conjunction with the new University-wide Bush initiative to integrate writing throughout the curriculum is serving as a model and basis for the adoption of the new University-wide writing requirement. His deep concern about student learning and success led him to serve on the Senate Committee for Educational Policy, serving 4 years as a member and than one as chair. He has served on the Graduate School Social Sciences Policy and Review Council, the Graduate School Executive Committee, the Bush Sabbatical Leave Committee, the International Travel and Study Board Association, as well as numerous search committees and other campus committees. An esteemed leader among the faculty, he was called upon to serve as the faculty legislative liaison. For the past five years, he has devoted hundreds of hours working to support the efforts to convey a faculty perspective on the mission to achieve excellence as a public university, to promoting the University's budget and capital investment requests and to improving communication between the faculty and the state legislature. Those who wrote letters of support describe him as an exemplary citizen, extraordinary, amazing, a committed and an effective advocate who has demonstrated unusual commitment to the University of Minnesota.

G. Edward Schuh

Family of G. Edward SchuhG. Edward Schuh, Regents Professor Emeritus and former dean of the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota passed away on May 4, 2008. He had been a member of the faculty since 1979, served as dean of the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs from 1987 to 1996, became the Orville and Jane Freeman Professor in International Trade and Investment Policy, and served as the director for the Freeman Center for International Economic Policy. He retired in 2006. His areas of expertise included agriculture and food policy, economic development, international trade and exchange rate policy, international financial markets, family policy and population, poverty alleviation and food security, and science and technology. Over the course of his esteemed career, he held a number of positions in university settings and in governmental organizations as well as non-governmental organizations. He served as program advisor to the Ford Foundation in Brazil, as senior staff economist in President Gerald R. Ford's Council of Economic Advisors, as Deputy Undersecretary for International Affairs and Commodity Programs at the U.S. Department of Agriculture during the Carter administration, and as the director of agriculture and rural development in the World Bank. He was a member of the U.S. National Research Council's Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources, a member of the Board of Trustees of the International Food Policy Research Institute, and chair of the Board for International Food and Agricultural Development during the Clinton administration. He was the recipient of several professional awards including five citations from the American Agricultural Economics Society, the Doctor Honoris Causis from the Federal University of Vicosa, Brazil, and the degree of Doctor of Agriculture, Honoris Causis, from Purdue University. In 1998, he was named Regents Professor, the highest academic honor bestowed on a member of the faculty at the University of Minnesota. In 2004, he was honored by the Brazilian Society of Agriculture Economics with the Legendary Member of the Society, a new award that recognized lifetime contributions to the profession. In addition, he was a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Agricultural Economics Association, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He truly was an exceptional researcher, teacher, program developer and administrator. "G. Edward Schuh is a consummate academic who has dedicated his long career to connecting the academy and the people it studies and serves. In doing so, he has improved the lives of men and women around the world and enlarged the reputation of the University of Minnesota in innumerable ways," wrote Dean J. Brian Atwood. The University of Minnesota is a better place because of G. Edward Schuh and he will be missed tremendously by all of those whose lives he touched.

Rajiv Vaidyanathan

Rajiv VaidyanathanRajiv Vaidyanathan is a professor in the Department of Marketing of the Labovitz School of Business and Economics (LSBE) and the executive director at the MBA program at the University of Minnesota Duluth. He also serves as executive director of the Association for Consumer Research (ACR), the premier scholarly organization for the field of consumer research, attracting scholars based in the departments of Marketing, Decision Sciences, Communications, and related social sciences. In his role as executive director, he demonstrated visionary leadership in his successful effort to establish an online conference management system for ACR. Under his leadership, ACR's cash balance increased by 400 percent. He will serve as co-chair of the 2009 Asia Pacific ACR conference that will be held in Hyderabad, India and will be responsible for the academic content of the conference. He is considered "the face" of ACR, and because of his leadership, he has raised international awareness of the University, especially the LSBE on the Duluth campus. He has a stellar record of service at the University, both on the Duluth campus as well as system-wide. He has served on various University promotion and tenure committees, editorial review board of journals, conducted regular article reviews, and has been a sought after speaker for athletic department recruits. In addition, he has served on many search committees and as a faculty mentor. As the director of the LSBE MBA program, he has helped to increase the profile of the program in Duluth and Rochester. Under his effective leadership, the program has excelled. His willingness to give of his time to the department, school, campus, and the broader community demonstrates his dedication and commitment. He is the recipient of many honors and awards including the Journal of Marketing Education "Outstanding Paper of 2007" Award, the LSBE Faculty Service Excellence Award, the 2005 Hormel Meritorious Teaching Award, and the U.S. Small Business Administration District Award for Student Consulting Project, to name a few. One person wrote, "Rajiv is an exceptional individual. While his intelligence and his values are extraordinary, as is the sheer volume of his accomplishments, what most impresses me is his unfailing energy to make everything around him better and his ability to inspire others to join with him in doing the same. In Rajiv, you have a true treasure."

Warren J. Warwick

Warren J. WarwickWarren J. Warwick is a professor in the Department of Pediatrics in the Medical School at the University of Minnesota. He graduated from the University of Minnesota Medical School more than 50 years ago and since then has made it his life's work to treat cystic fibrosis. He developed the first chest compression vest for bronchial drainage, which has extended the lives of individuals with cystic fibrosis. He is relentless in his pursuit to provide the best care for his patients and in the discovery of leading edge technologies. He has served as an inspiration to a countless number of physicians and researchers locally, nationally, and internationally. He serves on several professional societies such as the Northwestern Pediatric Society, the Ambulatory Pediatric Society, the New York Academy of Science, the American Society for Investigative Pathology, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, to name a few. He has served on many University committees including the Diabetes Education Advisory Committee, the Senate Library Committee, and the Senate Finance Committee. The list of his professional service is extensive. He has served as a committee member, board member, co-chair, chair, volunteer, consultant, or president of more than two-dozen organizations. He has established cystic fibrosis clinics in Minnesota, Iowa, and North and South Dakota. He is also credited with six patents. One person wrote, "Dr. Warrick truly embodies what the University stands for: creativity, passion, integrity, hard work, and compassion for others. A researcher-physician who is truly "driven to discover," he has made outstanding contributions to the Medical School, the University of Minnesota, and the world beyond, particularly through his decades-long commitment to serving patients suffering from cystic fibrosis."