Faculty, staff, and students were recognized for outstanding achievements Tuesday at the annual Chancellor’s Honors Banquet, the university’s largest recognition event of the year.
Seven seniors were recognized for their academic achievement, leadership, and outstanding service with the university’s highest student honor, the Torchbearer award. They are Jasmine Blue, of Brentwood, Tennessee, a Chancellor’s Honors student majoring in political science and minoring in English; Xavier Greer, of Memphis, a member of the Haslam College of Business’s Global Leadership Scholars Program majoring in accounting; Jack Larimer, of Brentwood, Tennessee, a Haslam Scholar double majoring in economics and political science; Elizabeth Longmire, of Corryton, Tennessee, a journalism and electronic media major; Maddie Stephens, of Knoxville, a Chancellor’s Honors student majoring in English and minoring in leadership studies, Mickayla Stogsdill, of Knoxville, a Chancellor’s Honors student majoring in public administration and Russian studies; and Chase Toth, of Knoxville, a Chancellor’s Honors student majoring in chemical engineering.
Read more about all of the students, faculty, and staff who received awards at the Chancellor’s Honors Banquet.
The following professors received the evening’s top faculty awards:
Macebearer: Carol Tenopir
This is the university’s highest faculty award, which celebrates and honors a distinguished career and a solid commitment to students, scholarship, and society. Tenopir, a Chancellor’s Professor in the School of Information Sciences, is a world-renowned researcher whose work focuses on the tools and behaviors that scientists and engineers use to communicate with each other and with nonexpert audiences. Her work has been cited more than 10,000 times and garnered more than $10 million in funding. She has received numerous honors, including being named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and becoming the first woman to hold the Fulbright-Nokia Distinguished Chair in Information and Communication Technologies.
Alexander Prize: Marianne Wanamaker
Named for former UT president and now US Senator Lamar Alexander and his wife, Honey, this award recognizes superior teaching and distinguished scholarship. Wanamaker is an associate professor of economics; a National Bureau of Economic Research research associate; Kinney Family Faculty Fellow; Boyd Center for Business and Economic Research Faculty Fellow, and BB&T Scholar in Markets, Capitalism, and Ethics. She is a world-class researcher as well as a highly regarded teacher who has advised countless theses and has led many study abroad experiences. Wanamaker recently completed a term in Washington, DC, where she served as chief domestic economist on the President’s Council of Economic Advisers.
Jefferson Prize: Alison Vacca
This award honors a tenured or tenure-track faculty member for significant contributions through research and creative activity. Vacca, an assistant professor of history, is considered one of the leading historians on the rise of Islam and the Middle East during the medieval period. Her work looks at the complex and conflicted history of the Caucasus region, which was a crossroads of empires and religions 12 centuries ago and remains so today. Her most recent focus is a study of women in the Caucasus Mountains during the medieval period, a topic that has been largely ignored until now. Vacca will use the monetary award associated with the prize to support her work on a book on women in early Islam. Already fluent in Arabic, Armenian, and Persian, Vacca is learning yet another language—medieval Georgian—to facilitate her current research.
L. R. Hesler Award: Marianne Breinig
Established by students, colleagues, and friends of the longtime head of the botany department and former dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, this prize rewards exceptional teaching and service. Breinig, a professor and associate head of the Department of Physics and Astronomy, has produced about a quarter of all student credit hours in her department over the past three years. Students say her teaching style and use of classroom technology help to make physics “enjoyable, interesting, and less daunting.” Breinig led her department to get the resources needed to begin teaching optical concepts, an area of study that has evolved from a small class to two full labs. Additionally, Breinig has served in leadership roles on multiple committees and councils and has trained others in her successful teaching techniques.
Amy Blakely (865-974-5034, firstname.lastname@example.org)