Nominate Colleagues for Faculty Awards – Including the New Professional Achievement Award!

In making the annual call for nominations for several UMW faculty awards, I am pleased to also announce that we are adding a new award this year — the Waple Faculty Professional Achievement Award.  Nominations for all awards are due to my office by March 1; email nominations to Amy O’Reilly (  Only electronic nominations will be accepted.  Please read on for additional details about all the faculty awards.

We will accept nominations for FIVE different awards, each designed to emphasize a particular area of faculty excellence.  I encourage you to submit one or more nominations of candidates for these awards —(1) the Grellet C. Simpson Award for excellence in undergraduate teaching, (2) the Graduate Faculty Award, (3) the Alumni Association Outstanding Young Faculty Award, (4) the J. Christopher “Topher” Bill Service Award, and (5) the Waple Faculty Professional Achievement Award.

Last year’s winners of these awards were:

  • Dawn Bowen, Professor of Geography (Grellet C. Simpson Award)
  • Mukesh Srivastava, Associate Professor of  Management Information Systems (Graduate Faculty Award)
  • Rosemary Jesionowski, Assistant Professor of Art (Outstanding Young Faculty Award)
  • Jeff McClurken, Associate Professor of History  (Topher Bill Award)

There is one other faculty award, the Mary W. Pinschmidt Award, and it is determined by the Student Government Association.  Last year’s winner was Gary Richards, Associate Professor of English.  Please do not nominate anyone for the Pinschmidt award through the process I am announcing now.

A list of all recipients of these awards is available here.

Nomination Process

With the exception of the new Waple Award, nominations are welcome from any member of the University community.  Nominations for the Waple Faculty Professional Achievement Award must come from faculty members, those who are in the best position to comment on a colleague’s professional achievements.

Send a letter to me, indicating the specific reasons for the nomination.  The deadline for the receipt of nomination letters is MARCH 1, 2013.  All nominations must be submitted electronically as either a word or pdf document (pdf preferred).  Once again, send the nomination letter as a file attachment to Amy O’Reilly ( 

Award Criteria

All full-time continuing faculty are eligible to be nominated for the Simpson Award or for the Graduate Faculty Award.  Keep in mind, though, that the Simpson Award is for outstanding undergraduate teaching.  Nominees for the Graduate Faculty Award must be persons who teach graduate students and have distinguished themselves as members of a graduate program at the University.

The Outstanding Young Faculty Award is presented to a full-time faculty member who has between two and five years of full-time teaching service at UMW.  Please consult this list of eligible faculty before nominating someone: Alumni Award eligibility list 2013

The Topher Bill Award recognizes outstanding faculty service. Nominees must have served a minimum of seven years as a member of the Mary Washington teaching faculty and must have been significantly and consistently involved in a variety of service roles through department, college, university, and/or community service activities.

Lastly, the new Waple Faculty Award for Professional Achievement will be offered for the first time.  This award will be based on the significance/impact of the faculty nominee’s scholarly, creative, and/or professional achievement(s).  All full-time, continuing faculty with at least seven years employment at UMW are eligible.  Achievement(s) must have been undertaken during the nominee’s years at UMW.  Once again, nominations for this award must come from faculty members.  Nominations should speak to the significance and impact of the nominee’s professional achievements.  As you may recall, this award was proposed by the faculty last year.  I am happy we were able to bring the details together and to locate a sustainable funding source for it as quickly as we have.

Award Presentations

We will announce the winner of the first Waple Faculty Award for Professional Achievement at the General Faculty Meeting on Wednesday, April 24, 2013.  This announcement will cap our annual approval of the list of graduates and the ceremony in which our retiring colleagues are honored by remarks from a colleague.

The Graduate Faculty Award will be presented at the Graduate Commencement ceremony on Friday evening, May 11.

The Simpson Award and the Young Faculty Award will be presented at the Undergraduate Commencement ceremony on Saturday May 11.

Finally, as has been the case since the award was first presented, the Topher Bill Award will be presented at the opening General Faculty Meeting in August 2013.

Each winner receives a cash prize along with a suitable personal memento commemorating the achievement.

Selection Process

The University Committee on Sabbaticals, Fellowships, and Faculty Awards will review all nominations and select the winners.  Members of this committee are:

  • Doug Sanford, Department of Historic Preservation (Chair)
  • Chris Foss, Department of English, Linguistics, and Communication
  • Bob Greene, College of Business
  • Norah Hooper, Department of Foundations. Leadership, and Special Populations
  • Federico Schneider, Department of Modern Foreign Languages

Thank you very much for your attention to this important matter.  Please let me know if you have any questions.

Once again, the deadline for nominations in March 1, 2013.  All nominations must be submitted electronically to Amy O’Reilly (  I look forward to receiving a nomination letter from you.




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