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Memorials president recognizes outstanding employees

The 2010 President’s Award winners are pictured, back row, left to right: Dr. Wolfgang Banzhaf, Ann Marie Vaughan, Dr. Kati Szego, Marilyn Forward, Dr. Marco Merkli, Dr. Maria Mathews, Dr. Mary L. Courage, Lynn Best, Martha MacDonald, Dr. Gary Kachanoski and front row, left to right: Richard Predham, Dr. Leslie Phillips, Dr. Mahmoud M. R. Haddara, Jane Ryan.

Dr. Gary Kachanoski, Memorial University’s president and vice-chancellor, has announced the university’s outstanding educators, researchers and staff members for 2010.

The recipients were formally recognized at an event held Dec. 7 at the Fluvarium in St. John’s.

At that event, Dr. Kachanoski presented the recipients of the president’s awards for teaching, research, exemplary service and exceptional community service. Five employees were honoured for exemplary service, two faculty members for distinguished teaching, four for research and two were recognized for exceptional community service.

"The success of any organization rests on the passion and commitment of its employees,” said Dr. Kachanoski. “Memorial is no exception, and I am pleased to recognize some of the outstanding faculty and staff we have at this university. Their contributions often extend beyond the Memorial campus, and have direct and positive effects on the surrounding community. Through exemplary service, teaching, research, and community service, these individuals are helping Memorial fulfill its mission.”

Dr. Mary L. Courage, Psychology, and Dr. Wolfgang Banzhaf, Computer Science, were named University Research Professors. University Research Professors have acquired a designation above the rank of professor. The title is the most prestigious award the university gives for research, and goes to faculty who have demonstrated a consistently high level of scholarship and whose research is of a truly international stature. The designation carries with it a $4,000 research grant (each year for five years) and a reduced teaching schedule.

Dr. Maria Mathews, Faculty of Medicine, and Dr. Marco Merkli, Mathematics and Statistics, received the President’s Award for Outstanding Research. The President’s Award for Outstanding Research recognizes researchers who have made outstanding contributions to their scholarly disciplines. Each award includes a $5,000 research grant.

Dr. Kati Szego, Music, and Dr. Leslie Phillips, Pharmacy, were presented President’s Awards for Distinguished Teaching which recognize the teaching excellence in the university community. Each winner of the teaching award receives a $5,000 grant contributed by the Memorial University Alumni Association, Office of the President, and Instructional Development Office/Distance Education and Learning Technologies.

Dr. Mahmoud M.R. Haddara, Engineering, and Martha MacDonald, Labrador Institute, were awarded the President’s Award for Exceptional Community Service, presented each year in recognition of employees (faculty or staff) who have demonstrated outstanding community service. The inaugural award was presented in 2007.

Five Memorial employees received the President’s Awards for Exemplary Service: Lynn Best, Department of Human Resources; Rick Predham, Computing and Communications; Marilyn Forward, Community Education and College Relations, Grenfell Campus; Jane Ryan, QE II Library; and Ann Marie Vaughan, Distance Education and Learning Technologies.

The President’s Award for Exemplary Service is presented each year to recognize employees who have demonstrated outstanding service and/or who have made significant contributions to the university community beyond that normally expected for their positions. All non-academic staff of Memorial University and its Separately Incorporated Entities are eligible to be nominated. The President’s Award for Exceptional Community Service and the President’s Award for Exemplary Service each carry a $1,000 award, respectively.

Memorial began its annual presentation of the University Research Professor designations and the Awards for Outstanding Research in 1984, and the Distinguished Teaching Awards in 1988, as ways of singling out particularly distinguished contributions within its academic community. Exemplary Service Awards were introduced in 1995 and the Exceptional Community Service Award was first awarded in 2008.

For more on each of the recipients, see