Indiana University East recognized several faculty and staff with awards for their service to the university during the Honors Convocation ceremony held April 19.
Rob Tolley, senior lecturer in anthropology and sociology, is this year’s recipient of the Helen Lees Award, established in 1991. Professor Emeritus Lees passed away in 1992, but her spirit continues in this annual award to honor a full-time faculty member who has taught at least 10 semesters at IU East.
Tolley received the award for his significant reputation among students for his inspiring lectures, his leadership of exciting trips to the American West, and his online videos. He also serves as the interim chairperson for the Department of Social Sciences. This role has allowed him to serve officially as a mentor to other faculty, something he has been willing to do more informally for many years.
Jean Harper, associate professor of English, received the Award for Excellence in Research. This award recognizes excellence in research and/or creative work by a full-time faculty member over a sustained period of time.
Harper has received many honors and accolades for her work from her first book, Rose City: A Memoir of Work, which won the Mid-List Press First Series Award for Creative Nonfiction, to her many essays, fiction and poetry, published in journals and magazines, and for her work on the documentary “1:47,” documenting the explosion in downtown Richmond in 1968. Her most recent project is her book, Horses and Divorces, partially supported by a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. A distinguished writer and researcher, Harper has also received grants to support a program called “Literacy through Photography,” in which IU East students serve as mentors for elementary school students.
Karen Clark, dean of the School of Nursing, received the Distinguished Faculty Service Award. This award recognizes distinguished service, either one-time or sustained, by a full-time faculty member above and beyond the expectations of any compensation or release time provided for the service.
Clark contributes to university, professional and community service. She has been instrumental in leading the development of new graduate, off-campus and online programs. Professionally, she serves on the Board of Directors for the Indiana Center for Nursing and is President-Elect of the Indiana League of Nursing. To name only a few of her more recent community service contributions, she serves on the Board of Directors for Reid Hospital & Health Care Services, the Board of Directors for the East Indiana Area Health Education Center, the Nursing Advisory Board for Ivy Tech Region 9, the Board of Directors of Youth as Resources, and the Advisory Committee for Wayne County Health Vocations.
Jerry Wilde, professor of educational psychology received the Chancellor’s Faculty Award. This award recognizes outstanding all-around achievement, either short-term or sustained, by an IU East faculty member, and can be awarded for any combination of research, teaching, and service.
Wilde has distinguished himself in multiple areas of performance including teaching, research and service. He has a reputation as an outstanding teacher, someone to whom students go for help with their most difficult problems. He has several research publications and presentations. His service is a model for others to emulate, according to Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Larry Richards.
Christie Joy is the recipient of the part-time Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching. She is also an advisor for First-Year Seminar.
Awards were presented to an outstanding support staff member and professional staff member who have made significant contributions to IU East during the past year. Rebeckah Hester, director of the Office of Campus Life, received the Professional Council Service Award and Mandy Hoadley, student records specialist, received the Staff Council Service Award.
Hester is known for her positive attitude, commitment, teamwork, and innovative ideas for campus life programming.
Hoadley, an active member of Staff Council and past president, was recognized for an exemplary work ethic and pride in her job.
Ryan Lacey is the recipient of the Student Employee Service Award. He works in the Office of Admissions and is an Admissions Ambassador, Student Government Association member, Supplemental Instructor and tutor in the science field. He plans to pursue a Doctorate in Pharmacy at Purdue University following graduation this May as IU East’s first student to receive a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry.