22, No. 16, March 20, 2003
Six academic professionals receive
Six people are being
honored with the 2003 Chancellor’s Academic Professional Excellence
Award, designed to recognize the importance of contributions made by
This year, as in the past 14, the CAPE Award winners were selected based
on their outstanding contributions in their professional fields, to
their department or unit and the campus, and for the positive impact
they have had on colleagues, students and the public. A committee of
12 academic professionals – from different campus units –
reviewed more than 30 nominations and unanimously recommended six people
to Chancellor Nancy Cantor for recognition.
The winners will be honored at an awards ceremony and reception from
4 to 5:30 p.m. April 3 in the South Lounge of the Illini Union. Anyone
Each CAPE winner will receive $2,000 at the ceremony and a base salary
increase of $1,000 effective Aug. 21. In addition, $1,000 will be added
to their departments’ budgets for the upcoming year. This money
is to be used at their discretion to benefit their workplaces.
The number of CAPEs awarded was increased from three to six last year
in recognition of the growing number of academic professionals on the
Urbana campus and the variety of their contributions.
by Bill Wiegand
T. Adams, director, Prairienet
When Paul Adams took over as director of Prairienet in 1999, the program
had a local scope and a mounting deficit. Now, four years later, it
reaches well beyond UI and Champaign-Urbana and it has been in the black
for two years.
Prairienet is a community network run by the Graduate School of Library
and Information Science that provides computers and Internet access
to low-income users and the public.
"Prairienet has become stronger and more stable," wrote Ann
Bishop, professor of library and information science, in her nomination
letter. "Paul has played a significant role in its continued vitality,
indeed its survival."
Also under Adams’ leadership, Prairienet combined forces with
the East St. Louis Action Research Project, a program that provides
computing resources for low-income communities.
Adams served as interim director of the project for seven months, typically
spending one to two days a week in East St. Louis. "This must have
come at a great personal cost: The travel to East St. Louis took a toll
on his spare time since it was on top of his work as Prairienet director,"
wrote Varkki George, professor of urban and regional planning. "He
brings a passion to his work that is quite remarkable."
In addition to these major projects, Adams set up a computer lab in
the poorest county in Georgia, sent computers to support community development
in Africa, and mentored and employed a local teenager whose interest
in computing was sparked by Prairienet classes.
by Bill Wiegand
N. Ballard, UI Extension educator
Ed Ballard has been a UI Extension educator in animal systems in the
Effingham area since 1992, but has served UI Extension for 37 years.
During the past five, he has conducted 393 programs and made face-to-face
contact with almost 47,000 people across the state.
"With the tremendous demands on producer’s time, attracting
them to educational events is more challenging than ever," wrote
Jimmy H. Clark, professor of animal sciences. "But Ballard has
had increasing success by developing programs that are superbly planned
and timely and that provide immediately applicable information. This
combination has resulted in some of the most successful animal systems
educational programs in Illinois while others are experiencing a trend
of reduced participation."
Ballard’s primary emphasis is livestock educational programming
in beef, swine, horses, forages and grazing, youth, and livestock nutrient
management. The past five years he has provided state leadership in
the area of forages and grazing. Through these he has pioneered numerous
programs for UI Extension.
In 1994 he pioneered the first Management Intensive Grazing School in
Illinois, which has been emulated by his Extension colleagues and become
a tool of choice for transferring new technology to livestock and forage
producers. The 92 MIG schools he has developed have reached more than
7,800 people. He also has developed five training schools for UI Extension
and NRCS personnel.
In addition, Ballard has been instrumental in acquiring state and national
grants to conduct applied research and Extension programming.
"He is a blue-chip educator, a major force in the Illinois livestock
and pasture industry, and a UI ambassador and professional," said
Michael F. Hutjens, professor of animal science.
by Bill Wiegand
Band, director of Functional Genomics, W.M. Keck Center for Comparative
and Functional Genomics
As founding director of the Functional Genomics Unit at the W.M. Keck
Center for Comparative and Functional Genomics in the Biotechnology
Center, Mark Band has achieved high recognition from the scientific
community for his work. And the facility he established has become an
indispensable component of the campus research infrastructure, wrote
Harris A. Lewin, professor of animal sciences, in his nomination of
Lewin credits Band with contributing to the scientific success of several
faculty members whose work done in Band’s lab led to large grants.
In addition, results obtained in his lab already have led to high profile
Band also developed a short course, "Microarray Technology,"
to meet the high demand on campus for a course dealing with the production
and use of microarrays.
Band also was praised by Lewin, who said Band’s "commitment
to teaching and managing his (staff) is unparalleled, and the unselfish
devotion of his time to the greater goals of the Keck Center has been
exemplary." Band even served as interim director of another unit,
while still operating his own, when the director left for private industry.
Gene Robinson, professor and director of the Neuroscience Program, wrote
that Band’s "contributions have significantly enhanced the
quality of our research in a high-profile field. His efforts on behalf
of off-campus investigators contracting with the Keck Center have further
enhanced our visibility and prominence, and constitute important service.
His superb educational efforts have enabled many students and postdocs
to learn a great deal about functional genomics. Through his efforts,
many faculty members, myself included, are able to do better science,
are more competitive for grants, and are able to take research into
realms undreamed about even a few years ago."
by Bill Wiegand
Livingstone, associate provost and director, Division of Management
Carol Livingstone was hired in 1984 to head the newly named Division
of Management Information. The new name signaled a need for the unit
to assume new functions, acquire new abilities and perform new services
for a constantly expanding pool of users. As its first director, Livingstone
transformed the unit into a proactive office that could meet the campus’
steadily increasing needs for information gathering and sophisticated
analysis to support policymaking and meet new reporting requirements.
"In the current public higher education environment, the need for
comprehensive, accurate and up-to-date information and analysis of every
aspect of the campus’s activities and operations is greater than
ever before," wrote Lamar Murphy, an associate dean in the Graduate
College, in nominating Livingstone. "Carol’s skills and hard
work have taken our institutional research abilities to a new level,
and she has created information systems and practices that have been
taken as models by a number of our peer institutions."
Livingstone has created a number of Web-based data reporting systems
that are key information sources for units at every level. The most
well known of these is the Campus Profile, which is a model for many
universities of how information from multiple sources can be assembled
and analyzed in order to produce a detailed picture of the resources,
staffing, research efforts, instructional activities and overall performance
of every department and college.
Among her routine responsibilities are the analysis of data for Budget
semester, which determines significant resource allocations to every
campus unit. She collects and reports data about the campus for annual
peer salary studies and external surveys of institutional performance.
Livingstone provides data used by the Illinois Board of Higher Education
every year to determine instructional costs of each degree program as
part of the periodic IBHE evaluation of every campus program.
In addition to producing all this information, Livingstone has devoted
herself to helping administrators at every level understand how to make
use of information to meet their own needs. She lectures each fall to
new senior administrators on the campus’s data services and she
conducts seminars every year for department heads on how to become "data
by Bill Wiegand
Ruan, head librarian, Illinois Fire Service Institute
"By her personal vision and energy, Lian Ruan converted an underused,
in-house reference room into a full service library that serves communities
and first responders throughout the state and has received national
and international recognition for excellence," wrote Richard L.
Jaehne, director of the Illinois Fire Service Institute, in his nomination
Ruan joined the institute in 1990 as a research information specialist
and became director of the library in 1999. In 1998, the institute implemented
Vision 2000 with the goal of "helping every firefighter do his/her
work through training, education, information and research." Increased
value was placed on outreach and technology to reach firefighters at
a distance. The library has played a central role in achieving this
"Because of her personal drive, enthusiasm, dedication, ingenuity
and tireless efforts the IFSI Library is now a member of the state library
system and has a central role in delivering training, education and
information to firefighters in Illinois and is playing a key role in
the institute’s growing agenda," Jaehne wrote.
Ruan also has obtained many grants on behalf of the library including
one to develop conceptual drawings and a feasibility study to expand
the library from 700 square feet to 10,000 square feet.
In addition, Ruan’s energy and vision have benefited the students
of the Graduate School of Library and Information Science who have worked
with her, noted Linda C. Smith, professor and formerly interim dean
of the school, in a letter supporting Ruan’s nomination. "She
gives generously of her time in training and mentoring the students
who work with her and these students report being inspired by her example,"
by Bill Wiegand
Thurston, director, Office of Educational Technology
As director of the Office of Educational Technology in the College of
Education since the office was created six years ago, Catherine O. Thurston
has been the "visionary and developer of this critical resource
for the college," wrote Susan Fowler, dean of the College of Education,
in a letter of support. "In the past six years, she has transformed
and centralized technology services in the college and enabled faculty
members and students to become educational leaders and innovators in
the application and integration of technology with teaching."
In her nomination of Thurston, Molly B. Tracy, associate dean for administration
and technology in the college, wrote "Thurston’s office supports
a comprehensive program that provides professional development for faculty
members on how to integrate technology into instruction, sponsors workshops
across the state, collaborates with a number of K-12 school districts
on a variety of technology outreach activities and oversees all information
technology resources in the college."
In addition, during her time at OET, Thurston has successfully gained
millions of dollars of funding to support college and faculty efforts
in the area of technology. She has assumed leadership in many of these
efforts, including the development and implementation of two very successful
online master’s degree programs.
It was her effort and initiative that began the "Moveable Feast"
program. This summer institute program offers hands-on training on technology
integration to teachers throughout the state and has grown tremendously
during its five years. Because of Thurston’s leadership OET today
– although originally conceived as a largely technical support
group – is a campus leader in the development, implementation
and research of the applications of technology in instruction.