News from the Hill, Spring 2013

Spotlight on commencement speaker and Chancellor’s Honors

The Hill

US ambassador and UT alumna Scobey to speak at commencement

Margaret ScobeyFormer United States ambassador and UT alumna Margaret Scobey will be the keynote speaker for the College of Arts and Sciences commencement on May 10.

Scobey retired from the US Foreign Service in December 2012 at the rank of career minister. During more than thirty years of service, she served as the US ambassador to the Arab Republic of Egypt from April 2008 until July 2011 and as the US ambassador to Syria from December 2003 until February 2005, when she was recalled in reaction to the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri. Her last assignment was as deputy commandant at the Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Management at the National Defense University in Washington, DC.

Scobey served as political counselor in Baghdad in 2006 and 2007 and as deputy chief of mission at the US Embassy in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, from September 2001 through November 2003. She also served as director of the Office of Arabian Peninsula Affairs in the Department of State and deputy chief of mission in Sanaa, Yemen, with earlier assignments in Jerusalem, Kuwait, Pakistan, and Peru.

In the Department of State, Scobey was staff assistant to the assistant secretary of Near East and South Asian affairs, watch officer in the Operations Center, political-military officer in the Office of Israel and Arab-Israeli Affairs, and deputy director of the Secretariat Staff.

Scobey was born in Memphis. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in history from UT, where she also received her master’s degree. She pursued doctoral studies in history at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor before joining the Foreign Service.


College students, faculty, staff, and alumna win Chancellor’s Honors

Faculty, staff, students, and one alumna of the College of Arts and Sciences received Chancellor’s Honors awards to recognize their extraordinary achievements.






Jon Carleton, senior in English literature
Blair Kuykendall, senior in international law and economics
Will Logan, senior in language and world business
Adam Roddy, political science major
Nia Sherif, psychology and sociology major


Extraordinary Campus Leadership & Service

Eric Goins, senior in psychology
Justina Jones, senior in political science and communication studies
Laura Ketola, senior in psychology
Jazmin Moore, senior in psychology
Cheshire Rigler, senior in geology
Taylor Thomas, senior in philosophy


Extraordinary Community Service

Jessica Nicole Welch, doctoral student in ecology and evolutionary biology
Graduate researchers in ecology, behavior, and evolution


Extraordinary Academic Achievement

Lisa Kaitlin Dicker
Hannah Elizabeth Durick
Isham Cason Hewgley IV
Alexander Lee Houck
Miranda H. Jones
Rachel Naramore
Alexander Matthew Perhac
Rachel Ann Radford


Extraordinary Graduate Student Teaching

Meg Burress, graduate teaching assistant in modern foreign languages and literatures
Carolyn Wisniewski, assistant director of first-year composition and doctoral student in English


Extraordinary Professional Promise

Alexander Wesley Cline
Emily Rose Finan
Christian Anton Gerard
Nirmal Jeevi Ghimire
Kristen Nicole Holbrook
Kelly A. Kerwin
Burton K. Mandrell
Stanley Vincent Paulauskas
Alissa R. Reeves
Ryan C. Shorey
Alexander Charles Woods


Gene Mitchell Gray Pioneer Award

Melanie Barron, doctoral student and graduate teaching associate in geography


Scholar Athletes

Elizabeth Altizer
Raven Charlotte Chavanne
Whitney Ariel Hammond
Erika Marie Johnson
Andrea Keesecker
Sarah Monberg
Brent Sterling
Brooke Watson


Top Collegiate Scholars

Desiree Nicole Ancar
Madelyn Elizabeth Crawford
Isham Cason Hewgley
Molly Elise Hunt
Miranda Jones
Blair West Kuykendall
Hannah Elizabeth Long
Emily Clare Manneschmidt
Samantha McElfresh
Rachel Ann Radford
Eric Herman Schmidt
Aaron Michael Searcy




Angie Warren Perkins Award

Cynthia Peterson, associate dean of academic personnel and Kenneth and Blaire Mossman Professor of Biomedicine


Extraordinary Community Service

Kenneth McFarland, lecturer in biology


Extraordinary Service to the University

Cheryl Travis, professor of psychology and chair of women’s studies


L. R. Hesler Award

Lee Riedinger, professor of physics


Jefferson Prize

Paul Gellert, associate professor of sociology


Multidisciplinary Research Award

George Schweitzer, Alumni Distiguished Service Professor of Chemistry (with Merry Koschan, Chuck Melcher, Laurence Miller, Dayakar Penumadu, and Mariya Zhuravleva, all of the College of Engineering)


Research and Creative Achievement

Nancy Henry, professor of English
Gregory Stuart, professor of psychology


Professional Promise in Research and Creative Achievement

Paul Armsworth, assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology
Micah Jessup, assistant professor of earth and planetary sciences
Norman Manella, assistant professor of physics


Alexander Prize

Gary McCracken, James R. Cox Professor and head of the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology


Excellence in Advising—Graduate

Brent Mallinckrodt, professor of counseling psychology


Excellence in Advising—Undergraduate

Mary Anne Hoskins, associate director of advising
Shanna Pendergast, advisor


Excellence in Teaching

Kelly Baker, lecturer in religious studies and American studies
Les Essif, professor of French and chair of French studies


Outstanding Teacher Awards

Megan Bryson, lecturer in religious studies
Will Jennings, lecturer in political science




Notable UT Woman

Rosemary Gillespie, 1986 doctoral graduate