The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

Stewart Awards honor faculty, staff for excellence

Though the weather doesn’t seem to agree, spring is approaching, and with it comes the season of celebrating the people who make Guilford great. The Bruce B. Stewart Teaching and Community Service Awards annually recognize two faculty members — one tenured and one non-tenured — and one staff member who make a difference in our community.

The Stewart Awards are named in honor of Bruce Stewart ‘60, who served Guilford in a number of positions, including assistant professor of education, provost, acting president, and chair of the Board of Trustees, according to the Guilford website. Stewart is a current trustee emeritus.

According to Joyce Eaton, executive assistant to the president, the awards began in 2006, using a fund established by Bill Soles ‘81 and Jan Soles Nelson ‘87. Each Stewart Award, presented by President and Professor of Political Science Kent Chabotar in a ceremony every spring, is accompanied by a $5,000 gift.

“The Soles wanted to recognize Bruce and everything he did for Guilford,” said Chabotar. “The school wanted to recognize excellence among the faculty and staff, and Bruce was always an advocate for excellence, so the two ideas came together at just the right moment.”

According to Chabotar, the Stewart Awards address a need that had previously been insufficiently met at Guilford — the need to express thanks.

“It’s a continuing challenge to show appreciation,” said Chabotar. “The Stewart Awards turn our attention to (the winners) and say, ‘Thank you, job well done.'”

Nominations for the Stewart Awards come from many sources within the Guilford community, according to Eaton. Students, faculty, staff, alumni and even parents can and have submitted nominations.

There are three Stewart Awards, including two teaching awards and one community service award. The teaching award nominations are reviewed by a committee of faculty and students, and the community service award nominations are reviewed by a committee of staff and students.

Eaton said that the committees narrow the selection down to two recipients and an alternate for each award. The committees make a recommendation to Chabotar, who is responsible for choosing the final recipient of each award.

“I’ve never turned down a recommendation,” said Chabotar. “I’ve been given two choices and had to choose between them.”

While a committee can suggest to the President that the awards not be given, this has never happened, according to Chabotar.

Assistant Professor of Physics Donald Smith received a Steward Award for non-tenured faculty in 2009.

“The best part was knowing who the previous winners were, because they were all people I admire,” said Smith. “It is an honor to be on that list.”

Other previous winners include: tenured professors Vance Ricks, Frank Keegan, Jeff Jeske, Robert G. Williams and Carolyn Beard Whitlow; non-tenured professors Heather Hayton, David Newton, Eric Mortensen, and Maria Rosales; and staff members Teresa Sanford, Terry Hammond, Norma Middleton, Lynn Van Horn and Tammy Martin.

“The awards don’t ignore the staff, which is important,” said Smith. “It shows that we are all one community.”

Community is the message, according to Chabotar.

“The awards celebrate two Guilford strengths,” said Chabotar. “Our excellent teaching and our excellent service to the community.”

Nominations for the 2011 Bruce B. Stewart Awards are now being accepted in the Office of the President.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

The Guilfordian intends for this area to be used to foster healthy, thought-provoking discussion. Comments are expected to adhere to our standards and to be respectful and constructive. As such, we do not permit the use of profanity, foul language, personal attacks, or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. Comments are reviewed and must be approved by a moderator to ensure that they meet these standards. The Guilfordian does not allow anonymous comments, and requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments.
All The Guilfordian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *