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Washington State University
Washington State University Office of the Provost

Faculty Awards

Sahlin Faculty Excellence Awards

The President’s Faculty Excellence Awards for Instruction, Leadership, Outreach and Engagement, and Research, Scholarship and the Arts were first presented at the 1983 Commencement to demonstrate the University’s high regard for meritorious faculty service. In 1994, three awards became part of the Washington State University’s President’s Excellence Awards Program and were named the Sahlin Faculty Excellence Awards in Instruction, Public Service, and Research, Scholarship and Arts. In 2008, a fourth award in Leadership was added to these awards. The naming honors Washington State University benefactors Lee and Jody Sahlin.

Washington State University, in establishing the Sahlin Faculty Excellence Awards, wishes to recognize in a tangible way the truly outstanding accomplishments and exceptional individual achievements of its faculty. The Sahlin Faculty Excellence Awards are designed to honor those faculty members who epitomize the highest levels of performance and excellence in the pursuit of the University’s goals and thereby in the fulfillment of its mission.

All regularly appointed tenured or tenure-track members of the Washington State University faculty (half time or greater) at the time of election are eligible for this award.

Application Process

Nominators are asked to submit the nomination form, a copy of the nominee’s curriculum vitae, and a narrative of 1000 words or less, stating why the nominee meets the award criteria and is deserving of the award.

The Sahlin Faculty Excellence Awards are highly coveted and receive numerous applications each year.  As such, the narrative is a crucial component of each application.  Kindly explain the nominee’s contributions and how broadly the nominee has impacted their discipline and other disciplines by these achievements (e.g. has the nominee launched new avenues of inquiry that did not exist before; did their contributions solve a critical problem that allows the discipline to advance; has their work been influential in public policy?).  Additionally, you may choose to explain how the breadth of the nominee’s impact translates into the lives of an average person.

Please do not submit additional information during the initial phase.  At a later date, for those nominees moving forward for secondary consideration, the nominator(s) will be asked to provide additional supporting information. Representative examples of additional information may include:

  • A brief description of the nominee’s position at Washington State University for the past five years and the approximate percentages of assignment to instruction, public service, and research, scholarship or arts.
  • An interpretive evaluation of the nominee’s contribution in relation to the award, including a summary of major accomplishments and evidence of impact on the nominee’s field and students.  An assessment of the role of collaborators such as graduate students and co-workers should be included.  In the evaluation, please directly address the criteria for the award (i.e. exceptional effective instruction, organizing or conducting new courses or programs of study, revitalizing existing courses or programs of study, and establishing a national reputation as a leader in instruction).
  • Up to three letters of endorsement from individuals who can evaluate the nominee’s contribution relevant to the award.
  • A list of honors or recognitions received.
  • A list of invited addresses and other honors related to the nominee’s contribution.
  • A list of graduate students for whom they served as major professor.
  • A recent summary of teaching evaluations, courses taught (going back five years, and including, if available, response rates and college average) and class sizes.

Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Instruction

The Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Instruction is presented to a member of the faculty in recognition of truly outstanding accomplishments in the establishment of excellence in the instructional programs of Washington State University. Activities encompassed by this award may be either outstanding singular accomplishments or a record of excellence over a period of years including:

  • Exceptionally effective instruction;
  • Organizing or conducting new courses or programs of study;
  • Revitalizing existing courses or programs of study; and
  • Establishing a national reputation as a leader in instruction.

2024 recipient Chris Dickey
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2023 recipient Corey Johnson
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2022 recipient Jesse Spohnholz
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2021 recipient Carolyn Ross

2020 recipient Erika Offerdahl

2019 recipient Anita Vasavada
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2018 recipient Ray Sun
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2017 recipient Julie Kmec
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Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Leadership

The intent of the Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Leadership is to recognize the outstanding performance by a Washington State University faculty member in leadership activities that serve the university and/or the academy. Leadership is defined as any activity that sets the direction of, advances, or benefits a group such as the department, college, university or academy. Activities that primarily benefit the public are more appropriate for the Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Outreach and Engagement.

Activities encompassed by the present award may be either outstanding singular accomplishments or a long record of excellent leadership. In either case, a record of merely serving on committees is not sufficient for the award. Instead, the candidate must have actively directed the activities of the committees on which they served and the committee’s activities must have had an important impact on the group being served.

2024 recipient Michael S. Trevisan
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2023 recipient M. Grant Norton
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2022 recipient Jill McCluskey
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2021 recipient Gregory Crouch

2020 recipient Steve Bollens

2019 recipient Lori Wiest
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2018 recipient Marvin J. Pitts
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2017 recipient Craig Parks
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Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Outreach and Engagement

The intent of the Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Outreach and Engagement is to recognize the outstanding performance by a Washington State University faculty member toward fulfilling the University’s public service mission, mainly by outreach and engagement into the state or nation. The award serves to honor truly exceptional accomplishments through activities directed toward extending instruction, research, and supporting resources to a broader public. Activities encompassed by this award are either outstanding singular accomplishments or a record of excellence in outreach and engagement including:

  • Enhancing the public’s appreciation of Washington State University;
  • Having direct and significant impact on the public through a program or project;
  • Having an indirect impact on Washington State University’s ability to provide public service;
  • Engaging in public service in the state that is “above and beyond” one’s normal job responsibilities; and
  • Relating those outreach and engagement activities to the individual’s discipline orientation.

2024 recipient Kevin Murphy
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2023 recipient Girish Ganjyal
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2022 recipient Eric Johnson
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2021 recipient Ka’imi Sinclair

2020 recipient Cheryl Schultz

2019 recipient Dale Moore
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2018 recipient Joe Harrison
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2017 recipient Douglas Walsh
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Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Research, Scholarship and Arts

The Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award for Research, Scholarship and Arts is presented to a member of the faculty in recognition of excellence and outstanding accomplishment in research, scholarship or arts. The award will be given for a major research or creative contribution or series of contributions completed at Washington State University. The contribution can be empirical, theoretical, or artistic, but must be widely recognized as highly meritorious and must have had a significant impact. Specific evaluation criteria include the following:

  • To what extent is the contribution novel or creative;
  • What is the impact of the contribution on the field;
  • How significant is the contribution;
  • How would the contribution compare to contributions of faculty members at comparable institutions;
  • What honors and other recognition have come to the nominee for the contribution; and
  • What is the stature of the nominee in the field?

2024 recipient Jon Oatley
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2023 recipient Maureen Schmitter-Edgecombe
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2022 recipient Olusola Adesope
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2021 recipient Hans Van Dongen

2020 recipient Greg Yasinitsky

2019 recipient Susmita Bose
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2018 recipient William M. Hamlin
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2017 recipient Douglas Call
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2024Chris DickeyAssistant Professor, School of MusicInstruction
Michael S. TrevisanDean, College of MedicineLeadership
Kevin MurphyProfessor, Department of Crop and Soil SciencesOutreach and Engagement
Jon OatleyProfessor, School of Molecular BiosciencesResearch, Scholarship, and Arts
2023Corey JohnsonInstruction/Assessment Librarian, LibrariesInstruction
Grant NortonDean, Honors CollegeLeadership
Girish GanjyalAssociate Professor, School of Food SciencesOutreach and Engagement
Maureen Schmitter-EdgecombeRegents Professor, Department of PsychologyResearch, Scholarship, and Arts
2022Jesse SpohnholzProfessor, Department of HistoryInstruction
Jill McCluskeyRegents Professor, School of Economic SciencesLeadership
Eric JohnsonProfessor, Department of Teaching and LearningOutreach and Engagement
Olusola AdesopeDepartment of Kinesiology and Educational PsychologyResearch, Scholarship, and Arts
2021Carolyn RossProfessor, Food ScienceInstruction
Gregory CrouchProfessor, ChemistryLeadership
Ka'imi SinclairAssistant Professor, Institute for Research and Education to Advance Community HealthOutreach and Engagement
Hans Van DongenProfessor, Medical Education and Clinical SciencesResearch, Scholarship, and Arts
2020Erika OfferdahlAssociate Professor, School of Molecular BiosciencesInstruction
Steve BollensProfessor, Director of Multi-Campus Planning and Strategic InitiativesLeadership
Cheryl SchultzAssociate Professor, School of Biological SciencesOutreach and Engagement
Greg YasinitskyRegents Professor, School of MusicResearch, Scholarship, and Arts
2019Anita VasavadaAssociate Professor, Chemical Engineering and BioengineeringInstruction
Lori WiestAssociate Dean, College of Arts and SciencesLeadership
Dale MooreDirector, Veterinary Extension; Clinical Professor; Director, Continuing Veterinary Medical EducationOutreach and Engagement
Susmita BoseHerman and Brita Lindholm Endowed Chair, Professor, School of Mechanical and Materials EngineeringResearch, Scholarship and Arts
2018Ray SunAssociate Professor, HistoryInstruction
Marvin PittsClinical Professor, Mechanical and Materials EngineeringLeadership
Joe HarrisonAnimal Scientist and Extension SpecialistOutreach and Engagement
William HamlinProfessor, EnglishResearch, Scholarship and the Arts
2017Julie KmecProfessor, SociologyInstruction
Craig ParksAssistant Vice ProvostLeadership
Douglas WalshProfessor, EntomologyOutreach and Engagement
Douglas CallProfessor and Associate Director, Research and Graduate EducationResearch, Scholarship and Arts
2016Charles MunsonProfessor, Finance and Management ScienceInstruction
John RollWSU SpokaneLeadership
Carol BlackPesticide Safety Education Specialist, Extension Specialist, Entomology Outreach and Engagement
Diane CookProfessor, Electrical Engineering and Computer ScienceResearch, Scholarship and Arts
2015Kristen A. JohnsonProfessor and Scientist, Animal SciencesInstruction
Vicki A. McCrackenProfessor, Economic SciencesLeadership
Kim D. PattenProfessor, WSU Extension ANROutreach and Engagement
Kenneth L. NashProfessor, ChemistryResearch, Scholarship and Arts
2014Charles PezeshkiProfessor, Mechanical and Materials EngineeringInstruction
Debra InglisProfessor, Plant PathologyWSU Mount Vernon Northwestern Washington Research and Extension Center (Mount Vernon NWREC)
Sue B. ClarkRegents Professor, ChemistryOutreach and Engagement
Thomas BesserProfessor, Veterinary Microbiology and PathologyResearch, Scholarship and Arts
2013Catherine A. ElstadClinical Associate Professor, Pharmaceutical Sciences and Associate Dean, University Honors CollegeInstruction
Amy S. WhartonProfessor, Sociology and Director, College of Arts and Sciences, WSU VancouverLeadership
Clayton J. MosherProfessor, Sociology, WSU VancouverOutreach and Engagement
Kerry W. HippsProfessor and Chair, ChemistryResearch, Scholarship and Arts
2012Lori M. CarrisAssociate Professor and Associate Plant Pathologist, Plant PathologyInstruction
Robert E. RosenmanProfessor, Economic SciencesLeadership
Gary G. GroveProfessor and Extension Specialist, Plant Pathology, WSU Prosser Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension CenterOutreach and Engagement
Wendy C. BrownRegents Professor, Veterinary Microbiology and PathologyResearch, Scholarship and Arts
2011Richard S. ZackAssociate Professor, Entomology and Director, M.T. James Entomoligical Collection
 Denny C. DavisProfessor, Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering and Director, Engineering Education Research Center
 Susan FinleyAssociate Professor, Teaching and Learning, WSU Vancouver
Outreach and Engagement
 B.W. "Joe" Poovaiah Regents Professor, Horticulture and Landscape ArchitectureResearch, Scholarship and Arts
2010Thomas M. TrippProfessor, Management and Operations DepartmentInstruction
 Mary Sanchez LanierClinical Associate Professor, Molecular Biosciences and Associate Dean, College of Sciences
 Timothy J. SmithExtension Educator, WSU ExtensionOutreach and Engagement
 Gustavo V. Barbosa-CanovasProfessor, Biological Systems Engineering
Research, Scholarship and Arts
2009Carol AnelliAssociate Professor, EntomologyInstruction 
 Kenneth L. CasavantProfessor and Scientist, Economic Sciences Leadership 
 Terry F. McElwainExecutive Director, Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory and Professor, Veterinary Microbiology and PathologyOutreach and Engagement 
 W. Sue RitterProfessor, Veterinary and Comparative Anatomy, Pharmacology and PhysiologyResearch, Scholarship and Arts 
Guy H. PalmerRegents Professor, Veterinary Microbiology and PathologyResearch 
Kathy A. BeermanProfessor, Food Science and Human Nutrition
David M. GranatsteinArea Extension Agent and Sustainable Agriculture Specialist, Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources, Tree Fruit Research Extension Center
Outreach and Engagement
Kenneth A. StruckmeyerAssociate Professor, Horticulture and Landscape Architecture and University Ombudsman
2007Duane W. DeTempleProfessor, Mathematics
 J. Daniel DolanProfessor, Department of Civil and Environmental EngineeringPublic Service
Lai-Sheng WangProfessor, Physics
J. Thomas DickinsonRegents Professor, Physics
Richard H. DoughertyFood Science Specialist, Food Science and Human NutritionPublic Service
Michael K. SkinnerDirector, Center for Reproductive Biology
Lisa J. McIntyreAssociate Professor, Sociology
Scott C. MatulichProfessor, Economic Sciences
Public Service
Victor VillanuevaProfessor, English
Roger SchlesingerProfessor, HistoryInstruction
Kenneth L. CasavantProfessor, Agriculture and Resource Economics
Public Service
John A. BrowseProfessor, Biological Sciences
Thomas BrighamProfessor, Psychology
Alice SpitzerHumanities/Social Sciences Librarian
Public Service
Gerald EdwardsProfessor, Biological Sciences
Ron MittlehammerProfessor, Agricultural Economics
John PaznokasAssociate Professor, Biological Sciences
Public Service
Frances McSweeneyProfessor, PsychologyResearch
Steve ParishProfessor, Veterinary Clinical SciencesInstruction
Jay BrunnerEntomologist and Director, Tree Fruit Research and Extension Center, WenatcheePublic Service
James KruegerProfessor, Veterinary and Comparative Anatomy, Pharmacology, and PhysiologyResearch
Shelli FowlerAssociate Professor, English and Comparative American CulturesInstruction
Christine SodorffDirector, Teacher Education Student Services
Public Service
Philip MarstonProfessor, Physics
Denny DavisProfessor, Biological Systems EngineeringInstruction
Charles GaskinsAssociate Professor, Animal Sciences
Public Service
Michael GriswoldProfessor, Biochemistry and BiophysicsResearch
1998Stephen A. HinesAssociate Professor, Veterinary Microbiology and PathologyInstruction
R. Alan BlackAssociate Professor, Botany and Program in BiologyPublic Service
Clayton CroweProfessor, Mechanical and Materials EngineeringResearch
Joe AyresProfessor, CommunicationInstruction
Arthur AntonelliExtension Entomologist, WSU Puyallup
Public Service
Michael J. SmerdonProfessor, Biochemistry & BiophysicsResearch
Richard W. CrainProfessor, Mechanical and Materials EngineeringInstruction
Kelsey GrayExtension Specialist, Cooperative Extension
Public Services
Peter W. KalivasProfessor, Veterinary and Comparative Anatomy, Pharmacology and PhysiologyResearch
Phillip L. SengerProfessor, Animal Sciences
Raymond W. Wright, Jr.Professor, Animal Sciences
Public Services
Don A. DillmanDirector, Social and Economics Sciences Research Center and Professor, Departments of Sociology and Rural SociologyResearch
Kenneth CarperProfessor, School of Architecture
Margaret ViebrockArea Extension Agent, Home Economics, Douglas and Chelan Counties
Public Service
Yogendra GuptaProfessor, Physics
Larry E. DavisAssistant Professor, GeologyInstruction
George J. PinyuhArea Extension Agent, Horticulture, King and Pierce CountiesPublic Service
J. Thomas DickinsonProfessor, PhysicsResearch
1992Richard S. WilliamsAssociate Professor, HistoryInstruction
John C. LittleCounty Extension Agent, 4-HPublic Service
Rodney CroteauProfessor and Fellow, Institute of Biological ChemistryResearch
Everett L. MartinAssociate Professor and Associate Animal ScientistInstruction
Nicholas P. LovrichProfessor, Political Science
Public Service
Bruce A. McFaddenProfessor, Biochemistry and BiophysicsResearch
1990John P. ReganoldAssociate Professor, Soil ScienceInstruction
Ardis Armstrong YoungChair and Professor, Adult and Youth Education
Public Service
Philip D. GollnickProfessor, PhysiologyResearch
John W. CraneAssociate Professor, Biology and ZoologyInstruction
Glenn A. CrosbyProfessor, Chemistry and Chemical PhysicsPublic Service
Ralph G. YountProfessor, Chemistry and BiochemistryResearch
Gerald L. YoungChair, General BiologyInstruction
Thomas L. BartonProfessor, English
Public Service
Linda L. RandallProfessor, Program in Biochemistry/BiophysicsResearch
1987William R. RayburnProfessor, General Biology
R. Keith CampbellProfessor, Clinical Pharmacy
Public Service
James F. Short, Jr.Professor and Scientist, Sociology
Calvin T. LongProfessor, MathematicsInstruction
David M. BaumgartnerExtension ForesterPublic Service
Jack D. RogersProfessor, Plant PathologyResearch
Robert J. JonasProfessor, Biology, Wildlife Biology and ZoologyInstruction
Sue N. ButkusSpecialist E-4 and Professor of Food SciencePublic Service
George DuvallProfessor, PhysicsResearch
Glenn A. CrosbyProfessor, ChemistryInstruction
William H. FunkProfessor, Civil and Environmental Engineering and Director, Washington Water Research CenterPublic Service
Clarence "Bud" A. RyanProfessor, BiochemistryResearch
D. Leroy AshbyProfessor, HistoryInstruction
Donald W. BushawProfessor, MathematicsInstruction
Thomas W. MaloneyProfessor, Materials SciencePublic Service
P.E. KolattukudyProfessor, Biochemistry, and Director, Institute of Biological ChemistryResearch
Milton RokeachProfessor, Sociology and PsychologyResearch