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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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NMSU honors educators

New Mexico State University celebrated the recipients of three endowed chairs, four professorships and 11 excellence in teaching awards during Spring Convocation, Jan. 16.

From left to right: J. Tim Query, Carl Kendall, Julie E. Johnson, Eric Butcher, Zohrab A. Samani, Theodore W. Sammis (NMSU photo by Darren Phillips)

The chairs and professorships include three from the College of Engineering, two from the College of Health and Human Services, and one each from the College of Agriculture and Home Economics and the College of Business.

Rola Idriss is the holder of the Ed Foreman Professorship. Ed Foreman is a successful NMSU alumnus in the fields of business and politics. The professorship will help support teaching, research and service activities of the civil engineering faculty member selected.

Idriss was the first woman to earn her Ph.D. from the NMSU civil engineering department, and the first woman to join the faculty in that department. Her award-winning research on "smart bridges" has brought national and international recognition to the College of Engineering.

Zohrab Samani is the recipient of the Harold "Chub" Foreman Professorship. Alumnus Harold "Chub" Foreman's career began in heavy construction and led to real estate brokerage and management. The professorship will help support teaching, research and service activities of the civil engineering faculty member selected.

Samani developed a renewable energy program to produce bio-energy from agricultural waste. He also developed several low-cost water-flow measuring devices which are currently used by irrigation districts locally and in eight countries.

The Dwight L. and Aubrey Chapman Endowed Professorship was established through an estate gift from the Chapmans to support key technical areas in mechanical engineering.

The professorship holder is Eric Butcher. Most of his research has been in the area of theoretical and computational dynamics and vibrations.

Carl Kendall is the new holder of the Stan Fulton Endowed Chair in Health Disparities. This endowed chair, established in 2004, will provide funding for a professor and director for the Southwest Center for Health Disparities Research.

Kendall is new to NMSU after a career at the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine in Louisiana. He has collaborated with colleagues in more than 40 countries to address global problems of maternal and childhood illnesses, vector-borne diseases, and HIV/AIDS. Currently Kendall manages projects in eight countries with full-time staff in four of those countries.

The Elisa E. and Antonio H. Enriquez Endowed Professorship in the School of Nursing was established by a gift from Nancy Archuleta to provide funding for a nursing professor.

Julie E. Johnson is the professorship holder. Her research focuses on the self-care and health promotion activities of older women living in rural and frontier areas.

The Jose Fernandez Memorial Chair was established by the Enrique Chavez family in recognition of his contributions to NMSU and the agricultural community.

The chair was awarded to Theodore Sammis, a professor in the Department of Plant and Environmental Science. He is credited for setting up the state's climatology program and creating the New Mexico Climate Center.

The Mountain States Insurance Group Chair for the Study of Insurance and Financial Services is intended for development of new college-educated personnel for the insurance and financial services industry in the state of New Mexico and in the Southwestern region of the country.

J. Tim Query was recently named to the chair. He has published extensively in the insurance and financial services fields.

Also honored during convocation were the Donald C. Roush Excellence in Teaching Award winners. Named for a former NMSU executive vice president in recognition of his 35 years of teaching improvement in New Mexico, the annual Roush awards recognize NMSU faculty for teaching excellence.

Roush award winners are Margaret "Ann" Bock, family and consumer sciences; Lee Hamilton, sociology and anthropology; Michele Shuster, biology; Greg Roth, finance and business law; Deborah Wright Knapp, physical education, recreation and dance; Russell P. Jedlicka, electrical and computer engineering; Eva Pavia Aguilar, nursing; Jack Rogers, nursing, NMSU Alamogordo; Claudia Estrada, nursing, NMSU Carlsbad; Katharine L. Rhodes, education, NMSU Doņa Ana Community College; and Paul Garcia, automotive technology, NMSU Grants.