Chancellor's Award winners on stage with chancellor

From left: Bob Casey, Jon McGinnis, Audri Adams, Tracie Edwards, Joseph Pickard, Chancellor Kristin Sobolik, Beth Huebner, Vanessa Loyd, Marcia Marie Countryman, Kimberly Stanger, Keith Stine, Jill Bernard Bracy and Joseph Rottman gather on stage at the conclusion of the State of the University Address and Faculty & Staff Recognition Ceremony Tuesday at the Blanche M. Touhill Performing Arts Center. McGinnis, the chair of the faculty senate, served as the master of ceremonies for event, and Sobolik presented Chancellor’s Awards to Casey, Adams, Edwards, Pickard, Loyd, Countryman, Stanger, Stine, Bracy and Rottman. Huebner received the President’s Award for Intercampus Collaboration. (Photos by August Jennewein)

Chancellor Kristin Sobolik highlighted contributions of University of Missouri–St. Louis faculty and staff on Tuesday afternoon during the annual State of the University Address and Faculty and Staff Recognition Ceremony.

Seven faculty members and three staff members received Chancellor’s Awards. Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Tanisha Stevens shared details of each one’s accomplishments as Sobolik presented each with their awards.

University of Missouri System President Mun Choi also presented the University of Missouri System President’s Award for Intercampus Collaboration via a recorded video message.


The faculty honorees:

Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Research and Creativity

Keith Stine, professor and chair of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Stine’s research focuses on membrane and sensor chemistry and includes the development of the nanoporous gold scaffold, which can be used to develop biosensors used for detecting the presence of proteins or certain biological molecules, or for carbohydrate synthesis. Both have applications in medicine and biotechnology.


Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching to a Tenured or Tenure Track Faculty Member

Joseph Rottman, associate dean of graduate and international programs and professor of information systems

Rottman has excelled at engaging students and facilitating their learning since joining the faculty in the Department of Information Systems and Technology in 2000. He displays deep domain knowledge of information systems and has an unrivaled ability to relate to everyone from freshmen to senior undergraduates, as well as MBA, PhD and DBA students. Among other courses, Rottman teaches “Systems Design,” the undergraduate capstone, prepares students for experiences they will have in the IT industry.


Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching to a Non-Tenure Track Faculty Member

Marcia Marie Countryman, assistant teaching professor in the College of Business Administration

Countryman is a highly energetic and effective professor who teaches virtually every undergraduate and MBA student in the College of Business Administration. In “Managerial Accounting,” she provides instruction in key topics related to analysis of business information for decision-making. Countryman provides a solid foundation in accounting and business concepts students need to succeed in the future.


Chancellor’s Award for Sustained Excellence in Online Teaching

Jill Bernard Bracy, associate teaching professor in the Department of Supply Chain and Analytics

Bracy is a pioneer and top-performing instructor in online teaching with a philosophy that centers on student-focused instruction with adaptive pedagogy and active student participation. Her enthusiasm for supply chain and analytics reaches her students through their computer screens. To keep her instruction dynamic and adaptive to real-world practice, Bracy employs a number of case studies, guest lectures and new technologies in her courses, helping create an active learning environment.


Chancellor’s Award for Excellence to a Part-Time Faculty Member

Tracie Edwards, adjunct professor in the Department of Economics

For the past 20 years, Edwards has been noted for her unmatched devotion and compassion as an educator. She is also dedicated to effective student learning, taking full advantage of opportunities to sharpen her skills provided by the Center for Teaching and Learning. During the pivot to online instruction, she outfitted her basement as a teaching studio, complete with white board, and helped colleagues and students alike understand and utilize new technologies.


Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Service

Joseph Pickard, associate professor in the School of Social Work

Pickard has played an instrumental role in securing more than $1 million in funding to support student training and development – specifically in the fields of gerontology and substance use – and the development of the Social Work Writing Achievement Group to mentor and encourage junior faculty. He has also made an impact through intensive committee work, including the Institutional Review Board, where he advocated for human research subjects, and as the internal chair of the five-year review of UMSL’s Department of Military Veterans.


Chancellor’s Award for Inclusive Excellence – Celebrating Diversity Award

Vanessa Loyd, Dean’s Fellow for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and associate teaching professor in the College of Nursing

Loyd has implemented key initiatives within the College of Nursing and wider community aligned with UMSL’s mission, vision and strategic priorities. She has been instrumental in the formation of the College of Nursing’s DEI and Community Engagement Committee, which helps facilitate faculty and staff discussion and engagement in DEI-related issues. She also developed “Action 101,” a self-paced DEI course for faculty and staff.


The staff honorees:

Chancellor’s Award for Staff Excellence in the administrative professional category

Kimberly Stanger, is a senior business support specialist in the College of Arts and Sciences

Stanger has gone from managing two units to six: computer science, criminology and criminal justice, economics, mathematics and statistics, political science and public policy administration. During this transition, she has shown consummate professionalism and positivity. Her in-depth knowledge of databases, systems and processes has helped others in the College of Arts and Sciences do their jobs more effectively and streamlined the operation of each unit she touches.


Chancellor’s Award for Staff Excellence in the office administrative category

Audri Adams, administrative associate in the Pierre Laclede Honors College

Adams is responsible for designing Quick Admission Day, a process that enables prospective Honors College students to meet with an Honors faculty member, receive a scholarship offer, get registered for classes, and have all UMSL questions answered. She also overhauled the pre-registration service for students. This service allows students to meet with their advisor before registration starts, pick out classes, and then have the college enroll them on their registration date.


Chancellor’s Award for Staff Excellence in the service maintenance category

Bob Casey, maintenance service attendant in Facilities Management

After a career as a hospital corpsman in the United States Navy, Casey came to UMSL in 2018 as part of the Facilities Management team. He has worked closely with the Office of Residential Life and Housing, fielding maintenance requests in Oak Hall, Provincial House, Mansion Hills, Villa and Villa North. During the past 18 months he has upgraded sinks with automatic faucets, changed out paper towel dispensers and installed plexiglass partitions and new signage to help protect the health and safety of the campus community during the pandemic.

During the Faculty and Staff Recognition Ceremony, Interim Chancellor and Provost Kristin Sobolik recognized faculty and staff who have served at the university for 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50 and 55 years.


Choi presented the University of Missouri System President’s Award for Intercampus Collaboration to Beth Huebner, professor of criminology and criminal justice. The award recognizes faculty who engage in activities that foster collaboration across two or more campuses of the University of Missouri System. Huebner shared this year’s award with Kelli Canada, Clark Peters and Ashley Givens at the University of Missouri–Columbia and Janet Garcia-Hallett at the University of Missouri–Kansas City.

Huebner and her colleagues have been working in collaboration with the Missouri Department of Corrections to examine the climate of prisons with a goal to identify strategies for improvements. Their work at Moberly Correctional Center is supported by a $200,000 grant from Urban Institute and Arnold Ventures. To begin to understand the living and working conditions requires community-based research. With prisons closed off to visitors amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the researchers have had to adapt their methods for collecting data from incarcerated people and staff. They’ve instead turned to Zoom for a series of individual interviews with correctional officers and incarcerated people and worked to explain their research and earn trust.

Burk Krohe

Burk Krohe