Isaac L. Jordan, Sr. Faculty Pluralism Award
Do you know a faculty member who has contributed to diversity on campus? Nominate them today! Only Faculty are eligible to receive this award but ANYONE (students, staff, faculty, community members) can submit a nomination, self-nominations also accepted. Nominations must be submitted by 4:30pm on February 26, 2016.
For many people on the RIT campus, Isaac L. Jordan Sr. represented the best of the human spirit: compassionate, fair, committed to promoting community among all people and supportive of people in their individual struggles to obtain economical and social equality.
His career touched many lives in many places. He was a positive role model for young people from Florida to Rochester as a high school teacher. He reached the community through his work with Action for a Better Community and the corporate world through the Eastman Kodak Company, where he worked for more than 20 years in Rochester. He was a pastor to churches in Pittsford, Syracuse, and a rural community in Yates County. Jordan transformed the minds and hearts of the people who worked and studied at Rochester Institute of Technology. His death in 1994 left a void in many lives.
The Isaac L. Jordan Sr. Faculty Pluralism Award is a university-wide award program that recognizes faculty members for their significant contributions to enhance diversity at RIT. As RIT's first chairperson of the Commission for Promoting Pluralism, Jordan provided outstanding leadership in advancing pluralism at RIT. He set an example for others to emulate. This award in his name ensures the continuance of his legacy and honors those who carry out his work.
2015-2016 Award Recipient
Kijana Crawford, Ed.D. — College of Liberal Arts
Kijana Crawford, Ed.D.
Associate Professor, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
College of Liberal Arts
- Joined RIT in 1973
- Research interests include mentoring, diversity, minority and women’s issues, as well as educational strategies of mentoring and the societal enhancement of minority students and faculty
- Member of research teams receiving more than $3 million in external grant funding through the National Science Foundation, as well as state and national government entities
- Author of multiple single and co-authored works in edited volumes, anthologies and peer-reviewed scholarly journals Journal of Race, Gender, and Class; the International Journal of Diversity in Organizations, Communities, and Nations; the Journal of Black Studies; the Encyclopedia of Social Problems; and IEEE Frontiers in Education, as well as two coedited, peer-reviewed books
- Co-developed two initiatives: the NSF ADVANCE RIT Women of Color (WoC) Connectivity Series and Promotion & Tenure Strategies for Minority-Women Academics at RIT for Transformative Success (P&T SMARTS)
- Created multiple new courses, including minority group relations; women, work, and culture; and African-American culture
- Member of the AALANA Faculty Advisory Council, the NSF AdvanceRIT leadership team and the Women’s and Gender Studies Program
- Ed.D., MA, higher education administration, University of Rochester; MSW, Atlanta University; BA, sociology, Tougaloo College
2014-2015 Award Recipient
Betsy Dell — College of Applied Science and Technology
Associate Professor, Department of Manufacturing and Mechanical Engineering Technology
College of Applied Science and Technology
- Joined RIT in 2006
- Research interests include sustainable materials development, retention and recruitment of underrepresented groups in engineering and technology, K-12 science, engineering and technology outreach and engineering education.
- Co-PI of the NSF-funded AdvanceRIT project to increase the representation and advancement of women faculty in STEM disciplines
- Director/PI for COMETS Scholarship program to increase gender diversity of engineering technology programs at RIT
- Appointed Faculty Associate for Female Faculty to support female faculty at the university level and to identify changes to support the success of female faculty at RIT
- Recipient of the Edwina Award in recognition of significant efforts to promote gender diversity at RIT
- Served as Paul A. Miller Endowed Professor and Director of the award-winning Women in Technology program
- Professional experience includes materials development and product design for Toyota, General Motors and Delphi
- MS, macromolecular science and engineering, University of Michigan; BS, mechanical engineering, Kettering University
2013-2014 Award Recipient
Twyla J. Cummings, Ph.D. — College of Imaging Arts and Sciences
Twyla J. Cummings, Ph.D.
Professor, School of Media Sciences at Rochester Institute of Technology
Senior Associate Dean
College of Imaging Arts and Sciences
- Joined RIT in 1998
- Research interests include media distribution, media business industry trends and women in graphic communication
- Frequent speaker on critical trends in post-press and issues impacting the graphic communication industry
- Publications featured in journals including the Visual Communications Journal, the Journal of Graphic Communications, and Print News
- Recipient of the RIT Changing Hearts and Changing Minds Diversity Award
- Inductee of OutputLinks Communication Groups Women of Distinction, the National Association for Printing Leadership (NAPL) Walter E. Soderstrom Society and the Nonpareil Society
- Conference presentations include the America East Conference, and the International Newspaper Group Conference and the Society for the Advancement of Management (SAM) International Conference
- Past board member of NAPL, chairperson for the 2014 PNA's America East Conference, chair of the Board of the Rochester Area Business Ethics Foundation and co-chair of the YWCA Board Advisory Council
- Ph.D., management , Union Institute & University; MS, business and industrial management and BS, chemistry, Wright State University
2012-2013 Award Recipient
Jason T. Younker Ph.D. — College of Liberal Arts
Jason T. Younker Ph.D.
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
College of Liberal Arts
- Joined RIT in 2004
- Assistant to the Provost for Native American Relations
- Co-director and principle architect RIT Native American Future Stewards Program
- Faculty advisor to the American Indian Science and Engineering Society, Native American Student Association, and Pi Delta Psi
- Author/ co-author/presenter of 57 articles, professional papers and reports
- Authored the MOU between RIT and Ganondagan State Historic Site to establish research and public awareness programs through the engagement of RIT students.
- Principal investigator, Collegiate Science Technology Entry Program (CSTEP)
- Awarded 13 major grants totaling $984,605.
- Initiated the Seneca Language Revitalization Project with the Seneca Nation of Indians
- President, national Association of Indigenous Anthropologists
- Enrolled member of the Coquille Indian Tribe of Oregon
- Ph.D./MS, anthropology, University of Oregon; M.Ed. , Talented and Gifted Education, Oklahoma City University; BS, communication, Cameron University
2011-2012 Award Recipient
Catherine Clark — National Technical Institute for the Deaf
Catherine Clark, Au.D.
Department of Communication Studies and Services
National Technical Institute for the Deaf
- Joined NTID in 1986
- Participant in the Minority Audiology Clinical Fellowship Program
- Serves on the leadership team of the NTID Diversity Group
- Member of the Rochester chapter of the National Black Deaf Advocates organization
- Established a mentorship program with a program for deaf and hard-of-hearing students at Monroe Middle School
- Serves as the Cochlear Implant Coordinator for Communication Studies, and is a resource for over 300 students
- Mentor for NTID's Emerging Leaders Program
- Past chair of the NTID Affirmative Action Advisory Committee where she was instrumental in developing strategies for improving the recruitment and retention of underrepresented faculty, staff, and students
- Served on the executive board of the Rochester School for the Deaf
- Co-developed and taught a course at NTID entitled "Black Experience" where she traces the founding of Black America from its origins in Africa to the present day
- includes members of the National Black Deaf Advocates group into research project assignments explores current health issues in the Black Deaf community
- Au.D., Salus University; MS, Audiology, University of Louisville; BS, Speech and Hearing Services, Bradley University
In order to be considered for this award, a faculty member must have been employed by RIT for a minimum of three years of continuous service as a regular (i.e., full-time, part-time, or extended part-time) employee. Temporary faculty, including those hired on an adjunct basis, are not eligible for nomination.
- develops and delivers innovative course curricula that encourage students to critically examine, discuss, share, develop, and promote their understanding of diversity
- develops inclusive teaching methods that foster thought and dialogue concerning issues of pluralism
- disseminates scholarly research or other creative work that examines, reviews, develops, and/or promotes issues of diversity
- develops programs that serve to enhance the recruitment, retention, and graduation of students and/or the recruitment and retention of faculty from underrepresented groups
- provides service to the RIT and/or off-campus communities, especially in ways that serve to build connections between these two groups in an effort to enhance and foster issues of pluralism
- participates in the mentorship of undergraduate and/or graduate students outside of the classroom in ways that serve to enhance their understanding and promotion of issues that involve diversity
- develops programs that serve to encourage an open dialogue concerning issues of diversity and pluralism among various constituencies
How to nominate:
André O. Hudson, Ph.D., Chairman
Isaac L. Jordan Faculty Award Committee
firstname.lastname@example.org | 585-475-4259
The recipient will receive a $1,000 cash prize and an artistic rendition of a flame representing the ongoing spirit of diversity.