Isaac L. Jordan, Sr., Faculty Pluralism Award

The Isaac L. Jordan, Sr., Faculty Pluralism Award recognizes faculty who are making significant contributions to enhance diversity, pluralism, and inclusion in and outside of RIT. 

The award is named after RIT’s first chairperson of the Commission for Promoting Pluralism, Isaac L. Jordan, Sr., who represented the best of the human spirit. This award assures the continuance of his legacy and honors those who carry out his work.

Isaac L. Jordan, Sr., Faculty Pluralism Award


  1. Individuals nominated for this award must be a faculty member who has been employed by RIT for a
    minimum of three years of continuous service as a regular employee.
  2. A nominee may be an individual whose position responsibilities are not focused on diversity, but who routinely and voluntarily makes diversity a priority in much of what he or she does. Alternatively, the candidate may be one whose major work responsibilities at the university include the implementation of diversity initiatives, but who also consistently explores unique ways to go above and beyond expectations.
  3. No individual shall be eligible to receive the award more than once every seven years.


Candidates shall have clearly and unequivocally demonstrated superior commitment to the enhancement and development of pluralism and diversity on the RIT campus in ways that have made a quantifiable impact that can be substantiated.

Faculty candidates shall have made significant contributions to the cause of diversity, pluralism, and inclusion with the goal of examining, enhancing, and promoting these ideals in ways including, but not necessarily limited to, the following:

  1. Develops and delivers innovative course curricula that encourage students to critically examine, discuss, share, develop, and promote their understanding of diversity
  2. Develops inclusive teaching methods that foster thought and dialogue concerning issues of pluralism
  3. Disseminates scholarly research or other creative work that examines, reviews, develops, and/or promotes issues of diversity
  4. Develops programs that serve to enhance the recruitment, retention, and graduation of students and/or the recruitment and retention of faculty from underrepresented groups
  5. 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
  6. 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
  7. Develops programs that serve to encourage an open dialogue concerning issues of diversity and pluralism among various constituencies

Nomination Process

If you would like to nominate a faculty member who excels at enhancing diversity, pluralism, and inclusion, please complete and submit a nomination form when the application process opens. 

For more information about the nomination process, go to section E12.5 of RIT’s University Policies.

Awards Ceremony

Award recipients will be honored at the Provost’s Celebration of Teaching and Scholarship awards. The virtual celebration will take place on Wednesday, April 14, 2021, at 4:30 p.m.  

More information about the ceremony

Award Recipients

André Hudson, College of Science

Robert C. Osgood, College of Health Sciences and Technology

Alan Smerbeck, College of Liberal Arts

Satish Kandlikar, Kate Gleason College of Engineering

Jennifer Connelly, College of Science

Margaret Bailey, Kate Gleason College of Engineering

Scott Franklin, College of Science

Kijana Crawford, College of Liberal Arts

Betsy Dell, College of Engineering Technology

Twyla J. Cummings, College of Art and Design

Jason T. Younker, College of Liberal Arts

Catherine Clark, National Technical Institute for the Deaf


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 economic 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 RIT. 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.


André O. Hudson, Chairman, Isaac L. Jordan Faculty Award Committee at or 585-475-4259.