The University of Louisville celebrated more than 80 faculty and staff for their work to expand knowledge and understanding at its 2023 Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity Awards, held Oct. 19.
This year’s honorees, representing nine UofL schools and colleges, include researchers, scholars and artists, along with those who provide critical support as administrators. Their work over the past year helped to advance health, grow our technology workforce, improve equity and more.
“I continue to be impressed by the bold and dauntless sense of curiosity and exploration that’s so foundational to our campus and what it means to be a Cardinal,” said UofL President Kim Schatzel, speaking at the event. “Each and every one of you here tonight brings a passion and energy to that work, and it’s just incredible.”
At the event, hosted by the Office of Research and Innovation, several major awards were presented to:
- Patrick Possel, of the College of Education and Human Development, who won Researcher of the Year for his work to shape mental health practice, especially for adolescent trauma-informed care and treatment;
- Center of Biomedical Research Excellence in Functional Microbiomics, Inflammation and Pathogenicity, of the Schools of Dentistry and Medicine, which won Center of the Year in part for its recent $12 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to study links between the human microbiome and disease, which could lead to better treatments for a range of conditions;
- Tiffany Calvert, of the College of Arts and Sciences, who won the inaugural Creative Works Award for her innovative work to marry technology and art, via an artificially intelligent painting collaborator;
- Cheri Hildreth, of Environmental Health and Safety, who won the Unsung Hero Award for leading the launch and growth of the environmental health and safety programs over her 30-plus years of service to UofL;
- Natalie Christian, of the College of Arts and Sciences, who won Early-Career Researcher of the Year for her work to harness plant-associated microbiomes to improve crop health;
- Jennifer Middleton and Shantel Crosby, of the Kent School of Social Work, who won the Grand Challenger Award in Empowering our Communities for their work to create supports for youth and their families most impacted by community violence and racial trauma;
- Hermann Frieboes, of the J.B. Speed School of Engineering, who won the Grand Challenger Award in Advancing our Health for work to integrate biological and clinical information, paving the way for personalized medicine;
- Sharon Kerrick, of the College of Eduacation and Human Development, who won the Grand Challenger Award in Engineering our Future Economy for her commitment to workforce up/re-skilling in the field of technology, including via innovative badging programs; and
- Joan Scott, of the School of Dentistry, who won Research Administrator of the Year for providing integral research support to her school and department for more than 20 years.
In the past year, UofL researchers and scholars submitted 1,075 proposals and received nearly $176 million in external grant funding to support groundbreaking discovery and exploration.
“I believe what we celebrate is what we value as an institution,” said Kevin Gardner, UofL’s executive vice president for research and innovation. “With awards like these, we show that we value research, scholarship and creative activity. And, that we value you. The work you do is the backbone of UofL’s knowledge enterprise.”