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SCHEV and Dominion Resources Announce 2016 Outstanding Faculty Award Recipients

by Elizabeth Liverman | Dec 31, 2015
For Immediate Release: December 16, 2015

RICHMOND — The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) and Dominion Resources are pleased to announce the recipients of the 2016 Outstanding Faculty Award (OFA).

This statewide honor has been bestowed annually since 1987 to selected faculty members for their excellence in teaching, research, knowledge integration and public service. The OFA program, open to nominees from all public and private Virginia institutions of higher education, celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2016.

“With Dominion’s support, this annual recognition of Virginia’s most outstanding faculty members is truly one of the agency’s most rewarding activities,” said SCHEV director Peter Blake. “We are honored to highlight the accomplishments of these professors who lend their extraordinary talents to their students, their institutions, and the Commonwealth of Virginia.”

“This event marks Dominion’s twelfth consecutive year of sponsoring the Virginia Outstanding Faculty Awards,” said Hunter A. Applewhite, president of the Dominion Foundation. “When you read the nominations, you are struck by the passion these teachers exhibit for their subject matter and their devotion to sharing it with their students.”  

“Virginia’s colleges and universities are among the best in the nation, and this year’s nominees personify what makes our institutions so great.  Selecting the 2016 OFA recipients was no easy task.  The Commonwealth has just as much to be proud of as do the awardees’ families and campuses,” said Dr. Bill Murray, managing director of public policy for Dominion and member of both the SCHEV Council and the OFA Final Selection Committee.

This year’s 13 distinguished recipients were selected from a pool of 92 deserving nominees based on accomplishments that strongly reflect the missions of their respective colleges and universities.

2016 Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award recipients:

Dr. Jacqueline E. Bixler
Alumni Distinguished Professor of Spanish
Virginia Tech

Dr. John A. David
Assistant Professor of Applied Mathematics
Virginia Military Institute

Dr. April L. Hill
Professor of Biology and Clarence E. Denoon Professor of Science
University of Richmond

Dr. Michael F. Hochella, Jr.
University Distinguished Professor of Geosciences
Virginia Tech

Dr. William C. Hughes
Professor of Physics
James Madison University

Dr. Charles E. Hyde 
University Professor of Physics
Old Dominion University

Dr. Jennifer G. Kahn
Assistant Professor of Anthropology
College of William and Mary

Dr. James R. Kirkwood
Professor of Mathematical Sciences
Sweet Briar College

Dr. Sabita Manian 
Professor of International Relations and Political Science
Lynchburg College

Mr. Jonathan A. Noyalas 
Assistant Professor of History
Lord Fairfax Community College

Dr. Lawrence B. Schwartz 
Charles and Evelyn Thomas Professor of Medicine
Virginia Commonwealth University

Dr. John P. Swaddle
Professor of Biology
College of William and Mary

Dr. Everett L. Worthington, Jr.
Commonwealth Professor of Psychology
Virginia Commonwealth University

The recipients will be recognized during a February 16 ceremony at The Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, at which they will be addressed by Governor Terry McAuliffe. Each award consists of an engraved plaque and $5,000 underwritten by the Dominion Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Dominion Resources.Dominion is the parent company of Dominion Virginia Power.

The Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award program is administered by SCHEV and funded by a grant from the Dominion Foundation, which has fully supported the OFA program since 2005. A total of 354 faculty members – including the 2016 recipients – have received this high honor since 1987.Virginia’s all-institutions-eligible faculty recognition program is unique among the states.

SCHEV is the Commonwealth’s coordinating and planning body for postsecondary education. The agency provides policy guidance and budget recommendations to the Governor and General Assembly, and creates the statewide strategic plan, 
The Virginia Plan for Higher Education. SCHEV has administered the Outstanding Faculty Awards since the program’s creation by the legislature in 1986.

Dominion Foundation is dedicated to improving the physical, social and economic well-being of the communities served by Dominion companies. Dominion and the Foundation support nonprofit causes that meet basic human needs, protect the environment, support education and promote community vitality. For more information about Dominion (NYSE: D), headquartered in Richmond and one of the nation’s largest producers and transporters of energy, visit



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