Distinguished Temple faculty recognized for outstanding teaching, research, creative achievement and service

Distinguished Temple faculty recognized for outstanding teaching, research, creative achievement and service

Annually, Temple recognizes its faculty members’ achievements in teaching, research, creativity and service with its prestigious faculty awards, the university’s greatest honors given to teachers and scholars. Current and former students and colleagues alike nominate the recipients. 

All winners were celebrated at the Faculty Awards Ceremony on April 12, 2023. Learn more about what makes these faculty members remarkable. (Quotations were selected from each awardee’s nomination packet.) 

Great Teacher Award 

Andrea Monroe, professor of law, Beasley School of Law 

“Students and colleagues alike routinely mention Professor Monroe’s ‘brilliance’ and uniformly praise her uncanny ability to describe complex concepts in accessible and easy-to-understand terms … Professor Monroe inspires and empowers her students to master some of the most complex and challenging material taught in law school. Alumni have praised the importance of the skills she taught them, which they now use in their daily practice of law.”—colleagues 

Matt Wray, associate professor of sociology, College of Liberal Arts 

“Dr. Wray is what every professor should aspire to be—passionate, knowledgeable, understanding and open-minded. His empathy and care for people from all walks of life was deeply inspiring and instilled so much hope for me in this world. To call Dr. Wray a ‘great’ teacher would be an understatement—he is an amazing one.”—former student 

Faculty Award for Creative Achievement 

Sara Davis Buechner, professor of keyboard studies, Boyer College of Music and Dance 

“Professor Buechner’s international career and artistic reputation position her perfectly for this award. She serves as a beacon of musicianship, professionalism, courage and scholarship. Her presence on the faculty offers a learned and international perspective to music and to learning. I am deeply moved by the extent and quality of Sara’s work. She is an inspiration, an artist we are fortunate to count among Boyer faculty and a deeply valued colleague in the Boyer College.”—dean 

Paul W. Eberman Faculty Research Award 

Tricia H. Burdo, professor of microbiology, immunology and inflammation, Lewis Katz School of Medicine 

“What continues to impress me throughout all of our interactions is that Dr. Burdo always has a ‘can-do attitude’ and is willing to think outside of the box. She wants to make everyone better and is always willing to help. She has a unique ability to critically assess an issue and find solutions to often complex issues that have plagued the field. She has become one of the leaders in the field.”—colleague 

Faculty Research Award 

Jie Wu, Laura H. Carnell Professor of Computer and Information Sciences, College of Science and Technology 

“Jie is a true leader and one of the top researchers in networking and distributed computing, and his record is truly outstanding. He has made many seminal and significant contributions in this broad area. His research accomplishments span a diverse set of topics … His research leadership is clearly evidenced by both the quality and quantity of his scholarly publications in the most competitive and influential venues as well as the prestigious awards and continuous federal grants.”—colleague 

Lindback Distinguished Teaching Award 

Bettina A. Buttaro, associate professor of biomedical education and data science, Lewis Katz School of Medicine 

“This award for teaching reflects the best values of education at Temple, and Dr. Buttaro is the perfect candidate. While she is also known for her excellent microbiology research, she has been widely considered one of the best educators at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University. I can personally attest to her broad range of extraordinary attributes which put students front and center. Under her careful leadership, she has built one of the most popular courses at Temple, which is also notable for its success in preparing students for their critical United States Medical License Exam.”—colleague 

James P. Byrnes, professor of psychological studies in education, College of Education and Human Development 

“Dr. Byrnes was profoundly instrumental in adding to my skill set as a budding public health social worker and researcher. I am honored to boast Dr. Byrnes contributed to my professional identity in ways that will surely benefit and guide me for the rest of my life. He created a classroom atmosphere that was student-centered and student-driven, which elevated my academic experience. He challenged me and others to be responsible, culturally sensitive and ethical critical thinkers and researchers … I tear up as I reflect on how Dr. Byrnes amplified my voice when we discussed specific topics related to my intersecting identities as Black and transgender. With kindness and empathy, he carved out space for me and others to share personal testimony and contribute to conversations that deeply impacted my life.”—former student 

Lawrence P. Carey, assistant dean of accreditation, assessment and quality and clinical professor of pharmacy practice, School of Pharmacy 

“If one were to seek a single word to define Dr. Carey as a clinician and educator it would be devotion. Devotion to his students, patients and profession, seamlessly woven into an animating principle that shapes his daily engagement with each of these constituencies … He provides an inspirational role model for our students as he welcomes them into a collaborative and personally transformative learning environment, coaching them to stretch the sinews of their curiosity, to willingly embrace the pursuit of knowledge towards a path of personal fulfillment through assisting others to navigate a path to a healthier life.”—colleague 

Sheri L. Lambert, associate professor of practice in marketing, Fox School of Business and Management 

“I have taken what I’ve learned from Professor Lambert and have already been able to utilize these tools in my professional career and the completion of my master’s. Professor Lambert  continues to advocate for my career through recommending marketing interns to my company  and helping me pursue other opportunities. In the future I would love to teach and hope that I  can be the type of professor that Professor Lambert was for me.”—former student 

(Photography by Joseph V. Labolito)

Judith A. Levine, associate professor of sociology, College of Liberal Arts 

“The doctoral process can be daunting especially for first-generation doctoral students like me, but I have never felt incapable or discouraged while learning from Dr. Levine. Her encouragement, patience and kindness were the push I needed to be a better student and scholar … Being an effective teacher is difficult, but Dr. Levine makes it look both easy and genuine. She has been a critical source of inspiration for me in a field where I don’t have many examples to emulate, and I am so grateful to have been under her tutelage for the past decade. Every time I interact with her, I am inspired and learn something new about our discipline and academia in general. To me, this is the purpose of an educator, and Dr. Levine stands out as exemplary.”—former student 

Laurence Roy Stains, associate professor of practice in journalism, Klein College of Media and Communication 

“As my time at Temple University comes to an end, I am truly grateful for the council and support that I have received from Professor Stains. Whether it be through a letter of recommendation, a pep talk or funny feedback on a midterm paper, Professor Stains has always motivated myself and other students to do their best. I cannot think of a more deserving professor to receive this award.”—former student 

Provost’s Award for Teaching Excellence in General Education 

Matthew T. Newby, assistant professor of instruction in physics, College of Science and Technology 

“Dr Newby is a passionate educator who knows what is needed to arouse the scientific curiosity of his students. He not only successfully instills enthusiasm in his students but also uses nontraditional ways of conveying concepts to his students. He has created and is continuously developing an outstanding GenEd course Exploring the Cosmos, which is unique.”—colleague 

Part-time Faculty Excellence in Teaching and Instruction Award 

Aidan T. Brett, adjunct associate professor in teaching and learning, College of Education and Human Development 

“[Students] are uniform in their praise for how engaging and interactive the course is, for Dr. Brett’s meticulous organization, for his timely and copious feedback, for the rigor of his expectations and the support he provides students so that they can meet those rigorous demands, and especially for the way he helps his students bring research and theory into effective practice.”—colleague 

Bobbie L. Dillon, adjunct instructor in communication and social influence, Klein College of Media and Communication 

“Professor Dillon’s strength as a teacher comes from her commitment to constant growth and professional development … She redesigns her lectures and assignments frequently based on feedback and evaluation of student learning, always based around the goal of finding new ways to help students care about the subject matter. Her desire to grow and develop as a teacher precedes her time at Temple, and her CV notes extensive professional development across her career.”—associate dean

Geoff Keston, adjunct associate professor in engineering, technology and management, College of Engineering 

“The efficacy of both Geoff’s teaching and leadership is demonstrated by student outcomes … Geoff routinely goes above and beyond what is expected of part-time faculty.”—colleague 

Faculty Senate Outstanding Faculty Service Award 

Sarah Bauerle Bass, associate professor of social and behavioral sciences, College of Public Health 

“Sarah’s tireless and vast service includes mentoring over 40 undergraduate and master’s students, 19 PhD students (four currently), and several junior faculty members (e.g., conducting teaching evaluations and guiding K-award recipients) … Besides her academic service, she is also a nationally known health and risk communication expert … Most recently, Sarah provided her time and expertise to guide the university, community and nation’s response to COVID-19 … Dr. Bass has provided sustained and exemplary service over her 22 years at Temple.”—colleague 

Christine Cleaver, assistant professor of practice in tourism and hospitality management, School of Sport, Tourism and Hospitality Management 

“All in all, Christine makes outstanding service contributions to STHM and the Temple University community … An active mentor and role model for faculty and staff, a one-of-a-kind teacher for STHM students, a trusting friend and supportive partner for STHM alumni and partners, Christine has truly made a difference with her humble and nurturing service leadership in and beyond the STHM and Temple community.”—colleague 

Wayne N. Welsh, professor of criminal justice, College of Liberal Arts

“Dr. Welsh is an accomplished scholar and dedicated teacher who has given generously of his time and expertise to the CJ Department, CLA, Temple and the local community throughout his career.”—colleagues 

Stauffer Award for Distinguished Faculty Service 

David W. Brown, assistant dean of community and communication and associate professor of instruction, Klein College of Media and Communication 

“David is the kind voice of reason and compassion in the most difficult situations. He has always been an important part of the fabric of Temple University, coaching countless Temple students, alumni, faculty and administrators to be even greater leaders. David humbly exudes excellence and continues to go above and beyond to serve Temple students as well as leadership, while also finding time to make an incredible impact in the broader Philadelphia community. He pulls up more chairs to every table to ensure Temple’s voice is represented. As a result, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of people, from all backgrounds, who have been lifted higher because of David’s commitment, service and leadership.”—colleague 

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