Awards and Accolades

Awards and Accolades

By University Communications
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Beverly Seckinger
Beverly Seckinger

Congratulations to the following employees, who have recently been honored for notable accomplishments.

The Association for Women in Mathematics will present William Y. Velez, University Distinguished Professor of Mathematics, with its fourth annual M. Gweneth Humphreys Award. This award is given to those who make exceptional achievements in inspiring undergraduate women to pursue graduate studies and careers in mathematics. It will be presented to Velez at the Joint Mathematics Meetings in Baltimore in January 2014. The award was given in recognition of his ability to instill confidence in students who are overcoming expectations based on culture or gender. In 1988, Velez founded the UA's Minority Calculus Advising Program and, in 1997, he received a President's Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring Program. Throughout his career, Velez has mentored numerous students, encouraged them to take additional mathematics courses and guided them to attain well-matched research opportunities.

Laura A. McCammon, professor of theatre education in the School of Theatre, Film and Television, is the recipient of the 2013 American Alliance for Theatre & Education Campton Bell Lifetime Achievement Award. This award is given to honor a lifetime of outstanding contributions to the educational theater field. During the course of her career, McCammon has presented papers and workshops at international drama and theater conferences. She is also the editor and author of multiple industry writings, including the text "Learning to Teach Drama: A Case Narrative Approach" that is used by drama teachers across the world. In 2009, McCammon received the AATE Judith Kase Cooper Honorary Research Award, given to honor distinguished scholars who have made notable contributions to the development or theory and research in drama and theater education. Additionally, in 2011 she received the AATE Research Award for the fourth time for being co-researcher on a study examining the lifelong benefits of speech and drama experiences.

In May, the American Industrial Hygiene Association Engineering Committee awarded Frank Demer, health and safety specialist for the UA Department of Risk Management Services, with the Best Professional Poster award at its 2013 conference in Montreal, Calif. The AIHA is a nonprofit organization with more than 10,000 members in the occupational health and safety field. Students and professionals from across the country are invited to give presentations and poster design submissions at its annual conference. Demer's poster, titled "Proposed Improvements to ACGIH VS-99-07 Mortuary Table Design," received one of nine professional awards given at the event. Demer has worked at the UA since 1989. His work is focused on evaluation and control of chemical and physical hazards at work. He also is an adjunct lecturer for the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, an American Board of Industrial Hygiene certified industrial hygienist and is certified by the Board of Certified Safety Professionals.

Beverly Seckinger, professor in the School of Theatre, Film and Television, is this year's Wingspan Godat Award recipient. Wingspan is a nonprofit organization with the mission of promoting the freedom, equality and welfare of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. The Godat award was inaugurated in 1998 to honor extraordinary long-term contributions to Southern Arizona's LGBT community. Seckinger will be honored at Wingspan's 25th anniversary dinner on Sept. 21. In addition to teaching courses in documentary production and documentary  studies at the UA, Seckinger helped found the UA Institute for LGBT Studies. She is a longtime member of the University Film and Video Association and an active member and owner of New Day Films, the leading filmmaker-owned distribution company for social issue documentary films.

We want to know about your good news. If you, your department or a colleague have won any major awards, been honored nationally or internationally, or accomplished some other major feat that deserves recognition, let us know about it.

To submit your news, please send us an email with the following information:

  • Name of the person or team receiving the honor.
  • Name of the organization granting the honor.
  • A description of the honor.
  • When the honor was announced and when it will be presented (or was presented).
  • A photo of the honoree. If others appear in the photo, please provide their names and affiliations.

Questions? Please contact Amanda Ballard at 626-4407 or

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