Faculty Honored at Commencement
Monday, June 1, 2009
SIOUX FALLS - Dr. John Pennington, Professor of Music, received The Carole Bland Cultivating Faculty Excellence Endowment during Augustana’s 149th Commencement Ceremony May 24.
The Carole Bland Cultivating Faculty Excellence Endowment was created by Mr. Dick Bland in honor of his wife, Carol Bland. The endowment will provide annual awards to faculty for the purpose of cultivating excellence in teaching and faculty performance. Carole Bland, an Augustana graduate, was a member of the Augustana Board of Trustees and served professionally as Assistant Dean for Faculty Development at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
Dr. Pennington is the first faculty member to receive this award. The 2008-2009 school year was his first at Augustana. He taught music at Fort Lewis College from 1992 to 2008. He holds degrees from the University of Michigan, Arizona, and Arizona State.
He is the director of the Augustana Percussion Ensemble. He is an orchestral percussionist who has recorded for the Ensemble 21, Summit, Cristo, OCP, and Equilibrium labels. In January, 2009, he was the featured soloist with the Augustana Band and Wind Ensemble during the Interim Tour.
In November, 2009, Dr. Pennington was invited to perform and premier a new work at the Percussive Arts Societies’ International Convention in Austin, Texas.
SIOUX FALLS – Dr. David O’Hara, assistant professor of Religion/Philosophy/Classics, received The Jane and Charles Zaloudek Faculty Research Fellowship during Augustana’s 149th Commencement Ceremony May 24.
The Zaloudek Faculty Research Fellowship was established in 2007 by Jane Hemmel Zaloudek and Dr. Charles Zaloudek to provide an annual fellowship to support research by a member of the Augustana faculty.
Jane Zaloudek is an Augustana graduate who served as Chair of the Augustana Board of Trustees. She and her husband, Charles, believe faculty are instrumental in opening the minds of their students and that faculty research, particularly when combined with undergraduate student research, expands thinking, emboldens the spirit of inquiry and has the potential to significantly improve the human condition.
Dr. O’Hara is the third faculty member to receive this fellowship. He began teaching at Augustana in the fall of 2005. He is a native of New York, majored in Spanish at Middlebury College, earned a MA in liberal arts at St. John’s College, and received a MA and PhD in philosophy from Penn State University.
He received the Augustana Student Association 2006-2007 Faculty Recognition Award. The award recognizes outstanding teaching and contributions to the Augustana community by a faculty member.
Dr. O’Hara is the recipient of the Harris Manchester Fellowship for the summer 2009. He will spend a week in the libraries of Oxford, taking advantage of an excellent collection of Medieval and Renaissance texts to look for older writings on fishing or riparian ecology.
SIOUX FALLS – Dr. Julie Ashworth, assistant professor of education, received The Vernon and Mildred Niebuhr Faculty Excellence Award during Augustana’s 149th Commencement Ceremony May 24.
The Vernon and Mildred Niebuhr Faculty Excellence Award was established to provide an annual award to recognize excellence in teaching. The winner is chosen for brilliance in the classroom. Dr. Ashworth is the 12th faculty member to receive the award.
Dr. Ashworth taught elementary school from 1987 to 2002 and was an adjunct professor of Education at Augustana from 1997 to 2000. She came to Augustana in 2002 as assistant professor of Education.
She was named the Sioux Falls School District Teacher of the Year in 1992, and the South Dakota Teacher of the Year in 1993. Upon receiving Sioux Falls’ Teacher of the Award, Dr. Ashworth was commended “for combining self-esteem and basic academics, for teaching how to think, not what to think.”
A native of Woonsocket, S.D., Dr. Ashworth earned her BA and MA degrees at Augustana and her PhD at The University of South Dakota.