Presidential Award Winners 2018
Presidential Awards for Excellence in Teaching
School of Music
Cynthia Gonzales, associate professor in the School of Music, earned a doctorate in music theory from Harvard University and came to Texas State University in 2004. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in music theory and aural skills and in 2011, founded the center for aural and theory tutoring in the School of Music. Dr. Gonzales has also authored a music fundamentals textbook to prepare first year music majors for the theory placement examination. She is a national leader in adapting Smart Music software for use in collegiate aural skills courses.
Department of Communication Studies
Stephanie Dailey, assistant professor in the Department of Communication Studies, came to Texas State University in 2014 after earning a doctorate in communication studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She was the recipient of Texas State’s 2015 Award for Excellence in Online Teaching and also received the 2015 Rising Star Award from the Training and Development Division of the National Communication Association. Dr. Dailey has also led graduate student projects that enhanced communication practices within local organizations and has had her work on the teaching of communication studies published in journals. She serves on the board for Communication Teacher.
Department of Modern Languages
Mayumi Moriuchi, senior lecturer of Japanese and coordinator of the Japanese program in the Department of Modern Languages, earned a doctorate in applied linguistics from the University of Texas at Austin and came to Texas State University in 1991. She has overseen the growth of the Japanese minor to over 80 students, adding six advanced courses and laying the groundwork for a Japanese major. In 2006, she established the summer study abroad program in Nagoya, Japan and continues to supervise students there each year. Dr. Moriuchi serves as the faculty consultant responsible for selecting exchange students with three Japanese universities and has mentored many students who live and work in Japan.
Presidential Awards for Excellence in Scholarly/Creative Activities
Department of Health and Human Performance
Duane Knudson, professor of biomechanics in the Department of Health and Human Performance, earned a doctorate from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He studies the biomechanics of sport and exercise, focusing on performance and injury issues in tennis, stretching, and qualitative movement diagnosis. Dr. Knudson has published 102 journal articles, 32 proceedings papers, 21 chapters, and four books and received more than 20 grants and contracts to support his research. Since coming to Texas State University in 2009, he has received state, regional, national, and international awards and his work has been featured in several New York Times columns on exercise, in documentaries, and translated into numerous languages.
Assistant Professor/Senior Lecturer/Lecturer
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Christopher Rhodes, assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, earned a doctorate in physical chemistry from the University of Oklahoma. Following appointments at the University of California, Los Angeles, the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory, and Lynntech, Inc., Dr. Rhodes came to Texas State University in 2014. His research focuses on the structure and properties of nanomaterials used for renewable energy storage and conversion devices including batteries and fuel cells. He has had 35 publications accepted by peer-reviewed journals, given 58 presentations and 14 invited talks at professional conferences, and received three patents. In 2017, Dr. Rhodes received a Scialog Fellowship Award from Research Corporation for Science Advancement in recognition of highly promising early career investigators in energy storage.
Presidential Awards for Excellence in Service
Department of Curriculum and Instruction
Gwynne Ash, professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction in the College of Education, earned a Ph.D. in reading education from the University of Georgia. She has been secretary of the Faculty Senate, program coordinator within her department, and a member of numerous university, college, and department task forces and committees. Dr. Ash has served as a mentor for five junior faculty members in the College of Education’s Scholar/Mentor program and was recently elected to the Board of Directors of the International Literacy Association where she holds fiduciary responsibility for a $10+ million annual budget for the world’s largest professional organization of literacy educators. Her service also extends to the community. In 2009, she began an afterschool tutoring program at a local middle school serving a large number of students classified as English language learners. Her father, also a college professor, was a service role model. She has said of him, “The time that was his to use as he wished was often given to someone else.”
Department of Theatre and Dance
James Price, a senior lecturer in the Department of Theatre and Dance, came to Texas State University in 2009. In 2010, he led the playwriting concentration in the master of arts in theatre and subsequently developed a dramatic writing concentration in the master of fine arts degree in theatre that was approved in 2015. During 2012-2013, Mr. Price helped launch the first musical theatre program in Chile at the Projazz Institute in Santiago. Last spring at the Kennedy Center, his playwrights brought home more top awards than any program in the country. Mr. Price himself is a Lark Playwright Fellow, a two-time O’Neill National Playwriting Conference semi-finalist, a Seven Devil’s Playwrights Conference finalist, as well as a finalist at the O’Neill Music Theatre National Conference for his musical, Cold Feet. Locally, he has been co-creator of the Texas Musical Theatre Workshop at the University of Texas at Austin, the Dallas Summer Musical Audition Workshop, the Nexus Musical Theatre Camp at Texas State as well as consultant, master class teacher, and judge for the Las Casas Scholarship competition in San Antonio.
Presidential Seminar Award
Department of Theatre and Dance
Ana Baer, associate professor of dance, earned her master’s degree in choreography and video from The University of Colorado at Boulder and came to Texas State University in 2007. She has presented 30 lecture demonstrations/workshops, produced 37 dance/film events, created 21 choreographies, 11 videos, and 27 multi-disciplinary performances around the world. Her work has been selected by international festivals and commissioned, among others, by the John Cage Foundation. She was named an ATLAS Innovator in 2010. At Texas State, she has been nominated three times for the Presidential Award for Scholarly/Creative Work, was the recipient of the Dean’s Seminar in 2013, and the Excellence in Diversity Award in 2017. Professor Baer is an artistic co-director of Sans Souci Festival of Dance Cinema, WECreate Productions, and Merge Dance Company.