UHCL lauds faculty, staff in service and merit awards

April 19, 2017 | Jim Townsend

UHCL 2017 distinguished faculty awards
University of Houston-Clear Lake faculty members received President’s Awards in an annual honors ceremony and luncheon April 5. Pictured are (l-r)  interim Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Glen Houston; President’s Distinguished Teaching Award recipient Daniel Silvermintz, associate professor of Humanities in the College of Human Sciences and Humanities; President’s Distinguished Research Award recipient Zerong “Daniel” Wang, professor of Chemistry in the College of Science and Engineering; President’s Distinguished Service Award recipient Everette Penn, professor of Criminology in the College of Human Sciences and Humanities; and UHCL President William A. Staples.


More than 100 faculty and staff were honored for their years of service at University of Houston-Clear Lake’s annual Faculty and Staff Awards ceremony and luncheon on April 5. Those honored represented more than 1,255 years of service.

Ten faculty and staff received the university’s commendations for meritorious service. In addition, 40 recent and soon-to-be retirees were acknowledged – among them UHCL President William A. Staples, who is stepping down in August after more than 22 years in office.

Five faculty members received awards:

  • President’s Distinguished Service Award: Everette Penn, professor of Criminology in the College of Human Sciences and Humanities.
  • President’s Distinguished Research Award: Zerong “Daniel” Wang, professor of Chemistry in the College of Science and Engineering.
  • President’s Distinguished Teaching Award: Daniel Silvermintz, associate professor of Humanities in the College of Human Sciences and Humanities.
  • Outstanding Lecturer Award: Marc Mokrech, lecturer in the College of Science and Engineering.
  • Outstanding Adjunct Award: Kenneth Goodwin, adjunct faculty member in the College of Science and Engineering.

“It is particularly significant to note that faculty can only be nominated by their faculty colleagues – a procedure that itself proclaims that the individuals honored are the most highly regarded in their profession and among their peers,” Staples said.

Awards for meritorious service went to four staff members:

  • Debbie Brooner, executive secretary in the Office of the Associate Dean, College of Education.
  • Dolores Galvan, supervisor of Printing Services in the Business Services Department.
  • Sana Zeidan, director of Academic Computing in University Computing and Telecommunications.
  • Miriam Qumsieh, associate director of Data Management in the Office of Institutional Effectiveness.

Susanne Clark, senior business coordinator in the College of Human Sciences and Humanities, received the President’s Distinguished Staff Service Award – the Hugh P. Avery Prize. The Avery Prize is the highest honor UHCL bestows on staff personnel, named for a longtime employee who was instrumental in establishing the staff-recognition awards in 1982.

Recipients for staff awards are nominated by staff and faculty and reviewed by a subcommittee of the University Life Committee, which makes its recommendation to the UHCL president.

Of the service awards, 27 faculty and staff received five-year awards, 24 received 10-year awards, 36 received 15 year awards, seven received 20-year awards and three received 25-year awards. Thirty-year awards were presented to three employees; six received 35-year awards.

Two faculty members were honored for 40 years of service: College of Education’s Suzanne “Sue” Brown, department chair and associate professor of Curriculum and Instruction, and College of Business’ James C. “Jim” Benson, associate professor of Legal Studies.

A monetary gift in their names will be presented to the university’s Alfred R. Neumann Library, and their names will join the four previous recipients of the recognition on a permanent plaque at the entrance to the library’s Special Collections Room. They also received a crystal book, etched with their name and the university seal.