Power Awards to be presented Feb. 11
The 19th Annual Sarah Goddard Power Awards will be presented at a ceremony 4 p.m. Feb. 11 in the Michigan League's Hussey Room. Award winners are Lora Bex Lempert, associate professor of sociology at U-M-Dearborn and assistant research scientist, Institute for Research on Women and Gender; and Seyhan Nurettin Ege, professor emerita, chemistry.
For the first time, the Academic Women's Caucus is awarding a Distinguished Service Award. The honor goes to Aline Soules, associate university librarian, California State University, Hayward. Soules served as a co-chair and caucus member for 14 years prior to accepting the position in California.
Lempert created the Women's Studies internships at U-M-Dearborn. Her publications range from research on domestic violence, women's health and racial injustice to pedagogical articles on feminist teaching.
In 2000 she was given the U-M-Dearborn Distinguished Teaching Award.
Lempert's award reads: "Her activism and scholarship merge so powerfully in the classroom that students report she changes the way they look at the world."
As chair of Women's Studies, Lempert instituted an annual retreat and organized an advisory board of community leaders to support the program. In addition, she led efforts to bring many speakers to campus and worked to obtain the first faculty line, a two-thirds appointment, in Women's Studies.
Her recent Fulbright award as a visiting professor in the Women and Gender Studies Program at the University of the Western Cape in South Africa exemplifies the integration of her academic work, the citation notes.
In South Africa, she taught a feminist methodologies course, another on violence against women and managed a seminar program on gender issues. She brought the Clothesline Project to South Africa, in which students decorate and display T-shirts to honor people who have suffered abuse.
Ege received her doctorate in chemistry from U-M almost 50 years ago. Her research interests involve the photochemistry of heterocyclic compounds and reactive intermediates in photochemical reactions. She held faculty positions at U-M, Mount Holyoke and the American College for Girls in Istanbul, interspersed with postdoctoral research activities at Toronto and Boston universities. In 1965 she returned to the University as the only woman faculty member in the Chemistry Department.
Ege has been the Thurnau Professor of Chemistry and received the Amoco Teaching Award and Phi Lambda Upsilon Teaching Award. She has written four editions of an introductory chemistry text and has been an innovator in teaching chemistry.
As chair of the curriculum committee, she was responsible for major modifications in freshman chemistry course work.
Ege's award says: "These changes made chemistry classes more gender friendly by including more real world applications and group work in the laboratory. The chemistry curriculum that she developed with Brian Coppola has become a model in undergraduate education throughout the United States."
With a small group of women faculty, she persuaded the administration to establish the Women in Science and Engineering Program in the late 1970s. She continues to advocate for the program and serves on its advisory committee.
"An important innovation was the development of the K-12 outreach program for middle school girls from the state of Michigan. This ongoing two-week residential summer program gives a small group of girls the opportunity to concentrate on a specific science or engineering field. She coordinated the group in chemistry for a number of years," her citation notes.
Soules is noted as "an outstanding leader, scholar, author and activist, committed to promoting women's issues at the University of Michigan and nationally."
As director of the Kresge Business Administration Library, she had the holdings digitized, integrated and bar-coded, laying the foundation for the current electronic library and remote access to the library. As a scholarly communications librarian, she was involved in intellectual property and copyright initiatives and gave testimony before the Register of Copyrights. She served as a member of numerous Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs committees, search advisory committees and the Library Council.
Soules has published two books of poems, essays and short stories, and she contributed to anthologies and literary periodicals.
"She is a gifted author and poet who has written articulately about women's issues and concerns. Her poems and stories highlight the dignity and choices of women in both the routine and special events of their lives," the award says.
"As an activist her dedication to improving the status of women was manifested in her 14-year commitment to the Academic Women's Caucus, where she served as a co-chair and organized numerous programs including several town meetings with University presidents, women regents and women deans, and was actively involved in 25th anniversary celebration of the caucus."
The chair of the selection committee was Elizabeth Duell, retired assistant professor, Department of Dermatology. Along with Duell, Cynthia Marcelo, senior research scientist, Medical School, and Ruth Barnard, associate professor emerita, School of Nursing, were the co-chairs of the Academic Women's Caucus this year.