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Introducing the 2009 SIUE Internal Award Recipients

2009 Paul Simon Outstanding Teacher-Scholar 2009 Vaughnie Lindsay New Investigator
2009 Hoppe Research Professor 2009 Distinguished Research Professors
2009 Summer Research Fellowships 2009 STEP Awards

2009 Distinguished Research Professor Award Winners

P. Simons

Margaret (Peg) Simons,

Prof. Margaret (Peg) Simons, Distinguished Research Professor of Philosophy, has sustained an extraordinary record of research activities since her promotion to professor in 1990 and brings national and international recognition to her department.

Since her promotion, Peg has maintained the highest level of professional development and has steadfastly pursued her scholarly research independently and through internally and externally funded projects, including two from the prestigious National Endowment for the Humanities. She has won acclaim as one of the most important scholars writing about the philosophy and life of Simone de Beauvoir. Since 1990 she has given fifteen international, thirty-five national, ten regional, and eight local presentations.

Simons' dossier clearly demonstrates that her research and publications have had a tremendous impact on the field, her students, and the public. External reviewers of Professor Simons's credentials provided unequivocal strong evidence of the high quality of her work. These reviewers stated that "Beauvoir scholarship in the United States owes more to Peg Simons than to any other individual." Carlin Romano, writing in The Philadelphia Inquirer, refers to Professor Simons as "America's leading Beauvoir scholar." Many of these reviewers say she is a "pioneer … to whose writings over the past 20 years all philosophers taking part in the current [Beauvoir] renaissance are deeply indebted." Her work is called "pathbreaking" and "fundamental" in Feminist Studies, a highly respected interdisciplinary journal in the broad areas of theory, philosophy, culture, history and literature. Several external reviewers noted that Professor Simons shows no sign of slowing down, continuing to publish, most recently a 2008 article appearing in France and a 2009 book publication, her edition of Beauvoir's Wartime Diary.

Dr. Simons' continuing enthusiastic commitment to her research on Beauvoir's philosophy promises to continue to bring advances in knowledge within the discipline of philosophy and international recognition for SIUE.

L OBrien

Leah O'Brien,

Professor Leah O'Brien, Distinguished Research Professor of Chemistry, was promoted to professor in 2001 and has brought broad acclaim to her department. Like Prof. Simons, Prof. O'Brien has pursued her independent research activities through both internally and externally funded projects that have earned her national and international recognition.

She has received research funding from two of the most prestigious research agencies in the field of Chemistry: the National Science Foundation and the American Chemical Society. She is highly respected in the international field of gas-phase spectroscopy and her work has relevance to many broader areas of science.

Leah regularly publishes in mainstream international journals, where it is also regularly cited. Since 2001 she has published 15 articles, all in preeminent journals in her field, and presented at the most prestigious conference in all of Chemistry. Her expertise in chemistry and science in general has been requested to review articles submitted to the Journal of Molecular Spectroscopy, the Journal of Physical Chemistry, and to review proposals submitted to the National Science Foundation.

Her dossier clearly demonstrates that her research and publications have had a tremendous impact on the field, her students, and the public. External reviewers of Professor O'Brien's credentials provided unequivocal strong evidence of the high quality of her work. One reviewer stated, for example, that "she has become one of the leading experts in the spectroscopy of small metal containing molecules and has made many important contributions to the field. She has maintained a steady and consistently high level of quality research and is widely known and respected in the international spectroscopy community." Another review stated that "her research is on the cutting edge of her profession." Noting the exceptionally outstanding NSF panel reviews of her proposals, another reviewer stated: "this level of commendation is the highest praise a scientist in this country can hope to achieve."

2009 Hoppe Research Professor Award


George Pelekanos,
Mathematics & Statistics

Dr. Pelekanos has been at SIUE since 1998. He received the Hoppe award for his research project in the area of computational electromagnetics, titled "On the Development of a Fast and Efficient Reconstruction Algorithm in Computational Electromagnetics."

Computational Electromagnetics is the science of numerically solving a complex set of Maxwell's equations using limited computer resources. These solutions describe the physical interactions and phenomena between charged particles and materials. A fundamental understanding of these phenomena are critical in the design of many devices such as radars, computer chips, optical fiber systems, and mobile phone systems. The Hoppe project will lay the foundation for long-term research that will result in the development of fast and efficient codes capable of resolving many of the current and future computational electromagnetic problems faced by the US Air Force. Overall this interdisciplinary work brings together computer science, applied mathematics, and electromagnetic theory, and it portends the creation of a new and important technology not previously available.

George Pelekanos received his Ph.D in Applied Mathematics from the University of Delaware, in 1997. From 1997 to 1998, he was a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Center of Computational Electromagnetics , Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He has published over 20 articles in the areas of inverse scattering, computational electromagnetics and mathematics education. His research has appeared in leading journals in his field. His main research interests include solving forward and inverse problems in elastodynamics, electromagnetics and acoustics and he is currently working on fast algorithms for solving electromagnetic scattering and inverse problems.

The Hoppe Research Professorship Awards are designed to support a significant and discrete portion of a faculty member's larger research agenda. The Hoppe Research Professor will be appointed for a two-year period, during which he or she will receive 50 percent assigned time for research each academic year (cost is shared with school/college), the services of a one-quarter time graduate assistant (for nine months per year), and $1,000 in support lines.

2009 Paul Simon Outstanding Teacher-Scholar

David Kauzlarich,

Sociology and Criminal Justice Studies

Dr. David Kauzlarich is Professor and Chair of the Sociology and Criminal Justice Studies department at SIUE. He has published four books and over thirty articles and book chapters in the areas of critical criminology, state and corporate crime, and international law. Five of these publications were co-authored with SIUE sociology students. He is widely regarded as an expert on the causes and victimology of mass governmental violence. Dr. Kauzlarich also founded and edited a scholarly journal for the dissemination of SIUE sociology undergraduate and graduate student research, served as a mentor for several decorated SIUE sociology students now in the professoriate, and has received the SIUE Great Teacher Award. He is past recipient of the American Society of Criminology's Division on Critical Criminology Critical Criminologist of the Year Award and currently the William and Margaret Going Endowed Professor in the SIUE College of Arts and Sciences.

2009 Vaughnie Lindsay New Investigator

Dr. Kevin Rowland,
Department of Applied Dental Medicine, School of Dental Medicine

Dr. Kevin Rowland, Assistant Professor and Section Head of Physiology in the Department of Applied Dental Medicine for the SIU School of Dental Medicine received the 2009 Vaughnie Lindsay New Investigator award for his research on dental pain. Initially, pain might be acute and resolve with appropriate treatment, but if left untreated a decayed tooth can be a source of intense, spontaneous and chronic pain. Despite the severity and frequent occurrence of dental pain in humans, drugs that effectively reduce pain without deleterious side effects, including addiction, are lacking. Dr. Rowland's work utilizes a rodent model to test how newly developed drugs reduce pain from dental injury by monitoring changes in behavior and changes in neuronal cytochemistry. The goal is to identify and quantify rodent behaviors that can be used to evaluate pain intensity following toothache by ultra sonic and video recording of injured and naïve animals. A second goal is identification of the trigeminal neurons innervating injured teeth by retrograde dye labeling at the end of each experiment. Dr. Rowland's animal model system will hopefully be a more accurate representation of dental pain at the cellular and behavioral levels and translate into human therapies to reduce pain. An animal model of dental pain is most important for understanding the mechanism of transition from acute to chronic dental pain and as a tool for functional and pharmaceutical studies for identification of targets for new types of analgesics. Rowland Portrait

Dr. Joseph Schober,
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Pharmacy

Dr. Joseph Schober is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences in the School of Pharmacy. He received a Ph.D. from the Department of Pharmacology, University of Illinois at Chicago in 2003. He was an American Heart Association postdoctoral fellow until 2007 at Northwestern University, Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Chicago, where his research project included investigation of cytoskeleton dynamics and cell motility. Dr. Schober joined the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences in the School of Pharmacy in July 2007. His research at SIUE, supported by the Vaughnie Lindsay New Investigator award, focuses on metastasis, a serious problem in the progression of cancer. Once the tumor cells move from their primary site and invade healthy organs, patient prognosis is poor. Dr. Schober's lab works on a protein called EB1. It is associated with several types of cancers, but the molecular mechanism of how EB1 promotes cancer is not known. Dr. Schober postulates that EB1 promotes cancer by causing the tumor cells to move and metastasize faster. Dr. Schober's approach combines a 3D model of cancer cell metastasis with immunohistochemistry techniques and immunofluorescence microscopy. The work in his lab will help validate EB1 as a viable drug target and could lead to new cures for cancer. Schober portrait
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