Herman, Frey Among U.Va's Outstanding Teachers for 2007

April 25, 2007 -- The University recognized professors and graduate students for their outstanding teaching at a Universitywide teaching awards banquet on April 25. U.Va. President John T. Casteen III congratulated this year’s outstanding teachers, his “colleagues who in their work transmit and create knowledge and in doing so link the generations one to the other. All of us mindful of the past, concerned about the present, and invested in the future, owe you a debt of gratitude.”

For the first time, the University bestowed an Excellence in Faculty Mentoring Award. It went to Darden professor Sherwood Frey and environmental sciences professor Janet Herman.

Sherwood C. Frey Jr.
Darden School of Business

“Without the insightful guidance and caring prodding of mentors, my life would have been far less rich and much less rewarding,” writes Sherwood Frey. “Mentoring allows me to pay homage to those who have mentored me.” José Fuentes states, “He represents an institutional treasure because of his sustained and outstanding mentoring to the junior faculty. As a founding member of the Excellence in Diversity Fellows Program, he has successfully supported the professional development of minority faculty.” One of those fellows, Irina Mitrea, says she “was impressed by his willingness to help us see beyond our immediate concerns and understand the tremendous potential of the roles we have as junior faculty in the life of the university. I have learned about what scholarship means in disciplines different from one’s own and about seeking interdisciplinary collaborations.” Fuentes adds that “irrespective of disciplines, Professor Frey has been a true role model for several generations of junior faculty members to develop long-term careers at U.Va.”

Janet S. Herman
Environmental Sciences

Janet Herman “reached across school boundaries…provided opportunities for her junior faculty colleagues and has taken the initiative to nominate them for awards and recognition at the national level,” attests Roseanne Ford, Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies. “She has a gift for creating an inclusive environment and sense of community.” Colleague Patricia Wiberg says that Herman mentored her “in the particular challenges facing many young women faculty, balancing family and work…and developing an effective voice in a department dominated by senior male colleagues.” Herman herself writes, “I realized I must be active in building my ideal professional community. But mentoring another person’s success does not mean asking them to emulate one’s own path... I found respecting their goals and desires was prerequisite to meaningful interaction. In my third decade I can count a handful of full professors that I helped along the way, and they are mentoring others as we all seek to enrich the University for the future.”