In the Spotlight: March 9, 2012

Kudos to these faculty, staff and students

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  • Ted Bunch and James Wittke of the School of Earth Science and Environmental Sustainability are among the co-authors of an article, “New Evidence from Central Mexico Supporting the Younger Dryas Extraterrestrial Impact Hypothesis,” published in theProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
  • John Paul Roccaforte, a research specialist at the Ecological Restoration Institute; forestry professor Pete FuléWalker Chancellor, a research specialist with the ERI; and Daniel Laughlin, formerly with the ERI, have their research featured in a recent issue of Canadian Journal of Forest Research. In their article, “Woody Debris and Tree Regeneration Dynamics Following Severe Wildfires in Arizona Ponderosa Pine Forests,” the researchers report that, following severe wildfires, many severely burned areas become vegetated with grasses or deciduous shrubs, a long-term condition that makes ponderosa pine regeneration difficult, especially in the face of a warmer, drier climate. The paper can be viewed here.
  • Northern Arizona University saw several members of its community recognized at the Flagstaff Cultural Partners 2012 Viola Awards ceremony at the High Country Conference Center on March 3. The awards recognize artists, educators, organizations and leaders who make positive contributions to the arts and sciences in Flagstaff. Among the award winners from NAU were:
    • Ann Cummins, English professor, who received the Literature Award
    • Pam Stephens, associate professor in the School of Art, who received the Arts Educator Award
    • Pat Curry, former chair of the music department, who posthumously received the Viola Legacy Award
    • Kari Barton, Suzuki and Fiddle Instructor in the School of Music, who received the Music Award
    • The Flagstaff Festival of Science, which received the Outstanding Event Award. NAU is a partner in the festival, and its Mountain Campus Science and Engineering Day features numerous faculty and staff

    Several others from NAU were nominated for awards, including Michael Vincent, dean of the College of Arts and Letters; KNAU Arizona Public Radio; the College of Arts and Letters Classic Film SeriesTina Ayers, associate professor of biology; Franklin Willis, associate professor in the School of Art; Rita Borden, principal lecturer in the School of Music; the Department of Theater; Steve Schaeffer, assistant professor of practice in the School of Art; Seth Muller, part-time faculty in the School of Communication; and Matt Beaty, undergraduate photography and marketing major.

  • Research by Heidi Wayment was recently featured in General Electric’s online health blog under the title “Can a ‘Quiet Ego’ Make You Healthier?”
  • Anne Marie Mackler, development coordinator for University Advancement, spearheaded the annual Report to Donors video project for the NAU Foundation, called The Chemistry of Giving: A Catalyst for the Future, which received a 2012 CASE District VII Gold Award of Excellence from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education. Watch the video here.
  • The NAU Ice Jacks club hockey team has qualified for the America Collegiate Hockey Association national finals by winning both games at the regional tournament in Fremont, Calif., in February. The team is ranked as one of the top 16 teams in the country out of the 192 teams in Division 2. The National Tournament Finals will be held in Fort Myers, Fla., March 16-20.