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grand poo-bah

Okay, so for the most part I’m really not into self-promotion. My tendency to focus on my work rather than myself has in some ways handicapped my career advancement. It has certainly not helped make the jobs of the development officers who coordinate fundraising for my position any easier.  That last fact made it doubly-flattering that one of them nominated me for a big award, one of the three top honors in different categories given annually here.  My category was for an individual who

"…demonstrates creativity, dedication, and a long-term, positive impact… and an application of professional expertise to benefit the public good and whose work … enhances the reputation of Our Grand Institution."

Last night at a dinner ceremony I received this honor, only the third non-faculty member in 25 years to have gotten this award. The short presentation featured some of the highlights of the nomination package, and I’ve seen some of the extremely nice support letters that were included. There was even one from the former head of Our Grand Institution. There was also one from my supervisor, whom I understand actually initially declined to write a letter and apparently only reluctantly agreed when he was told his former boss wrote one.  It’s no particular secret that our philosophy and style are quite divergent, but obviously I’ve managed to do a few things right over the last 15 years and, I think, this has reflected well on him. I think I know where I stand now, thanks.

Anyway, this recognition meant a lot to me, in no small part because of this lack of enthusiasm from immediately above that I’ve been working under for years. People at the dinner seemed genuinely interested in my work — I think my low profile made me the least-known of any major awardee in Our Grand Institution history! However, I’m not sure it raised the eyebrows of as many people as the research interest of another honoree: "mathematical imagery in European folk costumes." I’ve joined an exclusive club, it seems!

I know a few people who supported this nomination read Bootstrap — my sincerest thanks, again. Time for me to go into the office now, and hang the big plaque in plain sight!

Filed in Me

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • John March 28, 2007, 10:15 am

    Congratulations, nuthatch! I think that your willingness to do outreach with non-scientists – both here and elsewhere – benefits the public good and speaks well of you and your institution.

  • Gavan Watson March 28, 2007, 11:01 am

    Congrats! You should always be ready to celebrate your own achievements. Academic institutions are somewhat notorious for being able to see the value that "non-faculty" add to the work they do. Glad to see your institution does!

  • Roger B. March 28, 2007, 1:52 pm

    Well done!

  • Clare March 28, 2007, 2:50 pm

    What, I have to congratulate you yet again? This is starting to be a habit. :-)

    The cream always rises to the top, and you are the cream of the crop. Once again, good on ya Blogmom.

  • Rurality March 29, 2007, 9:43 am

    Woohoo! I always knew you deserved a major award! Congrats!

  • Anonymous March 29, 2007, 9:21 pm


  • Rob March 30, 2007, 4:42 pm

    Congrats. Would have loved to see you wearing the hat!

  • Nuthatch March 30, 2007, 5:44 pm

    Thanks everyone!

  • Sarda Sahney April 2, 2007, 5:48 am


  • Mark April 9, 2007, 3:45 pm

    Congrats! I can think of nobody that deserves it more than you.

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