Stanford's 2015 Cuthbertson, Dinkelspiel and Gores awards honor librarian, faculty and PhD students

University Librarian Michael Keller, three members of the faculty and two doctoral candidates will receive awards on June 14 at the 124th Commencement Ceremony for their outstanding contributions to Stanford.

Six members of the Stanford community have been named 2015 Cuthbertson, Dinkelspiel and Gores award winners.

The awards honor individuals for exceptional contributions to Stanford, for distinctive contributions to undergraduate education and for excellence in teaching. Two professors, a lecturer, the university librarian and two doctoral candidates will receive the awards on Sunday, June 14, at the 124th Commencement Ceremony.

Cuthbertson Award

Michael A. Keller

Michael A. Keller (Image credit: Courtesy Michael A. Keller)

The Kenneth M. Cuthbertson Award for Exceptional Service to Stanford University, which was established by members of the faculty in 1981, was named after one of the early architects of Stanford’s long-term financial planning and fundraising program.

Michael A. Keller, who is the Ida M. Green University Librarian, director of Academic Information Resources, founder of HighWire Press and publisher of Stanford University Press, is this year’s Cuthbertson Award winner.

He was honored “for 22 years of exceptional creativity and strong leadership of Stanford University Libraries, bringing it into the digital age and developing it into one of the premier facilities in the world.”

The award commended Keller “for pioneering new paths as the director of Academic Information Resources, while continuing to develop the libraries’ superb collections,” and “for his clear commitment to scholarly publishing, exemplified in his founding of HighWire Press and ongoing support of Stanford University Press.”

He was honored “for understanding the hybrid nature of today’s university research libraries, overseeing the transition to technologically state-of-the-art resources where feasible, while ensuring the availability of works unlikely to be digitized in the near future,” and “for his innovative and collaborative support of Academic Computing and undergraduate teaching programs.”

Keller was commended “for keeping the university’s mission and the needs of Stanford’s faculty, graduate students and undergraduates first and foremost in mind.”

Dinkelspiel Award

The Lloyd W. Dinkelspiel Award for Distinctive Contributions to Undergraduate Education, named after the late president of the Board of Trustees who served from 1953 to 1958, recognizes outstanding service to undergraduate education and to the quality of student life.

Lee H. Yearley

Lee H. Yearley (Image credit: Davey Hubay)

Lee H. Yearley, who is the Walter Y. Evans-Wentz Professor of Oriental Philosophies, Religions and Ethics, is the 2015 Dinkelspiel Award winner.

Yearley was honored “for the disruptive quality of his teaching – pushing, probing and challenging students to question, doubt, reflect and grow beyond the limits they set for themselves.”

The award commended Yearley “for the lasting impact his introductory seminar, Perspectives on the Good Life, has had on incoming students, inspiring a seriousness of purpose and belief in the value of a humanistic education.”

Yearley was honored “for his genuine concern both for his students’ intellectual development and for their general well-being,” and “for teaching his students – to quote one undergraduate – ‘the lifelong joy of learning, not only how to ask questions, but how to live.'”

Gores Awards

The Walter J. Gores Awards are the university’s highest teaching honor. They are named for Professor Walter J. Gores, a member of the Stanford Class of 1917 who became a professor of design at the University of Michigan. The 2015 winners are:

Joseph Lipsick

Joseph Lipsick (Image credit: Courtesy Joseph Lipsick)

Joseph Lipsick, a professor of pathology and genetics in the School of Medicine.

Lipsick was honored “for his deep commitment to improving the Cancer Biology Program curriculum as director of the program, revamping core courses in his sabbatical year, and including undergraduate as well as graduate courses.”

He was commended “for his dedication to undergraduate education – he was one of the first faculty to volunteer and develop a new course for Thinking Matters” and “for his generosity in mentoring his graduate teaching fellows, providing them opportunities to design and give lectures on topics of interest.”

Lipsick was honored “for his thought-provoking courses that students described as ‘challenging, but SO fun. They are like puzzles! … Do your brain a favor and TAKE THIS CLASS!'” and “for simply superb teaching that can transform a large lecture hall into an intimate setting for learning.”

Keith Schwarz

Keith Schwarz (Image credit: Courtesy Keith Schwarz)

Keith Schwarz, lecturer, Department of Computer Science.

Schwarz was honored “for masterful teaching that has made the introductory computer science courses a transformative experience for undergraduates” and “for the excellence and range of his contributions – from curriculum design to development of course readers, to advising and mentoring his students.”

He was commended “for his enthusiastic support of students outside the lecture hall and his promotion of equity in representation in the sciences.”

Schwarz was honored for being, quoting a colleague, “the best teacher I have come across in a lifetime of teaching,” and to quote a student interviewed by the Stanford Daily, the kind of teacher “that reminds you why you decided to show up for class and why you’re even at college in the first place.'”

Otis Chodosh

Otis Chodosh (Image credit: Courtesy Otis Chodosh)

Otis Chodosh, a doctoral candidate in mathematics.

Chodosh was honored “for his excellence and skill in teaching students at all levels – from freshmen with wide-ranging backgrounds in mathematics to fellow graduate students” and “for his particular ability to mentor and inspire students who are intimidated by mathematics so they experience the process of discovery.”

He was commended “for his extraordinary support of fellow students, which has included organizing meetings – without faculty involvement – to encourage top math students to apply for National Science Foundation graduate fellowships.”

Chodosh was honored for being “a great mathematical communicator,” the sort “that comes along once or twice in a decade,” according to one faculty member.

Adam Louis Horowitz

Adam Louis Horowitz (Image credit: Randy Michaud)

Adam Louis Horowitz, a doctoral candidate in sociology.

Horowitz was honored “for his deep understanding of complex material and his gift for making it accessible” and “for his proficiency in facilitating small-group discussions, especially on sensitive topics, so all students are comfortable participating.”

He was commended “for his exceptional ability to integrate the theoretical and the tangible in ways that are particularly meaningful to students – such as the classroom simulation showing how theories of power and status manifested in negotiating terms of the final exam.”

Horowitz was honored “for his perceptive mentoring of newer graduate students, helping them develop their own style of teaching” and “for his exuberance for teaching and clear commitment to all of his students.”