The Faculty Women’s Forum (FWF) presented its 2023 awards at a ceremony Monday afternoon. These awards honor individuals for their outstanding work supporting women at Stanford through role modeling, allyship, leadership, and sponsorship.

Provost Persis Drell and Vice Provost and Dean of Research Kathryn Moler are recipients of the Deborah Rhode Lifetime Achievement Award. (Image credit: Andrew Brodhead)

The forum, which is affiliated with the Office of Faculty Development, Diversity and Engagement, provides opportunities for faculty members to discuss shared interests, concerns, and ideas, and to engage in action promoting greater faculty equity, inclusion, and success. Its programs are open to all faculty members, regardless of gender identity.

The forum’s steering committee reviewed nominations from the Stanford community and selected 18 winners in five categories: Inspiring Early Academic Career, Allyship, Outstanding Sponsor, Outstanding Leader, the Deborah Rhode Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Carol Muller Outstanding Service Award.

“We are extremely excited to recognize faculty and staff that have gone above and beyond to make an impact on our community,” said Anne Joseph O’Connell, the co-chair of FWF and the Adelbert H. Sweet Professor of Law.

“The nominations that we received this year were absolutely outstanding,” said Debbie Senesky, who served as the lead for this year’s awards. Senesky is an associate professor of aeronautics and astronautics and a senior fellow at the Precourt Institute for Energy.

The Lifetime Achievement Award was named in honor of Deborah Rhode, the late Ernest W. McFarland Professor in Law and director of the Center on the Legal Profession at Stanford Law School. Rhode was a former co-chair of the Faculty Women’s Forum Steering Committee and was a pathbreaking and world-renowned scholar, teacher, and advocate in the fields of legal ethics, access to justice, gender and the profession, and leadership.

The Outstanding Service Award was named in honor of Carol B. Muller, former executive director of Stanford Wise Ventures, a 2012-2021 initiative designed to support and advance greater gender equity for individuals working in science, technology, and engineering fields at the university.

Both O’Connell and Senesky were impressed by the number of submissions from across the university.

“It was great to see students and postdoctoral researchers stepping up to submit award nominations,” Senesky said.

Here are the recipients of the fourth annual awards:

Inspiring Early Academic Career Award

This award recognizes an assistant professor who creates a culture of inclusion and belonging for students and trainees at all levels.

  • Patricia Alessandrini, assistant professor of music, School of Humanities and Sciences
  • Rabia Belt, associate professor of law, associate professor, by courtesy, of history
  • Usha Iyer, assistant professor of art and art history, School of Humanities and Sciences
  • Irene Lo, assistant professor of management science and engineering, School of Engineering
  • Lisa Goldman Rosas, assistant professor of epidemiology and population health, of medicine, and, by courtesy, of pediatrics, School of Medicine
  • Ashley Elizabeth Martin, associate professor of organizational behavior, Graduate School of Business
  • Petra Persson, assistant professor of economics, School of Humanities and Sciences
  • Molly Schumer, assistant professor of biology, School of Humanities and Sciences
  • Gabrielle Wong-Parodi, assistant professor of Earth systems science, Doerr School of Sustainability

Outstanding Leader Award

Recognizes a faculty member who leads a Stanford department, school, or independent laboratory, center, or institute, who has an outstanding record of developing a culture of inclusion and promotion of women faculty.

  • Melissa Bondy, Stanford Medicine Discovery Professor, professor of epidemiology and population health and, by courtesy, of pediatrics, School of Medicine
  • Risa Wechsler, director, Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology (KIPAC) and professor of physics and of particle physics and astrophysics, School of Humanities & Sciences
  • Joseph Woo, Norman E. Shumway Professor, professor of cardiothoracic surgery and, by courtesy, of bioengineering, School of Medicine

Outstanding Mentor Award

This award recognizes a faculty member with a strong track record of promoting and sponsoring women faculty members and/or faculty from groups historically underrepresented at Stanford.

  • Arden Morris, professor of surgery (general surgery) and, by courtesy, of health policy surgery, School of Medicine
  • Upinder “Upi” Singh, Stanford Medicine Professor of Infectious Disease and professor of medicine (infectious diseases & geographic medicine) and of microbiology and immunology, School of Medicine
  • Shirin Sinnar, William W. and Gertrude H. Sunders Professor of Law, School of Law

Carol Muller Award

Named after retired executive director of Stanford WISE Ventures, this award recognizes a staff person who has made significant contributions in service to gender equity at Stanford.

  • Cathy Garzio, vice chair and director of Finance and Administration, School of Medicine

Deborah Rhode Lifetime Achievement Award

Named after an amazing and fierce advocate for gender equity in the academy, this award honors Professor Rhode’s legacy by recognizing individuals who have dedicated their careers and used their influence to advance the status of academic women at Stanford.

  • Persis Drell, provost, James and Anna Marie Spilker Professor and Professor in the School of Engineering, professor of materials science and engineering and of physics
  • Kathryn “Kam” Moler, vice provost and dean of research, Marvin Chodorow Professor and Professor of Applied Physics, of physics and of energy science engineering, School of Humanities & Sciences