Diversity Achievement Award
Each year at Fall Convocation, President Shepard presents the Diversity Achievement Award to recognize an individual (faculty, staff or student) or office whose distinguished efforts have enhanced diversity and multicultural understanding at Western. Expect the next call for nominations in Spring 2014.
2013 winner: Dr. Steve Sulkin
Director, Shannon Point Marine Center
Dr. Steve Sulkin served as Director of Western’s Shannon Point Marine Center (SPMC) in Anacortes for 28 years prior to his retirement this summer. During that time, he worked tirelessly to further diversity at Western and in the science community, both programmatically and personally. Steve’s efforts have profoundly influenced the career tracks of students from diverse ethnic groups underrepresented in the sciences. Western students, faculty, and staff have also benefitted from the cultural and educational diversity produced by his program.
In 1985, during his first year at Western, Steve developed the Minorities in Marine Science Undergraduate Program (MIMSUP) through an unsolicited proposal to the National Science Foundation (NSF). After an initial three-year trial program, NSF has renewed this grant four times, each for five years, enabling Steve to sustain this program introducing Native American, Alaskan Native, African American, Latino/Hispanic, and Pacific Islander students to the possibility of pursuing careers in the marine sciences. No other NSF-supported diversity program can claim this longevity or level of support.
In addition to publishing papers and presenting, MIMSUP participants teach marine science in local elementary schools, giving young students the opportunity to learn science from diverse role models. The majority of MIMSUP alumni now work in science-related fields and are enthusiastic ambassadors for SPMC and WWU. To date, 60% percent of program alumni have pursued advanced degrees.
Recognizing Steve’s success, in 2002 he was invited to the White House to receive, for SPMC and Western, a Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring. SPMC and Western’s reputation as a national leader in recruiting and retaining diverse marine science students is rooted in Steve’s deep and lasting work. Congratulations to Steve for being recognized with the Diversity Achievement Award, and thank you for your years of inclusive leadership at Western.
Nomination Criteria and Guidelines
- Integrates diversity concepts and values into academic curriculum, management and/or operational functions.
- Develops methods for increasing and valuing diversity among students, faculty, and/or staff.
- Maximizes opportunities to achieve diversity.
- Contributes to promoting an understanding and appreciation of differences by contributing to the body of research on diversity or through other endeavors.
- Provide a nomination letter (not to exceed 3 pages) by Friday, May 10, 2013 addressing one or more of the above listed criteria to the Equal Opportunity Office, Old Main 345 or MS-9021.
Past Award Recipients
Willy Hart, Director, University Residences
Joan Ullin, Coordinator, Academic Support, Student Outreach Services
Kathy Kitto, Professor, College of Sciences & Technology
Lorraine Kasprisin, Professor, Secondary Education
Admissions Office, Karen Copetas, Director
Tom Nerini, Director, Student Outreach Services
Dr. Robert Hyung-chan Kim, Professor Emeritus
Jesse Moore, AS VP for Diversity
Lynn Robbins, Department of Environmental Studies
Gigi Berardi, Department of Environmental Studies
Brian Bingham, Shannon Point Marine Center
Ted Pratt, Director of Student Life/Dean of Students
Karen Hoelscher, Elementary Education
Joseph Garcia, Management
Roland L. De Lorme, Provost (retired)
Larry Estrada, Fairhaven/American Cultural Studies
Vernon Johnson, Political Science
Law and Diversity Program, Fairhaven College
The Ethnic Student Center Student Organizations
Ray McInnis, Wilson Librarians for the Development of Ethnic Minority Research Guides, Wilson Library Diversity Section, and Diversity Resource Collections
Woodring College of Education, the Center for Educational Pluralism
The Department of English/Curricular Transformation Project
Saundra Taylor, Vice President for Student Affairs