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Michael J. Horan* -- 2009 Outstanding Former Faculty
Department of Political Science
While he often is compared with past UW professors Sam Knight and T.A. Larson, Michael Horan definitely created a name and reputation of his own. Described as a man of principle, Horan offered challenging classes in which he encouraged open discussion and pushed students to think outside the box.
Horan loved to teach and loved American government, and his main purpose was to prepare students for law school. Professor Maggi Murdock, dean of The Outreach School and associate provost for Academic Affairs, says, “Many political science and criminal justice students at UW went on to law school well prepared with the knowledge and skills gained from Dr. Horan’s classes. And many of these students enjoy successful careers in law.”
Horan came to the university in 1967 and taught many classes on the American court system, including constitutional law. He also was a visiting professor and guest lector at other colleges and universities. Horan teamed up with fellow professor, Ken Griffin, to write a series of articles on judicial retention elections published in Land and Water Law Review, Judicature, and other distinguished refereed social science journals.
Widely recognized for his dedication to teaching, Horan received numerous teaching awards, and he was the first recipient of the Ellbogen Lifetime Teaching Award.
“My experience at UW was wonderful. I loved the job, everything about it. I was able to teach what I wanted and the pressure to publish was moderate. It was an overall pleasant experience,” comments Horan.
*In loving memory.