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The University of Wyoming awarded President's Faculty Stewardship Awards to professors Larry Weatherford and Doug Hixon.
"When faculty members are willing to go above and beyond in building external relations, the fundraising programs for the university elevate to a higher level," says Ben Blalock, UW Foundation president. "Doug and Larry exemplify faculty members who represent the very best of what the University of Wyoming is all about and communicate that to external constituencies."
The UW President's Stewardship Award recognizes the leadership of a University of Wyoming faculty member who has excelled in relationship building and stewardship of alumni and donors through receipt of private gifts; engagement of former students in the activities of UW; and the commitment to strong external relationships for the betterment of the university.
"The joy donors feel when they give to the University of Wyoming is always enhanced by interactions with faculty and students because it helps them better understand the tremendous benefits of their philanthropy and opportunities to do even more," says Greg Dyekman, chairman of the UW Foundation Board of Directors. "When donors forge relationships on campus --particularly with faculty members -- they feel even more a part of the university's mission. This award honors those who have distinguished themselves by being the human links between donors and their university."
Each faculty member will receive $5,000; the college or department will receive $2,500; and the recipient can direct another $2,500 toward a university unit or club. The awards are funded by the University of Wyoming Foundation.
Hixon is a professor and head of the Department of Animal Science in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. During his first 19 years at UW as beef cattle extension specialist, he worked with beef producers throughout the state. His research interest was in the area of beef cattle production and management, with emphasis on the interaction between nutrition and reproduction.
After becoming department head in 2001, Hixon continued to teach the advanced beef production and management course through 2008. Since then, administrative duties have consumed most of his time, although he still advises approximately 45 undergraduate students. There has been a 45 percent increase in the number of animal and veterinary science majors over the past five years.
"I am humbled by the recognition and, if I've contributed anything, it is only because of the good people with whom I've been associated," says Hixon. "This includes the livestock industries and producers throughout the state, our students, and our outstanding faculty and staff. It has been a total team effort and a great ride."
"Stewardship activities have a direct bearing on the quality of relationships between the University of Wyoming and its alumni and donors," says Frank Galey, dean of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. "There is no doubt that Dr. Hixon's commitment to donor relations, alumni involvement and outreach activities has fostered long-term relationships by keeping UW activities and people visible, and keeping UW donors informed and involved. He is an exemplary recipient of the President's Faculty Stewardship Award."
Weatherford is a professor of decision science in the College of Business and the Scarlett Chair in Business Administration. He teaches decision modeling with spreadsheets, quantitative methods and operations management. His research interests include revenue management for airlines, hotels, rental cars, and cruise lines; forecasting, and Monte Carlo simulation software, such as @Risk or Crystal Ball.
"I am very appreciative of this honor and would like to specifically thank the president's office and the UW Foundation for this recognition," says Weatherford. "I thoroughly enjoy interacting and working with alumni, friends and supporters of the College of Business. While I know these activities are beneficial to the college, I feel like I'm the real winner when it comes to these relationships."
"We are so very proud of Larry and his commitment to the students of UW, to the pursuit of knowledge and to the university," says John D. Mittelstaedt, chair of the Department of Management and Marketing. "He embodies the very best ideals of a land grant university, and I am proud to call him me colleague."
Hixon was recognized during the President's Commencement Dinner, and Weatherford was recognized during the College of Business's Annual Recognition Dinner.
The award is designed to bring about a greater knowledge and awareness of effective stewardship practices and relationship-building opportunities, and to give special recognition to those faculty members who make outstanding contributions to the culture of philanthropy at UW.
"Ultimately, the work of the UW Foundation ties itself to faculty members," adds Blalock. "Faculty members are the ones who teach our students. They are the ones who provide lasting impressions upon our alumni. They are the ones who ensure the greatness of UW's academic agenda."