Achievements: UI faculty, staff, students, and alumni making news

Achievements: UI faculty, staff, students, and alumni making news

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Offices and Awards

Lectures and Presentations


Offices and Awards


The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) has selected Vicki H. Grassian, F. Wendell Miller Professor of Chemistry in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, to receive the 2014 John Jeyes Award for “her pioneering contributions to the chemistry of environmental interfaces, heterogeneous atmospheric chemistry and the environmental implications of nanomaterials.”

Grassian will be awarded a medal and will present a lecture in the United Kingdom later this year.

The award, named for John Jeyes, a prolific scientist who invented one of the first disinfectants in 1877, is for chemistry in relation to the environment. It was established in 1975 to commemorate Jeyes' initiative and inventiveness. Previous award winners include Nobel Prize winners Paul J. Crutzen and F. Sherwood Rowland. RSC’s Environment, Sustainability and Energy Division awards it biennially.

Grassian began her academic career at the University of Iowa in 1990 and holds appointments in the Colleges of Engineering and Public Health in addition to the Department of Chemistry. In 2006, she was appointed founding director of the Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Institute at the University of Iowa and in 2013, she became the co-director of the Center for Aerosol Impacts on Chemistry and the Environment — a $20 million center funded by the National Science Foundation.

The National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures (NALAC) has announced that Tlaloc Rivas, assistant professor in the Department of Theatre Arts in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, has been selected to participate in the 14th Annual NALAC Leadership Institute July 14-19, 2014, in San Antonio, Texas. The Leadership Institute convenes Latina/o arts leaders for an intensive, one-week training in nonprofit arts management and leadership development.

Rivas is one of the 28 participants who will be part of the 2014 NALAC Leadership Institute, and the first to represent the University of Iowa.

Elizabeth Yale, adjunct assistant professor at the UI's Center for the Book, has been awarded a fellowship at Rare Book School.

Yale received her Ph.D. in the history of science from Harvard University. Her research and teaching center on the history of science and the history of the book in the early modern world.

The fellows will participate in a three-year program, the Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship of Scholars in Critical Bibliography.

Joseph Cavanaugh, professor in the Department of Biostatistics in the College of Public Health (COPH), has been named a 2014 Fellow of the American Statistical Association.

The College of Public Health awarded the following honors to faculty and staff on April 28:

  • Faculty Teaching Award (with 10 years or less since terminal degree): Briana Woods-Jaeger, assistant professor of community and behavioral health
  • Faculty Teaching Award (with more than 10 years since terminal degree): Brian Smith, associate professor of biostatistics
  • Faculty Service Award: Linda Snetselaar, professor of epidemiology
  • Faculty Research Award: Elizabeth Chrischilles, professor of epidemiology
  • Staff Research Award: Gayle Robertson, State Health Registry of Iowa
  • Staff Service Award: Marilyn Anderson, Department of Epidemiology


Joshua Jacobs, administrator for technology at the College of Education's Belin-Blank Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development, was awarded the 2014 Robert Ray Staff Scholarship through the Division of Continuing Education.

Jacobs started working for the UI in 2006. Prior to this, he received his associate’s degree from Kirkwood Community College. The Robert Ray Staff Scholarship will allow Jacobs the opportunity to earn a bachelor’s degree part-time starting fall 2014.

The Robert F. Ray Staff Scholarship fund supports UI staff members who wish to begin or continue their undergraduate studies at the University of Iowa. For more information visit,

John P. Culshaw, university librarian at the UI, has been elected for a four-year term to the Association of College and Research Libraries Board of Directors as director-at-large in May.


A student team from the University of Iowa was awarded the Houston Business Journal Leadership prize at the Rice Business Plan Competition April 10-12 at Rice University in Houston, Texas for their company, Iowa Approach Inc.

Iowa Approach, Inc., which is commercializing patent-pending medical devices used by doctors to perform atrial fibrillation ablation procedures in a way that is expected to be safer, faster, and more cost-effective. The company was founded by the inventor of the technology Dr. Steven Mickelsen, an Electrophysiology Fellow at the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics, with grant support from the University of Iowa Research Foundation, the John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center, and the UIHC Department of Internal Medicine. The company is also supported by private investment from Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Iowa and angel investors.


Janet Armstrong Harris (Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry, 1963) received Pi Beta Phi Fraternity Women's Carolyn Helman Lichtenberg Crest Award for distinguished alumna on May 1.

The Carolyn Helman Lichtenberg Crest Award is presented annually to distinguished alumnae of Pi Beta Phi who exhibit excellence and outstanding leadership in their career or volunteer service to their communities.

Lectures and presentations


The Obermann Institute on Social Entrepreneurship Across the Disciplines will meet in Las Vegas, Nev. May 27-30, as part of a collaboration with the Downtown Project and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Participants from the UI include:

  • Saba Rasheed Ali, associate professor, Counseling Psychology program in the College of Education
  • Lucas Carr, assistant professor, Department of Health and Human Physiology
  • Joe Cilek, undergraduate academic advisor, Department of Health and Human Physiology
  • Chuck Connerly, professor and director, School of Urban and Regional Planning
  • David Gould, Obermann Public Scholar
  • Tom Keegan, lecturer, Department of Rhetoric
  • Elizabeth Oakes, lecturer, School of Music
  • Joe Sulentic, lecturer, Tippie College of Business
  • Rachel Marie-Crane Williams: associate professor with a joint appointment in the School of Art and Art History and Gender Women’s and Sexuality Studies
  • Jon Winet, associate professor, School of Art and Art History

The purpose of the Institute is to explore the ways social entrepreneurship (SE) might be incorporated into courses for UI students, and asks each instructor to design a new course focused on SE or to integrate principles of SE into an existing course.

Funding is provided by the Obermann Center’s C. Esco and Avalon L. Obermann Endowment, the Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development, and by the Entrepreneurial Center of the OVPR.

The Institute was coordinated by Jennifer New and Dave Gould in collaboration with the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.



Jia, J; Bosley, AD; Thompson, A; Hoskins, JW; Cheuk, A; Collins, I; Parikh, H; Xiao, Z; Ylaya, K; Dzyadyk, M; Cozen, W; Hernandez, BY; Lynch, CF (Epidemiology); Loncarek, J; Altekruse, SF; Zhang, L; Westlake, CJ; Factor, VM; Thorgeirsson, S; Bamlet, WR; Hewitt, SM; Peterson, GM; Andresson, T; Amundadottir, LT: an article, "CLPTM1L promotes growth and enhances aneuploidy in pancreatic cancer cells." Cancer Research 2014 Mar 19. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 24648346

Duchman, KR; Lynch, CF (Epidemiology); Buckwalter, JA; Miller, BJ: an article, "Estimated cause-specific survival continues to improve over time in patients with chondrosarcoma." Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research 2014 Apr 5. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 24706044

Morton, LM; Gibson, TM; Clarke, CA; Lynch, CF (Epidemiology); Anderson, LA; Pfieffer, R; Landgren, O; Weisenburger, DD; Engels, EA: an article, "Risk of myeloid neoplasms after solid organ transplantation." Leukemia 2014 Apr 14. doi: 10.1038/leu.2014.132. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 24727673

Barker, AR; Londeree, JK; McBride, TD; Kemper, LM; Mueller, K (Health Management & Policy): an article, "The Uninsured: An Analysis by Age, Income, and Geography." RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis: Rural Policy Brief. February 2014, Brief No. 2014-2.

MacKinney, AC (Health Management & Policy); Mueller, KJ (Health Management & Policy); Zhu, X (Health Management & Policy); Vaughn, T (Health Management & Policy): an article, "Medicare Accountable Care Organizations: Program Eligibility, Beneficiary Assignment, and Quality Measures." RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis: Rural Policy Brief. April 2014, Brief No. 2014-3.


Deborah Thumma, University Communication and Marketing, 319-384-0006


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