Academic Staff: Judith Craig Distinguished Service Award

The Judith Craig Distinguished Service Award honors an L&S academic staff member with 15 or more years of outstanding service, and is named in honor of former L&S Associate Dean Judith Craig.

2018 Recipients

Jean Heitz
Distinguished Faculty Associate, Department of Integrative Biology

Jean Heitz has helped shape the way introductory biology is taught at UW-Madison, pioneering innovative teaching and learning practices, such as lab projects for undergraduates that focused on the scientific method, as well as weekly discussion sections. These and other innovations that Jean introduced were adopted in the STEM classrooms across this campus and indeed, in science departments nationwide.

Jean has been a tireless advocate for transforming the pedagogy of education. She was proactive in developing and implementing equity and diversity training for teaching assistants. And her work as the faculty advisor for the Peer Learning Association has helped thousands of UW-Madison students, across a range of disciplines in the sciences, “learn how to learn.” Thanks to Jean’s guidance, PLA’s peer-facilitation model helps students learn how to break complicated concepts and problems into manageable, understandable units; how to articulate and scaffold an evidence-based successful path to learning; how to work cooperatively with others; in short, how to develop the foundational cognitive and emotional skills that will serve them throughout their lives.

Biology professor Seth Blair says of Jean: “She is a dedicated, incredibly hard-working and innovative educator who, over her forty-year career, has made outstanding contributions to the Department, the College, and the lives of our students.”

Nancy Westphal-Johnson

Senior Associate Dean for Administration and Undergraduate Education, College of Letters & Science Administration

Nancy Westphal-Johnson joined L&S in 1983 and has played an integral role in the implementation of major initiatives such as the General Education Requirements, Integrated Student Information System, and the Guide. She is known for her deep understanding of the university’s curriculum and instructional mission, as well as how to deploy resources to best meet the needs of students. She worked tirelessly on UW-Madison’s LEAP initiative (Liberal Education and America’s Promise), an effort to develop, along with constituents across campus, a shared language about learning outcomes, which could then be used to communicate the value of a college education. The accolades for Nancy, over a career spanning 35 years, are simply too many to mention, but I will share just a few of them here.

Colleague Elaine Klein, Associate Dean for Academic Planning, says, “Nancy sets the standard for thoughtful, careful, inclusive decision-making.”

“I can think of no one in L&S who contributed more to undergraduate education than Nancy,” from Gary Sandefur, former dean of L&S, now Provost and Senior Vice President of Oklahoma State University.

Dean of Students Lori Berquam said: “Nancy is a colleague who has been instrumental to the current conversations and practices surrounding liberal arts education at UW-Madison.”

And this from Jolanda Vanderwal Taylor, Professor of Dutch and German, who was Nancy’s co-liaison of the LEAP initiative on campus: “I despair at doing justice to the scope of Nancy’s contributions.”


All Recipients

2017-18: Nancy Westphal-Johnson, Senior Associate Dean for Administration and Undergraduate Education, College of Letters & Science Administration, and Jean Heitz, Distinguished Faculty Associate, Department of Integrative Biology

2016-17: Anthony (Tony) Jacob, Department of Chemistry

2015-16: Caton Roberts, Faculty Associate, Department of Psychology

2014-15: Michael Cullinane, Associate Director of the Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Southeast Asian Studies Program. 

2013-14: Sandra Arfa, Faculty Associate, Department of English

2012-13: Matt Sanders, Assistant Academic Program Director, Department of Chemistry

2011-12: Brad Hughes, Director, The Writing Center

2010-11: Bruno Browning, Director, Learning Support Services

2009-10: Richard Loveless, Distinguished Scientist, Department of Physics

2008-09: Laurey Martin-Berg, Distinguished Lecturer, Department of French and Italian

2007-08: Maggie Sullivan, Academic Staff, L&S Administration

2006-07: Ada Deer, Academic Staff, American Indian Studies Program; Read Gilgen, Academic Staff, Learning Support Services

2005-06: Catherine H. Middlecamp, Academic Staff, Department of Chemistry

2004-05: Jeffrey F. Petersen, Academic Staff, Center for Demography and Ecology, Department of Sociology

2003-2004Mel Morgenbesser, School of Social Work

2002-2003: Taissa Hauser, Department of Sociology

2001-2002*: Judy Craig, L&S Administration

*In 2001-2001, the first year the awards were given, the top-level one was simply called the Distinguished Service Award. When he conferred it on Judy Craig, who was retiring that year, Dean Phillip Certain announced that future iterations of the award would bear her name.

Nominate an outstanding academic staff member.

Please contact the PDRC for more information about the Academic Staff Awards.