NCHC Fellows

NCHC Fellows Award

NCHC Fellows are distinguished individuals who have given substantial time and energy to furthering the cause of honors education. Their years of dedication and leadership, paired with recognition on their home campus for outstanding honors teaching, make them invaluable sources of knowledge in the honors community.

NCHC members are invited to nominate those who have made a national impact on the honors community for distinction as an NCHC Fellow.

Factors considered for nomination include:

  • NCHC, regional, and/or state honors organization leadership
  • Scholarly activities relating to honors education
  • NCHC, regional, and/or state honors special events, institutes, etc.
  • Recognition for outstanding honors teaching on the home campus
  • Assistance provided to other honors programs/colleges (site visits, consulting, etc.)
  • Demonstrated record of sustained commitment to honors education
  • (3) Nomination letters: in order to be considered for the Fellows distinction, candidates must be nominated by three (3) current NCHC professional, student, or institutional members, only one of whom may be from the same institution as the candidate.

2018 Class of Fellows

Steven Engel

Georgia Southern University

What is your favorite NCHC memory?
Attending NCHC conferences, reading NCHC publications, mentoring students who have presented at the conference, and working with a wide range of creative and interesting honors educators are the most rewarding and memorable of my NCHC experiences. In particular, I have spent over ten years on the Finance Committee and have developed the greatest respect for the dedication of these folks who are willing to take on the complicated (and often thankless) work that we do on that committee

What do you consider to be your greatest professional achievement?
When I took over as Honors Program director in 2005 we had a strong tradition of honors education on campus but did not have an effective process for students working on honors theses. Working with colleagues in departments across campus, we have worked (and are still working) to create courses and other approaches to support students as they complete theses. It is very satisfying to help provide these meaningful opportunities for students.

Jerry Herron

Wayne State University

What is your favorite NCHC memory?
The memory of the friends I have made hereā€”all of us brought together by our shared commitment to NCHC and the values of this outstanding organization.

What do you consider to be your greatest professional achievement?
Being able to work with wonderful students, colleagues, and friends at Wayne State University to build the Irvin D. Reid Honors College.

Melissa L. Johnson

University of Florida

What is your favorite NCHC memory?
My favorite NCHC memory is participating in the one and only Partners in the Parks trip to Denali in August 2010. I took two of my students from UF, and we got to spend an incredible week traveling and camping along the 92-mile long Denali Park Road which is normally not open to private vehicles. Perhaps the greatest part of the trip was getting to know fellow faculty members who also participated, as I was a relatively new NCHC member. Joan Digby, Lydia Daniel, and I spent several nights sleeping in one of the vans because we were over sleeping on the ground! Lots of fun conversations, and very few bear encounters.

What do you consider to be your greatest professional achievement?
Within my honors program at the University of Florida, I think it's the legacy of building a stronger honors community. When I started in honors, we primarily focused on academics with very few social opportunities for students. I was able to initiate many new community-building activities such as our wildly popular H-Camp retreat, our Honors Without Borders service organization, and our H1G Honors First-Generation Mentoring Program.

Within honors education as a whole, my greatest achievement so far has been broadening the focus of membership and involvement in NCHC to include professional staff members and other non-dean/director roles. I'm incredibly proud of starting the "#2 in Honors" conversations, as well as developing our summer institute on academic advising.

Rae Rosenthal

The Community College of Baltimore County

What is your favorite NCHC memory?
Hmm. Can I have two? Certainly being selected for the Ron Brandolini award was a wonderful highlight, but nothing could top my memory of Ada Long's Presidential Address at the 1994 conference in Pittsburgh. It was extraordinary, and everyone should read it.

What do you consider to be your greatest professional achievement?
Founding the CCBC Honors Program in 1988.

Laurie Smith Law

Iowa State University

What is your favorite NCHC memory?
My favorite memory is hosting the first New Directors Institute at Iowa State University with Charlie Slavin, Ted Estess, and Sam Schuman. In working with the three of them, not only did I feel we were able to provide a quality institute for the attendees, but I personally also learned a great deal from working with these pillars of honors education.

What do you consider to be your greatest professional achievement?
Working with Charlie Slavin to establish the NCHC New Directors Institute. As the first co-chairs for the Professional Development Committee, Charlie and I shared a passion for helping new directors navigate there new administrative role. The creation of this institute gave us an outlet to share this passion with our NCHC colleagues.

2019 NCHC Fellows Nominations

Nominations will be accepted January 25 - March 1, 2019.

Please use the form below, or at this link.


Larry R. Andrews (2012)

William Atwill (2016)

C. Grey Austin (2011)

Richard Badenhausen (2010)

Elizabeth C. Beck (2010)

Gary Bell (2010)

Patrice Berger (2015)

Irmgard Bocchino (2012)

Bernice Braid (2010)

Ron Brandolini (2012)

Earl Brown (2015)

Margaret Brown (2015)

Kate Bruce (2010)

Catherine Cater (2011)

Ira Cohen (2010)

Lisa L. Coleman (2012)

Richard J. Cummings (2012)

Lydia R. Daniel (2010)

Freddye T. Davy (2012)

Joan H. Digby (2010)

Steven Engel (2018)

Ted Estess (2012)

Barry Falk (2016)

John Grady (2012)

Annmarie Guzy (2015)

Jerry Herron (2018)

Bonnie Irwin (2010)

Jocelyn Jackson (2011)

Melissa L. Johnson (2018)

G. Hewett Joiner (2013)

Kathleen King (2015)

Carolyn Kuykendall (2013)

Jennifer Lane (2010)

Greg Lanier (2010)

Donzell Lee (2010)

Ada Long (2010)

George Mariz (2014)

Virginia McCombs (2012)

Dail Mullins (2010)

Mary Kay Mulvaney (2015)

Rosalie Otero (2010)

Anne Ponder (2012)

Jeffrey Portnoy (2010)

John Portz (2011)

Alison Primoza (2011)

Ann R. Raia (2013)

P. Brent Register (2013)

Jack Rhodes (2012)

Jessica Roark (2014)

Rae Rosenthal (2018)

James Ruebel (2015)

Hallie Savage (2010)

Samuel Schuman (2010)

Rick Scott (2011)

Charlie Slavin (2011)

Ricki Shine (2012)

Laurie Smith Law (2018)

Robert Spurrier (2010)

Elaine Torda (2013)

Lothar Tresp (2016)

Norm Weiner (2012)

Marca Wolfensberger (2013)

Len Zane (2015)

John Zubizarreta (2010)