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Fifteen Faculty and Alumni to be Honored at MU Awards Ceremony

October 8th, 2010

Story Contact: Emily Martin, (573) 882-3346,

COLUMBIA, Mo. – The Mizzou Alumni Association (MAA) will honor 15 outstanding faculty and alumni Friday, Oct. 8, at its 43rd Annual Faculty-Alumni Awards Ceremony. The Distinguished Service Award, the Distinguished Faculty Award and 13 Faculty-Alumni Awards will be presented.

 Gary L. Smith, who received a doctoral degree in education from the University of Missouri in 1971, will receive the 55th Annual Distinguished Service Award, the highest honor awarded to an MU alumnus. Established in 1956, the award recognizes outstanding service by an individual whose efforts have added to MU’s excellence.

 Smith has spent 43 years on the Mizzou campus distinguishing himself in his profession and serving the needs of the university. He served as director of admissions and registrar from 1970 to 2000. After retiring, he was named director emeritus. He was a pioneer in automated registration and an expert in high-school-to-college relations. Smith is past president and vice president for data management and research for the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers and a past member of the board of trustees of American College Testing Inc. He received the Legion of Merit in 1995 after retiring as a colonel in the U.S. Air Force and the Missouri Air National Guard. Smith also received the Military Officer Association of America Citizenship Award in 2009. He is an endowed member of MAA and a Jefferson Club Ambassador. Smith and his wife, Carol, live in Columbia.

 Jerry L. Atwood, Curators Professor and Chair of Chemistry at MU, will be honored with the 51st Annual Distinguished Faculty Award. Established in 1960, the award recognizes a faculty member whose sustained efforts in teaching, research and service have added to MU’s excellence. The award places special emphasis on the faculty member’s relationship with students.

Atwood has been widely recognized as one of the world’s finest chemists by the New Journal of Chemistry. Nine of Atwood’s former students work at this magazine and dedicated an entire issue to him in May 2008 for his 65th birthday. In 1969, he discovered liquid clathrates, which led to the development of the field of ‘environmentally friendly’ chemistry. He co-wrote a textbook and co-edited an encyclopedia on the area of supramolecular chemistry. In 2002, Atwood found a way to store hydrogen and methane by a process called adsorption. This work has the potential to make safe and efficient hydrogen-fueled cars a reality. He received a Faculty-Alumni Award from MAA in 2002, the Midwest Chemist Award from the American Chemical Society in 2005, and the Honorary Medal of the Institute of Physical Chemistry from the Polish Academy of Sciences in 2005. He also was elected as a foreign member of the Polish Academy of Science in 2000 and as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry in 2005. Atwood has published more than 650 articles and founded the Journal of Inclusion Phenomena in 1983. He is a Jefferson Club Distinguished Fellow and a Catalyst Society Member. Atwood lives in Columbia and has four children, a son-in-law, a daughter-in-law and four grandchildren.

MAA Faculty-Alumni Awards recognize the achievements of faculty and alumni. Assistant, associate and full professors are considered for their work as teachers and researchers and their relationships with students. Alumni are considered for both their accomplishments in professional life and service to their communities and alma maters. This year, 13 awards were presented:

Brett Begemann, executive vice president, seeds and traits, Monsanto  Company

Jeffrey P. Bonner, president and CEO, Saint Louis Zoo

Michael S. Clarke, founder and president, Clarke Orthopedic Clinic & Surgical Center

Douglas A. Grouws, professor of mathematics education, MU

Tarek S. Mansour, executive vice president for research and development, Xenon Pharmaceuticals

Mary Beth Marrs, assistant dean, Robert J. Trulaske, Sr. College of Business, MU

Rick McGuire, director of sport psychology for Intercollegiate Athletics and adjunct assistant teaching professor of sport psychology, MU   

Mike McKean, associate professor and futures lab director, Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute, MU

Kenneth A. Paulson, president and CEO of First Amendment Center, Vanderbilt University

Anne Lewis Raymond, managing director, Crow Holdings

Thomas D. Schultz, former director of development, MU

Frederick S. vom Saal, Curators Professor of Biological Sciences, MU

John A. Walsh, executive vice president and executive editor, ESPN

Biographies of the Faculty-Alumni Award winners are available upon request.

The Mizzou Alumni Association makes MU stronger by proudly supporting the best interests and traditions of the state’s flagship, land-grant university and the oldest public university west of the Mississippi River. The Association is the voice for 250,000 alumni worldwide and keeps Tigers connected to each other and the university they love. Since 1853, the Association has impacted generations of students and alumni by preserving their traditions. With the pride of a record-breaking 40,000 members and the strength of more than 1,300 volunteers, the Mizzou Alumni Association’s Faculty-Alumni Awards celebrate outstanding faculty and alumni who work to advance the arts, the sciences and the humanities. At Mizzou, scholarship and teaching are driven by a sense of public service – the obligation to produce and disseminate knowledge that will improve the quality of life in the state, the nation and the world.