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Colombo to lead Life Span Institute

John Colombo, interim director of the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies since March 1, has been named to the position on a permanent basis, effective immediately. He is the third person to head the institute since its formation in 1990 out of the Bureau of Child Research. He was appointed following a national search.

Colombo succeeds and will report to Steve Warren, who became vice provost for research and graduate studies in January.

Colombo is a professor of psychology at KU and was associate director for cognitive neuroscience at the Life Span Institute since 2004. Past campus administrative appointments include three years as an associate dean in the former Graduate School and one year as acting chair of the Department of Psychology. He has also served as faculty chair of the campus institutional review board (now the Human Subjects Committee) since 1993.

Sethi earns Smith College Medal

Simran Sethi

Simran Sethi, the Lacy P. Haynes Professional in Residence at the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications, is one of five recipients of the Smith College Medal. The award recognizes graduates' extraordinary professional achievements and outstanding service to their communities.

Sethi is a member of the Sustainability Advisory Board Lawrence and chairs the working group on Climate Change Education, Outreach and Policy for the Mayor's Climate Protection Task Force. She earned her bachelor's in sociology and women's studies at Smith and her master's of business administration in sustainable management from the Presidio School of Management in San Francisco.

Dandridge wins librarian award

Deborah Dandridge

Deborah Dandridge, librarian at the Spencer Research Library, is the recipient of the 2008 Budig Distinguished Librarian Award. Dandridge joined KU Libraries in 1986, working in the Kansas Collection. As the field archivist for the library's African-American Experience collection program, she is responsible for building and maintaining one of the largest archival resources on the subject in the state of Kansas.

Former KU Chancellor Gene A. Budig and his wife, Gretchen, established the library faculty award with KU Endowment in 2001. The award recognizes achievements in professional service and scholarship, as well as reputation among professional colleagues. The award was presented at the KU Libraries' Celebration of Excellence Sept. 19 at Watson Library.

Cassen, Johannes join communications

University Communications has hired two new employees. Tommie Cassen has accepted the new position of legislative and communications manager for University Communications and Government Relations, and Suzannah Johannes has been hired as a new graphic designer in University Relations.

Cassen comes to KU from the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets, where she was program assistant for nearly two years. She has also worked for Payless Shoe Source and the Shawnee County district attorney's office. She has degrees from Washburn University and Mid Plains Community College.

Johannes received a degree in industrial design from KU. She previously worked as a graphic designer for Sac and Fox Casino and for the Lawrence Journal-World.

Woodring named exemplary teacher

Cathy Woodring, clinical assistant professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the School of Medicine-Wichita, was awarded the 2008 Exemplary Teacher Award in the volunteer category by the American Academy of Family Physicians at its recent annual meeting in San Diego. The academy's Scientific Assembly, one of the largest gatherings of primary care providers in the country, was held Sept. 17-21.

The award recognizes exemplary teaching skills, the implementation of outstanding educational programs and the development of innovative teaching models. She is a family physician and has been employed by Wichita Clinic since 1982.

Roberts chosen for achievement award

Jim Roberts, professor of electrical engineering and computer science, is the 2008 recipient of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Education Society Achievement Award. The award recognizes significant contributions to the society over a period of years and will be presented at the society's Frontiers in Education Conference, to be held Oct. 24 in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.

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