Recipients of 2019 Outstanding Research Awards announced

UO physics professor Mike Raymer

University of Oregon researchers in marine biology, sociology, chemistry, physics, computer science, business management, and counseling psychology and human services have been chosen as winners of 2019 Outstanding Research Awards.

Presented by the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation, the awards celebrate the significant achievement of UO faculty members engaged in research and scholarly activity. This year, seven faculty members are being recognized for research excellence in four award categories.

The outstanding career award will go to sociologist John Bellamy Foster and chemist Jim Hutchison. The award is given to tenured faculty members at the associate or full professor rank with a history of distinguished scholarship, external recognition and national and international prominence in their field of research.

Foster is a prolific and world-renowned scholar whose research on the political economy of capitalism and environmental sociology has been highly cited. A pioneer in sustainable chemistry, Hutchison has a record of distinguished scholarship at the interface of nanoscience and green chemistry.

The early career award will be presented to Aaron Galloway, an assistant professor in the Department of Biology and a member of the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology; Nichole Kelly, an assistant professor the Department of Counseling Psychology; and Lauren Lanahan, an assistant professor of management in the Lundquist College of Business. The honor recognizes tenure-track faculty members at the assistant professor rank who have a track record of significant scholarship and emergent recognition and a productive and impactful scholarly record.

Galloway was singled out for being a prolific researcher focused on marine ecology and some freshwater marine ecology. Kelly was recognized for being a highly productive scholar focused on self-regulation and eating behavior as well as the mechanisms underlying disinhibited eating to help craft interventions. Lanahan was named for her interdisciplinary research focused on the role of local institutions and on early career scientists, which speaks to broader conversations that engage economists, policymakers and others outside of business management.

The innovation and impact award will be presented to Michael Raymer, a professor in the Department of Physics. The award is given to an outstanding individual or team that distinguished themselves and the university through entrepreneurial activities that resulted in innovations with a measurable societal or environmental benefits.

This year, for the first time, the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation expanded the award to include individuals who made contributions through broader public engagement activity. That includes proactively sharing research or viewpoints on research and policy issues with the public via traditional or new media channels, an acknowledgement that such efforts serve the larger mission of creating and disseminating knowledge across all disciplines for the benefit of the community, the region and the world.

Raymer was chosen for his scientific leadership and lobbying efforts on behalf of the National Quantum Initiative Act, a $1.2 billion initiative that promises to revolutionize everything from computing to navigation to encryption. Raymer traveled to Washington, D.C. numerous times to meet with congressional committees and staffers and co-authored the original proposal for the initiative.

Over five years, the initiative will support federal efforts to boost investment in quantum information science, support a quantum-smart workforce and allow the UO and institutions like it to play important roles in training the next-generation workforce in quantum information science and technology.

The award for outstanding accomplishment by a non-tenure-track faculty researcher will go to Sameer Shende, director of the Performance Research Lab in the Oregon Advanced Computing Institute for Science and Society. The award honors a non-tenure-track faculty member engaged in independent research activities with a substantial and impactful scholarly record or one with a record of providing exceptional and innovative technical support to UO researchers.

Shende was recognized for his leadership, technical skills, high level of research excellence and productivity and his remarkable abilities as a computer scientist in high-performance computing 

“These awards provide a prime opportunity for us to recognize the outstanding research, scholarship and innovation that takes place on our campus each and every day,” said David Conover, vice president for research and innovation. “We congratulate this year’s recipients who inspire us with their passion for discovery and thirst for new knowledge.”

Recipients of the Research Excellence Awards will be honored — along with recipients of the Distinguished Teaching Awards, the Williams Fellows, the Excellence Award for Outstanding Faculty Mentorship in Graduate Studies — as part of the Outstanding Achievement Awards ceremony, which happens from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 28, in the Ford Alumni Center Ballroom. The ceremony is co-hosted by the Office of the Provost, the Graduate School and the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation.

The ceremony is open to UO faculty members, students, staff and friends from the community. To RSVP, visit the Outstanding Achievement Awards registration page.