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ASU ranks 10th on environmentally friendly campuses list

December 4, 2019

Arizona State University works vigilantly to incorporate sustainability practices in all of its daily environments. In 2006, the university made real headway by establishing the nation’s first school of sustainability. Since then, efforts to become a more environmentally conscious campus have multiplied, and the university’s efforts have earned notice.

U.S. News and World Report recently highlighted ASU as one of 10 environmentally friendly college campuses, citing the university’s Carbon Project, which helps reduce carbon emissions on campuses, and ASU’s Fair Trade designation, which encourages vendors to use products that are produced with fair labor practices and environmental protections.

The ranking came from Sierra Magazine’s 2019 Cool Schools scores. Thompson Rivers University in British Columbia, Canada, ranked No. 1. The top 10 includes the University of California, Irvine, the University of Connecticut and Colorado State University. ASU ranked 10th in the nation, ahead of the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Oregon State University and Cornell.

"ASU continues to be recognized for its comprehensive solution-focused approach to sustainability. With efforts across research and education, climate action, water optimization, zero waste, personal action, collaborative action, resilience, community success, and food; we appreciate the recognition of ASU’s success," said Corey Hawkey, assistant director of University Sustainability Practices.

In 2006, ASU increased its efforts to certify its buildings under the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design rating system. The Fulton Center on the Tempe campus became ASU’s first LEED-certified building by reducing its urban heat island effect through roof and landscape design, using recycled building materials and reducing interior and exterior water usage by more than 30% and 50% respectively. So far, ASU has 54 LEED certifications.

Wrigley Hall, which is home to ASU’s School of Sustainability and the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability, was also renovated using sustainable products and low-emitting or low-emissions paint. The roof is also lined with 124 solar panels, a reminder that ASU is committed to renewable energy sources.

At the Polytechnic campus, students have a new tool to learn about holistic food systems through the Garden Commons, a community garden which aims to eliminate food insecurity among the ASU community. The locally, organically grown produce supports the campus and nearby food banks.

Learn more about ASU’s sustainability efforts and how students, faculty and staff can make an impact.

Top photo: Three hundred solar panels cover much of the Memorial Union patio and Cady Mall. Photo by Charlie Leight/ASU Now

Copywriter , Media Relations and Strategic Communications

 
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7 ASU faculty named AAAS fellows

November 26, 2019

Seven outstanding faculty from Arizona State University have been named as fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

ASU’s C. Michael Barton, Julian Chen, Gary Marchant, Emilia Martins, Charles Perrings, Sander van der Leeuw and Hao Yan were honored for recognition of their career contributions to science, innovation or socially distinguished efforts to advance science and its applications.

The AAAS, publisher of the journal Science, is the world’s largest general scientific society. Election as a fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers. Within that general framework, each awardee is honored for contributions to a specific field.

The seven new ASU faculty members' election this year brings the total number of AAAS fellows affiliated with ASU to 81.

The AAAS 2019 fellows individual scientific achievements include:

C Michael Barton

C. Michael Barton (anthropology), for distinguished contributions to the field of anthropology (geoarchaeology), particularly using data science and computational modeling to study the long-term, dynamic interactions of people and the environment. He has ongoing projects on human ecology and the emergence of coupled socio-natural landscapes in the Mediterranean.

"Understanding how humans interact with the environment over the long-term past is one of the best things we can do to help us understand how people will deal with this in the future," Barton said. "We're not starting from zero. We're starting from a long history."

Barton is director of the interdisciplinary Center for Social Dynamics and Complexity, and heads the Graduate Faculty in Complex Adaptive System Science. Barton also directs the international Network for Computational Modeling in Social and Ecological Sciences (CoMSES Net), is a member of the Science Steering Committee of AIMES (Analysis and Integrative Modeling of the Earth System, FutureEarth), and co-directs collaborative projects with the National Center for Atmospheric Research on social dimensions of climate change.

Sander van der Leeuw (anthropology), for outstanding contributions to the application of adaptive complex system theory in anthropology and the emerging field of sustainability. Van der Leeuw is an archaeologist and historian by training, specializing in the long-term impacts of human activity on the landscape. He is recognized as a pioneer in the application of the complex adaptive systems approach to socio-environmental challenges, and in this context has studied ancient technologies, ancient and modern man-land relationships and innovation. In 2012, he received for his work the U.N. Environment Agency’s highest award: “Champion of the Earth for Science and Innovation."

At ASU, he is the founding director of the School of Human Evolution and Social Change and was dean of the School of Sustainability. Currently, he is director of the ASU-SFI Center for Biosocial Complex Systems.

"Whenever any change occurs, man-made or natural, for better or worse, it alters in real time what options exist and what approaches will steer us toward positive futures," said van der Leeuw. "But the social scientists and nature scientists looking for those changes on their own sides of the aisle rarely have access to the same culture, tools or trade languages."

To that effect, van der Leeuw and ASU colleagues are working on a multiyear plan to create intellectual fusion among these once-distinct fields of study. This includes establishing shared research agendas, shared computational software, and convergent development and implementation standards.

Julian Chen 

Julian J.L. Chen (biological sciences), for distinguished contributions to our understanding of the function and evolutionary divergence of telomere sequences and telomerase structure in eukaryotes. Chen is a professor of biochemistry in the School of Molecular Sciences at ASU. His research focuses on the structure, mechanism, biogenesis and evolution of the telomerase enzyme that plays a critical role in human aging and cancer.

Telomeres cap the ends of chromosomes to prevent chromosome fusions. Typical human cells are mortal and can only undergo a finite number of cell divisions due to the gradual loss of telomeres. Telomerase is an enzyme essential for maintaining telomere length and conferring cellular immortality to allow for infinite cell growth. Therefore, stem cells contain high levels of telomerase and live for a long time, while typical human cells lack telomerase and die with old age.

"Telomerase is one of the most fast-evolving enzymes in biology. How telomerases employ divergent mechanisms to maintain telomeres in different species is a fundamental and fascinating question," Chen said. "In addition to the basic research, we are also looking for ways to enhance telomerase activity which will restore the lost telomere length in adult stem cells and to even reverse cellular aging itself."

Because of its role in chromosome stability, telomerase regulation is a critical step in tumorigenesis and aging. Elucidation of the molecular mechanism of telomerase function could have significant impact on the development of therapeutics for human aging and cancer.

Gary Marchant

Gary Marchant (societal impacts of science and engineering), for distinguished contributions to research, teaching and outreach at the intersections of law, science and biotechnology, including important work with legislative, executive and judicial groups.

“Law moves much slower than science and technology; it's known as ‘The Pacing Problem,’” said Gary Marchant, Regents Professor of law and faculty director of the Center for Law, Science and Innovation. “So, with many questions in genetics and other emerging technologies, legislators and regulators have to establish rules. When someone claims injury or invasion of privacy, courts and juries are forced to adjudicate new claims using old laws, which often fit poorly.”

His research interests include legal aspects of genomics and personalized medicine, the use of genetic information in environmental regulation, risk and the precautionary principle, and governance of emerging technologies such as nanotechnology, neuroscience, biotechnology and artificial intelligence.

Emilia Martins

Emilia P. Martins (biological sciences), for pioneering use of phylogenetic comparative methods to infer evolutionary mechanisms of animal behavior and for service as a program director at the National Science Foundation. Martins studies behavioral evolution by mapping the ancient history of lizard communication in the southwestern U.S. and by studying how sensory systems impact social behavior in the biomedically-important zebrafish.

“We study the mechanisms underlying the evolution of complex and multimodal communicative signals,” Martins said. “Why are there so many kinds of lizard displays? Why use both visual and chemical signals? Why does signal composition vary across individuals and species?”

More generally, her research program asks long-term questions about the evolution of complex behavioral phenotypes, and how evolutionary forces have interacted over long periods of time to shape phenotypic change. Martins is a professor in the School of Life Sciences and associate director of graduate programs.

Charles Perrings 

Charles Perrings (biological sciences), for distinguished contributions to our understanding of the interactions between economic behavior and ecological processes. Perrings’ research addresses the relation between economic behavior and changes in the diversity of other species. A recent focus has been the relation between behavior and the emergence and spread of infectious diseases of humans, animals and plants.

One example is the role of behavior in the impact of heavy rainfall events, such as hurricanes, on the transmission of vector-borne infectious diseases in temperate areas of the world, including the southern coastal U.S. The breakdown of public and private health infrastructure can put people at increased risk of infection, but the movement of people may be even more important.

"Since mosquito-borne diseases tend to be spread by the movement of people rather than the movement of mosquitoes, disaster-induced movements of people can shift where and when outbreaks occur," Perrings said.

Perrings directs (with Ann Kinzig) the Ecoservices Group — a group researching the interactions between society and the biophysical environment. He is a professor in the School of Life Sciences.

Hao Yan

Hao Yan (chemistry), for pioneering work and distinguished contributions in structural DNA nanotechnology and molecular self-assembly. His overarching research goal is to achieve programmed design and assembly of biologically inspired nanomaterials and to explore its applications in nanoelectronics, controlled macromolecular interactions and biosensing and bioimaging. 

One of his more recent applications was in the burgeoning field of nanomedicine, with his work on using nanobots to fight cancerous tumors by choking off their blood supply.

Constructed from DNA folded into 3D shapes — a process nicknamed “DNA origami” — these autonomous, molecular-level machines “go into the blood to find the tumor and kill it,” said Yan. Crucially, they leave healthy cells untouched. Yan hopes to begin to be able to treat human cancer patients within the next five years.

Yan is currently the Milton D. Glick Distinguished Professor in Chemistry and Biochemistry in the School of Molecular Sciences and director of the Center for Molecular Design and Biomimetics in the Biodesign Institute.

Election as an AAAS fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers. This year, 443 members have been awarded this honor by AAAS because of their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. New fellows will be presented with an official certificate and a gold and blue (representing science and engineering, respectively) rosette pin on Saturday, Feb. 15, at the AAAS Fellows Forum during the 2020 AAAS annual meeting in Seattle.

Joe Caspermeyer

Manager (natural sciences) , Media Relations & Strategic Communications

480-727-4858

10 ASU academics recognized as world’s most influential researchers over the past decade


November 26, 2019

Arizona State University is at the forefront of research and innovation and is recognized as one of the fastest-growing research universities in the country. In fiscal year 2018, ASU hit a record $617.7 million in research expenditures, rising to seventh in national research rankings. And over the past decade, ASU researchers have been busy publishing papers and pioneering contributions in their respective fields, and their peers have taken notice.

About 6,200 academics from around the world, including 10 researchers (one retired) from ASU, have been named Highly Cited Researchers by the Web of Science Group. In order to receive this prestigious title, the researchers’ published papers had to rank in the top 1% of most cited works over the last decade. These researchers were cited the most by their peers in order to advance the work in their areas of expertise. old main Download Full Image

“We’re very proud of the researchers who have been recognized for their exceptional work,” said Sethuraman "Panch" Panchanathan, executive vice president of ASU’s Knowledge Enterprise and ASU’s chief research and innovation officer. “Being cited by ones’ peers is a hallmark of highly respected work, and is demonstrative of the caliber of professionals dedicated to advancing impactful, cutting-edge research here at ASU.”

Below are the ASU academics recognized as Highly Cited Researchers in 2019.

The Biodesign Institute

Hao Yan is the Milton D. Glick Distinguished Professor in Chemistry and Biochemistry and director of the Center for Molecular Design and Biomimetics in the Biodesign Institute. Yan has made great strides in his research of structural DNA nanotechnology and DNA-directed self-assembly. One of his most recent achievements involves the use of nanobots — and a process dubbed “DNA origami” — to kill cancerous tumors. The DNA origami, which is folded into 3D shapes — much like the folded works of art — chokes off cancerous tumors’ blood supply.

Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering

Paul Westerhoff is an ASU Regents Professor in the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. Westerhoff has earned wide recognition for his focus on the treatment and occurrence of emerging contaminants in various bodies of water, and the risks nanomaterials can create. His research team is now examining how artificial intelligence can help alleviate global water issues.

Sefaattin Tongay is an assistant professor in the School for Engineering of Matter, Transport and Energy in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. Tongay’s work is focused on next-generation quantum materials and understanding their optical, electrical, mechanical and magnetic properties. Tongay argues that classic 3D materials won’t be able to meet demands in future technological advancements. His research involves 2D materials and utilizing these materials’ properties in new applications.

W. P. Carey School of Business

Kevin G. Corley is the chair of the Department of Management and Entrepreneurship and a professor in the W. P. Carey School of Business. Corley’s field research examines the process by which managers and employees establish their roles in an organization, and how they process change around them. Corley’s research has helped analyze organizational change and how it affects identity, image and learning.

Luis R. Gomez-Mejia is an ASU Regents Professor in the Department of Management and Entrepreneurship in the W. P. Carey School of Business. Gomez-Mejia researches the relationships of international management, strategic management, executive compensation and family business. One of his most highly-cited papers focuses on family business and whether any unique attributes help family firms make business decisions based on financial rather than socioemotional criteria.

Thomas Y. Choi is a professor in the Department of Supply Chain Management in the W. P. Carey School of Business. Choi has led the study of the upstream side of supply chains for decades and is currently looking at ways purchase managers play a lead role in various areas, including cyberdefense. In one of his groundbreaking studies, Choi analyzed social networks among suppliers, rather than traditionally looking at buyer-supplier relationships.

The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Jianguo Wu is the Dean’s Distinguished Professor of Sustainability Science in the School of Life Sciences in The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and has been focused on landscape ecology for 25 years. His research analyzes urban planning and ways we can improve the landscapes where we live. In one of his most recent published papers, Wu argues for contextualizing global, regional and local analysis to tackle landscape ecology problems. By researching both the bigger and smaller pictures, Wu believes we better position ourselves to handle complex sustainability concerns.

Uwe Weierstall is a research professor in the Department of Physics in The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and is credited with important research in the area of allergic disease. Weierstall collaborated with a team from the MIPT Center for Molecular Mechanisms of Aging and Age-Related Diseases to investigate the structure of a G protein-coupled receptor responsible for inflammation in asthma and other allergic diseases. By looking at the 3D structure, researchers can understand how drugs control these receptors, potentially paving the way to design drugs with fewer side effects.

Marc Messerschmidt is an associate research professor in the School of Molecular Sciences in The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. His areas of expertise include materials analysis, X-ray crystallography and chemistry. 

Michael O’Keeffe is an emeritus Regents Professor in the School of Molecular Sciences in The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and has led groundbreaking work on the fundamental structure and properties of molecules and materials over the decades. The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences awarded him the 2019 Gregori Aminoff Prize in crystallography for his contributions to the development of reticular chemistry. 

Copywriter, Media Relations and Strategic Communications

Legends Luncheon honors defenders of the gridiron


November 19, 2019

Update: See video and photos from the 2019 Homecoming and Legends Luncheon below.

More than 35 of ASU's best defensive football players will return for the Legends Luncheon this Friday. Download Full Image

Arizona State University’s defensive gridiron greats will be honored at the Legends Luncheon the day before this week's Homecoming game, where the Sun Devils will take on the Oregon Ducks. The luncheon will celebrate ASU’s former student-athletes who played three years in the NFL, have been inducted into the Sun Devil Athletics Hall of Fame or were named First Team All American during their time in college.

ASU’s football players and coaches will be honored at the event hosted by the ASU Alumni Association and the Sun Devil Club from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 22, at the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown, 340 N. Third St. These defensive players have achieved numerous athletic accolades on the gridiron including Most Valuable Player, Pro Bowler and inductee into the College Football Hall of Fame.

Players and coaches returning for the Legends Luncheon represent football teams from 1967 to 2007, including players from the 1969 WAC championship team, 1970 Peach Bowl team, 1987 Rose Bowl team and 1997 Rose Bowl team. Some of the more than 50 players returning for the event are Bob Breunig, Ron Brown, Curley Culp, Windlan Hall, Al Harris, Bob Kohrs, Nathan LaDuke, Ron Pritchard, Phillippi Sparks, Jeremy Staat and Darren Woodson.  

Video by ASU

Former NFL and ASU wide receiver J.D. Hill, who played for the Sun Devils in 1967, 1968 and 1970, had this to say about the importance of football defense: “When it really gets down to it, it’s defense that really puts the game where it needs to be, especially to give you an opportunity to win. And without defense, you just can’t win.”

Former Dallas Cowboys and ASU quarterback, and current Sun Devil Athletics consultant and Sun Devil Club ambassador Danny White talked about some of the great ASU defensive players who went on to have successful careers in the NFL.

“All of the pressure or lack of pressure on the offense comes from the defense,” said White, who played for the Sun Devils from 1971 to 1973. “We had a defense that set the tone,” White said. “They flew around. They were physical. When you mention names like Breunig, Haynes, Pritchard and Culp, there’s one common denominator, and that’s 'tough.'”

Sun Devil Athletics Deputy Athletics Director Jean Boyd, who played for the ASU defense during the 1991–94 seasons had this to say: “They say offense wins games but defense wins championships. A great defensive player really is a comprehensive individual who understands the mind, body and spirit of the game and seeks to elevate themselves in all those areas to be the best that they can from a physical standpoint.”

Information about the Legends Luncheon can be found at alumni.asu.edu/legends.

Tracy Scott

Director, Strategic Communications, Office of Senior Vice President & Secretary of University

480-965-8150

W. P. Carey School announces 2019 Alumni Hall of Fame members

Top business leaders to be honored at Nov. 22 event


November 19, 2019

Five Arizona State University graduates will be inducted into the 42nd annual W. P. Carey School of Business Alumni Hall of Fame on Friday, Nov. 22. This year's class is comprised of a food industry executive who has built and operated major franchise brands, a technology executive who provided financial guidance and leadership to a multinational technology conglomerate, a health care executive who dedicated his career to the strategic direction and financial well-being of Arizona residents, the highest-ranking African American executive working in college sports and a Clio Award-winning marketing executive and entrepreneur.

Previous inductees come from such diverse organizations as the Arizona Public Service, Avnet, JPMorgan Chase Bank, Native American Connections and Sony. Download Full Image

"Each of our honorees has been selected for their significant contributions to their professions, the community, and the W. P. Carey School of Business," Dean Amy Hillman said. "Together, they bring great awareness to students that you can reach your goals in any industry with a high-quality education, commitment and hard work."

The 2019 W. P. Carey Alumni Hall of Fame inductees are:

William Van Epps (BS in marketing, '71) William Van Epps is CEO of New England Authentic Eats LLC. For 45 years, Van Epps has had an extraordinary record driving growth in foodservice, retail and franchising, including 31 years in the international arena. His experience ranges across many household names in the restaurant industry, from Papa John's International to Long John Silver's Inc. and Shake Shack. Van Epps serves on the board of advisers for New England Authentic Eats LLC, Walhburgers and Locknet (a lock and security door manufacturer). 

Larry Carter (BS in accountancy, '74) — Larry Carter joined Cisco in January 1995 as vice president of finance and administration, chief financial officer and secretary. In July 1997, he was promoted to senior vice president of finance and administration, CFO and secretary. Carter was elected to the Cisco board of directors in July 2000. In May 2003, upon his retirement as CFO and secretary, he was appointed senior vice president, office of the chairman and CEO. He retired in November 2008. Carter was a member of Cisco's board of directors until 2014 and is currently a trustee and founder of the Cisco Foundation and a member of the CHP 11-99 Foundation board of directors.

Richard Boals (BS in accountancy, '79) — Richard Boals served as CEO at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Arizona, Inc. from April 2003 to July 2017. Boals joined Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona (BCBSAZ) in 1971 and served in a variety of capacities, seeing it through numerous years of growth and success. Before beginning his career at BCBSAZ, he served four years in the United States Air Force. Boals currently serves on the Arizona Biosciences board, the board of Phoenix Children's Hospital and Northern Arizona University's Innovations Advisory Board. He is a member of Arizona Tech Investors, ASU President's Club and the W. P. Carey School of Business Dean's Council.

Kevin Warren (MBA, '88) — Kevin Warren is the commissioner-elect of the Big Ten Conference, officially commencing duties on Jan. 2, 2020. Warren will be the first African American commissioner of an Autonomous 5 Conference. Before joining the Big Ten Conference, Warren was chief operating officer of the Minnesota Vikings. Warren and his wife, Greta, are active members of the Minneapolis-St. Paul community where they support several local elementary schools, scholarships for first-generation college students and the University of Minnesota Masonic Children's Hospital.

Matthew Michalowski (BS finance, '09) — Matt Michalowski is the president and founder of PXL, a creative technology agency that works with the world's largest blue-chip media brands, including NBCUniversal, 20th Century Fox, Disney, Paramount, Warner Bros. and Sony, among others. In 2012, on his 25th birthday, Michalowski embarked on his own and founded PXL. Over the next seven years, PXL would work on the marketing campaigns for some of the biggest theatrical releases, including "Bohemian Rhapsody," "X-Men: Days of Future Past" and "The Revenant" — winner of the 2016 Academy Award for Best Picture. In 2019, PXL was acquired by Studio City, an entertainment marketing agency specializing in television. 

Alumni, business leaders and students will attend the W. P. Carey Alumni Hall of Fame event on Friday, Nov. 22, at McCord Hall Plaza on ASU's Tempe campus. The reception starts at 5:30 p.m. Advance registration is requested at wpcarey.asu.edu/alumni/hall-of-fame or by calling 480-965-3978.

Shay Moser

Managing Editor, W. P. Carey School of Business

480-965-3963

Sun Devil leaders to receive honors at 2019 Homecoming

ASU Alumni Association awards Homecoming honors


November 12, 2019

The ASU Alumni Association will honor Sun Devil leadership during the upcoming Nov. 23 Homecoming game, which will pit ASU against the University of Oregon.

The Alumni Association will recognize Arthur “Art” Pearce II, ’75 BS in business administration, with its Alumni Service Award, and JoAnn C. Holland, president and CEO of four Valley-based networking organizations, with its Alumni Appreciation Award. Trish Gulbranson, ’88 BS in accountancy, the 2018-19 chair of the organization’s board of directors and National Alumni Council, also will be honored for her service to the organization.  headshot of ASU alum Art Pearce Arthur “Art” Pearce II Download Full Image

Alumni Service Award: Arthur “Art” Pearce II, ’75 BS in business administration

A third-generation ASU alumnus, Pearce supports his alma mater through service and philanthropy. He is a current member of The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Dean’s Council, Institute of Human Origins Research Council and President’s Club. Within Sun Devil Athletics, Pearce supports the Sun Devil Club, The Coach’s Club and Camp Tontozona. A passionate Sun Devil, Pearce provided the philanthropic support to create the statue honoring Pat Tillman inside the stadium and the copper trident statue outside the stadium.

He and his family endowed the Zebulon Pearce Distinguished Teaching Award within The College to honor his grandfather, which annually recognized an outstanding faculty member from humanities, social sciences and natural sciences. Recently, Pearce named the largest conference room in Armstrong Hall in honor of his grandfather and the Pearce family. He became president of Zeb Pearce Companies in 1983 and continued to lead the company until its sale in 2004. Pearce also is active in community organizations like the Arizona State Board of Geographic and Historic Names and the Phoenix Zoo.  

Woman’s portrait

JoAnn Holland

Alumni Appreciation Award: JoAnn Holland

As the leader of four geographically based networking groups for women throughout the Valley, Holland demonstrates her commitment to leadership development, building community and advancing women. She is the president and CEO of Central Phoenix Women and Women of Scottsdale, as well as founder and CEO of East Valley Women and North Valley Women.

Prior to her current position, Holland worked at Wells Fargo, most recently serving as vice president, community affairs manager for the Wells Fargo Foundation of Arizona. She has received national recognition with the Cele Kennedy Award from the Arthritis Foundation, the Humanitarian Award from Pima Council on Aging, and Appreciation Awards from ICAN, the Rodel Foundation and Junior Achievement of Arizona. She received an Appreciation Award from the ASU College of Education in 1993 when she spearheaded the initiative to establish a playground for the children who attended the College of Education Preschool on the Tempe campus. This year, East Valley Women named the ASU Alumni Association its 2019 Philanthropy Partner.  

Woman’s portrait

Trish Gulbranson

Past President’s Award: Trish Gulbranson, ’88 BS in accountancy

Trish Gulbranson served as chair of the ASU Alumni Association Board of Directors and the National Alumni Council last year and will serve as the past chair for the remainder of the fiscal year. During her term, she served as a member of the ASU Foundation investment and audit committees, Sun Devil Athletic Board and led the Sun Devil 100 committee. She will continue to spearhead the Sub Devil 100 committee during her current term.

Her professional background in finance and entrepreneurship fuels her enthusiasm for supporting and growing the ASU Alumni Association. She began her career as a CPA in a large accounting firm and later rose to president and CEO of an international software company before founding Derma Health, a medical aesthetics company. Today, Gulbranson is also a member of the Trustees of ASU.

Learn more about the ASU Alumni Association’s celebration of Homecoming week.

Planning events at ASU? Watts College has you covered


November 6, 2019

Does your boss ask you to plan your department team builder? Is it all hands on deck when your team hosts a conference or workshop? Do you secretly have no idea what you are doing?

ASU offers a Special Event Management certificate through the School of Community Resources and Development, in the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions. In this six-class certificate program, you will learn the tools to become a confident and successful event professional. people on tour of Sun Devil Stadium JD Loudabarer and his team talk about game day preparations. Download Full Image

Topics include:

• Food and beverage.
• Crowd management.
• Protocol.
• Budgeting.
• Marketing.

ASU employees can use qualified tuition reduction. Most courses are offered on the Downtown Phoenix campus one night a week with an online class available over the summer. The program also includes site visits to local venues and businesses, guest speakers and the opportunity to plan and execute your own event.

Classes are aligned with the academic calendar and begin in January. Visit the program's website for more information or email scrdadvising@asu.edu to speak with an adviser.

ASU's Amy Hillman honored with Women of Achievement award


October 30, 2019

Amy Hillman, dean of the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University was one of the 14 women honored at the In Business Magazine 2019 Women of Achievement luncheon on Oct. 24. She joins Cindy McCain, Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego and other community leaders who are being celebrated for their business success, connection and service to the community, and their efforts to grow business.

“Amy’s leadership is a rare mix of authenticity and vision that invites people into our W. P. Carey community," alumnus and philanthropist Rich Boals said. "Whether that person is a student, donor, an employee, or a community business owner, they see how they fit into our story, how they make a difference for our school.”  W. P. Carey School of Business Dean Amy Hillman Dean Amy Hillman. Download Full Image

Hillman received her PhD from Texas A&M University in strategic management and business and public policy in 1996 and was inducted as an Outstanding Doctoral Alumni from her alma mater in 2008. She joined W. P. Carey as an associate professor in the Department of Management in 2001 and earned professorship in 2006, before becoming chair of the Department of Management in 2007. Hillman assumed her current role as dean in 2013 and is the first woman to serve in that position. In addition, she has spent several summers as a guest professor at the Institute for International Management at Johannes Kepler University in Linz, Austria.

Hillman’s 25 years in higher education are best displayed through her multitude accolades, including an editorship of Academy of Management Review, serving as a founding fellow of the International Corporate Governance Society, and being named an Academy of Management Fellow in 2014. She received the Academy of Management’s Outstanding Educator Award in 2018, and will serve as vice-chair elect in 2020 and ultimately president of the Academy of Management in 2022.

Since Hillman became dean, the W. P. Carey School of Business has grown in both enrollment and prestige. Fall 2019 marks a new enrollment record with almost 5,500 undergraduate and graduate students joining the school across all campuses. Current rankings place W. P. Carey among the best business schools in the country — U.S. News and World Report named the school the No. 3 online MBA for veterans, No. 6 among online MBA programs, and No. 22 nationwide for part-time MBA programs. The Economist placed W. P. Carey as the No. 12 executive MBA worldwide, the University of Texas at Dallas Business School Research Productivity Rankings listed the school as No. 25 in research productivity worldwide, and seven undergraduate disciplines scored in the U. S. News and World Report Top 20. Hillman played a key role in launching the innovative Forward Focus MBA, which seeks to provide students with tailored, practical experiences, and the Professional Flex MBA, which offers part-time students enhanced customization.

As the first female dean at W. P. Carey, Hillman takes her mentorship role seriously. She regularly hosts Women’s Circle events in the community, featuring female scholars discussing their research and industries. Attendees include CEOs and leaders from across the Valley. Further, Hillman volunteers as a speaker and panelist for audiences learning about board equity, governance and leadership.

Hillman takes this perspective into the broader business community as well. Today, she serves on the board of publicly traded CDK Global, on the independent governance committee of U-Haul International, and on the nonprofit boards of AACSB and the ASU Research Park.

Shay Moser

Managing Editor, W. P. Carey School of Business

480-965-3963

New Graduate College website puts graduate education resources at students' fingertips


October 28, 2019

Arizona State University's Graduate College has launched its new website: graduate.asu.edu. The redesigned website features improved functionality, easy access to essential information for the ASU community and a more streamlined and engaging look, which includes a new video experience.

The Graduate College is a full-service resource for current students, graduate faculty and staff at ASU. The new website focuses on raising awareness of the programs and services the college provides to improve the graduate school experience for all. Graduate students at ASU Graduate students walking on the ASU campus. Download Full Image

“It was very important to us that the new website accomplished two things,” said Alfredo J. Artiles, dean of the Graduate College. “We want everyone to be aware of the programs and services we offer the ASU community and we want to make sure people can find what they need as quickly and as easily as possible.”

The new website navigation is audience focused to make it easy for prospective and current students, postdoctoral fellows and ASU faculty and staff to find the policies, support programs and tools they are looking for. New landing pages display the information most frequently searched for by site visitors helping them quickly access crucial resources.

Prospective students

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“We encourage everyone to visit the new website and explore the programs and services provided by the Graduate College,” Artiles said.

 
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Archivist to leave theater collection she built over the past 35 years

October 23, 2019

Katherine Krzys grew the ASU Child Drama Collection into world-renowned repository; she is set to retire Jan. 1

“Call Kathy.”  

It’s a phrase that gets thrown around quite a bit among scholars and practitioners in the field of theater for youth.  

And call they do.  

They call with questions about scripts and set designs. A director might have a question about a play. A student will call wanting to know more about the history of a writer.  

Others are interested in starting up a theater company of their own and want to know how to do it.  

And so they call Katherine Krzys, a woman whose name has become nearly synonymous with the Child Drama Collection, an internationally acclaimed archive for theater for youth which began at Arizona State University 40 years ago and which Krzys has curated for the last 35 — a career from which she has announced she will retire at the end of this year.  

“The hardest thing is convincing people that history is important,” said Krzys, who also has served as curator for ASU Library's Rare Books and Manuscripts, and in recent years facilitated the acquisition of the Civic Classics Collection, which includes first editions of “The Federalist” and writings by Frederick Douglass, Susan B. Anthony and the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. “I always say, if I can talk to you for five minutes and show you something in the archive, you will come back.” 

Building an archive

The Child Drama Collection began rather informally, the way one might imagine most things did in the 1970s.   

Lin Wright, former chair of what was then known as the Theatre Department at ASU, had arrived in Tempe in 1973 at the urging of her colleague Don Doyle, who was teaching courses in creative drama at the time at ASU.  

Wright wanted to develop a graduate program in theater for youth, a small but burgeoning field that was taking on new life in the hands of artists and scholars who were further exploring theater as a tool to teach and connect with children. 

Wright understood the value of a research collection, one that might bring in the kind of materials that would allow an MFA and doctoral program to flourish. More than that, she had the connections in the field to make it happen; Doyle had introduced Wright to one of the field’s founders, Rita Criste

“Rita Criste showed up on my doorstep with 32 boxes,” recalled Wright, who hosted Criste for several days at her house, where they ate many sugary snacks and sorted through her papers documenting one of the earliest creative drama programs in the country. The program, led by Criste, had been taught in the public school district of Evanston, Illinois, where Criste had been a teacher. “The first texts in the field that were written came out of that program. She was under-recognized, which was why it was so important to have her papers.”  

Armed with Criste’s materials and another 100 boxes belonging to the Children’s Theatre Association of America, Wright began approaching Marilyn Wurzburger, then head of Special Collections at the ASU Library, to see about kickstarting a research collection, which Wurzburger was able to get greenlit in in 1979.  

“I had no appreciation for what the Child Drama Collection was going to develop as. It was an unusual collection, unlike anything we had before,” said Wurzburger, who was unprepared for the variety of materials that began entering the doors of Hayden Library: costumes, stage designs, miniature sets. “I was in for a shock and realized we were in the midst of something big.” 

Desperately in need of archival assistance, Wurzburger reached out to Wright for help processing the collection. She needed someone with theater knowledge, who could both curate an archive and interface with theater professionals.  

Wright had someone in mind. 

Enter scene: Krzys

At 36, Krzys had left California with her 3-year-old daughter and a background in acting and directing to begin the MFA Theatre for Youth program at ASU.  

“I wanted to be an actress but found out that wasn’t my forte, because I cried a lot when I didn’t get cast,” said Krzys, who eventually got cast in a children’s production and was hooked. “There is nothing better than performing for an audience of children. They hold nothing back. And just when you think they aren’t paying attention, they come back with the most sophisticated, intuitive response.”  

While immersed in graduate work at ASU, Krzys had discovered the Child Drama Collection — and the work of Sara Spencer, who started the first publishing house in 1935 that exclusively printed plays for children. Krzys ended up writing about Spencer for her applied project and, with Wright’s help, got it published as part of an anthology, “Spotlight on the Child: Studies in the History of American Children’s Theatre,” by Roger Bedard and C. John Tolch.   

Krzys’ interest in the history of the field, coupled with her experience as an actor and director, and now scholar, gave her a unique perspective in carrying out the work of an archivist in the Child Drama Collection and made her a powerful force in growing it.   

She began assisting Wurzburger part time in 1985 and eventually secured a continuing appointment as a full-time archivist in 1995. 

“Kathy was doing such a phenomenal job and the collection began growing tremendously,” Wurzburger said. “When Kathy asked donors for their materials, they often did not refuse.” 

In those days, Krzys would just pick up the phone and dial the numbers of playwrights. 

“It was easy for me because I knew the field,” said Krzys, who also benefitted from the professional network of Wright and Doyle. “I would say to them, ‘I read your play. I directed your play. Where are your papers going?’”  

Many had not yet been asked the question. However, they soon found themselves engrossed in conversation with Krzys about the collection and the history of the field.

“It was Kathy’s charm that played a big part in this process,” said Wurzburger, who routinely hosted the collection’s donors when they came to visit ASU.

“They would sit around my dinner table and talk, and Kathy was always there,” Wurzburger recalled. “I really enjoyed it and so did my husband. This is where I was learning my child drama history.” 

As ASU’s theater department grew, so did the collection, and vice versa, just as Wright had planned. The MFA and PhD programs in Theatre for Youth are now among the oldest in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts

Under Krzys’ leadership, the Child Drama Collection swelled in size and became home to a number of high profile collections that today include the prestigious Irene Corey Collections, which took 10 years to acquire; the Jonathan Levy Collection, which expanded research possibilities back to the 16th century; the papers of Lowell and Nancy Swortzell, early pioneers of educational theater in New York; and the David, Sonja and Benjamin Saar Yellow Boat Collection, which documents the writing and production of “The Yellow Boat,” a play written by David Saar, founder of the theater company Childsplay, for his son Benjamin, a hemophiliac who contracted AIDS through a blood transfusion. 

ASU’s Child Drama Collection now houses over 9,000 books, nearly 300 periodical titles, more than 2,000 audio-visual materials and almost 5,000 linear feet of manuscripts. 

“The archive exists the way it does because Kathy has worked so hard to document and keep the field history,” said Stephani Etheridge Woodson, a professor in the School of Film, Dance and Theatre, within the Herberger Institute, and director of the MFA and PhD programs in Theatre for Youth. “Future generations will benefit from this love and care. We would not be where we are today without Kathy, and her legacy will ensure the continued health of our field and our historical contexts.” 

The next generation 

Dontá McGilvery said that Krzys was the first person he met after being accepted into the Theatre for Youth PhD program. The meeting led him to begin exploring the archive looking for plays written by African American playwrights.  

When he began teaching an African American theater class in 2018, he enlisted the help of Krzys, who spent hours searching for plays and identifying playwrights.

“She was searching as if this were her project,” said McGilvery, winner of the 2019 ASU MLK Jr. Student Servant-Leadership Award and a 2018-19 ASU Spirt of Service Scholar. “For my class, I needed a play that was the first recorded play by an African American written around 1820, and she located it. I had mentioned it to her but didn’t realize that she had been searching for it. There was only one copy, and she said, ‘I found it. Do you think we should get it?’ She purchased it and now we have it at ASU.” 

Beyond her energy and passion, McGilvery says what sets Krzys apart is her desire to learn and grow.

When presented with criticism in a seminar class about the lack of diversity in the educational theater field, Krzys took note and the very next day came prepared with materials reflecting those voices that had been missing from the conversation, McGilvery said.

“Kathy said to me, ‘It’s good that you’re asking about these plays. You’re requiring us to get more information. We need these plays. We need to make sure they are here.’”

End scene 

In 2017, Krzys was awarded the highest achievements in the field of theater for youth: the Children’s Theatre Foundation of America’s Corey Medallion and the Campton Bell Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Alliance for Theatre and Education. 

Previous winners include television’s “Mr. Rogers Neighborhood,” the National Endowment for the Arts and Charles Schulz of “Peanuts” fame.

“Kathy Krzys has been one of our stars for a long time,” University Librarian Jim O’Donnell said. “Her special work with the Child Drama Collection has won national recognition, and her leadership in seeing our rare books and special collections through a series of challenging transitions has earned her the admiration and gratitude of all who work with her.”

Krzys’ contributions and approaching retirement will be recognized this weekend as part of a symposium celebrating the 40-year anniversary of the Child Drama Collection and the 45-year anniversary of the Theatre for Youth program at ASU — two histories that will forever be entwined.

Symposium presenters will include Woodson, Wright, Doyle, Wurzburger, Bedard, Suzan Zeder and other scholars, students and practitioners in the field, including Krzys herself.

“I’m a great believer in fate,” Krzys said. “Fate brought me to ASU, brought me to the library to study Sara Spencer, and kept me here in Arizona.”

While Krzys plans to leave Tempe and move to Gainesville, Florida, to be closer to her daughter and grandchild, she says fate is throwing things in her face right now, alluding to the next chapter of her career — a potential book project and a possible partnership initiative to make the history of theater for youth more digitally accessible. 

“The door just keeps opening,” she said. “The phone just keeps ringing.”

Top photo: Kathy Krzys leads a seminar session for graduate students on the history of theater for youth. Photo by Deanna Dent/ASU Now

Britt Lewis

Communications Specialist , ASU Library

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