The College of Arts and Sciences has announced the 2016–2017 recipients of the Outstanding College Service Awards: Professor John Hooker, School of Communication, and Professor Doris Houston, School of Social Work.

Service awards are presented to faculty members who demonstrate excellence in professional service, including both professional service and strong citizenship. Hooker and Houston will be honored at the Spring Dean’s Address and Awards Ceremony at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 11, in the Old Main Room in the Bone Student Center.

Hooker has performed a wide range of service activities related to instruction. In addition to his work with students on thesis committees and as their major advisor on final projects, he has served on several standing and ad hoc committees, including the school’s committees on Instruction and Teaching Effectiveness, Graduate Workteam/Assistantships, Research and Grants, and Critical Inquiry.

Hooker has also been extensively involved in advancing pedagogy and instructional communication in various roles with the Central States Communication Association and the National Communication Association. He has extended his service into the realm of scholarship through his membership on multiple editorial boards, including the Basic Communication Course Annual, Communication Teacher, and The Journal of Radio and Audio Media. He also has several of his own publications.

Hooker excels in his service as the co-director of Com 110 course at Illinois State, known as the Basic Communication Course nationally. Hooker co-facilitates a two week pre-semester graduate teaching assistant (GTA) teacher training workshop each August. He works with approximately 20 first-year GTAs during these two weeks to prepare them to teach their own section of Com 110 their first semester as sole instructor. In 2008 Com 110 received the honor of being declared the inaugural Basic Course Program of Excellence Award given by the National Communication Association.

Hooker continues to be an integral part of maintaining that level of excellence and prestige. He was the 2017 recipient of the Stan and Sandy Rives Excellence in Undergraduate Education Award.

Houston joined the Illinois State University faculty in 2005, and her service reflects both depth and breadth across all levels of her professional career, including service to the School of Social Work, the College of Arts and Sciences, Illinois State University, and the child welfare sector of the profession of social work.

Houston has been a member of the human behavior curriculum sequence, the policy sequence, and the research sequence in the School of Social Work. She has also been a departmental reviewer for the Institutional Review Board for five years. She has also served as a departmental reviewer for the Institutional Review Board and as chair of the University Review Committee, which formulates faculty appointment, salary, promotion, and tenure policy on behalf of the Academic Senate.

Her most noteworthy contribution to the School of Social Work is her service as the director of the Center for Child Welfare and Adoption Studies, which contributes valuable service to the child welfare sector and is a point of pride for the School of Social Work. The most recent projects it has produced are the Youth in College Project and the First Star Academics Project.

Houston is a member of the planning group for the Culturally Responsive Campus Community conference, and she served on the 2016 search committee to recommend a new director of the Equal Opportunity and Access Office as well. She was selected to be an Administrative Fellow in the College of Arts and Sciences for fall 2016, and her administrative project through the fellowship includes working with the dean and a group of faculty in the college to develop recommendations to enhance equity and inclusion for faculty, staff, and students with the college.

Houston was selected by President Larry Dietz to serve on the Steering Committee for the University’s response to a cultural climate survey. Members of the committee have the opportunity to identify and rectify embedded institutionalized practices that have disadvantaged some people from marginalized groups. Recommendations from this committee will invite Illinois State to become a model and leader in equity, inclusion, and justice for universities across the nation.

Frequently she sees the need and offers assistance before the need is expressed, and her selfless dedication at all levels is an example of her belief in her philosophy statement of her obligation to give back to each of her communities.