The Richard A. Manahan Family Teaching Excellence Recognition Award was created by Dr. Richard A. Manahan and family in 1984. The award is given to a full-time Department of Educational Administration and Foundations (EAF) faculty member to recognize significant teaching quality. The recipient’s quality to, “inspire students to achieve their full learning potential both in and outside of the classroom” is a desired requirement.  

Dr. Dianne Renn was the 2021 award recipient. She has worked as an Illinois State faculty member since 2002. Her research involves assessing the learning and evaluation of programs that bring schools and universities together.

Dr. Phyllis McCluskey-Titus head shot.
Dr. Phyllis McCluskey-Titus

As a scholar and teacher, Dr. Renn has always wanted her work to be practical. She was chosen for the award in recognition of her work in revising and writing the curriculum for the EAF department’s superintendent preparation program. Dr. Renn said, “It was in recognition of what we had and hoped to accomplish in our teaching of aspiring superintendents and what they could do for students, families and communities through their leadership.”

Dr. Phyllis McCluskey-Titus also has received the Richard A. Manahan Family Teaching Excellence Recognition Award in 2001, 2017 and 2020. She joined ISU’s faculty in 1999 and teaches classes in the college student personnel administration master’s degree program as well as the higher education administration doctoral program.

“I place my role as a teacher and educator as one of my primary responsibilities as a faculty member. Helping prepare students for leadership roles in higher education and student affairs, a career I held for 18 years before joining the faculty, is a privilege and a joy,” Dr. McCluskey-Titus said. She expressed that teaching students in EAF is reward enough, but being recognized by nominations from students and her peers for the award has provided her additional motivation to continue to innovate and improve in her teaching role.