It’s Time to Celebrate; 2016 Roueche Excellence Awards Winners Announced


Congratulations to Valencia’s eight outstanding 2016 John & Suanne Roueche Excellence Award recipients.

The John & Suanne Roueche Excellence Awards are open to League for Innovation in the Community College alliance member institutions to celebrate outstanding contributions in improving student learning and leadership by community college faculty and staff.

The recipients are:

East and Winter Park Campuses

  • Suzette Dohany, Professor of Speech, for her innovative and creative contributions to the Winter Park Campus and her leadership in divisional, campus and collegewide work, namely being instrumental to the creation and programs of the Global Citizenship track for the Honors Program, as well as serving as the president of the Collegewide Faculty Association.
  • Ilyse Kusnetz, Professor of English, based on her advancement of innovation and creativity in Winter Park Campus and collegewide projects and her expertise in the English discipline, specifically in the area of creative writing. She has exemplified a love of literature, has created opportunities for students to participate in readings by a vast array of poets and writers and was instrumental in creating the inaugural Winter Park Writers Festival.
  • Jolene Rhodes, Professor of Mathematics, for her unending dedication to her profession, her colleagues and her students, including creating a course that combined and integrated intermediate and college algebra, developing and creating her own course materials and training other faculty members to teach the course and help test the materials.

Osceola and Lake Nona Campuses

  • Michael Robbins, Professor of English, because of his work above and beyond excellent instruction, such as being active in the Honors College, attending almost all co-curricular events, planning activities, being an active Phi Theta Kappa advisor, traveling on multiple service learning trips and being committed to faculty governance, including serving as the Faculty Assembly president.
  • Jackie Starren, Faculty, New Student Experience, for being an integral part of the REACH program and now the New Student Experience faculty team at the Osceola Campus. She places student learning at the forefront of her decision making and always seeks opportunities to support the campus and the College.
  • Lisa Gray, Professor of Accounting, for her work being a “developer” of students, demonstrating a ready capacity to harness students’ abilities and possessing a level of dedication necessary for students to excel in college and beyond. For example, Lisa has served as the faculty advisor for the Osceola Campus Chapter of the Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting.

West Campus

  • Donna Colwell, Professor of English, for the work she has done with the Interdisciplinary Studies redesign. Always ready to accept a challenge or strive to do a better job, she has not only attended faculty development classes, but she has designed several. Now, she is a TLA leader, working with tenure track faculty to help them grow as Valencia educators.
  • Karen Cowden, Professor of Reading, for being deeply engaged with the mission of Valencia, ready to advocate for both students and faculty. For example, she works with the developmental education planning team, with online instruction, was a Faculty and Instructional Development faculty fellow and has served in multiple roles for the Faculty Senate, including president.

Recipients will be recognized in a series of activities and promotions and honored at special events during the 2016 Innovations Conference on Sunday, March 20 – Wednesday, March 23 in Chicago.

For additional information about the John & Suanne Roueche Excellence Awards Program, visit the website.

1 Comment

  • Michele McArdle said:

    Congratulations to each one of the recipients! Their collective body of work has had a impressive impact on our students' lives.

    AMWed, 16 Dec 2015 07:28:13 +0000Wed, 16 Dec 2015 07:28:13 +0000am15,7:28 am

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