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Two Professors Receive Awards for Outstanding Faculty Leadership in Presidential Initiatives

Image: Gentry Patrick

Gentry Patrick. Photos by Erik Jepsen/UC San Diego Publications

UC San Diego professors Gentry Patrick and Keith Pezzoli were among 10 University of California faculty winners announced by UC President Janet Napolitano as recipients of the Award for Outstanding Faculty Leadership in Presidential Initiatives. Napolitano made the announcement during her remarks at the UC Board of Regents on Nov. 19. These influential faculty members, from across the system, are leading the charge in important initiatives such as carbon neutrality, sustainability, food, innovation, diversity and more.

“The brainpower and creativity of these 10 faculty members represent one more proof point of the tremendous difference the University of California makes in our state and beyond,” Napolitano said. “I look forward to congratulating them in person when we recognize their achievements in the New Year."

Award winners will receive $3,000 and will be honored by Napolitano in person at a dinner she will host in early 2016.

Patrick, an associate professor of biology, was honored for creating the UC San Diego/Howard University Partnership for Graduate Success Program, designed to increase the number of graduate school applicants from Howard University to UC San Diego. For the past two years, 10 Howard students in various disciplines spent eight weeks during the fall at UC San Diego on a research internship. Four alumni from the internship have enrolled in UC San Diego graduate programs. Patrick was recently named Director of Mentorship and Diversity in the Division of Biological Sciences.

Image: Keith Pezzoli

Keith Pezzoli

Pezzoli, a faculty member in the Department of Communication and director of the Urban Studies and Planning Program in the Division of Social Sciences, was honored for his role in the UC Global Food Initiative. Pezzoli is a member of the steering committee and leads a subcommittee on urban agriculture and food disparities, participating in a project at the Ocean View Growing Grounds in southeastern San Diego that is turning a food desert into a food forest. He is actively involved with community youth development workshops focused on urban agriculture and health. He also leads a project called CLEAR (Communication, Literacy and Education for Ag Research), a partnership with UC Davis that is helping prepare the next generation of science communicators in food and agriculture.

For more information on the 10 winners of the Award for Outstanding Faculty Leadership in Presidential Initiatives, visit the University of California website.