2014 University Awards

Karl G. Maeser Research and Creative Works Award

This award honors faculty for outstanding research and creative accomplishments and is made possible by the generosity of the Karl G. Maeser Scholarship Society.

Adam T. Woolley

Chemistry & Biochemistry

Professor Woolley has made distinguished contributions in scholarship that are internationally recognized. Moreover, he also excels in teaching and citizenship. His scholarship focuses on the use of miniaturized platforms that can detect and quantify small amounts of important biologically significant molecules (referred to as “lab on a chip”). He has published over one hundred scientific papers and been awarded over $3.5 million of external research support. He has received numerous external awards for his scientific contributions including the prestigious Presidential Early Career Award in Science from President George W. Bush. Professor Woolley is an engaging and creative instructor in the classroom and the laboratory. In addition to Dr. Woolley’s outstanding scholarship and excellent teaching, he is a strong citizen who has accepted numerous and challenging committee assignments inside and outside of BYU. In short, he is an outstanding faculty member in a demanding discipline.


Karl G. Maeser Excellence in Teaching Award

This award honors faculty for outstanding teaching accomplishments and is made possible by the generosity of the Karl G. Maeser Scholarship Society.

Steven W. Graves

Chemistry & Biochemistry

Steven Graves is a model of a dedicated teacher. He has taught biochemistry to thousands of premedical, predental and other science students during his fifteen years at BYU. In addition to being a rigorous teacher, Professor Graves shares life experiences with his students helping them to understand how the gospel, science and family life can all coexist comfortably and bring happiness. In addition to his didactic classroom teaching, Dr. Graves has mentored a number of Ph.D., M.S. and undergraduate students in research focusing on significant diseases of pregnancy that affect large numbers of individuals. Importantly, his scholarship informs his teaching and provides relevant examples of the importance of understanding biochemistry. Professor Graves is an excellent example of a caring teacher whose contributions affect students and colleagues alike. He is fully committed to the mission of Brigham Young University.


Wesley P. Lloyd Award for Distinction in Graduate Education

This award pays tribute to a faculty member of exemplary performance in teaching, research and citizenship in graduate education.

Barry M. Willardson

Chemistry & Biochemistry

Barry Willardson has made significant contributions to Graduate Education at BYU. He is an avid researcher with an international reputation whose scholarship into how cells “signal” (i.e., “see” their outside world and convey what they see into actions) provides fundamental understanding of complex biochemical processes. He involves both undergraduate and graduate students in his scholarship and they are coauthors on his research papers. He teaches his students scientific ethics and meets with them regularly to encourage their progress. He also is an important role model who demonstrates hard work, scientific curiosity, and a love for the gospel. He champions education by seeking high standards. Dr. Willardson is not only an excellent professor but he’s also a team player who is willing to sacrifice his time and efforts to help students and build the Department and University.


Alumni Professorship Award

This award honors a faculty member for teaching excellence.  The award carries a three-year stipend made possible by the generosity of the BYU Alumni Association.

R.  Brent Adams

Computer Science

Brent Adams represents the best of undergraduate education at BYU.  He started the BYU Center for Animation and has been doing great things with it ever since.  He has worked to overcome boundaries between artistic, science, and technology disciplines, and enrich academic pursuits with strong professional influences and financial support from generous donors.  This combination has yielded a creative environment where students thrive.  Under Brent’s guidance, students in the Center for Animation have produced short animations that have consistently received Student Emmys and Student Academy Awards.  Many students who have worked on these projects have received leading jobs in the top animation companies in the world, helping fulfill Brent’s vision of ensuring that entertainment is infused with high moral and professional standards.

Young Scholar Award

This award encourages and acknowledges outstanding promise and contributions by faculty in the early stages of their academic careers.

Jessica Purcell


Jessica Purcell has excelled as a scholar during her time here at BYU.  She has received several prestigious external awards, including an NSF CAREER award and a Sloan Fellowship – a fellowship that only one other professor has received while at BYU.  Jessica has published extensively in strong venues.  She is also a superb teacher, with ratings well above department norms and very positive student feedback.  Her strength in teaching carries over into her mentoring of both graduate and undergraduate students, where she has helped numerous students engage in meaningful and publishable research.  Jessica is highly respected, both internally and externally, and has excelled in all aspects of her career.  We look forward to her ongoing contributions in building the department and college.


Richard Roskelley Teaching & Learning Fellowship

This fellowship recognizes the sacrifice and efforts by the university’s support services in providing a transfer of positions and budget to enhance teaching and learning.

Blake Peterson

Mathematics Education

Blake Peterson has perhaps done more than any other member of his department in shaping the development of the department.  His fingerprints are all over the curriculum in the department.  He has participated either solely or collaboratively in developing 5 of the courses taught in the department and has typically taught those courses for the first few times.  Blake has also co-authored a best-selling mathematics textbook for elementary school teachers. He is also an exceptional teacher, with a commitment to plan his courses and lessons “fresh” each time he teaches them, in order to stay current.  Blake has been a leader in his department in the development of courses, in championing good mathematics instruction, and in applying his own research to improving his teaching.


Alcuin Fellowship Award

The Alcuin Fellowship recognizes outstanding teacher-scholars whose work at the university transcends the limits of their disciplines and who have made significant contributions to the general education and honors curriculum.

Steve Turley

Physics & Astronomy

Steve Turley is a dedicated teacher who has a passion for and commitment to general education, providing exceptional, sustained service to general education in both the classroom and university administration.  Steve served as associate dean for freshman year in General Education.  Even with his heavy administrative involvement, Steve worked with his department chair to identify courses to teach that would work with his situation.

Steve has been involved with PS 100, one of the large GE courses on campus, for his entire time here at BYU.  This experience gave him the perspective and insights needed to contribute effectively to a major revision of the text used for the course.  He wrote several chapters for the new text and was actively involved in providing input to the committee, and was one of the key members that developed the first online version of the course.  Steve was also the first to introduce “Clickers” into PS 100 in an effort to increase student learning.


President’s Appreciation Award

This award recognizes staff and administrative personnel for exceptional service, creativity and competence.

Lynn Patten


Lynn Patten is a recipient this year of a President’s Appreciation Award.  Lynn has a long history of outstanding service in the college. Several examples include her organization and oversight of the Student Research Conference.  The conference has grown in size and complexity.  For us faculty, it just happens, but we don’t see all of the behind the scenes organization that Lynn has spearheaded.  With the remodeling of the deans suite, Lynn was the organizational force that interacted with contractors and kept things on track, and I know it is a far better facility than if I had been in charge of it.  Perhaps one of Lynn’s most pronounced impacts has been in managing the college marketing team.  We felt strongly that we needed this support in the college, but had no FTE to put it together, so Lynn volunteered to manage a student team that we feel has done a remarkable job in supporting many of you in the college.  In so many ways, Lynn is deserving of the recognition that comes with this award.