Inductees to Virginia Tech’s 2019 class of the Academy of Faculty Leadership and Academy of Faculty Service have been announced by the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost.

These honors recognize the exemplary contributions of faculty members of all classifications in formal service roles or in areas of leadership.

Richard Crowder, professor of agriculture and applied economics; Robert Denton, professor and department head of communication; and Joseph Merola, professor of chemistry, have each earned membership in the Academy of Faculty Leadership. Richard Helm, associate professor of biochemistry and director of the Mass Spectrometry Incubator, and Nyusya Milman-Miller, associate professor of Russian, earned appointments to the Academy of Faculty Service.

Each honoree will join a community of distinguished Virginia Tech faculty who have been recognized for their exemplary contributions in formal service roles or in the area of leadership.

“Leadership and service are tenets of Virginia Tech’s Beyond Boundaries vision and how we will distinguish ourselves as a leading land-grant university,” said Cyril Clarke, executive vice president and provost. “These outstanding faculty have demonstrated a strong commitment to these precepts and are an example of true leadership and service excellence. I want to commend and congratulate each of them for the impacts they have had on our campus community and the standard they have set for our faculty and students.”

Crowder was nominated for membership in the Academy of Faculty Leadership as a result of his leadership and organization of the Virginia Governor’s Conference on Agricultural Trade and inception of the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences’ Center for Agricultural Trade. Both achievements advance the knowledge and development of agricultural trade throughout the commonwealth and provide unique experiential learning opportunities for undergraduates outside of the classroom.

Denton earned nomination through his strong leadership and oversight of curriculum revision and facilities development for the communication department. He also successfully developed a master’s degree program, achieved strategic hiring impacts, and co-created the Rice Center for Leader Development.

Merola was nominated for his collaborative and visionary leadership efforts in establishing the Graduate School, navigating and supporting the reorganization of the College of Arts and Sciences into College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences and College of Science, and his overall service leadership to the university.

Helm was nominated for Academy of Faculty Service membership based on his exemplary, voluntary effort in acquiring and supporting specialized equipment and providing training and service for researchers university-wide. Milman-Miller’s nomination stemmed from her spectacular success in developing a Russian program and securing a Project Global Officer (Project GO) grant, which supports critical language training and global education of ROTC students.

Faculty nominated for membership in the Academy of Faculty Leadership must have modeled exemplary leadership in formal or informal roles within the university and through activities and approaches that significantly advance a culture of collaborative leadership. They must also promote faculty, staff, and/or student development, advance program or curricular transformation, and make a notable and demonstrable positive impact within the university community.

Academy of Faculty Service nominees must have successfully completed an elected or appointed term of office in university governance, completed the assignment or set of responsibilities associated with a university-level project, or made commendable service contributions at the university level outside of usual responsibilities and ongoing formal governance roles. They must also have made a notable and demonstrable positive impact on the university as evidenced by the academy nomination statement and letters of support.

The Academy of Faculty Leadership and the Academy of Faculty Service are structured to parallel the academies of Teaching Excellence and Outreach Excellence; members are called upon for representative service to university committees.