2008-2009 Distinguished Service Award

March 21, 2009

TO: Campus Community

FROM: President Jon Whitmore

It is an honor for me to announce the selection of Dr. Judith Lessow-Hurley, Professor of Elementary Education in the Connie L. Lurie College of Education, as the recipient of the San José State University Distinguished Service Award for 2008-2009. This award recognizes exemplary leadership contributions to the university and/or the community or profession that brings credit to San José State University.

Dr. Judith Lessow-Hurley is an exceptionally meritorious professor whose service to the university, over the course of almost three decades, has been nothing less than exemplary. She is recognized as one of the "pioneers" addressing the critical importance of providing a multicultural education and preparing future teachers to serve California's increasingly diverse student populations in the university and in the K-12 system. Her outstanding service as a member of the Academic Senate, which started in 1996, and her extraordinary service as its chair for two consecutive years (2006 to 2008) brought her an unparalleled level of recognition by her peers as "the most outstanding and most effective faculty leader of the Senate in many years," making her most worthy of her selection as the recipient of the 2008-2009 Distinguished Service Award.

Professor Lessow-Hurley's leadership service to San José State University and the extended community has benefited the university enormously. As the university's facilitator of the Silicon Valley Higher Education Roundtable (SilVHER), a consortium of presidents and chancellors that works toward recruitment and success of underrepresented minority students in college, Dr. Lessow-Hurley has demonstrated outstanding intellectual and administrative leadership,. She led outreach to parents on the A-G requirement, coordinated communication planning for all members of SilVHER on issues of public policy affecting higher education and reorganized SilVHER to more effectively achieve its purposes. She also has served on numerous campus committees such as the Campus Fee Advisory Committee, the Center for Faculty Development and Support Advisory Committee, the New Faculty Orientation Advisory Committee, the Campus Reading Program Committee and the Campus Planning Board. She has served in many ways in the Lurie College of Education, including taking a significant role with the college's accreditation process.

As Senate chair, she chaired the Faculty Recognition and Awards Committee and served on the steering committee for the Accessibility Technology Initiative as well as the sub-committee for accessible instructional materials. During the first iterations of campus-wide strategic planning, she served on the Goals Advisory Committee and the University Planning Council and chaired the Resource Review Board. At the request of the Chancellor's Office and in collaboration with Provost Sigler, she organized SJSU's full-campus conversation and wrote the document to provide our input to the trustees' strategic planning process. Under her direction, the senate passed key policies to implement the chancellor's executive order regarding accessibility and reached agreements with the faculty union to enable the use of online SOTE's for online classes, and to begin a pilot of online SOTE's for "face" classes. A task force was created to address sustainability, to review the processes by which general education classes are certified, and to research the question of open access to faculty publications. She is currently serving as past chair on the Senate Executive Committee, an ex officio to the University Library Board and represents the Lurie College of Education on the Campus Planning Board. And, as a result of a campus-wide faculty election, she is now serving her first three-year term as one of three San José State University representatives on the CSU Statewide Senate (ASCSU).

Professor Lessow-Hurley is an exceptional teacher-scholar who has been a lead instructor in areas related to meeting the needs of second-language learners and diverse student populations. As a strong proponent of bilingual education, her scholarship reflects her dedication to serving all students. Her recent chapter, "Language Policy and Language Provincialism: Barriers to Globalization in Public Schooling in the United States," published in Education Landscapes in the 21st Century: Cross-cultural Challenges and Multi-disciplinary Perspectives and the fifth edition of her text, The Foundations of Dual Language Instruction, evidence a scholar who has established herself in the field of scholars promoting quality education for all students in our diverse, global community.

Please join me in congratulating Dr. Judith Lessow-Hurley for her selection as the recipient of the 2008-2009 Distinguished Service Award, which will be presented to her at the 10th Annual Faculty Service Recognition and Awards Luncheon on Tuesday, April 14, 11:45 a.m., in the Student Union Barrett Ballroom.