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Four Faculty and Staff Recognized with 2018 President’s Awards

Category: Employees

4 award winners with President Joe DiPietro Photo by Jed Dekalb

NASHVILLE – From discovering medical breakthroughs to breaking down boundaries to higher education, recipients of the 2018 President’s Awards represent excellence among the faculty and staff at the University of Tennessee.

Four employees from three UT campuses across the state were recognized by UT President Joe DiPietro during an awards luncheon this afternoon in Nashville.

“One of my greatest honors as president is working with outstanding individuals and having the opportunity to celebrate their talents, achievements and contributions,” DiPietro said. “I’m proud of the four winners and 22 nominees announced today, as well as the thousands of other passionate and hardworking faculty and staff members I’m privileged to call colleagues.”

President’s Awards are the highest honor a UT employee can receive from the University and are intended to spotlight success and inspire excellence. Honorees are selected each year from a system-wide pool of candidates nominated by campus and institute leaders. Commemorative plaques and monetary awards of $3,000 are presented.

This year’s winners are:

Educate Honoree: Trevor Sweatman

Trevor Sweatman

Trevor Sweatman, UT Health Science Center professor of pharmacology and medical education, has made significant and ongoing educational contributions across multiple colleges and academic programs. Sweatman transformed curricula for professional and graduate students in innovative ways using learner-centered, active learning approaches such as interprofessional education, flipped sessions, podcasts and simulation.

His goal is not just to teach pharmacology, but also that students understand the importance of pharmacology across disciplines and how they must work with other disciplines. To that end, eight years ago, he and a colleague developed a professional exercise involving medical and pharmacy students solving problems of medication non-adherence in healthcare. Along with teaching and advocacy, Sweatman is a member of the UT Center for Cancer Research and the United States Pharmacopeial Convention for the College of Medicine.

Discover Honoree: Samuel Dagogo-Jack

Samuel Dagogo-Jack

Dr. Samuel Dagogo-Jack, a UT Health Science Center professor of medicine and chief of the division of endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism, has made outstanding contributions that have added to the understanding of and interventions for diabetes and prediabetes. Internationally known for diabetes education, treatment and research, Dagogo-Jack discovered and developed treatments for hypoglycemia-associated autonomic failure and leptin regulation in humans.

Dagogo-Jack has been awarded 32 grants, including 10 National Institute of Health and three American Diabetes Association grants, which have totaled more than $20 million during the past 20 years. He has published seven books along with more than 270 peer-reviewed publications. Dagogo-Jack directs the Endocrinology Fellowship Training Program and serves as the A.C. Mullins Endowed Professor in Translational Research. He serves on the World Health Organization’s Strategic Planning Committee on Diabetes Mellitus. The National Medical Association named him Internal Medicine Section Physician of the Year and the American Diabetes Association awarded him the Banting Medal for Leadership. He also received the Distinction in Endocrinology Award from the American College of Endocrinology.

Connect Honoree: Elizabeth Strand

Elizabeth Strand

Elizabeth Strand, director of veterinary social work and clinical associate professor of biomedical and diagnostic sciences at UT Knoxville, is a pioneer in her field of study and works to educate veterinary professionals nationwide. Strand developed “veterinary social work” and is the founding director of the UT College of Veterinary Medicine’s veterinary social work program, which is the first of its kind in the world.

Her initial discipline vision went from the creation of programs focused on client grief and the importance of human-animal bond to include comprehensive veterinary social work services and related education. In addition, Strand teaches veterinary teams how to manage compassion fatigue and stress. She recently launched SAVE (Suicide Awareness in Veterinary Education) to educate veterinary professionals and students nationally about mental health issues and raise awareness of the resources available.

Support Honoree: Charley Deal

Charley Deal

Charley Deal, UT Martin associate vice chancellor for alumni relations and annual giving, is passionate about serving the people of West Tennessee and helping others realize their dreams. Deal solicited private contributions to substantially fund the Fayette County Center, one of UT Martin’s five, and it attracts students from Memphis and surrounding counties.

Deal also gives of himself. He and his family sponsor students from his home county of Hickman to visit the UT Martin campus without concern for travel costs. Deal is an active member of his community and an advocate for UT Martin and Weakley County.

More information about the awards, nominees and award categories and downloadable photos of the winners are available at:


Gina Stafford

Ellie Amador

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Category: Employees