SUNY Chancellor Awards Four for Excellence
Four faculty and staff members at SUNY Plattsburgh have been honored by the SUNY Board of Trustees and Chancellor Kristina Johnson with the 2019 Chancellor’s Award for Excellence.
Those selected by state are held as role models within the State University of New York community.
Recipients for the 2019 Chancellor’s Award for Excellence are:
- Dr. Adrian Carr, adjunct, Department of Music: Excellence in Adjunct Teaching
- Ethel Facteau, library clerk 3: Excellence in Classified Service
- Dr. Eric Leibensperger, associate professor of environmental science: Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities
- Dr. Sandra Rezac, associate professor of sociology: Excellence in Faculty Service
Dr. Adrian Carr
The Grammy-nominated Carr began his undergraduate studies of music at SUNY Buffalo. He holds a bachelor of music from Julliard, his MFA and doctorate from Princeton. He is a member of the American Society of Composers and Poets, National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, and the Audio Engineering Society. Prior to returning to Princeton for his doctorate in 2011, Carr already had more than 25 years in the profession, establishing his own recording studio in Manhattan as well as working with major record labels and indie clients in his mastering facility in Montreal.
In addition to teaching applied lessons in music composition, Carr has taught introduction to music technology, music theory 1 and 3, and world music, among others. His contributions extend beyond the classroom, hosting recitals and concerts on campus and in the community. He also assisted in the design of the new music arts management program in the department.
“I taught five courses this semester as an adjunct between the communications and music departments; that’s two more than a full professor, so you can imagine that it was a challenging semester,” Carr said. “So it was very gratifying to get recognition for the many things I’ve done for the college since I came here in 2016.
“My experience is definitely something I bring into the classroom,” he said. “Another benefit of going back to write my dissertation was that I got to know what it feels like to be a student again. I also became aware of the challenges of teaching in 2019.”
Facteau joined the staff at SUNY Plattsburgh as a clerk 1/dispatcher at University Police in 1993. In the fall of 1996, she took a provisional appointment/promotion to library clerk 2 in Feinberg Library. She was granted permanent status in 1997. In April 2009, she was promoted to library clerk 3 in interlibrary loan, Feinberg Library.
Over the course of her career, Facteau has supervised hundreds of students, cross-training them in both the borrowing and lending side of the department, and has worked with hundreds of faculty and staff members to assist with their needs. She as served on the campus RADIUS Development Committee and Affirmative Action Committee through the Title IX Office, and serves as the president of the Plattsburgh chapter of the Civil Service Employees Association.
“When I was approached by Dean Holly Heller-Ross, who told me she was nominating me for this award, I was both humbled and honored,” Facteau said. “When informed that I had received the award, I was elated. This award is especially important for classified staff, as we all play an important role, vital to the mission/operation of the campus.”
Dr. Eric Leibensperger
Leibensperger joined the faculty in the Center for Environmental Science in as an assistant professor in 2012. An atmospheric scientist specializing in atmospheric chemistry (air climate) and climate change, he earned his bachelor’s degree in chemistry and physics from Ithaca College, his maser’s and doctorate in applied physics from Harvard University. He has completed post-doctoral work at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Science in 2012.
He was promoted to associate professor in 2017. His studies focus on the interactions of air pollution and climate change as well as the dynamics of the atmosphere. He expanded his research at SUNY Plattsburgh to include studies of the climate of Lake Champlain and the Adirondacks. Since arriving at Plattsburgh, he has pursued more than $1 million in 18 external funding grants, including the NSF, NASA, NYSERDA, EPA and NOAA, among others. All of his funded projects and proposals were designed to include undergraduate researchers and to engage the community.
“I am proud of my contributions to SUNY Plattsburgh and the greater community through my scholarship,” Leibensperger said. “I am proud that my research has had enough impact on the scientific community and student learning to be recognized. I am also very thankful. The continued encouragement and support of the Center for Earth and Environmental Science, the Lake Champlain Research Institute, and my undergraduate research students have allowed me to undertake and complete many research projects.”
Leibensperger said he tries “to emulate the professors who impacted me the most as a student, and a common theme is their use of research as a learning tool in the classroom and laboratory. I feel that my nomination and receipt of this award validates my efforts and inspires me to continue conducting student-inclusive research,” he said.
Dr. Sandra Rezac
Rezac first arrived at SUNY Plattsburgh as a visiting assistant professor in 2002, joining the faculty of sociology as an assistant professor in 2004. She was promoted to associate professor and became chair of the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice in the fall of 2008. When criminal justice became its own department, she remained chair of sociology from January 2012 to September 2015. She began her third three-year term as chair in September 2018, and as such continues to carry a full-time teaching load.
In addition to departmental service, Rezac has served on numerous college committees, the Faculty Senate, the National Council on Family Relations, the Board of Directors of the ADK Humane Society, and more. She earned her bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
“There are many faculty at SUNY Plattsburgh who engage in extraordinary service, so I feel very honored to have been selected to receive this award,” Rezac said. “I’m particularly committed to shared governance and have served on our local and SUNY-wide faculty senates for many years. It’s important to me to embrace the unique opportunity that faculty have to help shape the academic direction of the college.
“I also enjoy having the chance to get to know other faculty and staff and learn about other departments and programs, particularly outside my own division, so I have a hard time saying no when asked to serve on committees.”
Recipients will receive a certificate and Chancellor’s Excellence Medallion. They will be honored later this year.