Department of Rhetoric & Writing
Department of Rhetoric & Writing


Hairston Prize for Excellence in Teaching

The Department of Rhetoric and Writing awards The Hairston Prize for Excellence in Teaching to honor Assistant Instructors of all DRW courses. Students and colleagues (i.e. DRW AIs and faculty) nominate instructors whom they feel deserve the award; eligible instructors then assemble a teaching portfolio for review. An instructor is eligible for this award if he or she meets the following requirements:

  • he or she has taught at least three courses in the Department of Rhetoric and Writing formally evaluated by the Measurement and Evaluation Center,
  • he or she has served as an AI for at least four sessions (regular or summer) in the English Department and/or the DRW,
  • he or she has received at least four nominations.

The winner of The Hairston Prize will be honored at a ceremony in May and will receive a cash award. If you are impressed by your instructor's teaching this semester, you can nominate him or her for this award. Your nomination should include the following information:

  • your name;
  • your instructor's name;
  • the course number, semester, and year in which you were taught by this instructor; and
  • a brief statement explaining why your instructor deserves this award.

Submit nominations to the DRW's office in Parlin 3 or via email to the Department of Rhetoric and Composition at Nominations received by mid March (that is, prior to spring break) will be eligible for that year's award; nominations received after the March cut-off will be considered for the following year.

Award Winners

The Maxine Hairston Prize for Excellence in Teaching

1993-1994 Christy Friend
1994-1995 Daniel Anderson
1995-1996 Bret Benjamin
1996-1997 Andrew Osborn
1997-1998 Robert Hornback
1998-1999 Erik Lupfer
1999-2000 Vimala Pasupathi
2000-2001 Peter Caster
2001-2002 Leta Deitholf
2002-2003 Lee Rumbarger
2003-2004 James Warren
2004-2005 Zachary Dobbins
2005-2006 Lacey Donohue
2006-2007 Joey Taylor
2007-2008 Michelle Neely
2008-2009 Anna Stewart
2009-2010 Sean McCarthy
2010-2011 Connie Steel

2011-2012 Chris Ortiz y Prentice
2012-2013 Rachel Mazique
2013-2014 Kendall Gerdes
2014-2015 Dustin Hixenbaugh
2015-2016 Laura Thain
2016-2017 James Garner

James L. Kinneavy Prize for Scholarship in Rhetoric and Composition

1997-1998 Joanna Wolfe
1998-1999 Michael Erard
1999-2000 David Gold
2000-2001 Julia Garbus
2002-2003 Robert Brown
2003-2004 Jenny Edbauer
2004-2005 Sue Mendelsohn
2005-2006 Jan Fernheimer
2006-2007 James Warren
2007-2008 Jim Brown
2008-2009 Rodney Herring
2009-2010 Dale Smith
2010-2011 Andrew Rechnitz
2011-2012 Megan Eatman
2012-2013 Doug Coulson
2013-2014 Eric Detweiler
2014-2015 Mary Hedengren
2015-2016 Kendall Gerdes
2016-2017 James Garner

The Mastery of Electronic Media in Education Award  (MEME)

2003 John Pedro Schwartz
2004 Olin Bjork and Matthew Russell
2006 John Pedro Schwartz
2007 John Jones, Nathan Kreuter, Tim Turner, and Vessela Valiavitcharska
2008 Nathan Kreuter and Jillian Sayre
2009 Sean McCarthy
2010 Matt King
2011 Marjorie Foley, Scott Nelson, Chris Ortiz y Prentice, Andrew Rechnitz, and Cleve Wiese
2012 Will Burdette
2013 Steven LeMieux
2014 Lily Zhu
2015 Rhiannon Goad
2016 Lily Zhu
2017 Caroline Barta & Amy Vidor