McCrone Award Winners Honored for Creative Scholarship - Humboldt State Now

McCrone Award Winners Honored for Creative Scholarship

Three distinguished faculty members—Tim Bean, Jeffrey Kane, and Meredith Williams—have been selected as recipients of the 2016 McCrone Promising Faculty Scholars Award. Selected for exhibiting potential in a specific field, each faculty member will receive $1,500 to assist his or her program of creative activity, scholarship, or research. This year’s recipients will be formally honored at a reception where they’ll deliver short presentations of their research.

This year’s recipient of the Alistair & Judith McCrone Graduate Fellowship Award is Alex Bippus, who is pursuing a master’s degree in Biological Sciences. Bippus has been selected for demonstrating potential to succeed in his chosen field, and will have $3,000 applied to his tuition for the upcoming academic year.

Following are brief biographies of the 2016 McCrone Promising Faculty Scholars and the Alistair & Judith McCrone Graduate Fellowship Award winner.

Tim Bean, Department of Wildlife 2016-0422-TimBean.jpg
Tim Bean, Dept. of Wildlife

Tim Bean is a highly regarded Wildlife professor who has a long track record of scholarly excellence and a deep commitment to his students. Using cutting edge technology and spatial analysis, Bean examines the distribution of terrestrial wildlife across spatial scales. He has co-authored several papers on applied animal ecology; his most recent ones on habitat relationships and population ecology of kangaroo rats were published in two prestigious outlets: Journal of Applied Ecology and PLoS ONE.

Bean’s dedication goes beyond his research. He supports student involvement in the classroom, the field, and the lab. Currently, he and 22 undergraduate volunteers are analyzing satellite imagery to find unknown giant kangaroo rat colonies. Bean has also mentored undergraduate students, some of whom have given award-winning presentations at conferences. He gives generously of his time to the University community and his profession, integrating his scholarly activity with the educational mission of the Wildlife Department.

Jeffrey Kane, Department of Forestry and Wildland Resources 2016-0422-JeffKane.jpg
Jeffrey Kane, Dept. of Forestry and Wildland Resources

Jeffrey Kane (’08, Fire Ecology and Fuels Management) is quickly establishing a reputation for himself with the high quality of his scholarly research. As an assistant professor specializing in fire ecology, behavior, and management, Kane puts HSU’s unique Fire Lab to use, engaging students and faculty in his work on fire ecology. His scholarly efforts have led to more than 15 conference workshop presentations, and 10 refereed papers in the three and a half years since he joined campus.

Kane has generated more than $250,000 in research grants and is currently sharing lead research duties on a project to support undergraduate and graduate Hispanic students. He’s also investigating the reproductive ecology of the Baker cypress, a tree that depends on wildfire to propagate. Decades of successful fire suppression are putting the cypress’s survival at risk, and according to his colleagues, Kane’s broad experience is uniquely suited to undertake this complex research project.

Meredith Williams, Department of Sociology 2016-0422-MeredithWilliams.jpg
Meredith Williams, Dept. of Sociology

Meredith Williams has been instrumental in developing the Department of Sociology’s recently established and rapidly growing major, Criminology and Justice Studies. Williams ensures the major maintains its rigor while offering a unique focus on race, class, gender, sexuality, and ability and how these factors intersect with the criminal justice system.

Williams mentors dozens of undergraduate and graduate students and creates additional opportunities for engagement by involving her students and colleagues in her research, which centers on the experiences of members of the LGBT community within the criminal justice system. As she develops this exciting and unique research niche, Williams has contributed to sociology textbooks and multiple journals, while presenting her research at conferences both academic and activist. Williams is also dedicated to teaching and has developed multiple teaching resources used by her and her colleagues. Currently, she’s serving as co-editor of a special edition of the “Humboldt Journal of Social Relations,” titled “Sexuality in the Post Marriage-Equality Era.”

Alex Bippus, Alistair & Judith McCrone Graduate Fellow 2016-0422-Bippus-Large.jpg
Graduate Student Alexander Bippus

Alex Bippus is an accomplished Biology graduate student with a breadth of research experience, from paleobotany and molecular biology, to ecological field surveys. Alex graduated magna cum laude as an HSU undergraduate in 2015. Now a Biological Sciences graduate student in Professor Alexandru Tomescu’s paleobotany lab, he’s working on his thesis, which investigates the explosive evolutionary radiation of vascular plants in the Devonian Period.

Known to be friendly, focused and hard working, Alex has participated in an array of lab- and field-based research projects. Notably, as a freshman, he won the prestigious Maynard Moseley Award—an honor usually won by doctoral students. He has made presentations at national botanical meetings; given a talk in Argentina; participated in a National Science Foundation­sponsored summer research experience; and co-authored an upcoming book on fossil microbes. An aspiring college professor, Alex was a Botany Supplemental Instruction course instructor, and he taught after-school enrichment classes in beginning band, guitar, and French to local elementary school students.