The Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Research is awarded in recognition of scholarly contributions that expand the boundaries of knowledge and enrich the lives of students and the community. Candidates may nominate themselves or be nominated by their colleagues. Awards at different levels (assistant, associate and full professor) are available.
Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Research - 2016
Brian Bowen is a Research Professor at the Hawaiʻi Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB) in the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology. He has made outstanding contributions to the conservation of marine species such as sea turtles, shrimp, sturgeon and white sharks. Since joining HIMB in 2003, he has trained 23 graduate students, and sits on the committees of another 14 graduate students. He has published approximately 200 peer-reviewed publications, garnering over 13,000 citations. This sought-after speaker has given 16 guest lectures in the past three years and, over his career, has presented 90-plus times. His competitive grants represent more than $6 million of extramural funding. This American Association for the Advancement of Science Fellow earned the Kobe Award for lifetime achievement in aquatic biology.
Loïc Le Marchand
Loïc Le Marchand is a Professor of Epidemiology at the University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center. He has contributed significantly to the field of cancer epidemiology, and was one of the first epidemiologists to study the role of genes and the environment on cancer incidence. His work has been nationally and internationally recognized. He was a member of the 2015 IARC (International Agency for Research in Cancer) committee that reviewed evidence for processed meat as a carcinogen, and was recognized on the 2015 Thomson Reuters’ “World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds and Highly Cited Researchers” list. Extremely successful at obtaining grant support, he brings in several millions of dollars to the University annually. He always strives to build a research environment that fosters the training of new scientists.
Kristin Pauker is an Assistant Professor in the College of Social Sciences’ Department of Psychology. She is described by a nominator as a young scholar whose thoughtful and careful research has contributed to developmental science with an impressive scope and breadth. She is making significant contributions to developmental and social psychology in the areas of intergroup attitudes, racial bias, interracial anxiety and essentialist beliefs. Using cutting-edge methodology, her research particularly focuses on the timely and important topic of racial prejudice. Since joining UH Mānoa in Fall 2011, she has published 12 peer-reviewed journal articles and a book chapter, with four manuscripts currently under review and a number under preparation. She has also been successful in obtaining federal funding to support her scholarly works.
Student Excellence in Research (Master’s and Doctoral) - 2016
The Student Excellence in Research Award is awarded by the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research in recognition of outstanding scholarly research endeavors by students while they pursue a degree at the doctoral, master’s or bachelor’s level.
Megan Ansdell, Graduate Student (Doctoral Level)
Megan Ansdell has pursued her academic interests with distinction at well-known institutions abroad, but returned home to Hawaiʻi to pursue a doctorate in astrophysics at the Institute for Astronomy. Her research is in the exciting area of formation of planetary systems, and she has already published four first-authored refereed papers on her work. She also just completed a paper on her groundbreaking survey of the Lupus cluster, one of the youngest nearby clusters undergoing active star formation. Her surveys of this and other star-formation regions are being made with the new ALMA telescope array, which provides 10 times the angular resolution and sensitivity of previous surveys of star formation regions. These surveys will permit studying planet formation on spatial scales similar to that of our own solar system.
Keisha Bahr, Graduate Student (Doctoral Level)
Keisha Bahr brings tremendous intellectual insight and positive energy into her PhD research at the Hawaiʻi Institute for Marine Biology. Her dissertation work focuses on identifying species and community level responses to local and climate change impacts in the estuarine coral reef ecosystem of Kāneʻohe Bay, in particular coral bleaching. She published her entire dissertation prior to her defense. She has won several awards, including the “Best Graduate Poster” at the annual UH Albert Tester symposium. Due to her natural leadership, she was selected to serve as chair for a novel session that will focus on coral bleaching, monitoring, management responses and resilience at the International Coral Reef Symposium. Most notably, she co-wrote and is co-investigator on a fully funded National Science Foundation grant in the Division of Ocean Sciences.
Ryan Gough, Graduate Student (Doctoral Level)
Ryan Gough is not only one of the top PhD students in the Department of Electrical Engineering, but he has also gained recognition within the international microwave community. He was named the 2014 ARCS Scholar of the Year, the first time a UH engineering student garnered the award for achievement among all sciences within the University. His work on creating dynamically reconfigurable circuits and antennas using liquid metals brings to mind the futuristic shape-shifter in the Terminator movies. This graduate student has made such fundamental advancements in the area that the nation’s foremost expert, a North Carolina professor, flew to Honolulu for Gough’s dissertation defense. He is unmatched in writing extramural proposals, communicating to a wide array of audiences, mentoring undergraduates, and providing service to the professional community.