Awards Ceremony


Join us to celebrate your colleagues! We will recognize the winners of this year’s research excellence awards and Research Week grant competitions.


Thursday, October 15, 2020


Awards include:

Travel Grant Competition Award – Two teams or individuals will be awarded with a $3,000 travel grant and receive administrative support from IREO to initiate contact and develop strategic, industrial partnerships with desired companies. The funding will help supplement travels in CY 2021 to pursue sponsored research partnerships.

Team Planning Grant Competition Award – The teams will compete for $50,000 plus a doctoral level research assistantship for the development their preliminary idea into an extramural center-type grant proposal. The research assistantship, provided by the Graduate School, will be for two semesters in support of this effort.

RA and $10K Competition Award – Awardee will receive $10,000 and/ or a doctoral level Research Assistantship (RA) for the Spring 2021 semester.

Grant and Contract Administration Service Recognition Award – Service is defined as an individual who has performed their grant and contract administration responsibilities outstandingly above and beyond the expected or required performance within his/her work unit or area

Grant and Contract Administration Contribution Recognition Award – Contribution is defined as an individual or a group whose meritorious efforts have made a unique difference on the Washington State University system, locally, regionally, nationally and/or internationally in the field of grant and contract administration.

Previous awardees:

Largest New Individual Grant Award

  • 2020 Winner: Dr. Rock Mancini ($1.69M  HHS: NIH) – “Exploiting Cancer Metabolism and Drug Efflux with Bystander-Assisted Immunotherapy”
  • 2019 Winner: Dr. Wipawee “Joy” Winuthayanon ($1.59M  HHS: NIH) – “The Actions of Steroid Hormones on Oviduct Function”
  • 2018 Winner: Dr. Jingru Sun ($1.9M  NIH: NIGMS) – “Neuronal and molecular mechanisms underlying neural regulation of innate immunity”

Largest New Team Grant Award

  • 2020 Winner: Dr. Lonnie Nelson ($9.67M) –  “URBAn Native Elders (URBANE): Risk and Protective Factors for Alzheimer’s and Related Dementias”
  • 2019 Winner: Dr. Jon Yoder ($5M) – “Technology for trade: Improving water use and allocation efficiency in agriculture and beyond”
  • 2018 Winner: Dr. Noel Schultz  ($7.5M + $7.5M in cost share  DOE: JCERDC) – “UI-ASSIST: US-India collAborative for smart diStribution System wIth STorage”

Creative Activity, Research, and Scholarship Award

  • Dr. Jesse Spohnholz’s – Research focusing on social practices of toleration in Reformation-era Germany and the Netherlands, experiences of religious refugees during Europe’s Age of Religious Wars, and historical memory of the Reformation. Has three published books and is currently the co-PI on a nearly $1M international research project.
  • 2019 Winner: Dr. Matthew Sutton – Published five books,16 academic journal articles and chapters, 12 select articles and editorials, and several book reviews and encyclopedia and dictionary articles. He has also received 21 grants and fellowships, 15 honors, awards, and prizes, and presented at numerous invited lectures and conferences.
  • 2018 Winner: Dr. Kim Christen ($555,000   Mellon Foundation Grant Recipient) – “Mukurtu Shared: Connecting Communities and Collections through Collaborative Curation”

Pacesetter Award – A promising WSU junior faculty, tenure/tenure track member who has excelled in their sponsored projects activity, taking the lead or setting new standards of achievement.

  • 2020 Winner: Dr. Caren Goldberg
  • 2019 Winner: Dr. Lonnie Nelson
  • 2019 Winner: Dr. Kiwamu Tanaka
  • 2018 Winner: Dr. Steven Roberts

Technology with Impactful Contribution to Society Award

  • 2020 Winners: Dr. Joe Harding, Dr. Jay Wright, and Dr. Leen Kawas – Development of CNS disease therapeutics through Athira Pharma start-up
  • 2019 Winner: Dr. Arron Carter – “Otto” Soft White Winter Wheat
  • 2018 Winners: Dr. Kate Evans & Dr. Bruce Barritt – Apple Cultivar (WSU 38) “Cosmic Crisp”
  • 2018 Winner: Dr. Katrina Mealey – Test for Identification of Dogs Sensitive to Ivermectin

Exceptional Service to the Office of Research Award

  • 2020 Winner: Dr. Joanna Kelley – assisted with events, provided input on different initiatives and efforts to foster research collaborations across units and colleges
  • 2019 Winner: Dr. Todd Butler – active reviewer on various committees within the Office of Research
  • 2018 Winners: Dr. Tammy Barry & Dr. Babu John-Mariadoss – Co-Chairs of the Research and Arts Committee & the Centers, Institutes, or Laboratories (CILs) task force










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