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2022 UAS Faculty & Staff Excellence

At the end of spring semester 2022 UAS honored faculty at an event hosted by the Office of the Provost.

Juneau, Alaska

Date of Press Release: November 7, 2022

At the end of spring semester 2022 UAS honored faculty at an event hosted by the Office of the Provost. Faculty Excellence Awards were presented and the designation of Faculty Emerita was bestowed on Professor Jan Straley. Also announced were promotions and sabbaticals granted for the 2022-23 academic year. On Staff Development Day, held Wednesday, May 11, Staff Excellence Awards were announced.

Faculty Excellence Awards

Faculty Advising

Dr. Carolyn Bergstrom, Associate Professor of Marine Biology

Dr. Bergstrom was nominated for her thoughtful consideration when advising students. She demonstrates passion for her field of study, and was touted for her knowledge and diverse experiences which she uses to benefit students.

Open Educational Practices

Dr. Heather Batchelder, Associate Professor of Education

Dr. Batchelder was nominated for her advocacy of student access and the impacts of that access on student success. Her adoption of library eBooks in the majority of her courses exemplifies her strong support of open educational practices which she shares with her colleagues in the School of Education, as well as Faculty Alliance, and education students, who are the teachers of tomorrow.


Elizabeth Zacher, MFA, Assistant Professor of Art

Liz Zacher, based in Sitka, was nominated for her long-time effective management of the Sitka Campus art studio, her grant writing, and her maintenance of the Sitka portion of the Northwest Coast Indigenous Art program.


Dr. Andrzej Piotrowski, Professor of Mathematics

A well loved faculty member in a difficult field, Dr. Piotrowski’s nomination by Denise Carl noted, “Seeing students take advantage of office hours no matter what is somewhat unusual, but especially with math faculty, not because they are available or willing to but just that math is a subject that is a hurdle and intimidating for many students, so to see so many students who are comfortable to take advantage of his office hours is really phenomenal.”

Faculty Emerita

Jan Straley, M.S., Professor of Marine Biology

Professor Straley’s world-renowned whale research was the focus of her nomination for faculty emerita status. Straley developed the Whale Laboratory based at UAS Sitka, which draws researchers from Hawaii, North America, and the Circumpolar north, who use this research to study rapid changes occurring in the oceans and with climate change. She has been successful in securing substantial funding from the National Institutes of Health in order to increase rural high school and Alaska Native involvement in science. One supporter noted, “It is clear that she has leveraged her reputation and gravitas to create opportunities for others who have traditionally not had access to marine science and research.”


  • Associate Professor Robin Gilcrist promoted to Full Professor
  • Associate Professor Jeremy Kane promoted to Full Professor
  • Associate Professor X’unei Lance Twitchell promoted to Full Professor
  • Term Research Assistant Professor Jason Fellman promoted to Term Research Associate Professor
  • Term Assistant Professor Elizabeth Zacher promoted to Term Associate Professor

Sabbaticals Announced for AY23

  • Dr. Eran Hood: “Visiting Scholar at the Payne Institute for Public Policy at the Colorado School of Mines; and Visiting Researcher at the US Geological Survey Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center ”
  • Mr. Jeremy Kane: “Exploring the ceramic surfaces of Southeast Alaska”
  • Dr. Sonia Nagorski: “Improving research productivity and teaching materials on a wide variety of geologic topics, from major landslides to microscopic contaminants.””
  • Dr. Andrzej Piotrowski: “Zeros of Polynomials Program”
  • Dr. David Tallmon: “Using Genomics Tools to Further Our Understanding and Conservation of Auke Creek Salmon.”

Staff Excellence Awards

Cindy Boesser, Egan Library Circulation Desk Supervisor (Juneau)

Cindy’s nominations referenced her dedication, as well as the inspiration and empowerment she imparts regarding library knowledge and advocacy of services to students, staff and faculty.

Mallory Nash, Student Engagement Manager, UAS Student Engagement & Leadership (Juneau)

Although new to Alaska, “Mallory has become a recognizable figure in the Juneau community to bring collaborative opportunities to UAS by juggling multiple roles from advising student-led organizations, to soliciting staff involvement from other departments, and providing an innovative means of the Juneau community to engage with UAS,” as noted by one supporter.

Angie Goffredi, UAS Maritime Training Center (Ketchikan)

Angie was nominated for her knowledge and passion for her work at the Maritime Training Center. In addition, she was celebrated for her work toward strengthening community partnerships.

Katie Sill, Student Services / Advising (Sitka)

Katie’s dedication to her job as a full-time advisor, and her willingness to help fill the gaps where needed were pointed out in her nomination. She takes on additional projects including media projects, and participation in multiple committees and working groups, and has worked toward community outreach and opportunities with local tourism.

Press Release Contact

Keni Campbell
University of Alaska Southeast
(907) 796-6509