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Posted on Sep 7, 2012

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Gould Receives Gardner Award

Fred Gould is the 2012 recipient of the O. Max Gardner Award — the most significant honor given to faculty by the University of North Carolina System Board of Governors. He is William Neal Reynolds Distinguished Professor of Entomology at NC State.

The annual award to a faculty member from one of the system’s 17 campuses recognizes achievement that has “made the greatest contribution to the welfare of the human race.” Gould is the 10th faculty member from NC State to win the honor since 1996.

An elected member of the National Academy of Sciences, Gould studies the ecology and genetics of insect pests to improve food production and human and environmental health. One of his research projects involves genetically modified mosquitoes that have reduced capacity to carry and spread dengue fever. He has received funding from the National Science Foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the National Institutes of Health, among others.

In 2007, he won the George Bugliarello Prize from Sigma Xi for his article on genetic manipulation of pests for control of human disease vectors. In 2004, he received the Alexander von Humboldt Award, presented annually to the person judged to have made the most significant contribution to American agriculture during the previous five years. In 2011, he received NC State’s Holladay Medal.

Gould is a member of the Entomological Society of America, the Society for the Study of Evolution and Sigma Xi. He joined NC State in 1978.

Eberhart Wins Innovation Honor

Lisa Eberhart

Lisa Eberhart was recognized by the state of North Carolina for her innovative work to reduce obesity.

Lisa Eberhart’s focus on healthy eating has earned her the highest honor a state employee can receive. A registered dietitian for NC State’s University Dining, Eberhart clinched a Governor’s Award for Excellence in the innovation category.

Her work shows that the university’s efforts to reduce obesity in North Carolina begin right at home.

The award recognizes Eberhart’s commitment to boost the Wolfpack community by helping transform how and what people eat, says Eberhart’s supervisor, Randy M. Lait, director of dining services.

When Eberhart first began consulting at NC State 10 years ago, the food was “very Southern.” Today’s fare still includes fried chicken but has less butter and more fruits and vegetables, she says.

To counter growing food allergies, Eberhart’s team documents all ingredients online and on posters in the dining halls. She has also implemented online food allergen information stations in all dining halls accessible via smartphones and tablets. So, by scanning a bar code diners receive nutritional data.

The award also highlights Eberhart’s work with diabetes. She hosts nutrition forums and feels deeply fulfilled seeing staff and students transform themselves through weight loss.

Eberhart will join other award recipients and the chancellor at the Governor’s Awards for Excellence reception Nov. 27 at the North Carolina Museum of History.

White House Names Champion

Doctoral student Sina Bahram

Doctoral student Sina Bahram received a White House honor for Champions of Change.

NC State doctoral student Sina Bahram recently earned the White House’s “Champions of Change” award for his efforts to make science, technology, engineering and math — the STEM disciplines — more accessible to people with disabilities.

Bahram developed a prototype system called “Touch It, Key It, Speak It,” or TIKISI, that makes Google Maps usable for blind people. The product is part of his doctoral research in computer science. But TIKISI is more than a scholarly project for Bahram, who is blind.

“When I began working on my Ph.D., I realized I had an opportunity to effect the kinds of changes I wished existed when I was younger and struggling to learn STEM topics,” he says. “With TIKISI, I’m hoping to give low-income and under-privileged people access to these educational tools.”
President Obama recognized Bahram at a White House ceremony May 7.

“The leaders we’ve selected as Champions of Change are proving that when the playing field is level, people with disabilities can excel in STEM, develop new products, create scientific inventions, open successful businesses, and contribute equally to the economic and educational future of our country,” says Kareem Dale, special assistant to the president for disability policy.

Baliga Chosen for NC Award

Professor B. Jayant Baliga

Professor B. Jayant Baliga will receive the North Carolina Award for scientific achievements in electronics engineering.

B. Jayant Baliga, professor of electrical and computer engineering, will receive the North Carolina Award from the state’s Department of Cultural Resources this fall. Baliga joins five other distinguished honorees who have made significant contributions to the state. He was selected for his scientific achievements.
Baliga is internationally recognized for his groundbreaking work in electronics engineering and was named among “Eight Heroes of the Semiconductor Revolution” by Scientific American. His work has saved consumers more than $15 trillion dollars worldwide, and now helps form the basis for the emerging smart grid. Last year, Baliga received a National Medal of Technology and Innovation.

The 2012 Gardner Award winner, Fred Gould also leads the NSF-funded Integrated Graduate Education and Research Traineeship at NC State.
Lisa Eberhart was recognized by the state of North Carolina for her innovative work to reduce obesity.
Doctoral student Sina Bahram received a White House honor for Champions of Change.
Professor B. Jayant Baliga will receive the North Carolina Award for scientific achievements in electronics engineering.

“The leaders we’ve selected as Champions of Change are proving that when the playing field is level, people with disabilities can excel in STEM, develop new products, create scientific inventions, open successful businesses, and contribute equally to the economic and educational future of our country.”

About the Awardees

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