University of Evansville Announces Berger Awards for 2019

Posted: Tuesday, August 13, 2019

University of Evansville professors Mohammad K. Azarian and Thomas Josenhans were honored recently with the 2019 Sydney and Sadelle Berger Awards for Scholarly Activity and Service. They were presented with the awards by Charlie Berger during UE’s Fall Conference.

UE professor of mathematics Mohammad K. Azarian was given the Berger Award for Scholarly Activity. Azarian is a well-published professional who has significantly contributed to the research community and has worked at UE for 34 years.

He has published 42 peer-reviewed journal articles in four different areas of mathematics including group theory, number theory, combinatorics, and the history of mathematics.

He presented his research at 54 international, national, and regional conferences. In addition, he has published 82 problems in peer reviewed general mathematics journals in the United States and made over 1600 contributions to the On-Line Encyclopedia of Integer Sequences, including over 1000 new sequences.

Azarian has earned the respect of mathematics organizations and publications, who value his expertise and trust his judgment. He serves as a referee for the following journals:

Missouri Journal of Mathematical Sciences

Houston Journal of Mathematics

College Mathematics Journal

Journal of Integer Sequences 

Ars Combinatoria

International Journal of Mathematics and Mathematical Sciences

He has served on the editorial boards of many prestigious journals and newsletters, and is a reviewer for the Mathematical Reviews of the American Mathematical Society (MathSciNet), the most prestigious and the authoritative gateway to the scholarly literature of mathematics in the world.

His remarkable research portfolio of 136 publications in the Google Scholar’s Citations system, and he was named a University of Evansville Global Scholar in 2007-2008.

From 2001 to 2007, he served on the Executive Board of the Mathematical Association of America- Indiana, where he was solely responsible for the Indiana College Mathematics Competition for all 40 colleges and universities in the state of Indiana.

In 2015, Azarian was one of only seven mathematicians in the United States who was selected to serve as a discipline peer reviewer for the Fulbright Scholar Program, sponsored by the United States Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, a position that he is still holding.

He is the recipient of the 2017 Mathematical Association of America-Indiana Distinguished Service Award, which recognizes a member for "extraordinary contributions and outstanding efforts" to mathematical sciences in America.

UE professor of music Thomas Josenhans was the recipient of the Berger Award for Service. Josenhans is fully committed to serving both UE and the greater community. One nominator says that he embodies the definition of a servant leader and truly has a servant’s heart.

During his nine years as chair of one of the largest and most diverse groups of faculty on campus, he has worked tirelessly to create opportunities to enhance the faculty and student experience. He has gone above and beyond to create a department that serves as a community resource and a showcase of arts in the community.

As part of this effort, he has cultivated positive relationships with area educators, providing financial and personal support of the Wesley Shepard Summer Music Camp which he has transformed into an annual high-quality experience for local and regional middle and high school students that serves as an invaluable recruiting tool.

Josenhans is an integral part of the Tri-State Community Ensemble Festival regional music educators' conferences, and weekend events such as Brass Day, Woodwind Day, Percussion Day and UE Opera events. He has provided support and found funding for campus appearances of world-class guest artists such as Doc Severinsen, Diane Shur, and Andre Watts. He has worked closely with the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra to consistently evaluate and improve the interwoven relationship of shared faculty and artists.

In addition, Josenhans has gone beyond his already heavy responsibilities as chair, to represent the University as chair of the Music Director Search Committee for the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra, a committee charged with selecting from over 200 applicants to find the 5 finalists who will guest conduct during the 2019-2020 season.

Two recent grants have specifically enhanced recruiting and current student opportunities. He wrote the request for a three-year grant to fund the new position of Music Outreach Director, with responsibilities to coordinate camp recruiting school visits. A second grant awarded during his leadership is from the Schmidt Foundation for the UE Opera Series. This grant has been renewed annually and has allowed UE Opera to mount larger productions and schedule outreach visits to area schools.

This year’s recipient has also been a dynamic influence in a steady period of growth, positivity, and tangible financial support from the Friends of UE Music. This organization includes a growing membership of alumni, faculty, UE student families, and members of the greater Evansville community.

Nominators also want to specifically recognize this year’s recipient for his work in creating and developing the UE Music Strategic Plan. He guided and mentored those working on this collaborative effort for more than a year.

Through all of this, he gives selflessly of his time and energy because of his genuine love and devotion to his department and University. His door is always open to faculty and students where each one is heard compassionately, validated and supported with kindness and integrity. 

Share this article:

Facebook Icon Twitter Icon Email Icon Google Icon