First Citizens Bank Scholars Medal

The First Citizens Bank Scholars Medal was first awarded in 1988 and recognizes outstanding scholarship, creativity, and research among senior full-time faculty members. Each year the University, with support from First Citizens Bank, presents this award in order to recognize and foster the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and creative endeavors.


The recipients are honored annually at a spring ceremony and reception presided over by the Chancellor, officials of First Citizens Bank, and other University officers. They are presented with a framed citation, a medal, and cash prize.


Nominations must focus on the excellence and importance of sustained contributions in research and creative activities, including work done over a substantial period of time at UNC Charlotte.  Relevant research and creative activities include scientific discoveries, books, a series of related articles, novels, sculptures, or paintings. 

Nominations remain eligible for consideration for two years. The nominator should submit a memo in the second year stating the nominee agrees to be considered for the next round. Please submit the second-year memo to 

Required nomination materials should consist of the following:

  1. Nominator’s letter, clearly specifying the scholarly or creative accomplishments at UNC Charlotte and their significance. 
  2. Three letters of support from professionals outside of UNC Charlotte who are qualified to evaluate the work of the nominee and provide an authoritative view.  
  3. The nomination letter should include a brief biography (two to three sentences) of each letter writer indicated in number two above. 
  4. Nominee’s current curriculum vitae. 

Optional supportive materials (such as books or journal articles) should be kept to one or two representative examples. If included, the material may be delivered to Christi Skerlak, in The Graduate School, Reese 527.

The nomination period is currently closed. For more information, visit the award site.


  • 2024: Dr. Adam Reitzel, Biological Sciences
  • 2023: Dr. Kirill Afonin, Chemistry
  • 2022: Dr. Jean-Claude Thill, Geography and Earth Sciences
  • 2021: Dr. Akinwumi Ogundiran, Africana Studies
  • 2020: Dr. James Walsh, Political Science and Public Administration
  • 2019: Dr. Steven Rogelberg, Psychological Science and Management
  • 2018: Dr. Pinku Mukherjee, Biological Sciences
  • 2017: Dr. Robert Algozzine, Educational Leadership
  • 2016: Dr. John David Smith, History
  • 2015: Dr. William Ribarsky, Computer Science
  • 2014: Dr. Craig Ogle, Chemistry
  • 2013: Dr. Lawrence Calhoun and Dr. Richard Tedeschi, Psychology
  • 2012: Dr. Jonathan Marks, Anthropology
  • 2011: Dr. Roslyn A. Mickelson, Sociology
  • 2010: Dr. Lyman L. Johnson, History
  • 2009: Dr. Diane M. Browder, Special Education and Child Development
  • 2008: Dr. Bruce A. Arrigo, Criminal Justice and Criminology
  • 2007: Dr. Kenneth Bost, Biology
  • 2006: Dr. Tanure Ojaide, Africana Studies
  • 2005: Dr. Mark G. Clemens, Biology
  • 2004: Dr. David T. Test, Special Education and Child Development
  • 2003: Dr. Murray A. Webster, Jr., Sociology and Anthropology
  • 2002: Dr. Rafic Z. Makki, Electrical and Computer Engineering
  • 2001: Dr. Martha A. Strawn, Art
  • 2000: Dr. Robert J. Hocken, Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Science
  • 1999: Dr. Donna R. Gabaccia, History
  • 1998: Dr. Daniel L. Shealy, English
  • 1997: Dr. Owen J. Furuseth, Geography and Earth Sciences
  • 1996: Dr. Zbigniew Michalewicz, Computer Science
  • 1995: Dr. Farid M. Tranjan, Electrical and Computer Engineering
  • 1994: Dr. Saul Brenner, Political Science
  • 1993: Dr. Thomas L. Reynolds, Biology
  • 1992: Dr. Gerald F. Pyle, Geography and Earth Sciences
  • 1991: Dr. Judith D. Suther, Foreign Languages, and Dr. K. David Patterson, History
  • 1990: Dr. Bryan E. Robinson, Human Services
  • 1989: Dr. David R. Goldfield, History, and Dr. James D. Oliver, Biology
  • 1988: Dr. Paul D. Escott, History, and Dr. D. Paul Rillema, Chemistry