5 Faculty Members Receive Plesur Awards

By Sue Wuetcher

Release Date: April 27, 2005

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The undergraduate Student Association (SA) at the University at Buffalo has recognized five faculty members for the quality of their teaching and their commitment to their students by awarding them Milton Plesur Excellence in Teaching Awards.

The award is named for Plesur, a faculty member in the Department of History who died in 1987. Plesur was a beloved teacher, author and scholar of popular culture and the American presidency whose humor captivated his students.

The recipients, recently honored at a ceremony, are:

• Timothy Boyd of Lockport, research associate professor in the Department of Classics, College of Arts and Sciences. Boyd has taught a wide range of subjects -- from writing haiku to military history -- at several colleges and universities, including Amherst, Princeton, Harvard, Brandeis and Holy Cross. He joined the UB classics faculty in 1992 after teaching English for five years.

• Jessie M. Carter of Clarence, lecturer and director of undergraduate studies in the Department of African American Studies, College of Arts and Sciences. A member of the department since 1978, Carter also has worked as assistant to the chair, curriculum coordinator and assistant to the director of the American Studies/African American Studies Rockefeller Humanities Fellowship Program. She has taught such courses as "Interracial Relationships," "History of African American Music" and "Survey of the Black Middle Class," as well as introductory courses. Carter's research interests include the general relationships beyond slavery among blacks and whites during the 18th and 19th centuries in the United States, Africa and Western Europe.

• Larry Davis of East Aurora, adjunct professor in the Department of Marketing, School of Management. In addition to teaching "Principles of Marketing" and "New Product Development/Brand Management and Promotion" at UB, Davis works at The TalkWorks Co., an independent marketing consulting firm he founded. Davis also has held positions at Fisher-Price and TRG&G, a toy development and manufacturing company, and as a marketing analyst in Brazil with the agricultural chemicals division of FMC Corp.

• Lynne Kurdziel Formato of Buffalo, assistant professor and director of the Musical Theatre Program in the Department of Theatre and Dance, College of Arts and Sciences. Kurdziel Formato has directed and choreographed hundreds of projects and shows, both locally and outside of the area, including productions for MusicalFare Theatre, Artpark, Studio Arena, Kavinoky Theatre and Buffalo United Artists. She recently completed a 23-year affiliation with St. Joseph's Collegiate Institute, where she directed and choreographed the annual school musical. She also has taught master classes for such organizations as Dance Master of America (DMA) National Teachers Training School, DMA of Connecticut and the World Jazz Dance Congress 2000.

• Albert L. Michaels of Buffalo, professor in the Department of History, College of Arts and Sciences, and adjunct professor, Department of Communication, School of Informatics. Michaels' research interests include U.S. foreign relations, Western New York and Latin America. He teaches numerous courses on Latin America and mass media and foreign policy, including courses on the Cuban Revolution and Kennedy assassination.