This article is from the archives of the UB Reporter.

Five faculty members receive Plesur Awards

Awards recognize quality of teaching, dedication to undergraduate students

Published: April 21, 2005

Reporter Contributor

The undergraduate Student Association (SA) last week 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.


Plesur Award winners (from left) Larry Davis, Jessie Carter and Albert Michaels. Timothy Boyd and Lynne Kurdziel Formato were unable to attend the April 11 ceremony.

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, who were honored at a ceremony on April 11, are:

  • Timothy Boyd, 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 College, Princeton, Harvard, Brandeis and Holy Cross. He joined the classics faculty in 1992 after teaching English for five years.

  • Jessie M. Carter, lecturer and director of undergraduate studies in the Department of African American Studies, CAS. 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, 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 Company, 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 Corporation.

  • Lynne Kurdziel Formato, assistant professor and director of the Musical Theatre Program in the Department of Theater and Dance, CAS. 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, professor in the Department of History, CAS, and adjunct professor, Department of Communication, School of Informatics. His research interests include U.S. foreign relations, Western New York and Latin America. Michaels teaches numerous courses on Latin America and mass media and foreign policy, including courses on the Cuban Revolution and Kennedy assassination.