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O. Max Gardner Award

Important Dates:
8-9-23  Full packages are due to the Award Review Group – nominees to email them to Xiangwu Zhang
8-23-23  Award Review Group sends comments and suggestions about packages back to the nominees
8-31-23  Final packages are due to the dean’s office – nominees to email them to the dean’s EA
9-7-23  Packages are due to the university – Dean’s EA will submit

Wilson College of Textiles Nomination Limit: No Limit

Awards Review Committee (all by position): Emiel DenHartog, Jeff Joines, Behnam Pourdeyhimi, Abdel-Fattah Seyam, Xiangwu Zhang

Award Website:

Award Information
The O. Max Gardner Award, named in honor of the former governor, is made annually to a member of the faculties of the University of North Carolina system who, in the opinion of the Board of Governors Committee, “during the current scholastic year, has made the greatest contribution to the welfare of the human race.”

Criteria and Eligibility
The UNC Board of Governors have provided the following information and guidance about the O. Max Gardner Award:

  • Nominees are full-time members of the NC State faculty
  • Because the will provides that the award shall go to the faculty member  “… who … has made the greatest contribution to the welfare of the human race,” the award should not be viewed solely as one for community service nor for excellence in teaching.
  • The Board’s committees have considered nominations in broad terms of service to the human race; any nominee, no matter how remarkable or unselfish his or her contributions may have been, is at a disadvantage if the service is limited to the particular community. The majority of those chosen in the past have been persons who made notable contributions of national or international scale or persons whose contributions, although local, served as models nationally or internationally. (Most of the campuses already have their own awards for recognition of excellence in teaching, and many campuses have awards that specifically recognize community service.)
  • The nominee’s contributions to the welfare of the human race, however technical the field, should be described in terms a layman can understand.
  • The selection procedure, which must begin in the fall, makes it difficult to adhere strictly to that provision of the will, which states that the award shall recognize a contribution made “during the current scholastic year.” In order to give as much weight to this clause as is feasible, the Board of Governors committees usually look for nominees who recently made contributions or whose work and service recently culminated in a major contribution.