Jepson School professor Doug Hicks wins 2012 SCHEV Outstanding Faculty Award
January 25, 2012
The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia has named Douglas A. Hicks, professor of leadership studies and religion in the Jepson School of Leadership Studies at the University of Richmond, the recipient of a 2012 Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award.
The award, sponsored by the Dominion Foundation, is the highest honor given by the commonwealth to faculty from all sectors of higher education in Virginia. It recognizes superior accomplishment in teaching, research and public service. Winners receive a $5,000 stipend.
A sought-after teacher and mentor, Hicks has taught at Richmond since 1998. He is praised on student evaluations as “the highest quality instructor” who leads students to think critically. Students say he can take “incredibly deep concepts and make them accessible to 18-20 year olds in a way that brings theory to meet reality.”
Hicks is the author of four books: “Money Enough,” “With God on All Sides,” “Religion and the Workplace” and “Inequality and Christian Ethics.” He co-edited “Leadership and Global Justice,” “Global Neighbors” and the three-volume “International Library of Leadership.”
Founder of the university’s Bonner Center for Civic Engagement, Hicks served as the center’s director and then executive director from 2004–09. He led the development and launch of the university’s downtown initiative, UR Downtown, located at Seventh and Broad streets. Frequently quoted in the national and Virginia media, Hicks focuses his scholarship on public and civic leadership, religion in the workplace and the ethical dimensions of economic issues.
Sandra Peart, dean of the Jepson School, said Hicks “stimulates the moral imagination of our students and his colleagues. His scholarship and teaching rest at several intersections: disciplinarily, he is equally at home in religious studies and political economy; as a professor he writes scholarly articles and books for his peers but also for the wider public; and his passion for serving students has led him to take on leadership and administrative roles while he continues to excite students in the classroom.”
Hicks’ civic engagement work also has won praise from colleagues. His “scholarship and teaching inform his civic engagement and vice versa,” said John Moeser, senior fellow at the Bonner Center.
For example, Hicks has inspired his students to engage with Richmond’s Hispanic Liaison Office as volunteers, data analyzers and fellows. “The impact on our agency, in terms of expanding the work we can do with this additional support, as well as the impact on the students as they are exposed to real world issues, is priceless,” said manager Tanya Gonzalez.
Hicks is a board member at the Virginia Poverty Law Center and has served as chair of the University of Richmond’s Faculty Council.
An ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA), Hicks is a parish associate at Second Presbyterian Church of Richmond. He has held visiting faculty positions at Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond and at Harvard Divinity School. He is a former president of the Academy of Religious Leadership and former chair of the Religion and Social Sciences section of the American Academy of Religion.
Hicks received an A.B. magna cum laude with honors in economics from Davidson College, a master’s of divinity magna cum laude from Duke University, and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Harvard University.
Hicks and the 11 other 2012 OFA winners from public and private colleges and universities in the commonwealth will be introduced on the floor of the General Assembly and receive their awards Feb. 16 in a ceremony at The Jefferson Hotel in Richmond.
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