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    Charles C. Randall Lectureship

    The lectureship is named in honor of Dr. Charles C. Randall, Professor Emeritus, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS. Dr. Randall conducted pioneering research in the area of viral structure, biochemistry, and molecular biology. As the former Chairman of the Department of Microbiology at the University of Mississippi Medical Center and former President of the South Central Branch, Dr. Randall made enormous contributions to the growth and development of the microbiological sciences within the South Central Branch. The South Central Branch, American Society for Microbiology, established the Charles C. Randall Lectureship, which is to be awarded annually to an “outstanding young faculty member” who will present a lecture on his or her research at the annual branch meeting. The awardee, selected by a panel of senior faculty members appointed by the Branch President, must hold the rank of Assistant Professor (or equivalent) in a scientific institution (public or private) within the geographic boundary of the South Central Branch of the ASM, and must be in the early stages of a research career with less than five years of experience since completing training, but be independent of a mentor. The award includes travel expenses to the branch meeting, a plaque, and an honorarium.

    Past Recipients of the Randall Award

    • 1991 Dr. Jan Bly, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS
    • 1992 Dr. Daniel J.J. Carr, LSU Medical Center, New Orleans, LA
    • 1993 Dr. R. Martin Roop, LSU Medical Center, Shreveport, LA
    • 1994 Dr. John Battista, LSU, Baton Rouge, LA
    • 1995 Dr. Bentley A. Fane, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR
    • 1996 Dr. Mark S. Smeltzer, University of Arkansas for Med. Sciences, Little Rock, AR
    • 1997 Dr. Jiang Dong Chen, LSU Medical Center, New Orleans, LA
    • 1998 Dr. Shouguang Jin, University of Arkansas for Med. Sciences, Little Rock, AR
    • 1999 Dr. Henri van der Heyde, LSU Medical Center, Shreveport, LA
    • 2000 Dr. Cheryl A. Nickerson, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA
    • 2001 Dr. Andrew D. Yurochko, LSU Medical Center, Shreveport, LA
    • 2002 Dr. William B. Klimstra, LSU Medical Center, Shreveport, LA
    • 2003 Dr. William P. Hallford, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA
    • 2004 Dr. Katherine D. Ryman, LSU Medical Center, Shreveport, LA
    • 2005 Dr. Christopher A. Elkins, National Venter for Toxicological Research, Jefferson, AR
    • 2006 Dr. Stephania Cormier, LSU, Baton Rouge, LA
    • 2007 Dr. Mohamed O. Elasri, University of Southern Mississippi, Hattiesburg, MS
    • 2008 Dr. Mary Marquart, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS
    • 2009 Dr. James Smith, Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS
    • 2010 Dr. Brent C. Christner, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA
    • 2011 Dr. Janet R. Donaldson, Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS
    • 2012 Dr. Jon Blevins, University of Arkansas Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR
    • 2013 Dr. Daniel Voth, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR
    • 2014 Dr. Ritesh Tandon, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS
    • 2015 Dr. Jeremy P. Kamil, LSU Health Sciences Center, Shreveport, LA
    • 2016 Dr. Fengwei Bai, The University of Southern Mississippi, Hattiesburg, MS
    • 2017 Dr. Karl Boehme, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR
    • 2018 Dr. Jason Bodily, LSU Health Sciences Center, Shreveport, LA
    • 2019 Dr. Jonas King, Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS

    R. J. Strawinski Memorial Research Award

    The R. J. Strawinski Memorial Research Award (Strawinski Award) for outstanding graduate student presentations was established in 1962 as a response to the tragic death of Dr. Raymond J. Strawinski, a professor of microbiology at LSU in Baton Rouge, and president of the branch from 1957 to 1959, who lost his life when he attempted to save the life of an international exchange student as his home was being destroyed by fire. The first award was won by Robert W. Darlington of the Department of Microbiology of the School of Medicine at the University of Mississippi. The judges are not obligated to present this award at each competition in order to maintain high standards. This award evolved into special recognition of outstanding presentations by graduate students enrolled in programs leading to Master of Science degrees.

    Charles S. McCleskey Award

    The Charles S. McCleskey Award was established in 1971 to recognize the accomplishments of this pioneer in microbiology of the southern United States, the initiator and one of the founders of the South Central Branch. He retired as chairman of the Department of Microbiology at LSU in 1966. The award is for outstanding research presented as talks or posters by graduate students in programs of studies leading to Ph.D. degrees. The first award was won by Helen L. Huang of the Department of Microbiology of the University of Mississippi Medical Center.

    Peggy Cotter Travel Award Program for Early Career Branch Members

    ASM Council of Microbial Sciences (COMS) and the ASM Board of Directors have approved the continuation of The Peggy Cotter Travel Award Program for Early Career Branch Members for 2020. This program will provide funds for outstanding early career* ASM Branch members to attend ASM Microbe 2020, to be held June 18-22 in Chicago.

    *“Early career” includes postdoctoral fellows, early career faculty, CLS-MLT-MLS Bench Techs, and/or early stage investigators. Awardees must be within a 10-year range beyond their terminal degree. Note: Students are NOT eligible for this award.)

    The purpose of the award is to allow more individuals in the local Branches to attend ASM Microbe and experience the first-class sessions in eight specialty science areas, cutting-edge research, career development activities and networking/collaboration opportunities at the meeting. It is expected that the awardees will in turn share their ASM Microbe experiences with their colleagues, students, mentees, and fellow Branch members, thereby enthusing others to join ASM and attend ASM Microbe in future years.

    Submission Information:

    Interested individuals should email a cover letter and CV to [email protected].  The cover letter should include information, 1) confirming your early career status, 2) describing your record of past participation in the South Central Branch, and 3) describing accomplishments/criteria/considerations that make you an ideal candidate for this travel award.

    Amount and Number of Awards:
    • Up to three awards per Branch
    • Each award is $1650
    Use of Awards:

    Awardees will use the awards to pay for registration, accommodation, and travel costs associated with attending ASM Microbe in 2020; https://www.asm.org/Events/ASM-Microbe/Home

    The main requirements/limitations for application:
    • Early stage investigators who are less than 10 years beyond their terminal degree (defined in the general program guidelines)
    • Participating members of the South Central Branch
    • Past recipients of this travel award are NOT eligible
    • Recipients must agree to complete the Reporting Requirements (outlined in general program guidelines)
    Deadline:

    February 1, 2020 (decisions and announcements will be made before March 1st)

    Past Recipients of the Peggy Cotter Travel Award

    • 2019 Tiffany Weinkopff, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
    • 2019 Srijon Banerjee, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
    • 2020 TBA
    About us

    The South Central Branch of the American Society of Microbiology is dedicated to the advancement of microbiological sciences as a vehicle for understanding life processes and to apply and communicate this knowledge for the improvement of health, environmental, and economic well-being worldwide.

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