The Virginia Tech Board of Visitors recently conferred the emeritus title on the following faculty members in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences:
Frederic Baumgartner, a professor of History, is a leading scholar of early modern France, military history, and the Reformation. His publications included nine books, one of which was recognized with the Charles Smith Book Prize from the Southern Historical Association, and he received numerous grants, fellowships, and awards for his research. In recognition of his teaching and research, the Virginia Social Sciences Association named Baumgartner Historian of the Year in 2002. A member of the Virginia Tech community since 1976, he served on many committees and commissions at the university and was active in numerous professional organizations as well. Baumgartner earned his undergraduate degree from Mount Saint Paul College in Waukesha, Wisconsin, and his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
Eric McCollum, a professor of Human Development, was recognized for his impact on the field of Marriage and Family Therapy through scholarship, clinical work, and teaching related to substance abuse, domestic violence, and mindfulness meditation; he was awarded grants and contracts for the implementation and assessment of intervention programs in the first two areas. He joined the Virginia Tech community in Falls Church in 1992 and served as clinical director and program director of the Marriage and Family Therapy master’s program in the National Capital Region. He was recognized with the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy Training Award for his clinical work. McCollum earned his baccalaureate and master’s degree from the University of Iowa and a Ph.D. from Kansas State University.
Marjorie Norton, a professor of Apparel, Housing, and Resource Management and a professor of Agricultural and Applied Economics, promoted the understanding of clothing and textiles through research on economic and trade policies, consumer economics, manufacturing, and merchandising as well as through service to professional organizations and journals in her field. She frequently provided expert testimony on apparel safety. Her teaching of undergraduate and graduate courses garnered her the William E. Wine Award for Teaching Excellence, and during her tenure at Virginia Tech, which began in 1980, she advised hundreds of undergraduates and dozens of graduate students. Norton earned her bachelor’s degree from Cornell University and a Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota.
Marlene Preston, an associate professor of Communication, made significant contributions to the field of teaching communication and was recognized as an authority in instructional development and innovation in oral and written communication. A member of the Virginia Tech community since 1993, she served the Department of Communication in numerous administrative capacities, including Assistant Department Head. For her teaching, advising, and service she received awards at Virginia Tech, such as the XCaliber Award for Technology in 2015, as well as from professional organizations, including two Communication Centers Section Service Awards from the National Communication Association. Preston earned her bachelor’s as well as master’s degree from Bowling Green State University and a Ph.D. from Virginia Tech.
Barbara Ellen Smith, a professor of Women’s and Gender Studies, was honored for her contributions to Women’s and Gender Studies, sociology, geography, and Appalachian Studies; she was the author of four books and numerous articles and book chapters. She served as director of the Women’s and Gender Studies Program and played an important role in the transition of the program to the Department of Sociology. She taught a variety of courses at the undergraduate and graduate level, garnering a Department of Sociology award for her undergraduate teaching as well as awards from ASPECT and Sociology for her work with graduate students. Smith earned her bachelor’s degree from Antioch College and a master’s degree as well as a Ph.D. from Brandeis University.