At her annual spring address to faculty, Margaret Freije, vice president for academic affairs and dean of the College of the Holy Cross, announced this year’s recipients of the Mary Louise Marfuggi Faculty Awards: Charles Anderton, professor of economics, and David Damiano, professor of mathematics.
The annual awards are made possible by a generous gift from Richard A. Marfuggi, M.D. ‘72, in honor of his mother.
Charles Anderton received the Mary Louise Marfuggi Faculty Award for Outstanding Scholarship. This annual award was established to honor a member of the faculty for outstanding achievement in the creation of original work in the arts and sciences over an 18-month period.
Most notably during this time frame, Anderton co-edited “Economic Aspects of Genocides, Other Mass Atrocities, and Their Prevention” (Oxford University Press, 2016), a volume that offers an economic perspective to the question of the prevention of genocide. The volume includes 28 chapters, four of which are co-authored by Anderton himself, and features the work of 41 experts from around the world and multiple disciplines, including that of Nobel Prize winners. Already, the volume has been adopted by over 160 libraries and positively reviewed in a number of venues, and Oxford University Press has invited the co-editors to write a trade book on the same topic.
Additionally, Anderton published two peer-reviewed articles during this time period, one co-authored with a former student.
While offering the award, Freije noted nominators’ emphases on Anderton’s scholarly record, one colleague calling him “adventurous, even courageous,” noting that he has always worked at “the fringe of mainstream economics.” Anderton’s scholarly research has included the study of arms race modeling, weapons, appropriation, bargaining theory of war, terrorism, genocide, and mass killing.
One nominator said, “Knowing him as I do…I find his new volume…both unsurprising and astounding — unsurprising because it continues seamlessly his remarkably productive career; at the same time, astounding because it reaches such extraordinary standards of excellence.”
“I am grateful to the College of the Holy Cross and to my department colleagues for their steadfast encouragement of my research on genocide risks and prevention,” Anderton shares. “I am surprised, honored, and humbled to receive the Marfuggi award and thankful to Holy Cross for its generous recognition of my research.”
David Damiano received the Mary Louise Marfuggi Faculty Award for Academic Advisement. This award is given to a faculty member who has demonstrated effective academic advisement and mentorship of students that was extraordinary in quality and sustained over at least three years, and is based on student nominations.
While presenting the award, Freije shared that student nominators commonly expressed Damiano’s effort to go above and beyond to build relationships, one student sharing that Damiano “never fails to show his concern for the well-being and happiness of his students.”
“I think he made an extra effort to be a mentor to me,” a student nominator said about Damiano, who had learned the student was the first in their family to go to college. “Over the four years I have known him, I have also seen him interact with other students the way he interacts with me. It is as if he finds those students who may need the extra help and he provides it.”
Damiano’s mentorship includes advising 19 College or departmental honors theses and a Fenwick Scholar project, participating as a faculty mentor for ALANA students for 12 years, and founding and directing the AME Zion Tutoring Program for the past 16 years.
“Whether his students are seeking help with their homework, asking advising questions, looking for advice regarding the future, or just want to talk about sports, he is the go-to guy,” one nominee shared. “He truly embodies what it means to be a Holy Cross faculty member.”
“It is an honor to receive the Mary Louise Marfuggi Faculty Award for Academic Advisement,” says Damiano. “It especially meaningful to me because it is based on student nominations. Advising and more generally mentoring are central to what faculty do at Holy Cross. While the classroom is the public focus of the job of being a faculty member, at the end of the day, the conversations that I have with individual students outside of class are what I carry with me. It is a particular pleasure when these grow into mentoring relationships that extend beyond advising meetings, course work, projects, and, in the best of worlds, beyond Holy Cross.”
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