The William M. Plater Award for Leadership in Civic Engagement

Given in recognition of exemplary leadership of an AASCU chief academic officer in advancing the civic learning of undergraduates. 

Nominate by April 21.
About the award
William Plater
William Plater

This award was established in 2006 to honor William M. Plater, Chief Academic Officer of IUPUI from 1987-2006. 

During his term, Bill Plater oversaw the development of civic engagement as an integral part of the campus mission and as a defining characteristic of its graduates, thus helping Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) win recognition among peers as a national leader. Through his writing, speaking and public advocacy, Plater also helped extend universities’ understanding of their collective responsibility as “Stewards of Place,” while connecting them with the larger regional, national and global communities of which they are also a part. 

  • Nominees must be a chief academic officer or provost at an AASCU member campus 
  • Nominations should demonstrate how the individual has advanced inclusive democratic engagement and influenced the civic learning of undergraduates through programs and activities that encourage greater knowledge, skills, experiences, and reflection about the role of citizens in a democracy. 
  • Nominations must include an endorsement from the nominee’s president/chancellor, the nominee’s curriculum vita, and additional documents that provide examples of the nominee’s sustained leadership in advancing civic learning and infusing equity into their work. 
  • Presentation: Annually in person at the Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement conference in June and a virtual acknowledgment will be made at AASCU’s Annual Meeting in November. At the awardee’s discretion, the award can also be presented at a suitable occasion on the recipient’s campus, ordinarily in the fall semester following selection.   
  • Recipients will receive a commemorative to acknowledge the national recognition
  • 2022: Kathy Johnson, Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis 
  • 2021: Mark Canada, Indiana University Kokomo 
  • 2019: Richard Eglsaer, Sam Houston State University (Texas) 
  • 2018: Vicki Golich, Metropolitan State University of Denver, Colorado 
  • 2017: Philip Rous, Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) 
  • 2016: Joan Lorden, Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, University of North Carolina Charlotte 
  • 2015: Michael Vaughan, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Weber State University (Utah) 
  • 2014: Harold Hellenbrand, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, California State University, Northridge 
  • 2013: William A. Covino, Provost, California State University Fresno 
  • 2012: Emile “Mel” Netzhammer, Provost, Keene State College (N.H.) 
  • 2011: Vincent Magnuson, Vice Chancellor for Academic Administration, University of Minnesota, Duluth 
  • 2010: Gail Wells, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Northern Kentucky University 
  • 2009: David L. Carr, Provost and Executive Vice President, Richard Stockton College of New Jersey 
  • 2008: Lawrence V. Gould, Provost and Chief Academic Officer, Fort Hays State University (Kan.) 
  • 2007: Barbara G. Burch, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Western Kentucky University 
  • 2006: William M. Plater, Executive Vice Chancellor and Dean of the Faculties, Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis 

2023 nominations for the William Plater Award are open.

Nominate by April 21.

2022 Award winner

From 1993, when Kathy joined IUPUI as an assistant professor of psychology, through her work today, she has incorporated high impact practices and student engagement into the undergraduate curriculum. In her current role, by championing the creation of the Profiles of Learning for Undergraduate Success, the Institute for Engaged Learning, and the Office of Institutional Research and Decision Support, Kathy has coordinated efforts to improve recruitment and retention and to develop a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship. Throughout the nomination letters, Kathy’s strategic focus on connecting student success to institutionalized civic learning and engagement efforts shone. Nominators described how Kathy’s “institutional knowledge of shared governance, value of civic learning, [and] commitment to mutually beneficial engaged scholarship reinforces the foundation of the student experience” at IUPUI. Congratulations, Kathy!  

2022 Winner Kathy Johnson

Executive Vice Chancellor and Chief Academic Officer
Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis

William Plater Award nominations are open until April 21.

Please reach out to us with any questions about this process.

Catherine Copeland

Catherine Copeland
Director, American Democracy Project (ADP)