TTUHSC Faculty Receive Chancellor’s Council Distinguished Teaching and Research Awards

Five people stand in front of TTUHSC photo backdrop.

Left to right: Tedd L. Mitchell, M.D., Lisaann S. Gittner, Ph.D., Sanjay K. Srivastava, Ph.D., Courtney M. Queen, Ph.D., and Lori Rice-Spearman, Ph.D.

Texas Tech University System (TTU System) Chancellor Tedd L. Mitchell, M.D., Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) President Lori Rice-Spearman, Ph.D., and TTUHSC Provost and Chief Academic Officer Darrin D’Agostino, D.O., presented the 2023 Chancellor’s Council Distinguished Teaching and Research Awards Feb. 14. 

Recognizing academic excellence, the honors are the most prestigious awards granted to faculty throughout the TTU System. The awards are funded by gifts to the Chancellor’s Council, a giving society that supports the chancellor’s priorities across the TTU System. 

Chancellor's Award medallion

The honors are the most prestigious awards granted to faculty throughout the TTU System.

“Through the generous support of our Chancellor’s Council partners, I’m honored to recognize and present our distinguished faculty with this year’s teaching and research awards,” Mitchell said. “It is with great pride that we celebrate these distinguished leaders for their careers dedicated to excellence in research and providing an unrivaled educational experience to our leaders of tomorrow.”

The Chancellor's Council Distinguished Teaching Awards are designed to recognize faculty members for teaching excellence, as evidenced by their distinction both within and beyond the institution for outstanding teaching and outstanding contributions to teaching excellence. The Chancellor's Council Distinguished Research Awards are designed to recognize outstanding research, scholarship and creative activity of faculty members in the developmental stages of their careers. 

“This year’s award recipients are experts in research and public health — both of which are key areas in transforming health care through innovation and collaboration — and their work significantly contributes to our mission of ensuring comprehensively trained health care professionals,” Rice-Spearman said. “I am so very proud for them to receive this well-deserved recognition. I’m also grateful to the Chancellor’s Council for their support and for providing this opportunity to recognize and show appreciation for the incredible efforts of our faculty members.”

Award recipients received a $5,000 stipend and an engraved medallion. TTUHSC honorees include: 

Distinguished Teaching Award Recipient: 

Lisaann S. Gittner, Ph.D., is an associate professor of Public Health at the Julia Jones Matthews School of Population and Public Health. Her journey to academia began in the professional realm of health care and pharmaceuticals. This unique background has shaped her into a professor who seamlessly blends academic rigor with practical expertise, bridging the gaps between theory and practice. 

Her transdisciplinary scholarship delves into the relationship between places and health. Notably, she has been federally funded to improve collaboration between health care and law enforcement to manage justice-involved individuals with serious mental illness.

Gittner provides students with insights into real-world complexities to understand the “why” behind a situation and the “how” of creating effective interventions and policies. 

Distinguished Research Awards Recipients:

Courtney M. Queen, Ph.D., is an assistant professor at the Julia Jones Matthews School of Population and Public Health. As a Fulbright Scholar, a National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities scholar and Health Equity Leadership Institute scholar, she focuses her research on eliminating health disparities for the medically underserved, primarily for rural and hard-to-reach individuals, through the development of non-invasive, low-cost, end-user devices for the early detection and management of disease. 

Queen also is concerned with questions about how end-user technologies can best be implemented to increase access to health care, especially among older adults. 

She is a TTUHSC Faculty Senator and a Faculty Ambassador and mentor for technology development, leadership, research and entrepreneurship in public health and the biomedical sciences for the Texas Tech University Innovation Hub.

Sanjay K. Srivastava, Ph.D., is a University Distinguished Professor and chair of the Department of Immunotherapeutics and Biotechnology. He holds a James A. ‘Buddy’ Davidson Endowed Professorship in Pediatric Pharmacology and Oncology in the Jerry H. Hodge School of Pharmacy. His research has been funded by the National Cancer Institute at the NIH, among other agencies. named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Srivastava is considered a leader in the fields of cancer chemoprevention and cancer therapeutics. He is a serial innovator with several patents to his credit. Named twice in Stanford University’s list of the World’s Top 2% Scientists, Srivastava has authored more than 160 research articles in high-impact journals with more than 10,500 citations and has an h-index of 57. 

Srivastava serves on the editorial board of several prestigious journals, is a member of numerous professional societies, and serves on the grant review panels of various agencies, including the NIH and the Department of Defense. 

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