Falk College honors faculty for excellence in teaching, research, service

Faculty members from the Departments of Public Health, Food Studies and Nutrition and Sport Management were honored for excellence in teaching, research and service with 2014 Falk College Faculty of the Year Awards. The honorees, who are nominated by their peers for outstanding performance and contributions to students, the Falk College, Syracuse University and beyond, were recognized during the Falk College’s Convocation for the Class of 2014 on May 10. The name of each recipient, the award received, and excerpts from the letters of nomination are noted below.


Dennis Deninger, Professor of Practice, Sport Management
Excellence in Teaching

Professor Deninger is described as having a genuine passion for teaching and mentoring students. His courses draw from 25+ years as an industry practitioner at ESPN television. Professor Deninger, a three-time Emmy Award winner at ESPN, recently wrote and produced his second documentary, “Changing Sports, Changing Lives,” which premiered on campus in April 2014 and focused on disability and sports.

In addition to service in the Falk College Department of Sport Management and Syracuse University, he has served as a national judge for the annual College Sports Media Awards. Dennis also completed teaching and administrative responsibilities in the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, where he was the founding director of the Sports Communications graduate program.

He has written and published a book, Sports on Television: The How and Why Behind What You See, which is being translated into Chinese.


Dr. Rodney Paul, Professor, Sport Management
Excellence in Research

Most recently, Dr. Paul received the 2014 Award for Extraordinary Accomplishments in Research by the Academy of Economics and Finance, the organization that selected him as the Research Fellow in Economics in 2013.

As a sports economist, he brings a strong financial and analytical business background into the classroom, which is immeasurable in the sport management field of study. In the past year, his research has focused on attendance variables and predictability among different minor league baseball leagues; betting and wagering in college football; ticket pricing variables affecting Major League Baseball; fan satisfaction levels in the National Football League; and attendance predictability in minor league professional hockey, among other contemporary topics.

Dr. Paul serves as the faculty sponsor for honors theses, independent studies, research projects and sport practicums, and advises the Baseball Statistics Club.


Dr. Maureen Thompson, Associate Professor, Public Health
Excellence in Service

Dr. Thompson is described as someone who is never a passive participant and shoulders more than her fair share of tasks and responsibilities. As director of undergraduate programs in public health, she conducts all interviews for students seeking to declare a public health major or transfer into it.

She served on both the Falk College and departmental Promotion & Tenure Committees. She has chaired, and currently serves on, the departmental curriculum committee. She is an expert at developing curricula and has shared that expertise, via her committee work, in developing the major and minor in food studies and graduate programs in public health. She has also been instrumental in developing the Falk College’s addictions studies programs.

Her additional service includes the University Senate Ad Hoc Committee on Promotion and the University Health Professions Advisory Board. She is co-director of the Consortium from Cultural Foundations in Medicine.