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Finalists selected for Faculty Lectureship

Photo of Thomas DeSutter

Thomas DeSutter

Dinesh Katti

Photo of Mukund Sibi

Mukund Sibi

Three respected NDSU faculty members are finalists for the Faculty Lectureship Award. The honor, which is one of the oldest and most prestigious of the university’s awards, recognizes sustained professional excellence in teaching, scholarly achievement and service.

The finalists include:

  • Thomas DeSutter, professor of soil science in the School of Natural Resource Sciences
  • Dinesh Katti, Jordan A Engberg Presidential Professor of civil and environmental engineering
  • Mukund Sibi, University Distinguished Profess of chemistry and biochemistry

“These finalists were selected by the Faculty Awards and Recognition Committee for their remarkable record in teaching, scholarly achievement, service and for their commitment to NDSU,” said Canan Bilen-Green, vice provost for faculty affairs and equity.

Each finalist will have a short presentation and interview before the Faculty Awards and Recognition Committee, which will determine the award recipient. The honoree receives a $2,500 award, while the two finalists will receive $500.

The 59th Faculty Lectureship is scheduled for Tuesday, April 7, at 7 p.m. in Century Theater, Memorial Union with a reception following in Butte Lounge.

Thomas DeSutter

DeSutter was nominated by Frank Casey, director of the School of Natural Resource Sciences and associate director of the North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station. “Dr. DeSutter is an incredibly gifted teacher and researcher and excels in all aspects of our land-grant mission,” Casey said. “Moreover, he is an incredible leader and mentor to faculty, students and staff, and is always lifting the atmosphere with his presence and positive contributions.”

DeSutter joined the NDSU faculty in 2006. He earned his bachelor’s degree in geography, environmental management and his master’s degree in plant science from South Dakota State University. He earned his doctorate in agronomy at Kansas State University.

His research interests include such topics as environmental soil science, soil reclamation after energy development, feasibility of coal by-products for agricultural uses and drainage and sub-irrigation impacts on soil quality.

DeSutter's many honors include the Teaching Award of Merit from the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture; the College of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Natural Resources Larson/Yaggie Excellence in Research Award; and the Emil Truog Soil Science Award from the Soil Science Society of America.

He is the current editor and past technical editor of Agricultural and Environment Letters, and is past associate editor of Soil Science Society of America Journal. DeSutter’s vita lists 101 peer-reviewed publications, six book chapters or Extension publications and 68 invited professional presentations.

Dinesh Katti

Katti was nominated by David Steward, professor and chair of civil and environmental engineering, and Michael Kessler, dean of the College of Engineering. “Professor Katti is internationally renowned for pioneering methods of computational mechanics and modeling to discovery of the origin of material properties, especially nanoscale materials,” they said. “Professor Dinesh Katti is a true leader who has demonstrated excellence in all three areas of teaching, research and service.”

Katti, who joined the NDSU faculty in 1996, earned his bachelor’s degree from the National Institute of Technology, Srinager, India; master’s degree in civil engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay; and doctorate in civil engineering at the University of Arizona, Tucson.

In his research, Katti has made important contributions to describing the mechanisms of swelling in clay and the creation of swelling pressure on infrastructure. He was the first to introduce the use of molecular-level phenomena to understand swelling of clays in civil engineering.

He has been recognized with many awards, including the John Booker Excellence Award by the International Association for Computer Methods and Advances in Geomechanics, Patriot Award from the Office of the Secretary of Defense, NDSU’s Fred Waldron Research Award and the College of Engineering and Architecture Researcher of the Year Award. He also is a fellow of the Engineering Mechanics Institute and the Faculty Institute for Excellence in Teaching.

Katti’s vita lists three books, 10 book chapters, more than 190 research papers and more than 30 invited talks.

Mukund Sibi

Sibi was nominated by Kalpana Katti, University Distinguished Professor of civil and environmental engineering. “The NDSU faculty lectureship event showcases the best at NDSU to the local community, an exemplary teacher and scholar with large contributions to the fabric of NDSU. With these characteristics in mind I wholeheartedly write this letter of nomination for Dr. Mukund Sibi, “Katti said. “Dr. Sibi excels in all of the three areas of research, teaching and service that encompass the nature of his contributions to NDSU.”

Sibi joined NDSU faculty in 1987. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Bangalore University, India, and his doctorate from the University of New York.

He has established an internationally recognized research program in synthetic organic and radical chemistry. His research interests include catalysis, total synthesis, medicinal chemistry, amino acids and biobased chemicals.

Sibi has received many honors, including the Arthurs C. Cope Scholar Award, NDSU Chamber of Commerce Service Award, College of Science and Mathematics Mentor of the Year, NDSU’s Fred Waldron Research Award, Yoshida Lectureship, Zasshikai Lecture, Haines Lecture, Novartis Lecture, Roche Lecture and Eli Lilly Distinguished Lecture.

His vita lists over 180 publications, 20 book chapters and 12 patents. He has been an invited speaker at symposiums or gave the plenary lecture nearly 100 times and he has been invited to give university seminar presentations more than 250 times.

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