Baylor University Honors Outstanding Faculty for 2022-2023

May 9, 2023
2023 Baylor University Outstanding Faculty

Contact: Lori Fogleman, Baylor University Media & Public Relations, 254-709-5959
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by Lexi Nitishin, student news writer, Baylor University Media and Public Relations

WACO, Texas (May 9, 2023) – Twelve Baylor University professors have been honored with Outstanding Faculty Awards for teaching, scholarship and contributions to the academic community for the 2022-2023 academic year.

The Outstanding Faculty Awards recognize the best all-around professors – including non-tenure track, tenured and tenure-track faculty – based on teaching capabilities, research achievement, effective committee service, time spent with students and civic and church involvement.

The designation represents a singular honor for Baylor faculty since the recognition comes from their colleagues. Each of the honorees will receive an award of $2,500, a citation and recognition by their department.

Outstanding Faculty 2022-2023

Teaching (tenured)
  • Patricia Norman, Ph.D., associate professor of entrepreneurship and corporate innovation and associate dean of graduate programs, Hankamer School of Business

  • Jamie Van Eyck, D.M.A., associate professor of voice and director of the division of vocal studies, Baylor School of Music

  • David Bridge, Ph.D., associate professor of political science, College of Arts & Sciences

Teaching (tenure-track)
  • Rebecca Poe Hays, Ph.D., assistant professor of Christian Scriptures, George W. Truett Theological Seminary

Teaching (non-tenure track)
  • Joshua K. Strakos, Ph.D., clinical associate professor of management and director of undergraduate studies, Hankamer School of Business

  • Luci Ramos Hoppe, M.S.W., senior lecturer of social work and BSW program director, Diana R. Garland School of Social Work

  • David A. Smith, Ph.D., senior lecturer of history, College of Arts & Sciences

Scholarship (tenured)

  • Douglas E. Smith, Ph.D., professor of mechanical engineering, School of Engineering and Computer Science

  • Kimlyn J. Bender, Ph.D., professor of Christian Theology, George W. Truett Theological Seminary

  • Zhenrong Zhang, Ph.D., professor of physics, College of Arts & Sciences

Scholarship (tenure-track)
  • Tomas Cerny, Ph.D., assistant professor of computer science, School of Engineering and Computer Science

Significant Contributions to the Academic Community
  • Stephen Gardner, Ph.D., The Herman Brown Professor of Economics and director of the McBride Center for International Business, Hankamer School of Business


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked Research 1 institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 20,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions