Two Elon faculty members honored with endowed professorships

Associate Professor of Management Brian Lyons and Professor of Chemistry Joel Karty were recognized for their contributions to their fields and the university community during the Faculty/Staff Awards Luncheon on Tuesday, May 14.

Elon University honored two faculty members with endowed professorships on Tuesday, May 14, during the university’s annual Faculty/Staff Awards Luncheon to close the 2023-24 academic year.

Brian Lyons, associate professor of management, was named Martha and Spencer Love Term Professor and Joel Karty, professor of chemistry, was named the inaugural Sidney F. and Kathleen Jackson Professor.

Martha and Spencer Love Term Professorship

Associate Professor of Management Brian Lyons

Brian Lyons joined the Martha and Spencer Love School of Business in 2014 as an associate professor of management and teaches courses in human resource management as well as management more broadly at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Brian Lyons, associate professor of management, speaking after being awarded the Martha and Spencer Love Term Professorship at the Faculty/Staff Awards Luncheon in Alumni Gym on Tuesday, May 14, 2024.

Known at Elon for the strength of his teaching, Lyons has extensive knowledge in the field of human resources and has demonstrated a strong commitment to supporting the development of students and challenging them to excel. “He sets high standards for achievement and provides feedback that helps his students learn,” Raghu Tadepalli, dean of the Love School of Business, said before presenting Lyons with the professorship on Tuesday.

Lyons has developed courses that explore topics including wage transparency and bias in performance management while pursuing personal professional development in diversity, equity and inclusion issues so that he may better integrate them into his coursework.

As a scholar, he has secured publication of his research in prestigious journals such as the Journal of Applied Psychology as well as in the highly regarded International Journal of Selection and Assessment, Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior, Psychological Reports. For the quality of his work, he received the Love School of Business Dean’s Award for Research in 2016 and his research continues to attract the attention of the news media.

Lyons serves as faculty director of the Love School of Business’s graduate programs and is the faculty adviser for Elon’s chapter of the Society for Human Resource Management. Within the university community, he has served on the Institutional Review Board, as co-chair of the Full-Time Ongoing Faculty Teaching Appointment Committee within the school and is a member of the advisory board for the Student Professional Development Center.

“I’m grateful to work at an institution where our values align with Elon’s mission, providing meaningful and engaging experiences for our students,” Lyons said. “I am also thankful to work at an institution where research informs our teaching and mentorship.”

Lyons said with this appointment, he plans to continue the work of those who have previously held the professorship by elevating the school’s research profile and mentoring undergraduate research.

Sidney F. and Kathleen Jackson Professorship

Professor of Chemistry Joel Karty

Since joining the Elon faculty in 2001, Professor Joel Karty has been a dedicated teacher, scholar and mentor who holds students and undergraduate research mentees to high standards while providing guidance to help them meet those standards.

Joe Karty, professor of chemistry, delivering remarks after being honored with the Sidney F. and Kathleen Jackson Professorship during the Faculty/Staff Awards Luncheon in Alumni Gym on Tuesday, May 14, 2024.

A past recipient of the Elon College Excellence in Scholarship Award and the Senior Faculty Research Fellowship, Karty is the author of numerous journal articles as well as “Organic Chemistry,” a textbook now in its third edition, and an organic chemistry prep book and complementary support materials that are designed to help student preparation and resilience in chemistry.

Karty has received ample feedback from his students in both his introductory and upper-level courses about the passion he has for chemistry and the way he balances challenging his students with supporting them. His data-driven approach to teaching is coupled with a spirit of experimentation that allows him to respond to the learning needs of students in ways that address achievement gaps and the current context, said Associate Provost for Faculty Affairs Deandra Little in her remarks before Karty was presented with the professorship.

Karty has a long history of service to his department, his school and the university including, among others, serving as a member and chair of Academic Council, the Budget Committee, a presidential search committee and now as department chair.

“What an honor,” Karty said. “It’s all that much more meaningful because I know how awesome my colleagues in the Chemistry Department are. Everyone in the department is extremely talented. I know that any number of my colleagues could have been the recipient of this award. It’s a direct result of all of the collective talent and mutual support in the department that I’ve been able to accomplish what I have over the years.”

The professorship stems from a gift from Sidney F. Jackson, a 1930 Elon College graduate and long-time supporter of Elon who credited his Elon degree for the foundation of his professional success. Jackson left a gift to Elon to support the study of science, which included funding for student scholarships and a professorship to support the work of a faculty member in chemistry or physics.