2024 J Bruce Jackson MD Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Mentoring: Jessica Fox

The Jackson Award honors faculty and staff members who have guided a student academically, fostered the student’s personal development, challenged the student to grow, and supported the student’s goals and life choices.

Wittke was an advisor, mentor and friend to Jackson while he was a student at Western Reserve University.

Students nominating Dr. Fox commented on her respect for students, treating them as “equals, collaborators, and scientists.” She puts students first, and makes time to help them when it is needed and encourage them to be independent and study what interests them.

Congratulations Jess!

2024 Outstanding Faculty Award: Dr. Ron Oldfield

Each year undergraduates nominate and vote on faculty members from the department to receive the Outstanding Faculty Award. Students write in comments with their nominations about why they choose this faculty member, which is then read and weighed by a smaller committee of students. This year, eighteen biology faculty were nominated by at least one student, but three made it to the final round of voting – Dr. Nancy DiIulio, Dr. Nicole Crown, and Dr. Ron Oldfield.

In the end, Dr. Oldfield was chosen as this year’s outstanding faculty. Students had this to say:

He is especially commended for his passion and skill in designing motivating and enjoyable classes that facilitate deep learning. His commitment extends beyond the classroom, guiding many students through capstone projects


Dr. Oldfield has been incredibly helpful throughout my college journey as a faculty advisor and mentor. This semester, he has helped me progress with my BIOL 388 capstone project and also driven me to a conference for the American Fisheries Society, where I was able to make professional connections.


He is great at explaining concepts and his passion for what he teaches makes the information more fun to learn.


Very passionate professor who cares about a students and designs classes in a way to get maximum learning and enjoyment.


Congratulations Ron!

2022 Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Action “Lifetime Achievement” Award:  Dr. Arnold Caplan

The Board of Directors of the nonprofit Regenerative Medicine Foundation (RMF) have nominated Arnold I. Caplan, PhD to receive the 2022 Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Action “Lifetime Achievement”  Award for his important contributions in promoting scientific discovery to improve health and deliver cures. The award will be presented at the World Stem Cell Summit on June 10, 2022.

Some of the past luminaries that have received Stem Cell Action recognition have included leaders in philanthropy, advocacy, education and policy including:  Joe Biden, Dr. Jill Biden (cancer initiative), Michael J. Fox, Sherry Lansing, Bernie Marcus, A. Alfred Taubman, Bob Klein, Governors Jennifer Granholm (Michigan-now Secretary Dept. of Energy), Martin O’Malley (Maryland) and Jim Doyle (Wisconsin). Organizations recognized include Research!America, JDRF, Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, Hadassah, Huntington Disease Grassroots Community, ALS Worldwide and the Parkinson’s Action Network, among other worthy groups.

2022 John S. Diekhoff Award for Graduate Mentoring: Dr. Karen Abbott

The Diekhoff Award honors John S. Diekhoff, a distinguished scholar, teacher, mentor and administrator who served Case Western Reserve in several capacities during his tenure from 1956 to 1970: professor of English, chair of the Department of English, dean of Cleveland College, acting dean of the School of Graduate Studies and vice provost of the university.

2022 J. Bruce Jackson, MD, Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Mentoring: Dr. Nicole Crown

The Jackson Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Mentoring recognizes the positive impact Case Western Reserve University faculty and staff have on the lives of students. It was established by J. Bruce Jackson (ADL ’52), in honor of Dean Carl F. Wittke, who served as an advisor, mentor, and friend to Jackson when he was an undergraduate student at Western Reserve University.