Six Regents Professors in Six Consecutive Years
K.C. Donnelly, Ph.D., former professor at the Texas A&M Health Science Center (TAMHSC) School of Rural Public Health, was one of six faculty members to receive the prestigious Regents Professor Award. (Dr. Donnelly passed away in 2009.) In fact, during the past six consecutive years, TAMHSC-School of Rural Public Health faculty have received this distinguished award, including Larry Gamm, Ph.D., Kenneth McLeroy, Ph.D., Marcia Ory, Ph.D., Charles Phillips, Ph.D., M.P.H., and Catherine Hawes, Ph.D.
Established in 1996, the Regents Professor Award is bestowed annually by The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents in recognition of awardees’ exemplary contributions to their university or agency and to the people of Texas. Since its adoption, 144 faculty members from universities, agencies and the Texas A&M Health Science Center across the A&M System have been recognized with the award.
With more than 30 years of experience in basic and applied research, Dr. Donnelly was the associate director for the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences-funded Superfund Basic Research Program at Texas A&M. His research included environmental exposure studies in Azerbaijan; the Czech Republic; Shanxi, China; and numerous U.S. locations, along with animal and human population studies on population exposures and the genotoxicity of complex chemical mixtures. Dr. Donnelly worked to improve the public health work force by implementing continuing education workshops in environmental health for public health professionals.
Additional research efforts by Dr. Donnelly included a collaborative study with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Environmental Protection Agency to conduct a study on pesticide exposure in children residing in four rural communities and studies on the use of health education as an intervention to reduce childhood exposure to pesticides in Texas colonias (rural, unincorporated border communities).