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News Release

Board of Regents Recognizes Professor, Student for Excellence (11/13/15)

(SAN MARCOS) – During its quarterly meeting on the campus of Texas State University today, the Board of Regents recognized Dr. Donald W. Olsen, a professor at Texas State University, and Keeley Townley-Smith, a student at Lamar University, for outstanding achievement in teaching and academics.

Dr. Olsen, a professor of physics at Texas State University, received the Regents’ Professor Award, which is given each year to a professor from one of the System’s component institutions who has demonstrated a record of distinguished teaching along with accomplishments in research and other scholarly activities. Recipients of the Regents' Professor award maintain this title for the duration of their service within the university system, receive a $5,000 award and a commemorative medallion. 

Dr. Olsen is an internationally recognized physicist, having developed so-called "celestial sleuthing" methods that use astronomy to solve mysteries surrounding significant events in art, history, and literature. He has authored and published scores of scholarly articles, book chapters, and books, and received multiple teaching awards.

Keeley Townley-Smith is this year’s recipient of the Regents’ Scholar Award. Regents' Scholars are selected by the chancellor based on their outstanding academic achievement and scholarship, leadership abilities, and contributions to the institution and their community. In addition to a framed resolution and medallion, the Regents' Scholar receives a $2,500 scholarship.

Ms. Townley-Smith is a double-major in physics and electrical engineering at Lamar University. She has repeatedly earned Dean's List and President's List accolades, won several prestigious awards and scholarships, and demonstrated commendable campus involvement, leadership, and community service. She has volunteered as a Lamar University Ambassador, a Peer Mentor for the LU Honors Association, and as President of the LU Chapter of the Society of Physics Students.