On Thursday, April 18, 2019, seven faculty members were surprised in their classrooms with the 2019 Endowed Teaching Chair awards. The Broward Community College Foundation established the project in 1989, in celebration of the College’s 30th anniversary, to highlight exceptional faculty.  

“We seek to identify the very best of our faculty and recognize their fantastic work,” said President Gregory Adam Haile, Esq. “It’s important for us, the College, to celebrate them. And what better way to do so than with the Endowed Teaching Chair Awards.”  

2019 Endowed Teaching ChairThe awards recognize faculty members that pursue innovation in the classroom. The $10,000 grant that accompanies the recognition is intended for professional development and to support the implementation of projects that improve the classroom experience for students. Each chair is sponsored by an organization from the community. 

“My students are the reason I’m here. I want to see them succeed, I care about them, and they make my job the best job in the world,” said Savena Budhu Barajas, assistant professor of English as she reacted to the unexpected visit. 

The seven recipients were selected by a panel of their peers following an in-depth review. They are: 

Children’s Opportunity Group Endowed Teaching Chair – Dr. Savena Budhu Barajas is an assistant professor of EnglishShe developed the Caribbean Literature course that may be used as a General Education requirement. Dr. Barajas is a recipient of the 2012 Student Life Development award and Professor of the Year. 

Bank of America I Endowed Teaching Chair – Dr. Scott Demsky is a math professor. He took a break from teaching and spent 25 years at IBM as a software developer. Dr. Demsky returned to higher education at Broward College, where he is also a member of the College’s Critical Thinking Learning Society. 

Bank of America II Endowed Teaching Chair – Benjamin Botero is a Criminal Justice assistant professor, holder of three master’s degrees. He is also the mentor to the Criminal Justice Club. Botero received the 2017 Broward College Central Campus Professor of the Year, and it’s a two-time ASPEN Faculty Innovation Award recipient.  

Margaret and Cato Roach Endowed Teaching Chair – Lourdes Heuer is an assistant professor of English, advisor for the Broward College Online Read Book Club, and a member of the College Read Committee. She is also a member of the National Council of Teachers of English and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. 

International Education Endowed Teaching Chair – Dr. Isis Silva is an associate professor of Education. Silva has presented at the annual Council on International Education Exchange conference in Barcelona. During the 2019 spring break, she helped lead a study abroad course for the College in France. 

Gaddis Corporation Endowed Teaching Chair – Rudy Jean-Bart is an assistant professor of History. He is the faculty advisor for the Black Student Union and Food for Thought. A recipient of the ASPEN Faculty Innovation Grant, Jean-Bart has hosted the college-wide TEDx event.  

Cleveland Clinic Florida Endowed Teaching Chair – Dr. Ellen Glazer is an assistant professor of Computer and Information Science and recipient of two ETC awards, the first in 2006.  

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Learn more about Broward College and our exceptional faculty, visit www.broward.edu.