Pasco-Hernando State College is proud to announce its recipients of the annual NISOD Excellence Awards. The 2021 honorees include Carolanne Azan, DBA, assistant professor, Bachelor of Applied Science in supervision and management; Karen Lotz, assistant professor, Bachelor of Nursing; and Jonathan Spiewak, instructor, mathematics. Also, since the 2020 conference was canceled, the college is also recognizing those recipients. The 2020 honorees include Gary Cors, J.D., professor and paralegal program director; Gloria Pray, assistant professor, economics and director of business programs, and Jeremy Scarbrough, Ph.D., instructor, philosophy.

NISOD’s Excellence Awards recognize men and women each year who have demonstrated an outstanding commitment and contribution to their students and colleagues. In 1989, in connection with a University of Texas at Austin national study of teaching excellence, NISOD hosted its first ceremony honoring NISOD Excellence Award recipients. The response to that ceremony was so positive that NISOD began what has become the largest and most inspiring gathering that recognizes the contributions and achievements of community and technical college faculty, administrators, and staff.

“I am honored and thrilled to be receiving this award,” said Spiewak. “This past year has been challenging for us all, and I must say it feels good to know that I didn't let it get the best of me. I have personally looked up to and continue to look up to everyone as a mentor and an example of excellence, and I thank you for the positive impact you have had on me. I look forward to representing PHSC as a 2021 NISOD award recipient.”

“NISOD’s commitment to fostering professional development and leadership opportunities for educators meets an essential need, especially as higher education faces monumental issues during the pandemic,” said Timothy L. Beard, Ph.D., PHSC president. “In these challenging times it is more important than ever to offer opportunities that inspire excellence in the classroom and beyond. Thank you NISOD for providing continuously exceptional cost-effective programs that have helped many deserving PHSC professionals advance their careers and the knowledge and skills of students.”

Excellence Award recipients are recognized during NISOD’s annual International Conference on Teaching and Leadership Excellence, to be held virtually April 28-30, 2021. Excellence Awards recipients receive a specially cast, pewter medallion hung on a burnt-orange ribbon. The names, titles, and colleges of all Excellence Award recipients are included in a special booklet that features congratulatory ads from many of the recipients’ colleges

“Recognizing those individuals who have contributed to student success and their colleges’ mission is something we look forward to doing each year,” said Edward J. Leach, Ph.D., NISOD’s Executive Director. “The extraordinary work of these men and women includes not only what they do for their students and colleagues, but what they do for the communities in which they live and work. We’re honored to be able to play a part in celebrating their achievements.”

The National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) is a membership organization committed to promoting and celebrating excellence in teaching, learning, and leadership at community and technical colleges. For more information about NISOD, visit