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Kady Fairfield Named Pasquini Award Winner for 2012

Mar 26, 2012

Each year the WIU History Department bestows the David Pasquini Award upon one outstanding graduate student is also a full-time secondary school History or Social Studies teacher. This year's recipient, Katherine (Kady) Fairfield, certainly fits the criteria for this award. Ms. Fairfield earned her Bachelor of Arts in Secondary Education and History in 2008; she graduated cum laude with a 3.6 GPA. She has traveled extensively in Europe and is currently teaching Social Studies and English at Winchester High School. She began her Masters program at Western in Fall 2010, and has amassed an impressive array of accomplishments since. With support from the WIU School of Graduate Studies Graduate Student Research and Professional Development Grant that she won in Fall 2011, she presented a research paper at the Northern Illinois University Graduate History Conference, and she published an article on her thesis research in the Western Illinois Historical Review, all while continuing to maintain an excellent GPA.

According to her Superintendent at Winchester she "possesses a sharp intellect, high moral character and a keen understanding of educational methodology. Kady has a bright future ahead of her in education." Her thesis advisor, Dr. Jennifer McNabb, Associate Professor of History, notes that "Kady has a fine mind and the ability to express her ideas clearly and effectively."

The Pasquini Award honors the memory of David Pasquini. David earned his BA in History at Western Illinois University in 1971 and his MA in History, also at Western, in 1977. In 1979 he began teaching history at Glenbrook South High School and went on to have a remarkable career there. In addition to teaching history he coached Boys Cross-Country, he was an Assistant Track and Field coach, he received the Parents Association Distinguished Teacher award, and served as Social Studies Department Chair.

When he died unexpectedly in 1996 his friends and colleagues chose to honor his memory by establishing the Pasquini Award, which has been given each subsequent spring to "a teacher who is pursuing an M.A. degree in history from Western Illinois University and who exemplifies David Pasquini's passion for teaching and commitment to history." Thanks to the cntinuing generosity of donors, the Pasquini Award now carries a value of $750.

Ms. Fairfield joins an illustrious group of past Pasquini Award winners, including Mike Baxter and Travis Brockschmidt (both in 1998), Dan Trenary and Jennifer Robinson (both in 1999), David Potthast (2000), Linda Litterer (2001), Judith Greene (2002), John Kealey (2003), Robert Newman (2004), Andrew Haines (2005), Brian Schmidt (2007), Ben Rees (2008), Roy Gully (2009), Brian Kennedy (2010), and Leevia Barnett (2011).

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