Four Faculty Recognized with Awards for Excellence

Posted: April 19, 2023

Contact: Doug Anderson,, 651-201-1426

ST. PAUL, Minn., April 19, 2023 – The Board of Trustees of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities today recognized four individuals with Awards for Excellence. These awards are conferred annually to college and university teaching faculty and university administrative service faculty to acknowledge and provide systemwide recognition for consistently superior professional achievement and to encourage the ongoing pursuit of excellence.

“Recipients of the Awards for Excellence have distinguished themselves through their commitment, efforts, and contributions that will benefit students and their families for generations to come,” said Roger Moe, chair of the Board of Trustees. “They continue to raise the bar in cultivating a culture of excellence and inspiring the best at Minnesota State. We are very proud of the transformational experience they provide our students every day.”


These awards are bestowed upon faculty within Minnesota State to acknowledge and reward exceptional professional accomplishment, and to encourage ongoing excellence in teaching. The award proclaims, on behalf of the entire system, the Board of Trustees’ pride in the dedication and accomplishment of its faculty who provide instruction that prepares Minnesota college and university students for their professional, scholarly and civic lives. This year, the Educators of the Year are:

Derrick Crim head shot

Derrick Crim
Human Services
Metropolitan State University

“Dr. Crim’s focus on equity, inclusion, and social justice permeates all of his work and community activities and promotes opportunity and hope for all,” said Virginia Arthur, president of Metropolitan State University. “He truly embodies our campus values and Minnesota State’s commitment to excellent teaching and community engagement that promotes educational equity for our students.”

Shannon Gibney head shot

Shannon Gibney
English, Global Studies
Minneapolis College

“Shannon is well-regarded on campus and beyond for her contributions as an instructor and as an award-winning author who has leveraged her experience and success to benefit students by connecting them with the Minnesota and national literary community,” said Sharon Pierce, president of Minneapolis College. “She continually works to create a curriculum that reflects the diversity of the College’s student body, and to create learning environments that allow students to make connections with their lived experience.”

Amy Zsohar head shot

Amy Zsohar
Inver Hills Community College

“Dr. Zsohar is a highly respected faculty member with a passion for her students and for equity and inclusion,” said Michael Berndt, president of Dakota County Technical College and Inver Hills Community College. “She is a valued member of the IHCC community, and is dedicated to her students and colleagues, equity and inclusion efforts, and innovative community-based learning.”


This award is bestowed upon university service faculty to acknowledge and reward exceptional individual professional accomplishment, and to encourage ongoing excellence in the key roles that service faculty fulfill at our system’s universities which includes advising and counseling students; the recruitment, retention, and placement of students; residential life programming; facilitation of student groups and student leadership; and other involvement in university and community activities.  This year, the Service Faculty of the Year is: 

Randy Ludeman head shot

Randy Ludeman
Director of Housing and Residential Life and Interim Dean of Students
Bemidji State University

“Dr. Ludeman is a highly experienced and deeply respected leader, not only on the BSU campus but throughout the Minnesota State system and, indeed, throughout the higher education community,” said John Hoffman, president of Bemidji State University and Northwest Technical College. “Simply put, he has dedicated his life to our students, and he takes great pride in continually bettering himself so, in turn, he may continue to provide them with the tools they need to succeed.”


Minnesota State includes 26 community and technical colleges and seven state universities serving approximately 300,000 students. It is the third-largest system of two-year colleges and four-year universities in the United States.