Associate Professor Thomas Williams was awarded emeritus status at Commencement June 12 and named Associate Professor of Biology Emeritus.
Williams came to North Central in 1981 from Washington State University, where he received a doctorate in zoology. His expertise in zoology focused on salamander anti-predator mechanisms and he ignited a passion for scientific research in his students by including them in his laboratory and field projects, conference presentations and publishing. Many students who went on to graduate school in the sciences were inspired by his research and mentoring.
“He was doing this 25 years ago when he may have been the only person doing real research in the natural sciences at North Central,” said David Horner, professor of chemistry and physics and Harold and Eva White Distinguished Professor in the Liberal Arts, when speaking about Williams at the College’s Service Awards dinner in May.
“But I think what made Tom special is the extent to which he enjoyed his students as people. He really cares about each student’s development as a person.”