2014 Dunavant Professorships

Dunavant Professorships are endowed by a generous gift from William Dunavant. The College of Arts and Sciences awards one to four professorships annually. Awardees receive $5,000 per year for three years to support their research programs. Since 1999, over forty Dunavant Professorships have been awarded.


Ebenezer George, Mathematical Sciences, About Dr. George

Sanjay Mishra, Physics, About Dr. Mishra

Sharon Stanley, Political Science


E. Olusegun George, Professor, Department of Mathematical Sciences

Dr. Ebenezer Olusegun George is awarded the Distinguished Research in Science, Engineering, and Mathematics Award | spring 2014E. Olusegun George is a Professor of Statistics and Bioinformatics in the Department of Mathematical Sciences at the University of Memphis. He has served on the NIH Center for Scientific Review- Biostatistical Methods and Research Design Study Section [BMRD] (2004-2008), and other NIH study sections. He is a member of Member of Advisory Board: Minority Programs, Harvard School of Public Health, was Chair of Local Arrangement, International Biometrics Society (1997) and former President of the Western Tennessee Chapter of the American Statistical Association. A major focus of his research is in the analysis of clustered exchangeable data and meta-analysis.

He has developed new parametric models which are now used for analyzing clustered data from developmental toxicity studies. In recent years, he has expanded his interests to developing Bayesian procedures for analysis of gene expression and other genomic related data. He has published extensively in top statistics journals, including the Journal of the American Statistical Association, Biometrics, Biometrika, Bioinformatics, and supervised several PhD students, many of who are employed at top universities throughout the United States.

Sanjay Mishra

Dr. Sanjay MishraDr. Mishra has received eight (8) NSF funds, prestigious Research Corporation and Petroleum Research Awards, Faculty research funds, research time at the national laboratory, all in totaling more than $3M. Since his inception at the University of Memphis in 1999, Dr. Mishra has published over 100 articles in peer-reviewed journals, has over 68 presentations, and over 50 conference proceeding articles.

Along with his active research activities, he has been very active in promoting Materials Research program at the University. Dr. Mishra has received several university awards including "Millionaire" award, College of Arts and Science Distinguished award, and Alumni Distinguished Award.

Sharon Stanley

Sharon StanleyProfessor Stanley's broad research interests focus upon modern and contemporary political thought, with two separate emphases: the Enlightenment, its critics, and its contested legacy, and the politics of racial justice in the United States. Her first book, The French Enlightenment and the Emergence of Modern Cynicism (Cambridge University Press, 2012) traces the relationship between cynicism and enlightenment in the thought of eighteenth-century French writers, including Diderot, Rousseau, La Mettrie, and the authors of libertine literature, and concludes by examining contemporary diagnoses of cynicism as the dominant mode of consciousness in "postmodern" democracies. She has also published related articles in Political Theory, Polity, and Eighteenth-Century Thought. She is currently working on a new book that examines the concept of racial integration in political, legal, and cultural discourse, offering a new, less spatially-defined model of racial integration. A piece from this project appears in Contemporary Political Theory, and a second piece is forthcoming in Du Bois Review.

Professor Stanley teaches classes on the history of political thought, American political thought, feminist political thought, race and politics, and constitutional law. She joined the faculty at the University of Memphis in 2006.