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Gabe Spalding, 2014 Recipient of the Homer L. Dodge Citation for Distinguished Service to AAPT.

Gabriel C. Spalding to Receive the 2014 Homer L. Dodge Citation for Distinguished Service to AAPT


College Park, MD, October 16, 2013—AAPT has announced that Gabriel C. Spalding will receive the association’s Homer L. Dodge Citation for Distinguished Service to AAPT during the 2014 Winter Meeting in Orlando, Florida.

Spalding is Professor of Physics at Illinois Wesleyan University where his recent work has utilized holographically textured fields to trap and manipulate matter. Besides being a past member and Chair of the AAPT Committee on Laboratories, he has been active on multiple AAPT committees as either a committee member or friend of the committee. He has been an organizer or contributor to a session at nearly every AAPT semi-annual national meeting for years. He has also been active behind the scenes and on task forces and subcommittees, and served on the AAPT Nominating Committee during 2012-13.  His time and energy support advances in physics education and lab education in particular. 

In July 2012, he chaired the conference on laboratory instruction Beyond the First Year (thereby introducing the “BFY” acronym) at the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University. This was an extremely unusual opportunity for hands-on exposure to a broad assortment of contemporary instructional labs appropriate to Modern Physics Labs, Electronics, Optics, Advanced Labs, as well as key instructional labs in Statistical Physics, Condensed Matter and Materials Physics, Quantum Mechanics, etc. At the same time, the conference served as an opportunity to discuss a range of curricular models that allow for enhancement of the undergraduate physics major. Organizing this particular conference was a logistic tour de force.

In 2010, while serving as ALPHA president, he initiated a joint AAPT/ALPHA single-photon detector project that makes this equipment available for instructional laboratories at a wide variety of institutions. More than 240 single-photon detectors have been shipped to 61 institutions.

Regarding his selection to receive this award, he said, “The powerful thing about participating in our professional organization, AAPT, is the degree to which all of us, working together, make a difference. It is very satisfying to be a part of this particular community.”

About the Homer L. Dodge Citation for Distinguished Service to AAPT
Established in 1953 and renamed in recognition of AAPT founder Homer L. Dodge in 2012, the Homer L. Dodge Citation for Distinguished Service to AAPT is presented to members in recognition of their exceptional contributions to the association at the national, sectional, or local level.

About AAPT
AAPT is an international organization for physics educators, physicists, and industrial scientists—with members worldwide. Dedicated to enhancing the understanding and appreciation of physics through teaching, AAPT provides awards, publications, and programs that encourage teaching practical application of physics principles, support continuing professional development, and reward excellence in physics education. AAPT was founded in 1930 and is headquartered in the American Center for Physics in College Park, Maryland.

For more information: Contact Marilyn Gardner, Director of Communications, mgardner@aapt.org, (301) 209-3306, (301) 209-0845 (Fax), www.aapt.org.