Roane State announces winner of adjunct faculty teaching excellence award

Roane State English instructor Wendy Bennett is the recipient of the college’s annual award for teaching excellence by an adjunct faculty member.

The announcement that Bennett won the Clyde James “Jim” Dunigan Adjunct Faculty Award was made during fall convocation on Wednesday, August 11. The event was held on the Roane County campus and streamed live online.

Originally titled the Adjunct Faculty Award, the honor was renamed for Dunigan, who was the first recipient of the accolade. He taught as an adjunct from Spring 1989 to Spring 2016. He died in June 2016.

His widow, Flory Dunigan, an advisory member of the Roane State Foundation, presented Bennett with the award, which includes a plaque and $250. Finalists Martha Trisler, Scott Jamison, and Debby Sexton received $150 checks, also courtesy of the Roane State Foundation.

The nonprofit Foundation raises funds for student scholarships and also seeks “to inspire excellence with regard to academics,” said Scott Niermann, executive director.

Bennett has taught English and composition courses since August 2018 and was nominated for the honor by Roane State Interim Dean of Humanities Geol Greenlee.

“Ms. Bennett deserves this award because of her willingness to accommodate students, her excellent teaching skills and her fine record of service to Roane State,” Greenlee said in his nomination statement.

Roane State is a two-year college providing transfer programs, career-preparation programs and continuing education. Founded in 1971, the college has locations in Roane, Campbell, Cumberland, Fentress, Knox, Loudon, Morgan, and Scott counties as well as a branch campus in Oak Ridge. For more information, visit or call (865) 882-4554. Remember, eligible adults can now attend Roane State tuition-free with the new Reconnect grant. Learn more at

The Roane State Foundation is a separate 501(c)(3) corporation governed by an independent board of directors and established to provide financial support for Roane State students and programs. The Foundation seeks to enhance community awareness of the college, to secure private contributions and bequests and to manage monies or properties given to the Foundation. For more information, visit or email

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