William R. Payden was known for his boundless curiosity and enthusiasm, as evidenced by his wide variety of professional paths and personal interests. Mr. Payden (Jour’57) was a journalist, college professor, sports fan, cinephile, professional pianist, world traveler and collector of aviation memorabilia and classic cars.

The Payden Award recognizes excellence in teaching and research or creative work with a $20,000 cash prize and the opportunity to present a colloquium on effective teaching methods. Each year, a short list of potential Payden Award recipients is identified quantitatively based on evidence submitted annually by each faculty member. 

Payden stipulated that a selection committee review the dossiers of the top three faculty candidates and choose a recipient based on provided criteria. This year’s selection committee members were Richard Khleif, senior director of communications, connections and customer insights at Oracle and adjunct professor of communication management at the University of Denver; Sarah Krakoff, Moses Lasky Professor of Law at CU Boulder; and María Len-Ríos, associate professor and associate dean for academic affairs in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia.

Prior Recipients

  • 2021: Toby Hopp
  • 2020: Patrick Ferrucci
  • 2019: Tara Knight
  • 2018: Kathleen M. Ryan
  • 2017: Peter Simonson
  • 2016: Steve Jones
  • 2015: Harsha Ganga
  • 2014: Tom Yulsman
  • 2013: Janice Peck
  • 2012: Nabil Echchaibi
  • 2011: Stewart Hoover
  • 2010: Mindy Cheval and Paul Daugherty
  • 2009: Jan Whitt
  • 2008: Elizabeth Skewes
  • 2007: Andrew Calabrese
  • 2006: Steve Jones