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University of California Santa Barbara
Academic Senate Awards

Prior Year Recipients

2013-14 Outstanding Graduate Mentor Award

Sally Holbrook - Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology

Professor Sally Holbrook is a faculty member of the Department of Ecology, Evolution, & Marine Biology, and she started as an assistant professor here in 1975. She has chaired or co-chaired 21 PhD dissertation committees and 12 Masters theses. She has also served on an additional 21 doctoral and 5 Masters committees.

Professor Holbrook’s success as a mentor can be seen over several metrics: through the financial support that she offers graduate students from her grants or assistance in writing new proposals; in the quality of research that her students generate (reflected by the excellent publication record of her students); and by the professional success of her students. One of her colleagues makes particular note of “the wide range of high profile career positions occupied by her former students including: professors and researchers at major universities, fisheries biologists in government agencies, biological consultants in private industry, educators and directors at public aquaria and non-profit organizations, and government administrators (e.g., the Program Examiner for NOAA in the White House Office of Management and Budget in Washington, D.C, and the West Coast Regional Director for the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries).” In fact, one of her mentees is a departmental colleague (and was the department chair), and another is a recipient of this year’s Distinguished Teaching Award.

Her supporters note the skill with which she provides great research opportunities, encourages students to take ownership of their research, and through personal example ensures rigorous interpretation of findings. One writes, “I have observed the growth in scientific maturity over time of her students is remarkable and [her] students … complete their PhDs with both strong scientific knowledge and the confidence and critical skills to take leadership in future independent work.”

For her dedication and exemplary mentorship of graduate students Professor Sally Holbrook is awarded an Outstanding Graduate Mentor Award. Congratulations, Professor Holbrook!