CMC recognizes faculty members of year |

CMC recognizes faculty members of year

Derek Johnston was named 2015 full-time Faculty of the Year for Colorado Mountain College’s Roaring Fork Campus, which has locations in Carbondale, Glenwood Springs and Spring Valley. He teaches photography in the college’s Isaacson School for New Media.
Staff Photo |

Colorado Mountain College 2015 Faculty of the Year

Collegewide and Edwards full time: Carol Koch, Spanish

Collegewide and Edwards adjunct: Cynthia Bell, business

Aspen adjunct: Steve Stefferud, emergency medical technician

Breckenridge and Dillon full time: Joyce Mosher, English and communication

Breckenridge and Dillon adjunct: Mark Palz, written communication

Carbondale, Glenwood Springs, Spring Valley full time: Derek Johnston, photography

Carbondale, Glenwood Springs, Spring Valley adjunct: Klaus Kocher, photography

Leadville and Buena Vista full time: Roger Coit, emergency medical services and outdoor education

Leadville and Buena Vista adjunct: Danielle del Castillo Shelton, geography

Online learning full time: Kimberly Harding, science

Online learning adjunct: Erin Donovan, anthropology

Rifle full time: Dave Ruffley, history

Rifle adjunct: Gretchen (Greta) Jorgensen, science

Steamboat Springs full time: Steve Craig, mathematics

Steamboat Springs adjunct: Lee Cox, mathematics

Educators Derek Johnston and Klaus Kocher have been named 2015 full-time and adjunct, respectively, faculty of the year for Colorado Mountain College’s Roaring Fork Campus, which has locations in Carbondale, Spring Valley and Glenwood Springs. Both teach photography through the college’s Isaacson School for New Media.

Johnston received more than a dozen nominations from students, alumni and colleagues. Comments range from “extremely knowledgeable, extremely patient” to “he has the precision of a chemist and the practiced, nuanced eye of an artist.”

Another photo faculty member, Seth Andersen, wrote in his nomination: “Derek takes a small two-year program and puts it on par with what students could expect to receive from a big four-year school, and more. We have students from other big art schools that have . . . come here for our excellent program. The value you get in two years of Derek’s program is simply incredible when you stack it up next to other schools.”

Johnston’s leadership in the Help Portrait program, as well as his students’ regular honors in the international College Photographer of the Year competition, were also mentioned as reasons for him to receive the award.

Kocher also received more than a dozen nominations from current and past students and peers. In nominations he was cited for his “infectious positivity” and teaching with “radiant energy and charisma,” while at the same time holding his students to the highest of expectations. One of his former students, Andrea Holland, said, “Few if any students of Klaus will tell you that his classes are easy. Rather he demands excellence from each of us. Without sugarcoating it, he will remind his students throughout a semester that photography is a competitive field, and only those who apply themselves have a good chance of success.”

Each year, students, staff and faculty of Colorado Mountain College nominate one outstanding full-time and one adjunct faculty member from each of the college’s seven campuses and the online learning department. From those honorees, senior administrators then select a collegewide award recipient in each of the two categories, representing the span of the college’s 12,000-square-mile service area.


Educators Kimberly Harding and Erin Donovan have been named 2015 full-time and adjunct, respectively, faculty of the year for CMC’s online learning department.

Harding, who also teaches science at the college’s residential campus at Spring Valley, was noted for developing and delivering an outstanding online version of the Human Pathophysiology course. A student who nominated her said, “I learned more in her class than I thought I ever could. Her teaching style helped me to learn more about my learning style, which I now know requires variation, challenge and adequate stimulation — all of which her class provided, electronically.”

Karen Kaemmerling, assistant dean of instruction, said in Donovan’s nomination that she “is collaborative with her peers, positive with her students and energetic with new projects.” Beyond Donovan’s dynamic online classroom, she also eagerly volunteers for new projects such as being a lead instructor in anthropology and developing assessments for the anthropology program. In addition to her online courses, Donovan also teaches at the college’s Glenwood Center in Glenwood Springs.

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