Campus & Community

Five School of Business Faculty Members Honored as Stevens' Best

School of Business professors recognized for teaching excellence, mentorship, advising and campus service. 

The Stevens School of Business had plenty of reasons to celebrate at this year’s university faculty awards ceremony. The five honorees represent both technical knowledge and the ability to connect with students and colleagues through communication, adaptability and empathy. 

Their commitment to excellence and community has positively impacted students, faculty and staff from across campus, alums, and members of the university and Hoboken community. 

Peter Koen Peter Koen 
Distinguished University Service Award 

What it is … 

The Award for Distinguished University Service honors a faculty member who has made outstanding contributions to Stevens and has had “a transformational effect on the university community.” 

Why he won … 

  • Peter developed Introduction to Entrepreneurial Thinking course that is now taught to all engineering students. 

  • Has been chair of the School of Business Nominating Committee, and Promotions and Tenure Committee, and is a. member of the Academic Management Committee, and ad hoc group on teaching assessments. 

  • Peter has been a member of the Faculty Senate for the past five years. He has been a member of the Faculty Handbook Revision Committee and last year chaired the senate subcommittee on the review of the employee handbook.  

“An amazing colleague, Peter’s commitment to his students and colleagues is truly inspiring and has helped transform how our faculty goes about their work. As a senator, he makes sure all of his constituents are well informed about all the issues and challenges they face and is constantly encouraging our faculty to become more involved. He is truly dedicated to benefitting the Stevens community.” — Gregory Prastacos, Dean, School of Business 

In his own words … 

“I am proud that I’ve been able to serve Stevens and the School of Business. In my work on the Faculty Senate, I took a dual approach of being an advocate for the university and the School of Business. My goal, along with many others, was to make Stevens a better place. I have been at Stevens for close to 28 years and have seen it prosper. This was my chance to give back and hopefully contribute to its betterment.    

I believe that the SSB Tenure Committee work was exceptional, thanks in large part to ALL the tenured faculty in the SSB. Their work and dedication to carefully and diligently evaluating faculty cannot be overstated. In a similar manner, I took a leading role in moving the faculty handbook changes forward and helped broker the conflicts, however, this took an immense effort of the Faculty Handbook Committee and the Faculty Senate. In reality, I was a cog in process which helped to keep the gears turning.   

I would like to thank Elaine Henry and Dibs Sarkar for nominating me. I would also like to extend a special thanks to Gregory Prastacos for the very nice comments that he made at the award ceremony.”   

Don Lombardi Don Lombardi 
Henry Morton Distinguished Teaching Professor Award 

What it is … 

The Henry Morton Distinguished Teaching Professor Award is one of three yearly honors awarded to individuals with “exceptional teaching ability who have demonstrated great influence on students in and/or outside the classroom.”   

Why he won … 

  • A Marine Corps veteran, Don brought back the Stevens’ Veterans Office which had not been active for more than 20 years. There are currently more than 200 undergraduate and graduate veteran students combined at Stevens. 

  • He is one of the academic advisors to the Stevens Pinnacle Scholars and the Faculty Academic Advisor for the varsity lacrosse, baseball, and wrestling teams. 

  • His outreach includes the development of the Leader SAT Max Program that helps prepare local students to excel on the SAT exam. 

“His work in the Stevens’ classroom can only be called extraordinary.  His ability to connect with students and motivate them through his enthusiasm can be seen in his near-perfect ratings for course and instructor effectiveness.” — Gregory Prastacos, Dean, School of Business   

“This is the best class I’ve ever taken at Stevens. Dr. L was an extremely INSPIRING professor. His passing for and knowledge of the subject matter was contagious, and I found myself looking forward to his class every week.” — Stevens student 

In his own words … 

“The Morton Award is especially meaningful to me, as it not only honors a legendary figure in our university's history, but previous winners include a number of my terrific colleagues and peerless mentors. I am deeply humbled that I'm on that list. I would like to thank my wife, Debbie, who has made my objective every day for the past 42 years to be a better person than I was the day before. I have worked for Marine Corps generals, university chancellors and corporate CEOs, but Gregory Prastacos is the best boss I've ever had. He is the rare leader who is unfailingly honest, consistently thoughtful and always direct in his communication. You give him good ideas, solutions, and strategies, and he'll always give you the resources needed to get the job done. Plus, I can't remember an interaction where our shared sense of humor did not enter into the equation!  

I've been blessed with a wonderful family, the honor of serving the world's greatest nation in the Marine Corps and teaching at Stevens. When I found out about the Morton, I thought, ‘How many people are that lucky?!? 

I tell the students all the time, ‘You don't care about what I know until you know that I care about you.’ If I'm doing that every time I walk into one of our classrooms or work with a student in my office, then I must be doing something right.” 

Ann Murphy Ann Murphy 
Alexander Crombie Humphreys Distinguished Teaching Associate Professor Award 

What it is … 

The Alexander Crombie Humphreys Distinguished Teaching Associate Professor Award is one of three yearly honors awarded to individuals with “exceptional teaching ability who have demonstrated great influence on students in and/or outside the classroom.”  

Why she won … 

  • As the Senior Design Coordinator, overseeing the two Senior Design courses, she worked to transform the program by introducing business consulting, research and entrepreneurship tracks. 

  • A former associate dean of the business school, Ann was instrumental in developing the Student Support Center, which is now the Center for Student Success.  

  • During her time as associate dean, she oversaw the development and launch of six new majors and seven new minors. 

“Ann is a dynamic professor who for more than 20 years has been consistently excellent in her work in Strategic Management. She has the unique ability to be an effective teacher at all levels, from undergraduate to MS, to MBA, to Ph.D., to the executive level.” — Gregory Prastacos, Dean, School of Business  

“Professor Murphy is a truly wonderful teacher. As a recent college graduate from a non-business field with limited work experience, I felt that I could ask any question. You could also tell she had a genuine care and concern for her students and tried to get know everyone and hear everyone’s voice.” — Stevens student 

In her own words … 

“Receiving this honor means so much to me because teaching is not just a profession but one of my greatest passions in life. I am genuinely invested in our students' learning and development and dedicated to nurturing their growth as scholars and future professionals.  

I have many people to thank. I am most grateful for the outstanding students at Stevens who are bright, kind, and hard-working. They make my job easy. I also appreciate the support from Dean Prastacos and my other colleagues in the School of Business. Finally, I want to thank my family, who always put up with me when I need to spend long hours preparing for class or teaching at night. They surprised the award winners at the ceremony by asking us to give a short speech. While I felt a bit unprepared, I appreciated having the opportunity to express my gratitude to those who support me, including my husband who was in attendance.  

 Additionally, it was really wonderful that several of my colleagues in the School of Business also received awards this year—Peter Koen, Don Lombardi, Kevin Ryan, and Jordan Suchow.” 

Kevin RyanKevin Ryan 
Distinguished Teacher-Mentor Award 

What it is … 

The Distinguished Teacher-Mentor Award recognized faculty excellence in “pedagogical innovation, curriculum development, classroom teaching and mentoring students outside the classroom.”  

Why he won … 

  • He has taught more classes than any other faculty member in the School of Business, sometimes taking on seven classes per semester. 

  • Kevin is the “go-to” person when classes need to be adjusted or created and redesigned how computer science is taught to business students. 

  • Kevin is a campus leader in preparing professors to teach engaging and effective online and hybrid courses. 

“A true sign of his influence can be seen in the common area outside his office which is constantly filled with students who come for advice and guidance. It is no surprise that he is continuously named by students as the faculty member who has had the biggest impact on them. One conversation with Kevin’s students and you’ll learn of his concern for not just his student’s academic progress but also their personal development and mental health. He is able to take highly complex concepts and make them understandable and engaging.” — Gregory Prastacos, Dean, School of Business  

“He came to class every day excited to teach, and this joy rubbed off on all the students. He was engaging and clear. His classroom was always a safe space for questions. Professor Ryan was not only my kindest professor, he was also by far the most engaging and informative.” — Stevens student 

In his own words … 

"The first two words that come to mind are humble and grateful. I want to thank my wife, Alison, Gregory (Prastacos) for all of his support, all the teachers I've had in my life, and the wonderful support staff. There are a lot of people who schedule my courses, set up the websites and give me teaching assistance. They've had a tremendous impact on my success. 

It's all about being available for the students. I love teaching. I'm blessed to be in this position so when I go to class, I'm excited, and I think students see me for the most part as someone they can approach. They feel comfortable with me, and I feel comfortable with them. It's very rewarding to have an important role as a positive influence on young adults. 

When I mentor my students, I tell them to find out what they're good at and use that in their careers to help other people along the way. I'm just very fortunate that I'm in a position to pass that along because it happened for me." 

Jordan Suchow Jordan Suchow 
Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Advising 

What it is … 

The Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Advising honors a member of the Stevens faculty “who has guided students in their academic and career paths; fostered students' long-term personal development; challenged students to reflect, explore and grow as individuals; and supported and/or facilitated the students' goals and life choices.” 

 Why he won … 

  • Jordan has unparalleled knowledge of computer science and artificial intelligence. 

  • He has the unique ability to explain those complex concepts in a way to help students develop a deeper understanding and inspire them to find new solutions. 

“His passion for teaching is evident to anyone who takes one of his classes and he engages with students in a way that lets them know he truly cares about their success. He does this by encouraging their curiosity, challenging them to think differently about the status quo, and exploring new ideas.” — Gregory Prastacos, Dean, School of Business 

“He is a mentor who always puts his students’ needs first and is willing to go the extra mile to help them achieve their academic and career goals.” — Stevens student 

In his own words … 

“Receiving this award truly came as a surprise and it's humbling. In my role as an academic advisor, the real reward lies in helping students work through their challenges, whether it's a tricky research problem, uncertainty in their professional development, or personal hurdles. It's about engaging deeply with their individual situations and finding solutions together.  

Each student's journey is unique, and being a part of that journey is truly gratifying. Watching them overcome difficulties and grow is the highlight of my job. To have been nominated for this award by the students themselves means the world to me. It's a testament to the bonds we've built and the challenges we've faced together.”