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Distinguished Alumnus

2007 Psychology Distinguished Alumnus - Professor Harry P. Bahrick

Professor Harry P. Bahrick received his PhD in Experimental Psychology from The Ohio State University in 1950. He joined the faculty of Ohio Wesleyan University in 1949 and has been a full professor with OWU since 1956. Professor Bahrick also has held guest professorships at Kenyon College, University of Marburg (Germany), University of Hamburg (Germany), University of Graz (Austria), Ohio State University and University of South Florida. Throughout his illustrious career, he has received many noteworthy honors including; Senior Fulbright Lecturer to Germany, National Science Foundation, Senior Fellow, Ohio Wesleyan’s Bishop Welch Meritorious Teaching Award, the Helen Whitelaw Jackson University Professorship at Ohio Wesleyan and the American Psychological Foundation, Distinguished Teaching Career Award. Professor Bahrick’s research also has been recognized with grants from the National Science Foundation, and the National Institutes of Health. His numerous publications, chapters and specialty books on the topic of human memory are highly regarded and frequently cited in popular science journals and introductory psychology textbooks.

Professor Bahrick’s influence on his students cannot be overstated. He has encouraged and inspired students at all levels to pursue their interest in psychology. In a recent article in the APS Observer he estimates that “over 100 people” were motivated enough in his classrooms to go on to earn psychology doctorates. Many of his students and post doctoral researches have gone on to have exemplary careers due to his mentoring.

2006 Psychology Distinguished Alumnus - Professor Michael T. Turvey

Professor Michael T. Turvey received his PhD in Psychology from The Ohio State University in 1967. That same year, he joined the faculty at the University of Connecticut. Just two years later he was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure and in 1973 again promoted early to Full Professor. He also has had a joint appointment at Haskins Laboratories since 1970.

Professor Turvey is renowned as a truly outstanding teacher and public speaker. While he was a student at OSU he was awarded the Graduate Student Teaching Excellence Award. For nearly 4 decades he has taught the introductory psychology course at the University of Connecticut and is nationally recognized as one of the best intro teachers in the country. In his 39 years at the University of Connecticut, he has taught more than 25,000 undergraduates and produced over 40 PhDs.

Professor Turvey has earned numerous national and international awards for his research on reading, motor control and perception. He received an APA Early Career Award in 1974. He was acknowledged by the University of Connecticut as its Honored Professor in Humanities and Social Science in 1984. He was the University of Connecticut Alumni Association Distinguished Professor from 1994-1997 and the University of Connecticut Board of Trustees’ Distinguished Professor in 2000. He has been elected to the Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Society for Experimental Psychologists, and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science. He presented the APA Distinguished Scientist Lecture in 1998, the American Psychological Foundation F. J. McGuigan Lecture in 2003, and he was named the National Science Foundation Distinguished Speaker in 2003. He also has an Honorary Doctor of Philosophy from Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam.

The department is honored to name Professor Michael Turvey as its 2006 Distinguished Alumnus.

2005 Psychology Distinguished Alumnus - Professor Claude Steele

Professor Steele received his PhD in Psychology from The Ohio State University in 1971. That same year, he joined the faculty of the University of Utah, moving to the U of WA, then U of MI, and finally to Stanford in 1991 where he has served as department chair and as the Lucie Stern Professor in the Social Sciences. His latest service to Stanford is as the Director of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences. Throughout his illustrious career, he has held several notable offices such as President of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology and the Western Psychological Association, and chair of the Executive Committee of the Society of Experimental Social Psychology. He is a fellow of the APS and APA, and a member of AAAS, and the National Academy of Education. In addition to his earned degree, he holds honorary doctorates from the University of Chicago and Yale University.

Professor Steele is the recipient of numerous awards among which include the Cattell Fellowship, the Gordon Allport Prize, the William James Fellow Award from the APS, the Kurt Lewin Prize from the Society for the Scientific Study of Social Issues, the Senior Award for Distinguished Contributions to Psychology in the Public Interest, the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award from the APA, and election to the National Academy of Sciences in 2003.

2004 Psychology Distinguished Alumnus - Professor Emeritus Donald "Al" Riley

Professor Riley received his Ph.D. in Psychology from The Ohio State University in 1950. That same year he joined the Psychology faculty of the University of California at Berkeley. Rising through the ranks, he became Professor in 1964, served as Associate Vice-Chancellor for Academic Development for UC Berkeley, and chaired the department from 1982 through 1987. He has been Professor Emeritus since 1991.

A force in the psychological literature for 50 years, Professor Riley actively published from 1950 to 2000 to become one of the pre-eminent researchers in animal learning and cognition. Some of his well-known papers include his critique of Kohler's theory of association published in Psychological Review with Leo Postman (1957), his sole-authored Psychological Review paper (1958), "The nature of the effective stimulus in animal discriminative learning: Transposition reconsidered", and his book (1968), Discrimination in Learning.

He wasa thoughtful, respectful, and generous mentor to his students, and many of them went on to productive careers in animal learning. Professor Riley was active in the American Psychological Association and other professional organizations, as well as on federal grant panels. Importantly, he has an international reputation as a scientist who maintained the study of animal learning and cognition as an ecologically relevant field.

2003 Psychology Distinguished Alumnus - Professor Richard M. McFall

Professor Richard McFall received his Ph.D. in clinical psycholgy from the OSU Psychology Department in 1965 under thementorship of George Kelly and Julian Rotter. His first academic appointment was with the University of Wisconsin, and in 1979 he joined the faculty at Indiana University, where he is currently Director of Clinical Training.

Dr. McFall has written many highly influential articles on a wide range of topics in clinical psychology. Much of his empirical research has focused on the role of social competence in relation to various forms of psychopathology in adults and children. That work has helped shape the perspective used by clinical scientists for studying aggression, depression, and a wide range of other problems.

Along with Dr. McFall’s highly respected body of empirical work, his efforts to enhance the role of science in clinical practice will be his enduring legacy. Dr. McFall’s work in this area has led to a profound, and growing change in the field. For example, he was the driving force behind the formation of the Academy of Psychological Clinical Science (APCS). This is but one of many exceptional contributions Dr. McFall has made to the field of clinical psychology, which promise to reverberate to the betterment of the field for many years to come.

Dr. McFall contributes his views about scientific clinical psychology to his graduate training at OSU and the influence of his mentor, Julian Rotter. As Dr. McFall said in an article about APCS in the APS Observer (Jan. 2002), “The philosophy of the program at OSU was that they were training people for careers in clinical research. I think the rest of the world is now catching up to that point of view.”

2002 Psychology Distinguished Alumnus - Frank Stanton

Born in Muskegon, Michigan, U.S., 20 March 1908. Educated at Ohio Wesleyan University, Delaware, Ohio, B.A. 1930; Ohio State University, Ph.D. 1935; diplomate from American Board of Professional Psychology. Worked in CBS research department (later CBS-TV), New York City, 1935-45; president, CBS Inc., 1946-71 (was cited by three committees of the House of Representatives for contempt of Congress for refusal to grant access to CBS News' "outtakes" in connection with the CBS broadcast of The Selling of the Pentagon, 1971), vice-chair, 1971-73, president emeritus, since 1973; chair, Rand Corporation, Santa Monica, California, 1961-67, trustee, 1957-78; U.S. Advanced Communications Info., Washington, 1964-73; chair, ARC, Washington, 1973-79, vice chair, League of Red Cross Societies, Geneva, Switzerland, 1973-80; chair, visiting committee, Kennedy School of Government, 1979-85; chair (now retired), Broadcast International Inc.; director, Capital Income Builder, Inc., Capital World Growth & Income Fund, Inc., Sony Music Entertainment, Inc. Member: founding member and chair, Center for Advanced Study in Behavioral Sciences, Stanford, California, 1953-60, trustee, 1953-71; Business Council, Washington, since 1956 (honorary); National Portrait Gallery Commission, Washington, since 1973; board of overseers, Harvard College, 1978-84; President's Committee on Arts and Humanities, Washington, 1983-90; honorary director and trustee, William Benton Foundation, Bryant Park Restoration Corporation, Educational Broadcasting Corporation; emeritus trustee and director, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Rockefeller Foundation, Carnegie Institution Washington. Recipient: Paul White Memorial Awards, Radio and TV News Directors Association, 1957 and 1971; Peabody Awards, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1964, and 1972; Trustees Awards, National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, 1959 and 1972; Special Honor Award, AIA, 1967; International Directorate Award, National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, 1980; named to TV Academy Hall of Fame, 1986, Market Research Council of New York, 1988. 

For more complete information on Frank Stanton’s illustrious career, please visit

2001 Psychology Distinguished Alumnus - Professor Roger E. Kirk

Roger E. Kirk grew up in Marietta, Ohio. When he was 15, his parents moved to Columbus, Ohio. He received his B.S. and M.A. in music and his Ph.D. in experimental psychology from the Ohio State University. He did post doctoral study in mathematical psychology at the University of Michigan. He has written over 80 scientific papers in the areas of statistics, psychoacoustics, and human engineering, and five textbooks on statistics. His first book, Experimental Design: Procedures for the Behavioral Sciences, was identified by the Institute for Scientific Information as one of the most frequently cited books in its field. Dr. Kirk is a fellow of the American Psychological Association (Divisions 1, 2, 5, and 13), the American Psychological Society, and the American Association of Applied and Preventive Psychology. He is a past president of the Society for Applied Multivariate Research, Division 5 of the American Psychological Association, and the Southwestern Psychological Association. A recipient of numerous distinctions for teaching effectiveness, he was named the Outstanding Tenured Teacher in the College of Arts and Sciences for 1992-93 and designated a Master Teacher in 1993, Baylor University's highest teaching honor. More recently, the Ohio State University Department of Psychology gave him its Distinguished Alumnus Award for 2001.


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