Stacey Mann, an assistant professor in the Department of Emergency Management, was recently named the recipient of the Southeastern Conference for Public Administration’s (SECoPA) Morris W. H. “Bill” Collins Award. The annual award recognizes the most outstanding paper written by doctoral candidates in the southeastern region of the American Society for Public Administration.
Mann’s paper was an excerpt of her dissertation, which investigated the level of involvement of human resource professionals in local government emergency planning. Her interest in the subject stemmed from a research project she conducted with her doctoral mentor, Dr. Doug Goodman, in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
Submissions for the Collins Award were evaluated for topic significance and relevance for public policy and administration; organization, readability, and clarity of style; soundness of methodology; adequate evidence supporting conclusion; and contribution to existing knowledge.
Mann said she is especially honored to have won the award because her dissertation director, Dr. P. Edward “Eddie” French, was Mississippi State’s last winner, approximately 10 years ago. “Dr. French worked so diligently as my director, and this award honors him along with the rest of my committee for their dedication to the project.”
Mann added that the award is also meaningful because the honoree, Bill Collins, was MSU’s former John C. Stennis Chair and founding director of the John C. Stennis Institute of Government. The current director, Dr. Marty Wiseman, was a member of Mann’s committee and the Institute funded the project.
“As her dissertation director, I am very proud of Stacey for winning this prestigious award, which recognizes her research and writing ability,” French said. “I was lucky enough to win the award back in 1999 and now to have one of my students accomplish this, makes it really special.”
In Fall 2011, Jacksonville State University welcomed its first doctoral program, the Doctor of Science in Emergency Management. As one of the few EM doctoral programs in the nation, the D.Sc. is offered completely online, allowing the program to recruit students both nationally and internationally. The department welcomed its incoming students in an integrative seminar at Fort McLellan in August, in which they participated in tabletop disaster exercises and were introduced to the program. Mann is one of two new tenure-track faculty members who will be working with the department’s graduate students.
“My hope is that I can use the knowledge gained during my doctoral program to help my students in Emergency Management, especially this first class of doctoral students,” Mann said.
As the recipient of the 2011 award, Mann was honored during a plenary luncheon on Sept. 22 at SECoPA’s annual conference. She received a plaque and cash award, and has submitted the work to Public Administration Quarterly.