This year’s winner of the Appalachian AAUP Award for Academic Freedom and Faculty Governance goes to Dr. Andy Koch, a professor in the Department of Government and Justice Studies. The award recognizes a member of the university community whose outstanding service has enriched the university by defending, supporting, and working to advance academic freedom and faculty governance across the campus.
The chapter found that Koch has counted academic freedom and faculty governance among his highest priorities during his tenure as Faculty Senate chair, a position he’s now been elected to serve in for a third term. One nomination letter noted that Koch “played a major role in keeping academic concerns and the importance of faculty involvement in campus decisions at the forefront during the spring semester search for our new chancellor and through that process forged a number of important relationships with members of Appalachian’s Board of Trustees that will benefit the university for many years.” It further noted that Koch has “used his position as the leader of the Appalachian delegation to the University of North Carolina Faculty Assembly to convey Appalachian faculty concerns to President Tom Ross and members of the UNC Board of Governors.”
The chapter also determined that, in the words of one nominator, Koch’s “direct but diplomatic style in dealing with sensitive issues at an unsettled time at this university has served us well for the last several years” and that his “influence (is certain to be) felt well into future.”
Koch joined the Appalachian faculty in 1995. He holds a Ph.D. from the University of California at Santa Barbara. He is the author of numerous articles and books in the field of political philosophy. Koch has also served as the advisor of the university chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union.
We are grateful for Dr. Koch’s work to advance academic freedom and shared governance on the Appalachian State campus and in the UNC System.
(Note: some of the above content comes from a press release by ASU News.)