Distinguished Professors of Oakland University

Oakland University Board of Trustees Appoints Two to the Rank of “Distinguished Professor” Including Frank Giblin of Rochester

Upon recommendation by the Office of Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost James P. Lentini, and with support of President Ora Hirsch Pescovitz, the Oakland University Board of Trustees unanimously approved the request to appoint Frank Giblin, Ph.D. and Terri L. Orbuch Ph.D. to the rank of Distinguished Professor at the formal February meeting. The appointments are effective August 15, 2018.

Lentini, Giblin, and Orbuch pose for a photo

Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost James P. Lentini, left, with Dr. Frank Giblin and Dr. Terri L. Orbuch at the Board of Trustees meeting approving their elevation to Distinguished Professors at Oakland University

“Oakland University is blessed with an internationally recognized faculty, many of whom are at the top of their fields in making discoveries that having a positive impact on the lives of people everywhere,” said Dr. Lentini, “The title of Distinguished Professor is the highest honor bestowed on a faculty member who is recognized as being among the leaders in their disciplines. Dr. Giblin and Dr. Orbuch are most deserving of the honor.”

A selection committee of their peers recommended Professor Giblin and Professor Orbuch for consideration of these appointments and wrote letters of support for the nominations. The provost’s office also did an extensive review of each professor’s body of work.

Director and Professor of the Eye Research Institute, Dr. Giblin has been teaching and mentoring students at Oakland University for 44 years. He has conducted NIH-funded metabolic and biochemical studies on the lens and cataract at Oakland University for 40 years, earning more than $12 million in research grant funding while publishing 110 scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals. He is particularly interested in the possible role of oxidative and free radical processes in the formation of nuclear cataract, a common type of maturity-onset human cataract that affects the center of the lens, resulting in blindness. He also investigates unusually active antioxidant mechanisms present in the epithelium of the lens that help to keep the tissue transparent. During his time at Oakland, Dr. Giblin has mentored 20 post-doctoral fellows and nearly 100 undergraduates in his laboratory, impacting their lives and career paths.

Professor of Sociology in the Department of Sociology, Anthropology, Social Work and Criminal Justice, Dr. Orbuch has been an Oakland University faculty member for 18 years. She has directed a landmark relationship study, funded by the National Institutes of Health, where she has been following the same 373 couples over 30 years. One of the country’s most trusted relationship experts, Dr. Orbuch has authored eight books and has written 58 professional journal articles and chapters on the topic. She also has a national following as “The Love Doctor” where she translates her research on relationships to the public as a frequent media guest. She has participated in more than 1,500 local and national news stories during her career, including pieces with ABC, CNN, NBC, ESPN, New York Times, Cosmopolitan, Wall Street Journal, Time and USA Today.

The Distinguished Professor recognition includes a one-time salary stipend of $2,500 plus an annual supplies and services allocation of $1,500, up to five years, to be paid from the provost’s discretionary fund.

In 1988, the Oakland University Board of Trustees established the rank of Distinguished Professor to be conferred on eminent faculty members for the duration of their service at Oakland. According to the criteria for Distinguished Professor status, the individual must be preeminent in at least one of three categories: scholarship, teaching, or public or professional service. This distinction has been conferred on a small and highly select group of outstanding individuals. Honorees are selected by the Provost and the Distinguished Professor Advisory Committee.

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