King Fellow Citation 2017 - William “Bill” Frank
Now into a fourth decade at UD, this year’s King Fellow has been exemplary in teaching,
service, and scholarship.
This teacher is well-loved at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, with care
for students shown, for example, by helpful and constantly refined study guides and
outlines, by careful preparation for classes often taught, by the detailed correction
of assigned work, and by the active interest in each student not only during the semester
but long after graduation. As one freshman put it this past semester, this professor’s
“teaching style is incredibly involving and thought-provoking; even the exams are
designed and explained as a great finale to help us understand and to relate the material
to our own lives and interests.” It is not uncommon, moreover, to find remarks like
the following from a recent student evaluation:“This professor is by far the best
one I have had at UD.” Another student writes, “Students should have the privilege
to be taught by one of the most passionate, smartest, and nicest teachers at UD.”
In service at UD, this faculty member has twice served as department chair, once as
a dean, twice as Academic Director in Rome, once as academic advisor for the seminarians,
frequently as a senator as well as president of the Faculty Senate — and as member
of too many university committees to count. In his department, moreover, this professor’s
affability and friendliness has often and easily translated into mentoring relationships
to younger colleagues, who profit from a memory filled with UD lore as well as wisdom
about the core curriculum and other essential elements of a UD education.
In service to the community — at local, national, and international levels—this leading
citizen has been unstinting in dedication. Whether it be teaching children or adults
at the local parish, or bringing Christmas food baskets to the poor, or hosting a
home-cooked “poetry dinner” for Charity Week, or teaching monthly in the diaconate
program for the Diocese of Dallas, or organizing week-long international forums for
church, state, and business leaders, this faculty member is widely loved for the attentive
care given to many neighbors. But always in first place has been the greatest care
for spouse, children, and now grandchildren — in ways that have inspired many a student
and colleague to live a similar balance in an ordered and hard-working life.
In scholarship, this year’s King Fellow publishes regularly, addressing both perennial
professional issues and a wide range of pressing contemporary issues. Recognized as
an authority in his field, this untiring scholar has also, for almost twenty years,
participated in and now directs the German-American Colloquium that brings together
scholars and cultural leaders to foster international study and dialogue about the
most important issues of contemporary concern.
This year’s King Fellow has enriched UD greatly during thirty-one years here and has
brought the best of UD to many, many others: locally, nationally, and internationally.