Campus News

Applications now open for Emmett P. 'Buzz' Burnam Inclusive Excellence and Expansion Impact Awards

From left to right: Damon L. Williams, Emmett P. "Buzz" Burnam, Katrice A. Albert.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 8, 2024) — The University of Kentucky Office for Institutional Diversity is now accepting nominations for the Emmett P. "Buzz" Burnam Inclusive Excellence and Expansion Impact Award.

"Emmett P. 'Buzz' Burnam has been — and continues to be — an icon of inclusive excellence and leadership for the University of Kentucky," said University of Kentucky Vice President for Institutional Diversity Katrice A. Albert. "For more than four decades, he served UK as a champion for all students. As an architect for diversity recruitment and retention, he left an indelible mark that allows us to continue our mission of advancing Kentucky through nurturing and cultivating our diverse talent at UK."

Albert says recipients of the award should be someone who exhibits Burnam's same commitment to creating and fostering a community of belonging. 

"It should be someone who empowers, inspires and elevates others," she said. "The recipient’s true north star should be to emulate Buzz Burnam in both their personal and professional lives."

Open to all UK alumni and friends, and past and present faculty and staff (individual or team), nominees should: 

  • Demonstrate outstanding and sustained excellence toward creating an inclusive tradition, community, belonging and care.
  • Use their personal influence and power to significantly impact the trajectory of educational access, opportunity and success.
  • Fiercely advocate and champion inclusion, engagement and expansion.
  • Inspire others to reach their fullest potential and to “keep on going” despite challenges and obstacles.
  • Dedicate themselves to giving others the vital and necessary “roots” and the “wings” to soar.

Applications include two open-ended questions. The nominee's educational background, career description and accomplishments/honors/awards must also be provided.

To make a nomination, click here

The Buzz Burnam Awards Dinner will be held Friday, April 12, at the Campbell House in Lexington. The winner will receive recognition and an award commemorating the honor. 

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.