Saturday, November 30, 2019

Joyce Medal Awarded to Solomon

[We have the following announcement from Anne Twitty, ASLH Secretary, as well as Associate Professor, University of Mississippi, Arch Dalrymple III Department of History.  DRE]

The ASLH occasionally issues the Craig Joyce Medal in recognition of extraordinary service to the Society. This year's recipient is Rayman Solomon, University Professor of Law and Dean Emeritus, Rutgers-Camden. I include here a portion of Bruce Mann's wonderful comments about this most-deserving recipient:
Much of Ray’s professional life has been committed to helping colleagues do their best work by building and strengthening the institutions in which scholars work and gather, whether as dean of his law school or as a life-long member of ASLH. Every president of the Society for at least the last thirty-five years–myself included–has valued Ray’s judgment and skill and pressed him into service. He has served on every ASLH committee of any importance–and more than a few others, as well. If he has ever said “no,” I do not know of it.

We pressed Ray into service because we all knew that, if we wanted something to get done, we should ask Ray. His greatest professional strength is his ability to take complex institutions such as law schools and scholarly societies, which when left unattended naturally devolve toward dysfunction if not outright chaos, and make them functional. And he does this with a skill and modesty that leaves no fingerprints. One day you look around and realize that the institutions are not only working well, but are better versions of what they were.

These are formidable skills, always deployed for good causes. What makes the execution distinctively and quintessentially Ravian–or Solomonic, if you prefer–is Ray himself. He is, if I may mix languages, a shmoozer par excellence, which makes him not only a boon companion and a valued conference-goer, but also someone who can nudge people in the direction they should want to go. He is also, and there is no other way to say it, a genuine mensh, whose integrity, empathy, and kindness make you glad to be part of the organizations he serves.

He is, in sum, a fitting recipient of the Craig Joyce Medal.