Mason Korea Academic Dean Shannon Davis Receives Martin L. Levin Distinguished Service Award

In Recognition of Nearly Two Decades of Dedication to the Southern Sociological Society

Mason Korea Academic Dean Shannon Davis Receives Martin L. Levin Distinguished Service Award
Dr. Shannon Davis pictured with Dr. David Brunsma, Executive Officer of SSS

Dr. Shannon Davis, Associate Dean for Faculty and Academic Affairs and Director of IUCF at Mason Korea, recently received the Southern Sociological Society's Martin L. Levin Distinguished Service Award.

The Martin L. Levin Distinguished Service Award honors outstanding service to the Southern Sociological Society (SSS) by recognizing those members who have made exemplary contributions to SSS through direct service over a lifetime or significant portion of their professional careers.

Since her first year of graduate school in the late 90s, Dr. Davis has served in multiple academic roles at SSS. From organizing key sessions to the entire program, sitting at the Executive Committee table, and serving in senior faculty roles, Dr. Davis continuously demonstrated her dedication to SSS for nearly two decades. From 2016 to 2018, she served as Vice President—one of the highest offices in SSS. Dr. Davis received numerous nominations by colleagues for the award.

“Shannon is one of those colleagues who truly exemplify a profound professionalism, a deep passion for rigorous scholarship, caring mentorship, and an unwavering commitment to the organizations she belongs to,” said Dr. David Brunsma, Executive Officer of SSS, who has worked with Dr. Davis for nearly 12 years.

Dr. Davis was recognized by Dr. Julie Wiest (West Chester University) as “using her engagement in [the] organization to recruit and retain members." "That last piece—recruitment and retention of members—deserves emphasis, for it is service that’s not only frequently underappreciated, but is also vital to the sustained existence of an organization like SSS," said Dr. Wiest. "And it’s an area in which Dr. Davis particularly shines; I couldn’t even begin to count the number of SSS members (including me) who have listed her as a mentor and/or a primary reason for feeling welcomed and valued within SSS,” she added. 

This was amplified by Dr. Will Tyson (University of South Florida), who noted that “seeing her serve was the reason I decided to run for Executive Committee Member.” In her nomination letter, Dr. Kylie Parrotta (California Polytechnic State University) stated that Dr. Davis is “a role model for many of us who were new to leadership positions, demonstrating how a leader could be critical, yet kind, and always making sure that voices, even those of graduate students, were being included and heard.”

“The Southern Sociological Society is my professional home, the place where I grew up as a sociologist. My service to the organization has provided me with so many opportunities to develop as a professional,” said Dr. Davis, adding, “This award is dedicated to the work of many with whom I have served to ensure that others find the Society as welcoming a place as I always have.”

Dr. Davis was publicly recognized earlier this month at the 85th Annual SSS Conference held in Birmingham, Alabama.