Faculty member receives prestigious award from national museum board

Dr. Deborah Cockerham

The College of Information, congratulates Dr. Deborah Cockerham, lecturer in the Learning Technologies department on her John Cotton Dana Award for Leadership. Dr. Cockerham was nominated by The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History for the award which is given by the National American Alliance of Museums (AAM).

This award is considered prestigious for several reasons.  For one, it is not awarded annually; this award is only given when merited. Leaders in the field of museum education and judges asked to consider nominations unanimously felt that Dr. Cockerham was deserving of this honor. 
Cockerham’s long-standing relationship with the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is vast and covers numerous projects and coordinated research efforts. 

On behalf of the museum, she collaborated to created workshops and family events for children with autism spectrum disorders, where institutions and therapists come together to provide resources for those families. The workshops evolved into Sensory Aware Saturdays, events funded by local foundations that allow families with children on the spectrum to benefit from their private visit to the museum. The evening features sensory modifications and opportunities for families to connect with important support services. Cockerham also collaborated with university professors, museum staff, and museum guests to implement active research studies and educational experiences within the museum setting.  

“Debbie is well-deserved for the award! I am so glad that she is recognized for what she’s been doing for the FWMSH in the past several years. She has worked tirelessly for the museum while pursuing her Ph.D. degree at the University of North Texas! She is driven, creative, talented, and hard-working. I’m very honored to know Debbie as her friend, advisor, and colleague!” says Dr. Lin Lin, a co-author and LT department faculty member.  

The museum plans to prepare a special acknowledgment and press release in honor of Dr. Cockerham. The award presentation normally takes place during the annual American Alliance of Museums in San Francisco. The meeting will now be held virtually. 
Learn more on the John Cotton Dana Award for Leadership