February 21, 2014

Wilson earns rehabilitation research award

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill.  -- Keith B. Wilson, dean of Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s College of Education and Human Services, is the recipient of the 2014 James F. Garret Award for a Distinguished Career in Rehabilitation Research. 

The American Rehabilitation Counseling Association presents the award in recognition of rehabilitation counseling research contributions over the course of a career.  

“I am definitely surprised to receive such an award,” Wilson said.  “As with many professionals who just come to work and do their jobs, an unexpected recognition is good to have every now and then.  When I look at the people in my profession who received this award in the past, I feel like I still have so much more work to do.” 

Organization guidelines indicate to be eligible for the award, recipients must have published rehabilitation counseling research for at least 15 years and the research must be of “excellent quality” with respect to relevance, questions addressed, and implications for rehabilitation counseling practice. The research must also have a demonstrable impact on the field, as evidenced by being often cited and influencing changes in practice, policies or theories.  Nominated recipients must also be members of the association for at least a decade. 

According to the “Rehabilitation Counseling Bulletin” report from Feb. 1 showing the “most-cited articles” in the field, Wilson ‘s published research held spots No. 2, 33 and 45 among the top 50 cited articles in the field.  Wilson’s published research has held the No. 1 spot for months at a time on several occasions. 

“While I have received several research and service awards during my career, this award is special because it represents a body of work and winners are selected by past award winners.  To say this is an honor would be an understatement,” Wilson said.  “I feel that any honor that I receive is a reflection of the outstanding faculty and staff at SIU, the College of Education and Human Services and the Rehabilitation Institute.” 

The award presentation is set for March 28 at the association reception in Honolulu.  Wilson said someone will accept the award on his behalf and express his appreciation to the organization for the honor.  

Wilson became dean at SIU in July 2012.  Previously, he was a professor at The Pennsylvania State University in University Park, Pa.  

Wilson also earned the 2013 Virgie Winston-Smith Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Association for Multicultural Rehabilitation Concerns.