Billy Hawkins, a professor of kinesiology in the College of Education, is the recipient of the Robert Maynard Hutchins Award.
The highest honor from the Drake Group, the award is given each year to faculty and staff members who take a courageous stand to defend academic integrity at their institutions, often risking job security in doing so.
Hutchins, vice president of the University of Chicago from 1921-1951, vigorously defended academic freedom, opposed faculty loyalty oaths in the 1950s and was a strong supporter of the rights of minorities and women.
Hawkins, who has worked in education for more than two decades, focuses his research on racial issues in the context of collegiate and professional sports. His award-winning book The New Plantation draws parallels between colonialism, the American slave system and the structure of the athletic industrial complex.