Heller School honors Nsiah-Jefferson, Anderson, and Isenberg with awards

Faculty and staff honored with annual awards

Photo/Mike Lovett

From left: Lanni Isenberg, Laurie A. Nsiah-Jefferson and Brenda Anderson

Faculty members Laurie A. Nsiah-Jefferson ’80, MA ’06 PhD ’06 and Brenda Anderson, and administrator Lanni Isenberg have been honored with annual faculty and staff awards by the Heller School for Social Policy and Management.

Nsiah-Jefferson, a senior scientist and senior lecturer, won the Mentoring Award; Isenberg, an office manager and senior program administrator, won the Staff Service Award; and Anderson, who serves as MBA program director at the Heller School and also teaches at Brandeis International Business School, won the Teaching Excellence Award.

Nominations for the awards were made by members of the Heller School community, and a committee of faculty, students, staff and alumni reviewed the nominations and selected the winners, who were recognized in an award ceremony at the Zinner Forum at the Heller School in April.

Nsiah-Jefferson, whose research focuses on intersectionality, and the social outcomes of systematic oppression, said she was motivated to be a strong mentor by her experience as a student at the Heller School, where she earned her PhD and a masters degree.

“I was so well-mentored while I was here that I was determined to do the same thing for my students,” Nsiah-Jefferson said. “I want to be there for students during their ups, their downs and their middle.”

In a nomination for Nsiah-Jefferson, one student said, “I would not still be pursuing a degree at the Heller School—or likely any other institution—if not for Dr. Nsiah-Jefferson.”

In nominations for Anderson, students said she built relationships with all her students and cared about the success of all her students, and prepared them to be “world-ready.” One review said she was the "best teacher I've had since middle school." Anderson teaches courses in accounting and finance.

“I feel most fortunate to play a very small role in the lives of my MBA students and other Heller students who work so passionately in trying to effect positive, sustainable social change throughout the world,” Anderson said. “You humble me on a daily basis.”

Isenberg serves as an administrator and executive assistant in the Center for Youth and Communities. She has been at the Heller School since 2005. Written nominations for Isenberg noted her attention to organization, positive attitude and willingness to offer help. “She does it all with smarts, a smile, and an extraordinary willingness to do whatever it takes and work as hard as it takes to get it done,” one nomination said. “Our Center doesn’t function without her.”

 “I’m pleased to be able to contribute in some way and make the road easier for some of you,” Isenberg said. “It’s really gratifying to be noticed and noted.”

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