Fox earns Lifetime Achievement Award from APLU Board on Human Sciences
October 19, 2021
Author: Cal Powell  | 706-542-6402  | More about Cal
Contact: Linda Fox  |   | More about Linda

Linda Kirk Fox, University of Georgia College of Family and Consumer Sciences dean emeritus, has been named the recipient of the 2021 Lifetime Achievement Award by The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities Board on Human Sciences (BoHS).

The award honors a nationally recognized leader who has a significant history of promoting and advancing the human sciences in higher education.

Fox retired in August after 10 years as dean of the college, presiding over significant growth in enrollment, private giving and funded research.

“Even in retirement, Dean Fox continues to bring recognition to the University of Georgia,” said S. Jack Hu, the university’s senior vice president for academic affairs and provost. “The Lifetime Achievement Award from the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities Board on Human Sciences underscores her deep and unwavering commitment to applying research-based expertise to promote health and well-being.”

The APLU BoHS awards recognize individuals for the development and stewardship of academic excellence in human sciences; elevate visibility and leverage resources to support human sciences research, Extension and teaching programs; and educate leaders regarding the capacity of the human sciences to solve human problems.

The honors are part of the broader BoHS mission of promoting the intellectual integrity and stature of the human sciences at APLU member institutions.

Honorees will be recognized virtually at the 2021 BoHS Celebrating Excellence in the Human Sciences ceremony on Nov. 10.

“Dean Fox has been an advocate and spokesperson for family and consumer sciences throughout her 40-year career,” FACS interim dean Sheri Worthy said. “Her impressive lifetime of work, dedication and leadership in family and consumer sciences carved a path for others to follow. She is a natural leader and is an ideal choice for this award.” 

Fox has received numerous awards and honors throughout her career.

She was most recently awarded the Thomas E. Cochran Distinguished Service Award for “exemplary service to the financial planning program, community and profession.”

She also was chosen to deliver the Distinguished Alumni Lecture at Oregon State University’s College of Public Health and Human Sciences in 2020 and was named a FACS 100 Centennial Honoree as part of the college’s centennial celebration in 2018.

The notion of serving others through her work was a driving force in Fox’s career, which began in 1981 as part of University of Idaho Extension, and explains her lifelong affinity for land-grant universities. 

“Land-grants have the special obligation to serve the public and to assure the research and knowledge base is accessible for all people,” Fox said.

Prior to being named dean at UGA, Fox held faculty and administrative positions at the University of Idaho and Washington State University, where she served as dean and director of WSU Extension from 2005-2011.

Fox also was recruited to serve in several leadership roles during her career.

At UGA, she chaired the Quality Enhancement Plan to reaffirm Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges reaccreditation and serves on the Council for Accreditation for the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences.

Fox also served two three-year terms on the BoHS board of directors and on the National 4-H Council Board of Trustees for four years and is nationally revered as an expert on the AAFCS Body of Knowledge, as evidenced by her numerous roles as a reviewer for academic curricula, research and outreach programs.

Fox also forged international relationships to promote family and consumer sciences, including developing a relationship with her counterpart at the Seoul National University College of Human Ecology that led to a memorandum of understanding between the two institutions in 2014.

During her tenure at FACS, funded research in the college doubled, enrollment increased by more than 20 percent and endowed professorships grew from five to 15, just a few of the highlights of a remarkable 40-year career in higher education.

“Since early in my Extension career, I knew Linda Kirk Fox as an influencer in the field of family and consumer sciences,” said Allisen Penn, FACS associate dean for Extension and outreach. “One of her lasting legacies is the Cooperative Extension’s National Framework for Health, which actively guides the national land-grant university Extension system and UGA Extension’s health equity and well-being applied research and education. On a more personal note, it was the chance of a lifetime for me to have the opportunity to learn from and work with Dean Fox in her role as FACS dean.”