Lee News

Barnett Named Honorary Alumnus of the Year

Lee University has named its 2015 Honorary Alumnus of the Year, Dr. Robert Barnett. The award was presented to Barnett on Nov. 7, during the President’s Circle Luncheon at Lee’s Homecoming.

“Dr. Barnett is a gifted teacher. He makes history come alive for his students, and has made that discipline a popular one at Lee for almost twenty years.” said Dr. Paul Conn, Lee University president.                                                                              
Dr. Robert Barnett

Barnett, named a distinguished professor of history in 2012, has also been the recipient of Lee’s Excellence in Advising Award, Excellence in Teaching Award, and the Janet Rahamut Award. Conn noted that Barnett is the only faculty member currently teaching full time in Lee classrooms with the Distinguished Professor rank, and that he has established a reputation for world-class work among both students and colleagues.

Prior to his arrival at Lee, Barnett was the chair of the Department of History and the director of the International Studies Division at Tennessee Wesleyan College. He was also a member of the Russian Bureau of the Tennessee Humanities Council, and project evaluator of the Tennessee Humanities Council. He earned his doctorate, master’s, and bachelor’s degrees from Texas Tech University.

Specializing in the Russian Revolution, Barnett also teaches courses on Modern Europe, Tudor and Stuart England, and various seminars in history. He has been published in American Passages, American National Biography, Encyclopedia of Historians and Historical Writing, and Nineteenth Century Prose Volume XIX.

In addition to teaching, he sponsors Alpha Kappa Eta, Lee's chapter of Phi Alpha Theta, the national history honor society, and serves as a national mentor for Phi Alpha Theta. He is the founder of the Southeast Tennessee Historical Conference. He also is a founder and director of the annual Global Perspectives trip to England and Scotland.

Barnett is a native of Berkeley, California, and enjoys architecture, literature, music, art and travel. He has five children: Christina, Brooke, Andrew, Jordan, and Aimee.

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