The state senator from Laredo and proud UT alumna has been the defender-in-chief for her alma mater at the not-always-friendly state Capitol. Zaffirini’s main line of work this academic year came in the form of three highly-publicized hearings as the co-chairwoman of the Joint Committee on Higher Education Governance, Excellence and Transparency in the fall, which helped at least temporarily halt the frenetic pace toward detrimental change in the state’s higher education.
Honorable mention: Stefanie Lindquist
The interim dean of the UT School of Law stepped in at the most academically awkward of situations, following the firing of former law school dean Larry Sager. But with a respectability that encompasses administrative, faculty and student circles, Lindquist helped orient the school back in the right direction.
Honorable mention: Marsha Miller
The ever under-appreciated University photographer has the disadvantage of being behind the scenes most of the time. But if any institution can appreciate the intricacies of photography, it’s The Daily Texan.