Dixie Thompson, Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School, received the 2017 Henry J. Montyoe Scholar Award from the Southeast Chapter of the American College of Sports Medicine (SEACSM). Thompson received the award on February 18, 2017 at the SEACSM annual meeting where she delivered the Montoye Scholar Lecture. In her lecture, The Evolution of a Career: Lessons Learned, she reflected on how lessons learned as a scientist helped prepare her for the role as an academic administrator.
The Montoye Scholar Award is named for Henry J. Montoye, an exercise scientist who had a tremendous impact on the development of exercise science as a scientific discipline. For a period of time during the 1970s, Montoye was a faculty member at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and was one of the founding members of SEACSM. This annual award is used to recognize a member of SEACSM whose career has yielded significant contributions to the body of knowledge in exercise science and sports medicine.
As Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School, Dixie Thompson provides oversight to graduate education at UT. She leads the team responsible for implementation of the strategic goals related to graduate education. Thompson has been a member of the UT faculty since 1994. She holds the rank of Professor in the Department of Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sport Studies where she served as the Department Head from 2008 until 2012. She served as the Associate Dean for Research and Academic Affairs in the College of Education, Health and Human Sciences from 2012 until 2016.
Thompson earned a BA in physical education and an MA in exercise physiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She earned a PhD in exercise physiology from the University of Virginia. She focuses most of her research on the health impact of regular physical activity, particularly in women. Her work has clearly shown that important health changes (decreased blood pressure, better glucose control, weight loss, etc.) can result when inactive women add walking to their daily routine. She is currently part of a federally-funded research group training students from various disciplines to work in teams to assist patients with multiple chronic conditions develop wellness plans. Her research has led to numerous peer reviewed publications, articles for the general public, book chapters, a textbook and presentations. Thompson is a Fellow and Board of Trustees Member of the American College of Sports Medicine and a Fellow of the National Academy of Kinesiology.