Accounting professor Martha (Marty) Loudder was awarded the 2003 University Distinguished Achievement Teaching Award. Given by The Association of Former Students, it is the highest honor bestowed on a Texas A&M faculty member. Recipients are honored with a framed certificate, $4,000 and a gold commemorative watch.

It is only fitting that someone with Loudder’s passion earn this award. “I used to play ‘teacher’ after school when I was in first grade,” she says. “I even had a little blackboard in my bedroom.”

Loudder’s rapport with students comes through her teaching as well as her involvement as faculty advisor to Mays’ Freshman Business Initiative, a peer-led learning community for freshmen. Through both she hopes to teach students to “think critically and develop habits that lead to life-long learning.”

One of 22 to receive the award this year, Loudder joined Mays in 1989. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from West Texas A&M University and her doctorate degree from Arizona State University.

“I am very proud to receive this award,” says Loudder, who has also been named a PricewaterhouseCoopers Teaching Excellence Professor. “To Aggie professors, those gold shields on the watch are as special to us as Aggie rings are to the students!”