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The Canisius College Alumni Association presented history professor Bruce J. Dierenfield with its 2013 Kenneth L. Koessler Distinguished Faculty Award during spring honors convocation this month in the Montante Cultural Center. The award recognizes one faculty member for teaching excellence and outstanding contributions to the academic world.

Dierenfield, who lives in Kenmore, specializes in 20th century American politics, society and law, and the Civil Rights movement. For several years, he served as a Peter Canisius Distinguished Teaching Professor, during which time he established and coordinated the college’s program in the African American Experience. Dierenfield also is director of the All-College Honors Program, which offers educational experiences to a select group of students who excelled academically in high school and in college entrance exams.

A graduate of St. Olaf College, Dierenfield holds a Ph.D. in American history from the University of Virginia.

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Jerold C. Frakes, professor of English at the University at Buffalo, received a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation fellowship to support his study of the emergence of early Yiddish literature during the 2013-14 academic year.

Frakes, a scholar of medieval European literature, joined the UB faculty in 2006, after many years as a professor of German and comparative literature at the University of Southern California.

He has received a number of awards, grants and fellowships over the course of his career, notably a National Endowment for the Arts research fellowship and two fellowships from Germany’s Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.

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Yusef Burgos, a 2013 graduate of City Honors School, is the second recipient of the Drake M. Francescone Memorial Scholarship. The $8,000 award is made possible through a contribution in Drake’s name made by his father, Joseph R. Francescone.

Burgos, a member of the varsity basketball, football and baseball teams, was nominated for the award by his physical education teacher, Andrew Krause. The award is named for Francescone, a teacher and coach remembered for fostering a tradition of excellence in the classroom and on the playing fields.

Burgos plans to pursue his education at the University at Buffalo.

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Buffalo Architecture Foundation’s Architecture + Education program will receive a national Diversity Recognition Program award for increasing diversity and inclusion within the architecture profession.

The program brings local architects, Buffalo Public School classroom teachers and University at Buffalo architecture students together to teach standard New York State curriculum through architectural principles. In the past decade the program has been involved in 62 classrooms with the participation of 75 local architects and more than 2,000 students.

The honorees will be celebrated during the 2013 American Institute of Architects National Convention and Design Exhibition in June in Denver.

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The Zonta Club of Kenmore presented academic awards totaling $6,000 at its annual dinner last week at Wynwood Kenmore.

Recipients were: Mary Katharine Ginnane and Lyn Brown, seniors at Mount St. Mary Academy; Kathryn Rogemoser of Sweet Home High School; Kayla Catalano and Sarah Pray, seniors at Kenmore West Senior High School; and Samantha Kupco of Kenmore East Senior High School.

Zonta is an international organization of professional women.

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Two Chautauqua County senior citizens, Mary Wisniewski and Patricia Baker were honored for their outstanding service at an Albany ceremony sponsored by the New York State Office for the Aging. Baker and Wisniewski were nominated by MaryAnn Spanos and the Chautauqua County Office for the Aging.

Wisniewski, 85, was born and raised in Chautauqua County and has been involved with the Office for the Aging since 1993. As part of her volunteer efforts, she provides medical transportation, caregiver support visitation for the isolated and assists clients with cooking meals and grocery shopping. On average, she serves 50 hours a week and provides assistance for at least a dozen people.

Baker has been a resident of New York for 76 years and has volunteered with numerous organizations, including seven years with the Office for the Aging, 31 years with the Chautauqua Fire Department/Rescue Auxiliary, and 46 years with the VFW Auxiliary. In addition, she has worked with the North Harmony Senior Citizens for 10 years, has been an active member of the Volunteers for Mayville Food Pantry for seven years and has volunteered for five years with the Mayville Senior Citizens.

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Several local residents have graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, San Antonio, Texas.

Air Force Airman Ryan J. Pawlicki is the grandson of Gwen Dench of North Java. He is a 2012 graduate of Warsaw High School.

Air Force Airman 1st Class Ian D. Rayfield is the son of Mary Rayfield of Buffalo, and John Rayfield of Holly Hill, Fla. He earned distinction as an honor graduate. The airman is a 2008 graduate of West Seneca West High School.

Air Force Airman 1st Class Christopher J. Godlove is the son of John Godlove Jr. of Sarasota, Fla., and Nancy Quattrone of Lakewood. He is a 2004 graduate of Southwestern Central High School. He earned a bachelor’s degree in 2008 from St. John Fisher College in Rochester.

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Anna R. Zahm was named the recipient of the Harold C. Bohn Prize in Anthropology and the Hawley Prizes in Greek and Latin at Hamilton College’s annual Class and Charter Day earlier this month.

Zahm, a senior majoring in anthropology/archaeology and classical studies, is a graduate of Orchard Park High School. She is the daughter of Robert and Susan Zahm of Colden.

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Scholarships have been awarded to Western Division Federal Credit Union members who are high school seniors planning to further their education at a two- or four-year college or university. The five scholarships were awarded to students that exhibited excellence in four categories: GPA; community service; leadership roles and an essay question. This year’s winners received $1000 each, with one recipient awarded an additional $500 due to his service to the community.

Recipients are: Maura Seitz, Cheektowaga; Kelsey Hatfield, Bowmansville; Monica Thurston, Amherst; Christina Richard, Grand Island; and Jacob Brown, Fredonia, who also received the Outstanding Service to the Community Award.

email: citydesk@buffnews.com