University of Southern Mississippi Distinguished Professor of Gifted Education Dr. Frances Karnes was honored for her service to the field of gifted education with a key to the city of Hattiesburg by Mayor Johnny DuPree during the Mississippi Association for Gifted conference, held last week in Hattiesburg.
“The city of Hattiesburg recognizes you, Dr. Frances A. Karnes, for your dedication to educating Mississippi’s children, for shining the light on their gifts and abilities,” DuPree said in presenting Karnes with the honor. “Your relentless efforts have played a key role in shaping the leaders of The City of Hattiesburg, and the world at large.
Karnes, who founded the association in 1974, joined the university in 1973 as a professor in its Department of Curriculum, Instruction and Special Education. She founded the Center for Gifted Studies in 1979, which has furthered the education of thousands of gifted students and those with leadership abilities through teaching, research and service, academic and leadership enrichment programs. Named for its founder in 1999, the center also provides support for teachers of the gifted and their families.
She has collaborated with many of her current and former graduate students in publishing approximately multiple peer reviewed journals and books on gifted education, and has been a prominent advocate for legislation benefiting gifted education in Mississippi and across the U.S. Her graduates have gone on to work in academia, private industry and the public sector across the country and around the globe.
Karnes is also the 2003 recipient of the Mississippi Association for Gifted Children’s Award for Excellence, and received the Distinguished University Professor designation this year.