Matt Harrison, assistant professor of foundations of education at Southwestern Seminary, was presented with the 2017 Association of Christian Libraries (ACL) Research Award during a special reception, May 10. The award recognized his work and research skills in the study of J.M. Price, Southwestern’s first dean of the School of Church and Family Ministries, and Price’s contribution to Southern Baptist religious education.

Established in 1957, the ACL aims to strengthen libraries through professional development of evangelical librarians and through spiritual encouragement for service in higher education. With more than 500 individual members and more than 180 institutional members, it is one of the oldest evangelical academic library organizations in existence.

Nominated by Jill Botticelli, archivist and special collections librarian at Southwestern, Harrison was commended for his contribution to the field of religious education and Southwestern’s institutional history. “His dedication to academic excellence has allowed him to produce work that is historically accurate and academically stimulating,” Botticelli said.

“Recognition of this type highlights the exceptional resources our institution makes accessible to students and researchers,” Botticelli said of the significance of this award to Harrison as well as Southwestern. “Dr. Harrison made extensive use of institutional archives and discovered untapped materials to reinforce his writing, which produced a valuable dissertation.”

Since 2006, the ACL Research Award has been awarded to students, scholars and researchers who excel in research and exemplify leadership and Christian character. “Dr. Harrison has proven to be an able instructor and is well-liked and respected by his students and peers,” Botticelli said. “He is always ready and willing to help others and demonstrates impeccable character and Christ-like behavior.”

In recognition of Harrison’s accomplishment, Dean of Libraries Craig Kubic says the Southwestern Seminary Libraries and their professional Christian librarians are proud of Harrison’s work and achievement. “His research covering the life of J.M. Price illuminates the contributions of a distinguished Southwestern faculty as a leader in Christian education,” Kubic says.

During the reception, Harrison took time to thank his family and the Southwestern faculty and staff who supported him in his work and research. “Receiving the ACL award is very encouraging to me and a reminder of how the Lord gives the resources we need to fulfill that to which He calls us,” Harrison said. “I am thankful to Dr. Craig Kubic and Mrs. Jill Botticelli in the Southwestern Seminary Library for their extensive help in the archives as well as Drs. [Patricia] Nason, [Paul] Stutz, and [Waylan] Owens for the supervision and direction they gave in my research.”