The Catholic University of America



Professor Kenneth Pennington Recognized for Teaching Excellence
by American Catholic Historical Association


Catholic University law school professor Ken Pennington is the recipient of the first annual "Excellence in Teaching" Award from the American Catholic Historical Association, the only scholar designated with that honor this year.
He will formally receive the award at a banquet in Boston on Jan. 8, 2011. A citation will be read in his honor.
A congratulatory notice from the Rev. Steven M. Avella, president of the association, read in part:
“Your students raved about their experiences in your classroom--especially when you came in character as Peter Abelard! Just a sampler of some of their comments: ‘ excellent the semester went on I didn't want to miss any class:’ ‘Great class, I've been recommending it to as many people as I can;’ ‘P. is awesome. He loves his subject and the best of all, he loves his students.’ Indeed, that last comment sums it up Dr. Pennington—you love your students and that has apparently made all the difference in the world. It is a special joy for the ACHA—long headquartered at the CUA campus—to honor a man of your abilities, talents and skills.”
Founded in 1919, the American Catholic Historical Association is a conference of scholars, archivists, and teachers of Catholic studies. Its Distinguished Teaching Award is intended to honor a college or university professor who has demonstrated a high commitment to teaching beyond the expected requirements of their position and through their influence and skill have promoted Catholic studies from one generation of scholars to another. 
Pennington holds a dual appointment at Catholic University; he is also the Kelly-Quinn Professor of Ecclesiastical and Legal History in the School of Canon Law.
Pennington received his Ph.D. in medieval history from Cornell University in 1972 and taught  medieval and Renaissance history at Syracuse University for 30 years before joining The Catholic University of America in 2001.
His areas of interest are ancient, medieval, and early modern legal history, the history of constitutional thought, political theory, church history, history of universities, and paleography.