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• Rodney Davis, M.D., professor and chairman of the Department of Urology at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, has received the Headstream Memorial Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Arkansas Urologic Society. Davis is an internationally recognized expert in minimally invasive techniques to treat urologic malignancies. He has made innumerable contributions since his recruitment to UAMS from Vanderbilt University and Meharry Medical College in Nashville in 2012, both in Arkansas and nationally. A Malvern native, Davis also earned many honors for his service in the U.S. Army and Army Reserve, from which he retired with the rank of colonel.

• A researcher at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences has received a $1.7 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to study how physical activity improves bone health, with possible implications for bone loss from osteoporosis and aging. Jinhu Xiong, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery in the UAMS College of Medicine, and is one of several researchers from various disciplines at UAMS focusing on bone science as part of the Center for Musculoskeletal Disease Research. Xiong received the five-year grant from the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. "Scientists have long understood there is a connection between bone size and strength related to physical activity," Xiong said. "Reduced physical activity due to disability or long-term bed rest causes profound bone loss and increases the risk of fractures. As we age and become less active, we also tend to lose bone. Despite these correlations, what scientists don't know is exactly how the skeleton senses and responds to changes in physical activity." About 54 million Americans have low bone mass. An estimated one in two women and one in four men over 50 break a bone because of osteoporosis. Xiong began studying the underlying biological mechanisms behind bone health in 2008 as a Ph.D. student at UAMS.

• Pulaski County student Aynsleigh Washam was recently honored by the Oklahoma State University Ferguson College of Agriculture with an academic scholarship for the 2020-21 academic year. The scholarship is part of the more than $1.8 million that students will receive from the college and its academic departments. Students from all majors are considered for university scholarships, which can be combined with college and departmental opportunities. "We are fortunate to have many high achieving students in the Ferguson College of Agriculture," said Cynda Clary, Ferguson College of Agriculture associate dean of academic programs. "It is an honor and a privilege to award scholarships to help fund their college experience. These scholarships would not be possible without the generosity of our alumni and friends, and we truly appreciate their continued support of our college and outstanding students." Washam is a biosystems and agricultural engineering student from Maumelle, Arkansas. She received the Joseph Fleming Memorial Freshman Scholarship.

• Shannon Baker, a kindergarten teacher at Eagle Mountain Elementary School, was named Monday as the October recipient of the "Citizens Bank Above & Beyond Award" for the Batesville School District. Citizens Bank and the Batesville Schools collaborated in 2012 to present the monthly award to school staff members in recognition of exceptional service to students, parents, their schools, peers and the district. All school district employees may be nominated for the award by their peers. Recipients of the award, which includes a certificate of appreciation from the board, and a $25 gift card and 20-ounce insulated tumbler from Citizens Bank. Baker was selected from four deserving nominees. The nominations for her frequently mentioned her positive attitude and dedication to her students.

Arkansas Achievers is an opportunity to give recognition to Arkansans for their achievements.

Civilian and military achievements are accepted.

Please follow these guidelines:


1) Must be an Arkansan or have graduated from a school in Arkansas.

2) Received an award, scholarship, medal or promotion.

Pageants, deans' lists, graduations or military enlistments are not accepted.

No photographs please.

To submit an Achiever email us at with the words "Arkansas Achievers" in the subject line.


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