Psychologist and Educator Named Distinguished in Service by SUNY

University at Albany Edelgard Wulfert and Alan Wagner

ALBANY, N.Y. (May 6, 2021) — Two internationally respected scholars whose service to UAlbany has extended to the community, state and beyond have been named State University of New York Distinguished Service Professors for 2020-21.

Longtime UAlbany teachers, researchers and administrators Edelgard Wulfert of Psychology and Alan Wagner of Educational Policy & Leadership were promoted to SUNY’s highest faculty rank in April.

Edelgard Wulfert

Wulfert, who has been with the University for more than 30 years as educator, researcher and administrator — including 11 years as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) — is acknowledged worldwide for her studies on behavioral therapy and addiction, particularly in the area of gambling addiction. Her treatment for gambling disorder has been disseminated to more than a 1,000 clinical providers throughout New York alone.

Beyond academia, she has lent her expertise to multiple organizations, including the New York State Gaming Commission and the New York Council on Problem Gambling.

After her tenure as CAS dean, Wulfert served seven months as interim provost. She’s been a member of the University Senate and several of its most influential committees. Upon being elected Senate chair, she led an effort to revise its bylaws and establish the Committee on Ethics in Research and Scholarship.

Wulfert also served nine years as co-chair of the President’s Council on Diversity and Inclusion, where she established multiple initiatives to support women scholars, particularly in STEM fields, and made significant and enduring contributions in partnership with the Office of Diversity and Inclusion.

Within the Capital Region’s arts community, Wulfert is known her significant contributions, particularly toward Albany Pro Musica.

She has been the recipient of the President’s Award for Exemplary Public Engagement, the President’s Excellence Award in Academic Service, the Citizen of the University Award and was named in recognition for her sustained service to the University a Collins Fellow.

“I am honored by this designation,” said Wulfert. “Throughout my career, I have sought to balance research, teaching and service. I have been active in faculty governance and supported equity. But I am perhaps proudest of my federally funded program of research which allowed me to train doctoral students and develop an effective treatment for gambling disorders.”

Alan Wagner

Wagner, a labor economist who’s been a full-time School of Education faculty member for 21 years, had seen his work in the areas of educational policy, educational finance and the economics of education published in several languages.

He served as his department’s chair for 10 years while frequently volunteering in highly demanding roles related to promotion and tenure, graduate student development, enrollment management, disability services and athletics.

Wagner garnered a significant local and national reputation as an advocate for university-K-12 partnerships and the professional development of local school leaders. He served multiple terms on the boards of the Principal Center and the Capital Area School Development Association. Within SUNY, he has supported several research projects relating to the institution’s funding model, economic impact and data sharing with other state agencies.

In his field, Wagner has led various organizations, including the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES) and National Center for Higher Education Management Systems. His selfless service has been rewarded by UAlbany’s Disability Resource Center, the National School Development Council and CIES, among others. His work with the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems helped each U.S. state to measure the effectiveness of its policies on higher education.

“This is a wonderful honor,” said Wagner. “I’ve been fortunate to have had remarkable opportunities to work with exceptional colleagues, on campus and off, and to benefit from their curiosity, wisdom, thoughtfulness and commitment. Through my work, I’ve aimed to help bring research and comparative experience into policy development and implementation in education.”

Wagner, who served 13 years as principal administrator in the Directorate for Education, Employment, Labour and Social Affairs in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development in Paris, France, said he has gathered much knowledge from his experiences with agencies, employers and organizations outside education both here and abroad in the areas of funding, incentives and learning opportunities outside the classroom.