Accinelli Inducted into Faculty Hall of Fame

Apr 28, 2017 | Stacey Ortman, director of public information

DUBUQUE, Iowa – Steven Accinelli, professor of aviation and director of aviation programs, joined the University of Dubuque nearly 20 years ago to help bring the aviation program to national prominence.

Accinelli did just that. He has grown the department into a nationally accredited flight program that is respected across the industry and in the academy. On April 27, Accinelli was one of two people inducted into UD’s Faculty Hall of Fame for Excellence in Teaching and Advising at the Dubuque Golf and Country Club. The event was established in 1995-96 by Richard and Donna Svrluga to recognize the contributions and impact of faculty on the lives of students. Awards are named in honor of former distinguished faculty members John Knox Coit and William Lomax. Accinelli received the 2017 John Knox Coit Prize. Coit was an integral member of the Philosophy Department from 1955-96.

“I was in disbelief,” Accinelli said of the award. “I thought my time for this kind of award had passed.”

Jeffrey F. Bullock, president of UD, said Accinelli is an outstanding professional leader in his industry and is a nationally recognized leader in his academic discipline.

“Steven Accinelli is a committed professor who holds himself to the highest standards and expects nothing less of his students and colleagues,” Bullock said. “His commitment to his students’ well-being and education is one of the significant reasons for their success. He has created a program that encourages students to achieve their highest skills by giving them opportunities to do so.”

Accinelli has over 40 years of experience in the aviation industry with extensive experience in flight operations, financial planning, research, contract negotiations, equipment procurement, and personnel management. In his current role as professor of aviation, director of aviation programs, and head of the Aviation Department, Accinelli is responsible for academic and flight training of over 240 students in three bachelor of science degree programs – flight operations, applied aviation technology, and aviation management – that utilize 25 aircrafts and 39 faculty and staff.

“Working with young adults has always been rewarding,” Accinelli said.

Accinelli is an active air transportation pilot in airplanes and helicopters with over 8,700 hours. He is an active flight instructor in single- and multi-engine airplanes and helicopters. Accinelli holds two master of science degrees, one from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, and the other from the National Defense University in Washington, D.C. Additionally, he is a certified aviation manager, a nationally accredited certification managed by the National Business Aircraft Association. Accinelli also serves on the Dubuque Regional Airport Commission.

Accinelli will retire in the summer. He said he will miss working with the UD Flight Team and serving as the chair on the executive committee for the IIAC.

Advice for Colleagues

Treat your students professionally and do not let politics drive your teaching style.

Advice for Future Graduates

Lead a life of discipline and place safety as a value, not just a program, into all your activities. Strive for a balanced life involving a learning life, a physical life, and a spiritual life. Have a passion!

Dennis George, associate professor of accounting and director of the summer school program at UD, received the 2017 William L. Lomax Award at UD’s Faculty Hall of Fame for Excellence in Teaching and Advising. Click here to read his story.