Industrial and Labor Relations Professor Earns State Teaching Excellence Award

Portrait of Lilly

Professor Thomas Lilly, Jr., an Assistant Professor and Chair of the Politics, Economics & Law Department at SUNY Old Westbury, has been recognized by the State University of New York Board of Trustees with the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

The Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching recognizes consistently superior teaching at the graduate, undergraduate, or professional level in keeping with the State University’s commitment to providing its students with instruction of the highest quality.

"Professor Lilly strives to teach his students not what to think, but to teach them how to think,” said College President Dr. Calvin O. Butts, III. “His efforts show how dedicated our faculty are to preparing students for their career with practical knowledge and skills.”

According to colleagues, Lilly's use of modified Socratic methods, such as presenting students with real world problems in labor relations and holding debates and discussions between students better prepares them for the future.

To continue their development and learning, Professor Lilly has invited students to events and meetings of the Long Island Labor and Employment Relations Association (LI LERA) to learn and interact with professionals in the field. These opportunities have created opportunities for business connections, internships and careers in the labor field, and to become LERA members themselves. It also resulted in establishment of a scholarship that is annually awarded to an SUNY Old Westbury student.

Lilly, who also serves as Coordinator for the Industrial and Labor Relations Program, has held several other responsibilities on campus such as lead member of the Faculty Judiciary Committee, Faculty Co-Chair for the Middle States Working Group on Ethics and Integrity, and is a member of the Honors College Advisory Board

A resident of Garden City, Lilly first started at SUNY Old Westbury in 2000 while also practicing labor law full-time. Lily earned his J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center and his B.A from Holy Cross College. His work has appeared in several publications and he has made numerous presentations on his research interests. He is a member of the Executive Board and Past President for the Long Island Labor and Employment Relations Association, and member of the board of Indian Subcontinent Partition Documentation Project, Inc. among his many professional associations.