Fives-Taylor Named Cabot “Community Celebrity” in Recognition of Volunteer Work
- By Jennifer Nachbur
University of Vermont Professor of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics Emerita Paula Fives-Taylor, Ph.D., earned numerous honors and a national reputation as a preeminent researcher in the field of microbiology during the more than 35 years she served on the faculty. Following her retirement in 2008, she channeled her passion into a new vocation as a hospice volunteer, providing end of life support for patients through the Visiting Nurse Association of Chittenden and Grand Isle Counties. As with her academic career, her volunteer efforts have not gone unnoticed. In early September, Vermont-based Cabot Creamery announced that Fives-Taylor has been named a 2012 Cabot Community Celebrity in recognition of her exceptional community service, along with 40 other volunteers from 22 other states.
On September 14, 2012, Fives-Taylor joined her fellow Community Celebrities for an eight-day, all-expense-paid Cabot Celebrity Cruise to Alaska, which departed from Seattle and traveled to the Alaskan coast. The program originated in 2009; the Alaska trip was the third hosted by Cabot Creamery Cooperative and partners AARP Create the Good and Points of Light to honor community service. Fives-Taylor’s selfless contributions were recognized through a Cabot program called “Reward Volunteers,” which is a web-based and iPhone app-based volunteer hour tracking system.
In a profile on the Cabot Community Celebrity Cruise website, Fives-Taylor is quoted as saying “I always prefer to provide hospice care in a patient’s home. It’s much more comforting for the patients and their loved ones, and the whole process of hospice care eases things for everybody involved.”
Fives-Taylor, whose pioneering research focused on the link between dental plaque and disease, has received many academic awards. Among these honors are induction as a Fellow in the American Academy of Microbiology in 2004; a 2002 International Research in Oral Biology Award – the highest honor given by the International Association for Dental Research; the first UVM Vogelman Award for Sustained Excellence in Research and Scholarship in 2002; UVM’s prestigious Kidder Outstanding Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence in 1999; and UVM’s University Scholar award in 1989. In addition, she served nationally as a member of the National Institutes of Dental Research National Advisory Council and the National Institutes of Health Oral Biology and Medicine Study Section. She is a long-time member of UVM/Fletcher Allen’s Community Medical School Advisory Committee.