Citation for
Mary Coney
Elevated to ATTW Fellow, March 1999
(written by Donald Cunningham)

The Fellows Committee of the Association of Teachers of Technical Writing is pleased to elevate Mary Coney to the position of Fellow.

Mary is a professor and associate chair in the Department of Technical Communication at the University of Washington. Mary has contributed greatly to the development of our field in her work with ATTW and the Council of Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication. She has served her own department in its development of a graduate program and has established a research record in such areas as audience analysis.

Mary's many accomplishments are, of course, too numerous to list now. However, I would like to highlight her Fellows Award for Best Article in The Technical Writing Teacher in 1988 for "Contemporary Views of Audience" and her Faculty Achievement Award in the College of Engineering at the University of Washington for outstanding research and teaching. Mary has advised or served as committee member for an impressive number of theses and dissertations, ranging from "Ghandi and Technology of Poverty and Wealth" to "The Role of the Reader in Technical Writing: An Ethnomethodological Examination." She has developed graduate seminars on such topics as Theoretical Dimensions of Technical Communication and has been instrumental in creating an international exchange program for faculty and students at the University of Washington.

Mary has published on such topics as author-reader relationships in computer documentation, audience analysis, readers and their rhetorical roles, curriculum design, and style. Her work appears in the most respected journals: The Journal of Technical Writing and Communication, The Journal of Computer Documentation, The ASEE Journal of Engineering Education, IEEE Transactions in Professional Communication, Technical Communication, and the Journal of Advanced Composition. Her piece on technical communication theory opens the theory section of the 1996 Ablex/ATTW collection titled Foundations of Technical Communication.

Mary also consults with the public schools and industry in the Seattle/Puget Sound area and has obtained grants to work on international education and on improving writing skills in industry. Finally, Mary has been a featured or keynote speaker at eleven conferences and meetings and has presented regularly at the annual meetings of the Conference on College Composition and Communication, the Council of Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication, and the Society for Technical Communication.

First, I want to read a message of congratulations from Mary's colleagues at the University of Washington:

Unfortunately Professor Coney is the only one of our faculty able to attend this ceremony, so we her colleagues in the Department of Technical Communication at the University of Washington have borrowed a voice to allow us to add our congratulations to yours. Mary has been for all of us a respected scholar and teacher, a valued mentor and colleague, and above all a good friend. She continues to set standards that we all strive to equal in research, in teaching, and in service (not to mention in political footwork and wardrobe development). Here at UW, Mary has just received a huge vote of confidence from the faculty at large in being elected Chair of the UW Faculty Senate. As she moves forward to address this new challenge, we know that she will especially value your expression of esteem in selecting her as a Fellow of the Association of Teachers of Technical Writing. Congratulations, Mary!

Indeed, Mary has a record worthy of elevation to ATTW–given her research, her teaching excellence, her curricular development, and her service to the profession. But Mary brings a personal charm and warmth to all these activities that goes beyond the professional character noted in her accomplishments. Good-humored, hard-working, energetic, and welcoming to all, Mary is a true friend to many of us.

I and the other ATTW Fellows are pleased to honor Mary Coney in this way, and we look forward to many more years of service and friendship with her. Congratulations, Mary!

Go to top