Villinski was selected by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).
An associate professor of economics and management and co-director of DePauw's Environmental Fellows Program, Villinski was announced as the state award winner at a luncheon at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.
At DePauw, Villinski specializes in environmental economics and policy, game theory and international economics.
Her primary research area is environmental and natural resource economics. She was the recipient of a Fulbright Award for the 2008-09 academic year, which she spent teaching environmental and natural resource economics and policy at Universitas Surabaya (UBAYA) in Surabaya, Indonesia.
"Michele is a fitting recipient of this honor," DePauw President Brian W. Casey said. "Her service to DePauw University students has been of the highest caliber, and we are very proud of her achievement, and of this recognition she is receiving from the Carnegie Foundation and CASE."
This year, a state Professor of the Year was recognized in 30 states and the District of Columbia.
Villinski was selected from faculty members nominated by colleges and universities throughout the country.
CASE assembled two preliminary panels of judges to select finalists. The Carnegie Foundation then convened the third and final panel, which selected four national winners. CASE and Carnegie select state winners from top entries resulting from the judging process.
The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching is an independent policy and research center that supports transformations in American education through tighter connections between teaching practice, evidence of student learning, the communication and use of this evidence, and structured opportunities to build knowledge.
CASE and the Carnegie Foundation have been partners in offering the U.S. Professors of the Year awards program since 1981