Faculty

Endowed Chairs and Professorships

About Endowed Chairs and Professorships
Holders of Endowed Chairs
Holders of Endowed Professorships

Endowed Chairs and Professorships

Chairs and Professorships are endowments created by generous donations and awarded to outstanding faculty who are leaders in the classroom, in their respective discipline, and who excel in service to the institution. Endowments for faculty are crucial in the recruitment and retention of highly qualified teachers and researchers and support their research and creative works. Funding for endowed chairs and professorships provides the resources to do research, publish their findings, travel to conferences, and create opportunities for students to engage in high-impact practices.

  • Holders of endowed chairs and professorships are expected

    • To maintain a level of excellence in their research and/or creative endeavors
    • To maintain a level of excellence in their teaching
    • To maintain excellence in their service to the department, college and university
    • To report annually to thank the donors, describing how they used the funds
  • An appointment as holder of an endowed chair or professorship is made by the President in consultation with the Vice President of Academic Affairs.

    Endowed chairs and professorships may be appointed from within the faculty but also be used for recruiting and retaining distinguished faculty members.

  • Research expenses may include the following:

    • airfare, meals, parking, car rental, etc. for travel related to research
    • professional association annual membership dues (not extended or lifetime memberships)
    • conference fees
    • subscriptions
    • transcription fees
    • subvention fees
    • offprint fees
    • student research assistants
    • research collaboration with faculty and/or student co-authors
    • research supplies and equipment (IT approval is required for technology purchases)

    Expenses not listed above require prior authorization of the Dean of the Faculty. All expenditures over $500 require prior approval from the Vice President of Academic Affairs. Endowed chair budgets may not be used for entertainment, meals or other similar local expenses not directly related to research. Endowed chair budgets may not be used for student entertainment, including meals, unless the students are working directly on research. (Departmental, FYS, and Paideia funds can be used, when available and previously approved, for non-research related student entertainment costs.) Endowed chairs are expected to teach the load consistent with their appointment letter. Endowed chairs who receive a course release are not eligible for overload compensation.

  • Term of appointment of endowed chairs and professorships varies.

 

Endowed Chairs

Elizabeth Root Paden Chair

    • Held By

      Laura Hobgood

    • DEPARTMENT

      Religion

    About the Holder

    Dr. Hobgood is co-chair of the Environmental Studies program and has chaired the Religion program as well. She holds the Elizabeth Root Paden Chair in Religion and Environmental Studies and is a frequently invited lecturer. In 2018-2019, Dr. Hobgood coordinated “The Anthropocene,” the 39th Brown Symposium at Southwestern University.

    Hobgood has also received many recognitions during her time at SU, including the Mundy Service Award, the William Carrington Finch Award and holding the Paden Brown Chair in Religion and Environmental Studies. 

    She is also affiliated with the Animals and Religion Consultation—American Academy of Religion, the Forum on Religion and Ecology, and the American Society of Environmental History. And has served as President of the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture.

    Hobgood received her Ph.D. from St. Louis University in 1997, her M.Div. from Vanderbilt University in 1989, and here B.A. from James Madison University in 1985. She spends her time away from Southwestern engaged with dog rescue and cycling.

     

Lillian Nelson Pratt Chair in Science

    • Held By

      Ben Pierce

    • DEPARTMENT

      Biology

    About the Holder

    Benjamin Pierce, Professor of Biology and holder of the Lillian Nelson Pratt Chair teaches and conducts research in the areas of genetics, evolution, and the biology of amphibians.

    He received a B.S. in Biology from Southern Methodist University and a Ph.D. from the University of Colorado. He has taught at Connecticut College (1980-1984), Baylor University (1984-2005), and Southwestern University (2005-present).  

    Ben conducts genetic, ecological, and evolutionary research on amphibians. He has authored 44 articles in research journals and four books, including Genetics: A Conceptual Approach, a general genetics textbook that is now in its 7th edition. His genetics textbooks have been adopted at over 300 colleges and universities and have been translated into 5 foreign languages.

    Serving as President of the Texas Academy of Science from 2010-2011, Ben is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Sigma Xi, and is a Fellow of the Texas Academy of Science. He serves on the editorial board of BioScience. He has received $900,000 in research and teaching grants from the National Science Foundation, the 3M Foundation, the W. M. Keck Foundation National Geographic Society, the US National Park Service, and the Williamson County Conservation Foundation. 

    Ben was Associate Dean for Sciences at Baylor from 1996-2002, during which he coordinated planning and programming for Baylor University’s new $105 million multidisciplinary sciences building. At Southwestern University, Ben coordinated academic planning for a new addition and renovation to the Fondren Jones Science Building. He conducts research with his undergraduate students on development of better sampling techniques for amphibians, the ecology and evolution of the endemic Georgetown salamander (Eurycea naufragia), and the ecology of Texas chirping frogs. He teaches courses in genetics, evolution, methods in ecology and evolution, and biology capstone.

    Awards:

    Mundy Award for Exemplary Service, Southwestern University (2020)

    Exemplary Teaching Award at Southwestern University, Division of Higher Education of the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry, United Methodist Church (2012)

    Phi Beta Kappa

    Fellow of the Texas Academy of Science

     

Lucy King Brown Chair

    • Held By

      Eric Selbin

    • DEPARTMENT

      Political Science

    About the Holder

    Eric Selbin is Professor of Political Science and Holder of the Lucy King Brown Chair. His research interests are in the areas of resistance, rebellion, and revolution, theories of revolution, and socio-political change. Selbin is the author of Revolution, Resistance, and Rebellion: The Power of Story (2010), which has been translated into Arabic, German, Spanish, and Turkish, Modern Latin American Revolutions (1999/1993) and a variety of articles and book chapters primarily on matters revolutionary. He has co-authored with Meghana Nayak, Decentering International Relations (2010) [http://www.southwestern.edu/live/news/4934-rethinking-global-politics]. Selbin is co-editor of the New Millennium Books in International Studies series, Associate Editor of International Studies Perspectives, and was the founding editor of Southwestern University’s Brown Working Papers in the Arts and Sciences. In 2007 he was selected as one of Southwestern University’s All-time “Fav Five” Faculty by the SU Alumni Association and received the Exemplary Teaching Award from the Board of Higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church for 2001-2002.

    Selbin received his PhD from the University of Minnesota in 1991, his MA from Louisiana State University in 1984, and his BA from the University of Texas at Austin in 1980. 

    Honors & Awards

    • Holder of the Lucy King Brown Chair (2014- )
    • University Scholar (2006-2015)
    • Mr. Homecoming 2012 Association of Southwestern University Alumni
    • Association of Southwestern University Alumni Inaugural Faculty Fav Five (2007)
    • Cullen Faculty Development Program (2003-6)
    • Brown Distinguished Research Professor (1999-2003)
    • Southwestern University Exemplary Teacher, General Board of Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church (2001-2002)
    • NEH Summer Research Seminar: “New Perspectives in the Comparative Study of Revolutions,” ( 1996)
    • Mundy Faculty Fellowships (1995-96, 1998-99)
    • Brown Faculty Fellow (1994-95)
    • Cullen Faculty Development Program (1993-9).
    • Cullen Research Grant (1994)
    • Sam Taylor Research Fellowship (1994)
     

Margarett Root Brown Chair in Fine Arts

    • Held By

      Kimberly Smith

    • DEPARTMENT

      Art & Art History

    About the Holder

    Kimberly Smith’s research focuses on 20th c. German and Austrian art, and the intellectual history of art history. At Southwestern, Smith teaches courses on art in Europe and the United States from the 18th century to the present, feminism and art history, and theory and methods of art history.

    Universities and Degrees

    Ph.D., History of Art, Yale University

    M.A. and M.Phil., History of Art, Yale University 

    B.A., Art History, Duke University

     

Herman Brown Chair

    • Held By

      Valerie Renegar

    • DEPARTMENT

      Communication Studies

    About the Holder

    I believe that the best teachers are engaged and interested in both their students and the content of their courses. In my quest to be an outstanding teacher, I have sought to embody a teacher-scholar model of education. My research agenda enhances my teaching because I am actively engaged in the same process of critical inquiry that I teach and my teaching informs my research by allowing me to see areas of interest to the students or areas that have been under theorized in the status quo. The research projects, journal articles, and conference papers that comprise my professional development are also useful to my students as examples of new directions in the field of rhetorical and communication theory. In other words, my research and teaching goals are reciprocal and serve to enhance one another. As a member of the Southwestern University faculty, I endeavor to be a notable teacher and scholar.

    I fundamentally believe that the university experience should educate individuals in more than just the subject area of their courses. My goal as a teacher is to help our students to think critically about communication and the world around them. My courses are based on the idea that we must question tradition, convention, and popular wisdom to uncover its roots and assumptions. This critical posture is essential to the field of communication, but is also an important life skill. My teaching philosophy is rooted in the idea that a university education should equip students with critical thinking skills that will enable them to be concerned, interested, and active citizens. I seek to develop students’ critical thinking skills so that they can approach any problem with more intellect and finesse. My expertise in rhetorical theory, especially its dimensions of feminist, environmental, and critical theory allows me to empower students with the knowledge necessary to develop a more critical consciousness. I encourage students to look deeper, think more critically, and ask more questions about the things that often go unquestioned. If our students begin asking, “Why is that the way it is?” more often, I hope they will begin to see the ways in which communication plays a fundamental role in the establishment and reification of our culture. I also seek to invest students with the understanding that our culture is a product of our practice, and that activism is within their reach. Individual agency and a sense of empowerment stem from the understanding that our culture is malleable and has shifted substantially over time. Students who develop this sense of agency are then able to be actively involved in the creation of a more just, equitable, and humane society.

    Education

    PhD, University of Kansas 2000
    MA, Kansas State University 1997
    BA, University of Notre Dame 1993

     

John H. Duncan Chair

    • Held By

      Fumiko Futamura

    • DEPARTMENT

      Math & Computer Science

    About the Holder

    Fumiko Futamura received her MS and PhD from Vanderbilt University in 2007 and her BA from the University of Louisville in 2002. In her free time, she is an artist working primarily in charcoal, pen and ink, oils and crochet, but she dabbles in everything from photography to ceramics. She shares her passion for mathematics and art with her students in classes like Geometry and Explorations in Mathematics, empowering and engaging them through hands-on activities and active learning. She also shares this love through public lectures and workshops at venues such as NerdNite, Japan America Society of Greater Austin, the Phi Beta Kappa honors society, Art.Science.Gallery and the Thinkery. She is the author of a TED-Ed video, The Mathematics of Sidewalk Illusions, and is writing a textbook with co-authors Annalisa Crannell and Marc Frantz titled Perspective and Projective Geometry. 

    “Mathematics is the most elusive of all the arts. It took 8 years of serious study to even begin to understand the medium and begin to work with it in a creative way. Math is art. I wouldn’t be a mathematician otherwise.”
    - Fumiko Futamura

     

Garey Chair

    • Held By

      Maria Elena Cuevas

    • DEPARTMENT

      Biology

    About the Holder

    Maria Cuevas, Professor of Biology, teaches in the areas of physiology, endocrinology and reproduction. Her research focuses on endometrial cancer.

     

    Teaching Philosophy:

    I see my role as a teacher to challenge my students and prepare them well for whatever postgraduate path they chose. To accomplish this, I have focused on inspiring my students to engage in their studies, to be curious beyond their disciplines, to understand that learning embodies a lifelong process and encouraged them to take ownership for their learning.  It is the experience of doing that helps us grow both in our personal and professional lives.

     

    Education

    PhD, Boston University 1992
    MS, Northwestern University 1985
    B.S., Purdue University 1982

     

Garey Chair

    • Held By

      Maha Zewail-Foote

    • DEPARTMENT

      Chemistry & Biochemistry

    About the Holder

    Dr. Zewail-Foote earned a B.S. degree in chemistry with honors from Caltech and a Ph.D. in biochemistry from The University of Texas at Austin. She joined the faculty at Southwestern University in 2003 and was promoted to Associate Professor in 2009 and Professor in 2013.  She holds the Garey Chair in Chemistry at Southwestern and is a Visiting Scholar at UT Austin. 

    Dr. Zewail-Foote regularly teaches general chemistry and biochemistry and she brings in the latest research topics in her courses. Undergraduate students in her research group are taught how to conduct interdisciplinary research at the forefront of nucleic acid (DNA) chemistry. Her research has led to publications in top-ranking journals such as Nature Chemistry and Nucleic Acids Research.

     

Garey Chair

    • Held By

      Scott McLean

    • DEPARTMENT

      Kinesiology

    About the Holder

    Too often, teaching is viewed as one of the jobs a university professor must perform. I choose to view teaching as a privilege and as the most important job a professor performs. Teaching takes on many different forms. It occurs in the classroom, office, and laboratory and it involves students and colleagues as well as oneself. Teaching may be structured, as it is in most classroom settings, or it can be largely independent where the teacher provides guidance and information as is typically done when overseeing research projects. Teaching may also be unstructured where the student and teacher work together, investigating and learning to simply broaden their horizons. To these ends, teaching involves the communication of knowledge. This communication is most effective when the student is actively involved in learning. To involve students, a teacher must understand the nature of students, how to adapt knowledge to interest them, and how to structure effective participation experiences. I am convinced that students are better able to comprehend and utilize knowledge when they participate in well-designed learning experiences. As a result of my belief that learning is understanding how to use knowledge, not simply memorizing facts, my teaching style emphasizes student participation. I choose to use a problem-based learning approach so as to challenge students to develop thinking skills appropriate to understanding the scientific material in my classes. The following describe some of the methods that I use. First, I strive to help students develop the ability to formulate and ask questions in class. This is a skill that many students simply don?t have. Exercises related to this have included writing questions for submission to magazines (several of which have been published), a required question submission component for my introductory class (the ?muddiest point? option), and developing a question and related hypothesis for semester research projects. Second, I permit open discussion in class. I encourage the students to ask questions regarding the material, question my thinking or rationale in my lectures, or offer personal insights related to the topics. Third, I plan small group (2-4 people) learning sessions in class where students work to solve problems or to discuss issues. This has included mathematical problem solving, hypothesis writing, and participation in team-oriented games. Finally, I require the students to communicate their knowledge in oral and written form. Beyond the traditional exams and assignments, each student will make a presentation to the class as well as turn in at least one formally written paper. Beyond participation, I believe that developing the link between concepts and application is an important aspect of teaching. I attempt to help students understand the integral role research plays in developing and utilizing knowledge. To help understand that process, students in my classes complete a semester long research project. Each student participates in a small group (2-4 students) to conduct a simple research project using the steps of the scientific method. They must formulate a question and develop associated hypotheses, collect data, analyze these data, and report their findings. I view these projects as an opportunity that most undergraduates do not receive, particularly in introductory classes. In this advancing age of technology, I feel that it is important to expose students to new technologies and to require students to gain experience with these technologies. One avenue for developing these skills is the semester research project. Students use state-of-the-art equipment in our laboratory to conduct human movement analyses. This work requires the students to acquire and use research and computer skills. Although a major time commitment on the part of the student as well as the teacher, this experience demonstrates to the student how the knowledge they are gaining in the classroom can be applied in the real world. Often the students begin their projects by believing that the questions they ask are mundane or too simple to be considered for a research project. After completing the project the students generally are much more aware of the time, effort, and care needed to conduct a research project. They have also developed a better understanding of the concepts presented in class. I use every opportunity to incorporate technology into classes. For instance, my lectures include the use of computer generated slides. This enhances my ability to present complex ideas using intricate graphics, equations, etc. in a systematic manner. I also require homework assignments using the computer. For example, one assignment pertains to using the internet to locate information specific to the topic of the class. Finally, a large portion of the class laboratory is conducted with the aid of technologically advanced equipment. Introductory courses often challenge a teacher because of the diversity of students? backgrounds, uncertainty in career choices, and, depending on the material, potentially intimidating information. To this end, it is necessary to remove any barriers the students may perceive in relating to me as a person early in the teacher-student relationship. I attempt to clearly describe my expectations of the students at the very start of our relationship. At the same time, I work hard to learn about the students in my classes. This information allows me to tailor the class to meet the students? needs. It is important for me to arrive early to class and to hold office hours immediately following class so that students can access me while questions are fresh in their minds. I believe that an ?open-door? policy is essential to establishing an effective communication link to students, and, I strive to be accessible for them at hours that accommodate their schedules. I also think that it is important to take an interest in the students? activities outside of the classroom. As a result, I try to attend various student events and talk with them about things that are important to them. Knowing the students and understanding their responsibilities is as important to me as for them to understand my expectations of them. In summary, I believe that to effectively teach my courses I must encourage the students to take an active role in their education. It is my responsibility as a teacher to develop participation in the class as well as provide effective approaches to learning the material. Success in these endeavors will produce students who have achieved an understanding of the field both in concept and application.

    Education

    PhD, Arizona State University 1994
    BA, College of Wooster 1987

    Affiliations

    • American College of Sports Medicine (1990-present)
    • International Society of Biomechanics in Sports (2000-present)
    • Texas Chapter of the American College of Sports Medicine (2001-present)
    • Allied Health and Education Representative (2005-2009)
    • President-Elect (2009-2010)
     

Garey Chair

    • Held By

      Alison Marr

    • DEPARTMENT

      Math & Computer Science

    About the Holder

    Alison Marr received her Ph.D. from Southern Illinois University in 2007, her M.S. from Texas A&M University in 2004, and her B.A. from Murray State University in 2002. Before attending Texas A&M, Marr participated in the EDGE summer program and before her senior year at Murray State participated in the Oklahoma Weather Center’s REU. She has been at Southwestern since 2007 and has served as Department Chair and co-chair of the Transforming Paideia Initiative. She teaches classes across the math curriculum from Introduction to Statistics to Calculus to Algebraic Structures. She also enjoys teaching interdisciplinary courses such as her FYS on television game shows and her team taught Global Health Paideia Seminar. 

    Outside Southwestern, Marr is the current co-director of the Enhancing Diversity in Graduate Education (EDGE) Summer Program for women entering PhD programs in mathematics across the US. She has also been active in the inquiry-based learning community (IBL), and has served on committees for the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) and the Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM). 

     

Garey Junior Chair

    • Held By

      Arjun Chandrasekhar

    • DEPARTMENT

      Math & Computer Science

    About the Holder

    Dr. Chandrasekhar received his undergraduate degree in Computer Science from Caltech, and he received his PhD in bioinformatics and systems biology from UCSD. Prior to coming to Southwestern, Dr. Chandrasekhar worked as a computer science lecturer at UCSD, the University of San Diego, and the University of Pittsburgh. He has taught courses in computer programming, algorithm design, applied machine learning, and theory of computation. He has also taught survey courses that introduce students to some of the broad ideas and themes in computer science and information science. Outside of the university context, Dr. Chandrasekhar has taught for the Bridge to Enter Advanced Mathematics (BEAM), and he has facilitated the administration of local clubs for Girls Who Code (GWC). For more information, please see my academic website!

     

Garey Junior Chair

    • Held By

      Jennie DeMarco

    • DEPARTMENT

      Biology

    About the Holder

    I am a self-identified nerdy scientist who loves geeking out on asking questions about how the natural world works and how to design experiments to answer those questions. I am often heard saying, “We can test that!” when those around me postulate a question about any topic. This passion for knowledge is what drives my teaching and research. As a scientist and teacher, I want to challenge students to think critically about the natural world around them so that they can begin to understand the complex interactions that influence the natural world. I encourage students to apply their understanding to create solutions and make decisions to promote sustainability. 

     

Lord Chair in Mathematics and Computer Science

    • Held By

      Barbara M. Anthony

    • DEPARTMENT

      Math & Computer Science

    About the Holder

    Dr. Barbara Anthony teaches a variety of computer science courses, including Explorations in Computing for non-majors, introductory courses in Java and Data Structures, core courses in Discrete Math, Algorithms, and Programming Languages, electives in Databases, Operations Research, and Theory of Computation, and the capstone in Software Engineering. She has taught First Year Seminar, Colloquium in Computer Science, and a course designed to prepare students to compete in the International Collegiate Programming Contest. She sometimes teaches Introduction to Statistics on the Mathematics side of the department. She also has conducted numerous independent studies, from explorations of topics with first-year students through seniors doing research as part of an Honors project. She is the faculty supervisor for CSC academic internships. She is currently the faculty advisor for UPE, the CS Honor Society, and is happy to help organize a number of CS-themed events throughout the year.

    She received her PhD in Algorithms, Combinatorics, and Optimization from Carnegie Mellon University in 2008 and her BA from Rice University in 2001 with majors in Computational and Applied Math, French, and Mathematics. She is an ACM Senior Member, a member of UPE, CCSC and SIAM, and a certified American Sign Language interpreter. 

    “Computer Science is relevant for everyone these days, and has great interdisciplinary potential, especially at a liberal arts institution. As such, I believe lower-level courses should be accessible to any SU student, and students should be exposed to both the breadth and depth of the field.”
    - Barbara Anthony

     

Hugh Roy and Lillie Cullen Chair in Economics

    • Held By

      Dirk Early

    • DEPARTMENT

      Economics & Business

    About the Holder

    Dirk Early received his PhD from the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA in 1995 and his BSB from Miami University, Oxford, OH in 1988.

     

Herbert and Kate Dishman Chair in Science

    • Held By

      Emily Niemeyer

    • DEPARTMENT

      Chemistry & Biochemistry

    About the Holder

    Emily Niemeyer received her PhD from State University of New York at Buffalo in 1998 and her BS from Ohio Northern University in 1993.

    Honors

    • Jesse E. Purdy Excellence in Scholarly and Creative Works Award (2022)
    • Southwestern University Teaching Award (2020)
    • Joe S. Mundy Award for Exemplary Service (2017)
    • Distinguished Alumni Award, Elida High School (2014)
    • Outstanding Texas Women in STEM Award from Girlstart (2013)
    • Exemplary Teaching Award from the Board of Higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church (2009-2010)
    • Southwestern University Excellence in Academic Advising Award (2002-2003)
     

Robert Sherman Lazenby Chair in Physics

    • Held By

      Steve Alexander

    • DEPARTMENT

      Physics

    About the Holder

    Steve Alexander received his PhD from The University of Texas at Austin in 1982.

     

John Shearn Chair in Business

    • Held By

      Debika Sihi

    • DEPARTMENT

      Economics & Business

    About the Holder

    Debika Sihi is a Professor of Business at Southwestern University. She earned her PhD in Marketing at the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas (UT) at Austin. She also holds a BBA and MPA (Masters in Professional Accounting) from the McCombs School. Prior to entering the doctoral program, Debika worked at Public Strategies, Inc. and Deloitte, both multinational professional services and consulting firms.

    Debika’s research explores the impact of technological innovations on marketing strategy. She has published works in peer reviewed marketing and business journals including the Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, Industrial Marketing Management, Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing, and the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science. Debika teaches a variety of business courses including classes on digital marketing and a capstone course with a focus on innovation in business.

    Debika actively participates with different initiatives in Austin’s vibrant entrepreneurship community. She is also an avid supporter of Emancipet, an animal welfare organization.

    Honors & Awards

     

Suzanne and Ed Ellis Term Chair

    • Held By

      Maria Catherine Todd

    • DEPARTMENT

      Biology

    About the Holder

    Maria Todd, Professor of Biology, teaches and researches in the areas of molecular biology/genetics with a particular emphasis on the causes of cancer metastasis (or spread).  She received her PhD from Cambridge University in 1990 and her BSc (Hons) from the University of Sussex in 1987. 

    Throughout her career she has received multiple honors including the Exemplary Teaching Award (Board of Higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church) in 2013 and Southwestern University Teaching Award in 2010. 

     

Tower-Hester Chair in Political Science

    • Held By

      Bob Snyder

    • DEPARTMENT

      Political Science

    About the Holder

    Bob Snyder strives to introduce students to the different perspectives in the study of International Relations and to have them to be able to compare and contrast the different theoretical and methodological approaches. He uses different pedagogical methods that emphasize an interactive approach.

    Snyder received his PhD from the University of Michigan in 1993.

     

Endowed Professorships

Cargill Professorship in Education

    • Held By

      Alicia Moore

    • DEPARTMENT

      Education

    About the Holder

    Dr. Alicia Moore has 33 years of higher education experience. She currently teaches undergraduate courses in early childhood, special education, general education, and Diversity in Schools and Society. She also supervises field-based and student teachers in Georgetown and surrounding areas, develops course content, researches and writes for scholarly publication, and supervises student research, as well as co-research with students. As well,

    Moore received her PhD from the University of Texas at Austin in 1997, her MEd from the University of Texas at Austin in 1990, and her BSEd from Huston-Tillotson University in 1988.

    Teaching Philosophy

    I believe that students flourish when their needs are met and I use my instructional strategies to meet those needs. In order to model best practice strategies in for my students, I use these strategies when I teach. I believe that these strategies promote student participation, a learning community, and focus on various learning styles of the students. Strategies I utilize are: group discussions, cooperative learning, interactive lectures, multimedia materials, instructional technology, Think-Pair-Share, small group activities, assigned and selected group configurations, mini lessons, brainstorming, and kinesthetic, visual, aural, and tactile activities. I model these strategies and ask students to develop lesson plans and other activities that are specific strategy based. In addition, I also use a variety of learning techniques to reinforce concepts taught. Students are given assignments that focus on creativity, critical thinking, and their cognitive, behavioral and affective development. I use this combination of techniques because I believe that you should educate the whole student. This holistic approach features elements that stimulate the mind, heart, and psyche. Another component related to my instructional strategies, is the element of constructivism. Constructivism focuses on the student being able to make meaning for the environment, in this case, the materials that I present in class for assignments. Students are expected to use some discovery and/or inquiry techniques to find the pieces to a concept puzzle. This strategy is used in all of my classes and allows students to be autonomous in their personal learning sequence. Course requirements are also varied. I use a variety of activities to inspire and foster learning. Some activities I utilize are lectures, multimedia presentations, group presentations, field-based learning experiences, and storytelling, to name a few.

    Honors & Awards

    • 2020-2021 Teaching Award, Tenured Faculty
    • Cargill Endowed Professorship
    • Exemplary Teaching Award from the Board of Higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church
    • Junior Sabbatical
    • Cullen Faculty Development Grant
    • Academic Advising Award
    • Recipient of the Unity in Action Diversity Award
    • Nominated for the Excellence in Academic Advising Award

    Professional Associations/Affiliations

    • Federal Appointment to the Army Command and General Staff College
    • Co-Editor for the Black History Bulletin; Published by the Association for the Study of African American Life and History
    • Member, National Association for Early Childhood Teacher Educators
      Life Comprehensive Member, National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)
    • 2005-Present Member, Association for the Study of African American Life and History
    • 2003-2017 Member-at large, Board of Directors, Texas Chapter, National Association for Multicultural Education (NAME)
    • 1993-1994 Area Director, Kindergarten Teachers of Texas (KTOT)
     

Lurlyn and Durwood Fleming Professorship in Religion and Philosophy

    • Held By

      Jorge M. Lizarzaburu

    • DEPARTMENT

      Philosophy


Carolyn and Fred McManis Professorship

    • Held By

      Heidi Hogden

    • DEPARTMENT

      Art & Art History


Genevieve & Thatcher Atkin Junior Professorship in Mathematics

    • Held By

      Noelle Sawyer

    • DEPARTMENT

      Math & Computer Science

    About the Holder

    Noelle Sawyer is a Bahamian mathematician. She earned her PhD in Math from Wesleyan University and her BA in Math and History from Vassar College. When she’s not working on math, she’s probably baking, drinking tea, working on an embroidery project or doing crossword puzzles.

    She is also strongly invested in spaces that are anti-racist, safe and equitable, especially for mathematicians. She is the cofounder of Black in Math Week and hopes to continue finding community and making connections.

     

Genevieve & Thatcher Atkin Junior Professorship in Physics

    • Held By

      Cody Crosby

    • DEPARTMENT

      Physics

    About the Holder

    Dr. Cody Crosby received his Ph.D. in biomedical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin in 2020, his M.S.E from UT in 2017, and his B.S. in engineering from Harvey Mudd College in 2015. 

    He specializes in cell-material interactions and is currently working to develop novel open-source bioprinters and improved biomaterial inks in his biofabrication laboratory on-campus. Through outside collaborations he also aims to build an improved in vitro model of the blood-brain barrier. Dr. Crosby teaches lower-level physics courses and upper-level engineering courses at SU. He currently advises undergraduates as part of the Pre-Med Advisory Committee. 

    Cody is affiliated with the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES), Society for Biomaterials (SFB), American Heart Association (AHA), and the International Society for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine (TERMIS). 

     

Herbert and Kate Dishman Professorship in Special Education

    • Held By

      Michael Kamen

    • DEPARTMENT

      Education

    About the Holder

    Michael Kamen received his PhD in Science Education from the University of Texas at Austin in 1991, MS in Education in Supervision and Administration from Bank Street College of Education in 1984, and a BA in Elementary Education with a specialization in Early Childhood Education from the State University of New York at Stony Brook in 1977. 

     

Wilhelmina Cullen Robertson Professorship

    • Held By

      Catherine Bourland Ross

    • DEPARTMENT

      Modern Languages & Literatures - Spanish

    About the Holder

    I fell in love with the Spanish language in elementary school, and I have studied it ever since. In college, I spent time in Buenos Aires, Argentina and in Madrid, Spain. During my graduate studies, I discovered post-Franco Spanish literature, and that became the focus of my academic career. Teaching Spanish language classes helps me remember those moments when another language starts to make sense, when you really start to gain proficiency. It is exciting to see my students go through that process. In my upper level courses, I focus on twentieth and twenty-first century peninsular Spanish literature and film, especially focusing on issues of race and gender. Most of my students start out unfamiliar with these topics, or at least unfamiliar with the topics from a Spanish perspective. Together we discover how literature and film can represent –and misrepresent–culture.

    I believe that learning Spanish is a gateway to other cultures for my students. Through my focus on the 5 Cs of language learning, communication, culture, connections, comparisons, and communities, I encourage my students to make connections to their other courses, their outside interests, and their communities. In my upper-level courses, I strive to create a student-centered, discussion-based classroom where together we engage with current issues facing Spain and the rest of the world.

    Education

    PhD, University of Texas 2004
    MA, University of Kansas 1997
    BA, Davidson College 1995

    Honors & Awards

    William Carrington Finch Award (2021)

    Wilhelmina Cullen Robertson Endowed Professor (2019-present)

    The 2008 Bill L. and Gerre D. Andrist Award for Hispanic Gender Studies for “Is Spain Still Spanish? Bigas Luna’s Yo soy la Juani.” 2008.

    Affiliations

    • MLA
    • SCMLA
    • ACTFL
    • AILCFH
    • ALCE SXXI
     

Christine Robertson Morenz Professorship

    • Held By

      Maria R. Lowe

    • DEPARTMENT

      Sociology & Anthropology

    About the Holder

    I am deeply committed to being a teacher-scholar at a liberal arts university.

    In my courses, I work closely with students to explore the intersectional ways that race, class, sexual orientation, and gender are constructed, embedded in power structures, and inform our perspectives and life chances. Additionally, we examine the relationship between social structures and agency and the myriad ways that people have come together to fight for rights, equality, and justice. I also help students hone their critical thinking abilities and research skills. In all of my classes, I hope to convey to students how meaningful and important research can be, particularly as we work to tackle the many complex social issues facing us today.

    Mentoring sociology majors is a central and highly rewarding part of my teaching career. For instance, I have mentored students in my capstone courses, guiding them in every aspect of the research process. This intensive mentoring process has led to numerous capstone students having sole-authored publications in peer-reviewed journals and winning national and regional undergraduate paper awards for their research. In addition, a number of students have participated in the American Sociological Association Honors Program and many have presented at regional and national sociology meetings. 

    I am also dedicated to research collaboration with faculty and students. In total, I have worked collaboratively with 18 students on a number of scholarly works, including the Mississippi civil rights movement, campus climate (with Dr. Reginald Byron, co-Principal Investigator), neighborhood surveillance, and contemporary American racial attitudes research projects. These students include J. Clint Morris, Madeline Pizzo, Alice Nguyen, Melissa Garcia, Griffin Ferry, Brianna Billingsley, Nathan Tuttle, Holly O’Hara, Dakota Cortez, Madeline Carrola, Mary Jalufka, Madison Adams, Katherine Holcomb, Riley Naugle, Natasha Perez-Krause, ThuyMi Phung, Carson Maxfield, and Brigit Reese. As research collaborators, students are involved in every aspect of the research process and are also co-authors on conference presentations and journal publications. Our collaborative work has led to numerous national and regional presentations as well as a variety of publications.

    Education

    PhD, Sociology, The University of Texas at Austin

    Master’s, Sociology, The University of Texas at Austin

    BA, Sociology, Trinity University

    Honors

    • The Christine Robertson Morenz Endowed Professor, 2019-present.
    • Invited member of the American Sociological Association Honors Program Advisory Council, 2022-2024.
    • Invited member of the 2022 Southern Sociological Society Program Committee.
    • Herbert Allen Research Assistant Program award, 2019.
    • Invited presenter, Race, Ethnicity, and Place conference, 2018.
    • Invited presenter, Faculty of Color Uniting for Success Institute, 2018.
    • Sam Taylor award for neighborhood surveillance project, 2017.
    • Invited member of the Southern Sociological Society Program Committee for the 2017 meeting, 2016.
    • Invited member of the senior editorial board for Journal of Undergraduate Ethnography2016-present.
    • Invited member of the Undergraduate Paper Competition Committee, the Southwestern Sociological Association (chair: Robert Wallace), 2016-2017.
    • Invited Keynote Address Speaker, 2015, Texas State University, Center for Diversity and Gender Studies Symposium titled Democracy’s Promise - Deisolating Gendered Experiences.
    • The Sam Taylor Award, “They May Be Up To No Good,” 2013.
    • Faculty-Student Collaborative Research Grant (Co-principal investigator with Reggie Byron). “Grid Iron in the Ivory Tower,” 2013.
    • The Sam Taylor Award, “Grid Iron in the Ivory Tower,” 2012.
    • Andrew W. Mellon Integrated Scholarly Community Grant (Co-principal investigator w/ Sue Mennicke and Reggie Byron). “What Happens When the ‘Global Citizen’ Returns?’ The Impact of Study Abroad on How Students View Racial Diversity at their Home Institution,” 2011.
    • Andrew W. Mellon Integrated Scholarly Community Grant (Co-principal investigator w/ Reggie Byron). “Racing the Academy: A Baseline Assessment of How Students View the Racial Climate at Southwestern,” 2010.
    • Southwestern University Teaching Award, 2009.
    • Southwestern University Teaching Award finalist, 2004.
    • Invited member of the American Sociological Association Honors Council, 2006-2010.
    • Participant in The National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute titled African American Freedom and Civil Rights Struggles. Harvard University. WEB Dubois Institute for African American Studies, 2003.
    • Recipient of the Funds for the Advancement of the Discipline Award (FAD) funded by The American Sociological Association and The National Science Foundation, 2000-2001.
    • Southwestern University Unity in Action Diversity Award, 2000.
    • New York University Press Author of the Month for Women of Steel: Female Bodybuilders and The Struggle for Self-definition1998.

    Affiliations

    • American Sociological Association – Racial and Ethnic Minorities section; Race, Gender, and Class section; Latina/o section; Sex and Gender section.
    • Southern Sociological Society
     

Corbin Robertson, Jr. Professorship

    • Held By

      Sergio Costola

    • DEPARTMENT

      Theatre

    About the Holder

    Sergio Costola is Professor of Theatre and Dean of the Faculty at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas. He earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Bologna in Italy and a PhD from the University of California, in Los Angeles. His research interests focus on vision and the ways in which it has been constructed throughout history, in particular during the period that separates the medieval from the early modern period, with brief forays into nineteenth-century African American theatre. He is the author of Commedia dell’Arte Scenarios (Routledge 2021), has collaborated on The Dramaturgy of Commedia dell’Arte with Olly Crick (Routledge 2022), edited with Michael Saenger Shakespeare in Succession: Translation and Time (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2023), and is currently working on a monograph on Lucrezia Borgia and her performances at the Este court. He has also published various book chapters and articles in journals including Skene,Teatro e Storia, International Journal of Art and Technology, Renaissance Quarterly, Asian Theatre Journal, Mediaevalia, and The Journal of American Drama and Theatre.