Maddox and Keltner named to All-Southern Conference Faculty and Staff Team
The Southern Conference named its All-Southern Conference Faculty and Staff Team on Dec. 15, 2016, with two representatives each from all 10 member schools being recognized by the league.
While the selections were left up to each institution’s discretion, the recipients all shared the common characteristics of demonstrated service to the institution and contributions to campus life and the local community. Faculty members selected should have a proven record of high scholastic achievement among students and/or recognition for a research project or written academic piece, while staff members could be from the instructional/teaching ranks or the non-instructional ranks and should be recognized for bringing out the best in others and creating conditions for success.
The 2015 inaugural team consisted of just faculty members, but the team was expanded this year to include staff, as well, doubling the number of recipients of the honor.
The Citadel’s Melanie Maddox and Sally Keltner; ETSU’s Dr. Andrea “Andi” Clements and Stefanie Murphy; Furman’s Sandy Roberson and Rob Carson; Mercer’s Dr. Laura Lackey and Emily French; UNCG’s Dr. Jerry Walsh and Dr. Brett Carter; Samford’s Dr. Robert Hensarling and Michelle Durban; Chattanooga’s Dr. Gretchen Potts and Lisa Tarr; VMI’s Col. W.G. “Grigg” Mullen Jr. and Lance M. Fujiwara; Western Carolina’s Dr. David Claxton and Christy Wyatt; and Wofford’s Dr. Nancy M. Williams and Dr. Phillip Stone comprise the all-league faculty and staff team.
Each member of the All-SoCon Faculty and Staff Team will be presented a plaque and honored at a home basketball game at his or her institution.
The Citadel’s Melanie Maddox is an historian of early medieval Ireland and Britain, who works on the ideal of the Insular civitas, c. 500-1050. Her research primarily focuses on Anglo-Saxon and Irish ecclesiastics' understanding of what a civitas was and how they used the Latin term along with their vernacular languages. She is also interested in the relationships between monasteries and secular authorities, as well as women and their use of secular authority. Maddox’s upcoming undergraduate courses will include The Romans, Medieval Ireland, The Vikings, Honors History I and the core classes for Western Civilization.
Sally Keltner, The Citadel
Sally Keltner works as an administrative assistant in The Citadel’s Office of The Commandant, which manages everything related to the South Carolina Corps of Cadets. She has worked at the college since 1999, proving to be an indispensable member of the Commandant’s staff. Some of her duties include preparing cadet awards, keeping cadet records and providing logistical support to the Assistant Commandant for Discipline, the Command Sergeant Major and the Chief of Staff.
Dr. Andrea “Andi” Clements, ETSU
ETSU’s Dr. Andrea “Andi” Clements is a professor and assistant chair in the Department of Psychology. Her main areas of expertise are in pregnancy and early child development, religiosity and health, and research methodology. Recently, she and a colleague from the Johnson City Police Department have been educating professionals in the area about Trauma-Informed Care as a way to improve the health and well-being of people who experienced traumatic events in childhood, and she has just been awarded a grant from the State of Tennessee Department of Children’s Services to study the effects of Trauma-Informed Care at the Boys & Girls Club in Johnson City. Clements is also very involved in the Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome Working Group, which is trying to reduce the number of drug-addicted newborns and discover what the long-term effects of prenatal opioid exposure are.
Stefanie Murphy, ETSU
Stefanie Murphy has been an academic counselor at ETSU since 2003. In addition to her responsibilities as an academic counselor, she is involved in the University Advising Center’s outreach to regional high school students, helping prepare them for orientation. She is involved in a multitude of areas of campus life, far exceeding the expectations of her job duties, and is serving as President of ETSU’s Staff Senate. On top of her campus involvement, Murphy is active in the community. She participates in local theatre productions both on stage and behind the scenes and has served as a board member for the Johnson City Community Theatre. She has worked with Junior Achievement of Tri-Cities and is the School Board Chairperson at St. Mary’s Church.
Sandy Roberson, Furman
A professor of accounting at Furman, Sandy Roberson, was the 2006 recipient of the Alester G. Furman, Jr., and Janie Earle Furman Award for Meritorious Advising. Prior to teaching at Furman, she spent over 17 years in industry gaining valuable experience that significantly enhances her teaching and ability to effectively advise students regarding potential career paths. Roberson has made significant contributions to her profession through her work on the Uniform Certified Public Accountant examination and served as the chair of the Furman Faculty Fringe Benefits and Welfare Committee for three years. She believes that educated professionals have a responsibility to share their knowledge and skills with the community and that students can benefit significantly from working closely with community members, and since spring 2009, students in her classes have contributed over 3,100 hours of service to the Greenville community through their participation in the United Way Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program.
Rob Carson, Furman
Furman’s Rob Carson serves as the assistant director in the Office of Academic Assistance. Carson oversees the academic advising for the athletic department and serves as an academic liaison for more than 400 student-athletes from the department’s 18 NCAA Division I teams. He is a member of numerous university committees such as the Diversity Committee, Bias Incident Response Team, Athletics Advisory Committee and the Strategic Vision Advisory Council Enhanced Advising & Mentoring subcommittee. In an effort to bridge the gap between academics and athletics, he also assists with the Faculty Guest Coach Program at Furman. Carson is a graduate of the NCAA’s Minority Leadership Institute and also serves as a member of the Furman Athletics Leadership Team under Athletics Director Mike Buddie.
Dr. Laura Lackey, Mercer
Mercer’s Dr. Laura Lackey is a professor and senior associate dean in the Biomedical and Environmental Engineering Department in the School of Engineering. She has taught 20 different courses at Mercer, ranging from a freshman-level Introduction to Problem Solving course to a senior-level Process Chemistry course, which she developed. In addition to her teaching, Lackey has taken an active interest in the Mercer On Mission program. Her projects have focused on using manual well drilling techniques and low-cost, human-powered pumps to bring water closer to users and in the development, installation, and monitoring of point-of-use biosand filters (BSFs) used to treat surface water prior to drinking. She and her students have taken their research to communities globally through projects in Kenya and Uganda. Prior to coming to Mercer, Lackey spent six years at the Tennessee Valley Authority as an environmental/chemical engineer, where she conducted both basic and applied research with emphasis on the mitigation of organic wastes through bioremediation.
Emily French, Mercer
Emily French worked with Mercer student-athletes as a sports medicine assistant with the football team from 2012-14 while pursuing her undergraduate degree. In the fall of 2014, she began her public health degree program while also working as a student-athlete support specialist. In that role, she was an integral member of Mercer’s student-athlete academic support staff. In addition to helping student-athletes develop their academic skills, she also provided advising services that included helping with registration, creating schedules, and monitoring NCAA eligibility and tracking degree progress. Most recently, she has become the Coordinator of Sports Operations, and her duties include helping organize community service and outreach for the teams, managing academic services for baseball, and personal and career development for student-athletes.
Dr. Jerry Walsh, UNCG
Dr. Jerry Walsh is a professor and associate head in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at UNCG, where he has been for more than 30 years. His career has spanned the areas of inorganic chemistry and science education. Projects funded by the National Science Foundation and the Department of Education have allowed him to contribute to recruitment and professional development of teachers and to inspire students to pursue careers in science. He is regularly involved in outreach activities like Science Olympiad and STEMX summer camps.
Dr. Brett Carter, UNCG
Dr. Brett Carter is the associate vice chancellor and dean of students at UNCG. He has been involved in higher education for more than 28 years. His diverse work experience includes: student housing, judicial affairs, student academic integrity, student advocacy, service learning and leadership, the first-year experience, and crisis management. In his role as associate vice chancellor and dean of students, Carter responds to faculty, staff and parent and family concerns regarding students in distress and works directly with students in crisis. He oversees the development and implementation of university policy for students, co-chairs the Behavioral Assessment Team (BAT) and chairs the Safety and Concerns Committee. Carter is also responsible for the overseeing the coordination of student support resources and awareness initiatives, in partnership with campus departments, in an effort to promote best practices for assisting student in distress. His professional interests are to engage students in educational discourse about personal values, accountability, citizenship, and positive decision-making.
Dr. Robert Hensarling, Samford
Dr. Robert Hensarling serves as associate professor of kinesiology and director of the Master of Athletic Training program in Samford’s School of Health Professions. With more than 20 years of service to the university, Hensarling was previously an assistant athletic trainer with the men’s basketball team and an associate athletic trainer with the football team. His research interests include baseline and post-concussion testing and treatment on concussion outcomes and the development of inter-professional education programs in Samford’s College of Health Sciences. He serves on the executive council for the Alabama Athletic Trainers Association and numerous school and university committees.
Michelle Durban, Samford
Michelle Durban began her career at Samford University in January 2004 as the head volleyball coach. In 2006, she added the Senior Woman Administrator (SWA) role to her coaching duties. In 2008, she transitioned out of coaching and became assistant athletic director for compliance, while continuing as SWA. Now a senior associate AD, Durban oversees volleyball, women’s basketball, men’s and women’s cross country/track & field, women’s tennis and women’s golf. She also oversees Student Services (Academics, Compliance and Financial Aid), Athletic Training, Strength and Conditioning and Sport Nutrition. She is the Southern Conference chair for volleyball and track & field and serves as a member on a few other committees.
Dr. Gretchen Potts, Chattanooga
A professor of chemistry, Chattanooga’s Dr. Gretchen Potts also serves as the program director for the university’s Integrated Studies Program. Through this role, Potts works with students to complete a degree that works across multiple disciplines and assists them to reach an academic goal that might otherwise not be available. She has assisted many students who have returned to school to complete a degree interrupted by other life events. Also an avid supporter of Mocs athletics, Potts knows many of UTC’s athletes personally and acts as a mentor, guide and informal cheerleader and attends dozens of athletics events throughout the year, both home and away.
Lisa Tarr, Chattanooga
Lisa Tarr serves as the academic coordinator for the Chattanooga football team. She joined the athletics department in the spring of 2011 after working a year with the UTC Center for Advisement and Student Success. Tarr serves on the StepUP Leadership bystander intervention committee at UTC, a program initiated by the UTC Counseling and Student Development Office in partnership with the NCAA. An avid supporter of Chattanooga athletics, Tarr provides the right balance of challenge and support for UTC student-athletes and has become a trusted confidant for many of them.
Col. W.G, “Grigg” Mullen Jr., VMI
Colonel W.G. “Grigg” Mullen Jr. is in his 25th year as a professor of civil and environmental engineering at VMI. An expert in geotechnical engineering, rigging and raising, and in the fabrication and construction of timber frame structures, Mullen is a member of the engineering honor society Tau Bata Pi and Phi Kappa Phi national teaching honor society. He is also a member of the Timber Frame Engineers Council of the Timber Framers Guild. Mullen organizes both a fall and spring Timber Frame Field Training Exercise (FTX), each of which is a community service project. Among the many structures he has organized and helped cadets to build are a pavilion at the VMI rifle range, an overhead enclosure at the Lexington city pool, a wayside structure at historic Goshen Pass, and an entire new house for Project Horizon, a local nonprofit dedicated to reducing dating, domestic and sexual violence in Rockbridge County, Virginia.
Lance M. Fujiwara, VMI
VMI’s head athletic trainer/director of sports medicine since 1988, Lance Fujiwara has also served as an associate athletic director for the Keydets since 2008. Fujiwara is a certified member of The National Athletic Trainers Association and is also a licensed athletic trainer in the state of Virginia. He is a member of the McCue Sports Medicine Society and serves as a clinical instructor in athletic training for the University of Virginia, Western Carolina University and Longwood University. He is also on the editorial board of the journal Training & Conditioning. Fujiwara has cared for, or directed the care of, thousands of VMI cadet-athletes, faculty and staff, and others who needed his care throughout his career.
Dr. David Claxton, Western Carolina
Dr. David Claxton has served in higher education for more than 40 years and is a lifelong physical educator. A professor at Western Carolina since 1996 and the head of WCU’s Department of Health, Physical Education & Recreation, Claxton has served in varied leadership roles as a professional, including as president of the North Carolina Alliance for Athletics, Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance and on the board of directors of the National Association for Kinesiology in Higher Education. He currently serves as the assistant to the dean for development in the College of Education and Allied Professions. He will retire after the spring semester in 2017.
Christy Wyatt, Western Carolina
Christy Wyatt is a counselor/substance use specialist at Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) at Western Carolina, where she has worked since the fall of 2012. One of Wyatt’s passions is to help students who are in recovery from drugs, alcohol and other addictive behaviors thrive at WCU. Since starting her position at Western, she attained a grant to start a Collegiate Recovery Program supporting this marginalized group of students and over the past three years, she has advocated at local and regional levels to bring attention to their needs. Part of Wyatt’s role at CAPS is providing clinical mental health services to Western Carolina students who experience anxiety, stress, depression and other mental health issues. Additionally, Wyatt supervises master's students who are enrolled in the Social Work, Counseling, Psychology and Higher Ed Student Affairs programs.
Dr. Nancy M. Williams, Wofford
Dr. Nancy M. Williams, an associate professor of philosophy, has been teaching at Wofford College since 2006. While the regular semester may have her teaching Philosophy of Food, Environmental Ethics or Feminist Philosophy, her January interim courses usually involve her students learning about yoga, vegan cooking, the healing powers of hiking, and the human-animal relationship. Her research interests include feminist philosophy and applied ethics, with a focus on feminist animal care theory. Reflecting these interests, she serves as chair of the board of directors for a nonprofit low-cost spay and neuter clinic in Spartanburg, South Carolina, and sits on the board of the Ethical Choices Program, a nonprofit educational organization centered on motivating students to adopt sustainable, compassionate and healthy food practices.
Dr. Phillip Stone, Wofford
A 1994 Wofford graduate, Dr. Phillip Stone has served as the college and Methodist archivist at the college since the spring of 1999. Stone is responsible for maintaining the college’s historical records and helping researchers of all sorts explore the history of Wofford and the Methodist Church in South Carolina. In 2010, he published a pictorial history of Wofford, and he has written several articles about local history in Hub City Press publications. In the summer of 2014, he served as interim library director. Since 2008, he’s also served as an adviser to first-year students, has taught Southern Politics for the government department, freshman humanities, and Western Civilization for the history department. He writes regularly for Wofford Today and the SC United Methodist Advocate as well as for his blog, From the Archives. He is an active member of the Spartanburg community, having served as chair of the city’s board of architectural design and historic review, and is currently on the board of Partners for Active Living, the Spartanburg Downtown Association, and the city’s Planning Commission. He has been president of his neighborhood association, as well.