Academic Leadership Academy (ALA)

About Us


The purpose of the Bluegrass Higher Education Consortium Academic Leadership Academy (ALA) is to encourage younger faculty/staff to consider leadership career paths. ALA provides guidance in developing the skills that are requisites for effective institutional leadership. This ensures a sound and successful future for the participating institutions.

Academy Objectives

– Analyze theories and styles of leadership

– Apply leadership concepts to practice

– Build relationships that advance the work of higher education

– Address leadership challenges in higher education

– Demonstrate strategic thinking and decision making skills

– Lead in team-building and communication

– Expand understanding of the environment in which institutional decisions are made in the 21st Century

Sample Curriculum

– Budgeting 101 Basics

– Crisis Management

– Legal & Ethical Issues involving Employees & Students

– Managing Conflict & Difficult People

– Strategic Decision Making

– Accreditation, Compliance, & Assessment

– Campus Projects

2020 Academic Leadership Academy

2020 ALA October 22nd Schedule



Hosted by:


October 23, 2020


8:30 a.m. Welcome and Self-Introductions of Fellows.
9:15 a.m. Welcome and Introductions

Overview of Consortium, Setting Expectations and Context

Rob Rumpke, President/CEO Bluegrass Tomorrow

Co-chairs: Dr. Laurel Martin and Sonia Sanders, Kentucky State University

9:30 a.m. Morning Keynote: Higher Education Leadership: Issues & Challenges

Dr. John Marsden, President, Midway University

10:00 a.m. Q&A: Questions & Answers with President Marsden
10:20 a.m. Break
10:30 a.m. Panel of Deans/Provosts: Academic Leadership at Our Universities- 

Dr. Tom Otieno, Dean of the College of Science, Eastern Kentucky University

Dr. Greg Feeney, Provost, Bluegrass Community & Technical College

Dr. Stashia Emanuel, Vice Provost of Academic Affairs, Kentucky State University

Dr. Mark Gill, Dean, School of Business, Equine & Sports Mgmt. Midway University

11:15 a.m. Q&A: Questions & Answers
11:45 a.m. Lunch Break
12:20 p.m. Luncheon Keynote: Dr. John Roush, Retired President, Centre College
1:10 p.m. Q&A with Dr. Roush
1:20 p.m. Break
1:30 p.m.  Budgeting 101

Angie Martin, Vice President for Financial Operations, University of Kentucky

Leah Barth Rice, Vice President of Finance, Midway University                         

2:15 p.m. Q&A: Questions & Answers with Financial Officers
2:25 p.m. P.E.A.C.E. from Conflict

Dr. LaVena Wilkin, Director of PhD Programs, Sullivan University

3:05 p.m-

4:00 p.m.

Virtual Cocktail Reception with Jim Beam mixologist Beth Burrows w/networking breakout rooms.

2020 ALA October 23rd Schedule


Hosted by:


October 23, 2020



9:00 a.m.

 Welcome and Introductions,

ALA Co-Chairs Dr. Laurel Martin, Sonia Sanders Kentucky State University                                                                                                       

9:15 a.m.

 Morning Keynote:  Dr. Kris Williams, Chancellor (Chief Academic Officer) KCTCS

9:40 a.m.

Q&A: Questions & Answers, Conversation

9:50 a.m.-

11:55 a.m.

Campus Projects:  4 Concurrent Sessions where campus projects will be presented virtually in Zoom break out rooms. (this will be updated)






Room 1




Room 2





Room 3





Room 4





12 Noon

Lunch Break

12:20 p.m.

 Luncheon Keynote President’s Panel:  

Dr. Jay Morgan, President, Morehead State University and Dr. Kevin Brown, President Asbury University.  Moderator:  Dr. Laurel Raimondo Martin, ALA Co-Chair

1:00 p.m.

Break, Transition to Roundtable Discussions (Zoom Break Out Rooms)

1:10 p.m. 




Roundtable Discussions (choose 3, 20 min each) These are also subject to change.

Accreditation:  Dr.  Carrie Christensen, Midway University

Admissions & Recruiting: Brandon Combs, Assistant VP for Admissions, Asbury University; Sara Price, Transfer Admissions Director, University of Kentucky

Departmental Budgets and Finance: Dr.Barry Barnett, Chair Dept. of Agricultural Economics, University of Kentucky

Chair/Dean Development:  Dr. Rich Schein, Associate Dean of Faculty, Arts and Sciences University of Kentucky

Diversity:  Dr. LaTonya Irons, Assistant Provost, Sullivan University

Government Relations/Issues:   Ethan Witt, Assistant Vice President for Government & Community Relations, Eastern Ky University; Dr. Rachelle Johnson, Executive Director of Government Relations and Economic Innovation,, Kentucky State University                                 

More Than Service Learning – Discussing the benefits of formal University/Community Partnerships: Tori Vogelgesang, Kentucky Campus Compact; Gary Creamans, United Way of the Bluegrass                            

2:40 p.m.

 Networking, Break Out Rooms, Discussion, Conversation on takeaways

3:00 p.m.

­­Final Keynote:  Dr.Aaron Thompson, President, Council on Postsecondary Education                             

3:30 p.m.

  Q&A Wrap Up

2020 ALA Speaker & Panelist Bios


Thursday, October 22

Opening Keynote

Dr. John Marsden, President, Midway University, Opening Keynote

John P. Marsden, Ph.D. became the tenth president of Midway University on February 1, 2013. A transformational leader, he collaboratively managed a turnaround of Midway University through expansion of athletics and academic programs, coeducation, international partnerships, and financial stewardship. Following four years of significant enrollment growth, Midway University launched several renovation and construction projects including the Hunter Field House, Tracy Farmer-Don Ball Stadium, the conversion of Pinkerton Hall to a residence hall, bathroom renovations in Belle Wisdom Residence Hall, and a new Welcome Center in a renovated Marrs Hall. All projects have been funded through the Campaign of Opportunities, without incurring new debt.

Dr. Marsden’s success was recognized in 2018 by Bluegrass Tomorrow, an organization focused on quality of life in the 18-county Bluegrass Region, when he received the Excellence in Education Vision Award for his work at Midway University. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Washington, DC-based Council of Independent Colleges (CIC), on the Executive Committee and as Treasurer for the Association of Independent Kentucky Colleges and Universities (AIKCU), and as Secretary for The Council of Colleges and Universities of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).

Dr. Marsden’s twenty-year career in higher education includes teaching a range of courses from the undergraduate level to the doctoral level; administration as a provost and head of university strategic planning; and authorship or co-authorship of four books in the areas of assisted living and dementia care settings as well as many book chapters, articles, and presentations. A first generation American, he was raised on Long Island, NY. He earned a B.Arch. with a minor in Industrial Management from Carnegie Mellon University, a M. Arch. and Graduate Certificate in Gerontology from the University of Arizona, and a Ph.D. and M.S. from the University of Michigan. Dr. Marsden and Mrs. Margaret Marsden, a graduate of Auburn University School of Pharmacy, have one son, Will.

Panel of Deans/Provosts: Academic Leadership at Our Universities

Dr. Stashia Emanuel, Vice Provost of Academic Affairs, Kentucky State University

Stashia L. Emanuel is the Vice Provost of Academic Services and Assistant Professor of Education at Kentucky State University in Frankfort, Kentucky. Her research and academic interest are in the areas of academic and social adjustment of minority students at predominately and traditionally white institutions, organizational leadership at Historically Black Colleges and Universities, first-year initiatives and student retention. Dr. Emanuel received her Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice from Stockton University (New Jersey), a Masters of Public Administration from Albany State University (Georgia), and a Doctorate of Education in Educational Leadership from Argosy University (Atlanta).

Dr. Greg Feeney, Provost Bluegrass Community & Technical College is Provost at Bluegrass Community and Technical College. Prior to this, Dr. Feeney served as Vice President of Academics and Workforce Development Academic Dean, Dean of Academic Support, Assistant Dean of History, Languages, and Social Sciences at the College and as a faculty member. He achieved the rank of professor and has been at the College for 21 years. He earned his doctorate, with an emphasis in interpersonal and health communication, at the University of Kentucky. He completed his masters at Northern Illinois University, with an emphasis in communication theory and organizational communication.

Dr. Mark Gill, Dean School of Business, Equine & Sports Management Midway University Mark Gill serves as the Dean of the School of Business, Equine and Sport Management at Midway University. He oversees a fulltime and part-time faculty of 50 individuals teaching courses in-seat, online and in hybrid formats. During a typical semester the programs in the school offer 100+ course sections serving over 750 students. Mark earned his Ph.D. at Arizona State University in Computer Information Systems. In additional to Midway, he has been a faculty member at the University of Louisville and Asbury University.

Dr. Tom Otieno, Dean of the College of Science Eastern Kentucky University Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) appointed Dr Tom Otieno to be the founding dean of its College of Science in 2016, one of two colleges created as part of restructuring of the former College of Arts & Sciences. The College of Science is comprised of the following academic departments: Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Computer Science, Geosciences, Mathematics & Statistics, and Physics & Astronomy. It also houses the Division of Natural Areas.

Because of this organizational structure change it has allowed for an opportunity for a greater focus on EKU’s science and math programs, giving all the programs opportunities for increased prominence. Because it houses STEM disciplines, the College of Science plays a central role in the university as EKU adapts to the realities of performance-based funding that is on the horizon.

Prior to this appointment, he served as an Associate Dean in the College of Arts and Sciences for 11 years. Other academic leadership positions he has held include services as Assistant Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Interim Chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy, and Coordinator of the Chemistry Graduate Program. Otieno, a professor of Chemistry, began his academic career at Eastern Kentucky University in 1995 as an assistant professor.

Luncheon Keynote

Dr. John Roush, Retired President, Centre College

Under the leadership of John Roush, just retired July 1 this year, Centre College has flourished. Since 1998, the College has added 14 new endowed professorships; instituted a Centre Scholars Program to honor outstanding work at the junior faculty rank; successfully revised its curriculum; finished work on the College Centre, a $24 million addition to and renovation of Crounse Hall, the College’s primary academic space and library, Sutcliffe Hall, the fitness and recreation facility at Centre, welcomed these new buildings to campus: The Campus Center, Pearl Hall, and the A. Eugene Brockman Commons; launched, in January, 2004, the Campaign for A More Perfect Centre, a $120 million capital campaign focused on endowment for student financial aid and scholarships and academic program enhancements; and, most recently, initiated an institutional planning process that holds the promise of setting a new standard for national liberal arts colleges.

Growing up in Ohio, Roush graduated from Kettering Fairmont High School where he was active in athletics, music, and theatre. He earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Ohio University’s Honors College in 1972, where he graduated summa cum laude. Active in college athletics, Roush was Ohio University’s Scholar Athlete of the Year and was a three-time Academic All-American in football. He completed his formal education at Miami University, earning the Master’s degree in 1973 and the PhD in spring, 1979.

Roush began his career in higher education at Miami University as an assistant football coach in 1972, and then transitioned to administration in 1976, completing his work there in January, 1982 as Executive Assistant to the President.

He joined the University of Richmond in 1982 as Executive Assistant to the President and was made Vice President for Planning, Executive Assistant to the President, and Secretary to the Board of Trustees in 1990. In the late 1980s, he was identified as the intellectual “architect” in the effort to create the Jepson School of Leadership Studies, a multi-disciplinary, undergraduate degree program.

In addition to his work in higher education, Roush was a Captain in the U.S. Army. He is a regular contributor to professional journals in the areas of leadership, governance and finance in higher education, and intercollegiate sport. A member of several professional boards and organizations, Roush has been active in the Association of Governing Boards, the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, the Association of Presbyterian Colleges, the Association of Independent Kentucky Colleges and Universities, and the American Council on Education. He also remains active in civic and community affairs.

He and his wife, Susie Miller Roush, are the parents of two sons. Luke, a 2000 graduate of Duke, and his wife, Brooke Olsen Roush, have three children. Mark, a 2003 graduate of Northwestern, and his wife, Natalie Crable Roush, have three children. Mrs. Roush, a native of Dover, Ohio, has a bachelor’s degree from Ohio University and a master’s degree from Miami University. She is an active civic leader and an accomplished photographer.

Budgeting 101

Angie Martin, Vice President for Financial Operations and Treasurer for the University of Kentucky, Angie is responsible for the stewardship and accountability of all university assets and financial resources. Prior to arriving at UK in 2002, she was the Vice President for Finance at the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education. Angie has a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from the University of Louisville, a Master of Business Administration from Xavier University, and is a Certified Public Accountant.

Leah Barth Rice is the Vice President of Finance at Midway University. She has been with Midway over seven years and has served in various accounting roles in that time period which has given her a unique perspective on the financial operations of the institution from the ground up. Leah is a graduate of the University of Kentucky with a BA in Anthropology as well as a graduate of Midway University with a BS in Accounting.

P.E.A.C.E. from Conflict, Dr. LaVena Wilkin, Director of PhD Programs, Sullivan University

Dr. LaVena Wilkin is the Director of PhD programs at Sullivan University. Before joining Sullivan University, she spent twenty-six years in the construction industry, and three of those years she co-owned a commercial and industrial masonry sub-contracting company. After selling the construction company, Dr. Wilkin came to work at Sullivan and has served as the Associate Director of the Evening and Weekend Division, Dean of the College of Business Administration, and Dean of Conflict Management Programs.

Dr. Wilkin is a certified mediator, conflict coach, and employee engagement facilitator. In addition, she has facilitated workshops on communication, organizational conflict management, emotional intelligence, change management, workplace bullying, forgiveness, and the P.E.A.C.E. Model of Conflict Management for public, private, and non-profit organizations.

A paper she co-wrote on workplace bullying was presented at The Psychology Research Unit of the Athens, Greece Institute for Education and Research. She is also published in the International Journal of Business and Social Science and writes a quarterly column for Business First. Dr. Wilkin is co-editor of a book entitled Organizational Conflicts: Challenges and Solutions. She is the Editor for the Journal of Conflict Management, a scholarly journal that publishes research in many of the multidisciplinary areas of managing conflicts.


Friday, October 23

Opening Keynote

Dr. Kris Williams, Chancellor, Kentucky Community & Technical College System

Kristin Williams was named chancellor of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS) in 2018, and she was no stranger to the KCTCS system. Williams was previously president of Henderson Community College, has served as interim president of Hazard Community and Technical College and was chief academic officer at Hopkinsville Community College. Prior to joining KCTCS, she was vice president at Santa Fe Community College in Gainesville, Fl.

The KCTCS chancellor is the chief academic officer for the system providing leadership, service and support for academic affairs, economic/workforce development, institutional research and effectiveness, distance learning initiatives and external collaborative relationships.

Williams has earned a bachelor’s degree in agriculture, a master’s degree in higher education leadership and a Ph.D. in educational leadership, all from the University of Florida.

Luncheon Keynote President’s Panel

Dr. Jay Morgan, President Morehead State University

Dr. Kevin Brown, President Asbury University

Dr. Joseph A. (Jay) Morgan is the 14th president of Morehead State University and has served as president since July 1, 2017. His focus at MSU has been on student success, performance outcomes, academic excellence, as well as university rankings and responsiveness to the region. Prior to service at MSU, Dr. Morgan served as the state-wide chief academic officer and vice president for academic affairs and student success for the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education in Frankfort. Before state-wide service at the Council, Dr. Morgan served as provost and vice president for academic affairs at Murray State University, as well as associate provost, university faculty regent, leadership program director, graduate program coordinator, and professor/teacher educator. He also has early career service as an entrepreneur, as well as being a high school teacher and coach. Dr. Morgan holds a Ph.D. from Oklahoma State University and a B.S. and an M.S. from Murray State University. He currently serves as a board of trustees and executive council member of the Southern Association of College and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) and is on the Council of Presidents of the Ohio Valley Athletic Conference – Division I. Dr. Morgan formerly served as a board member of a medical university, several foundation boards, vice chair of a public university board, a bank board, and the Kentucky Educational Professional Standards Board administering public school teacher licensing and educational standards. Additionally, his former public service includes serving four terms as an elected member of a city council, board president of a chamber of commerce, board chair of the United Way, was formerly named Citizen of the Year, is a Rotarian, and has been involved with economic development, banking and other regional initiatives. He has taught, worked and traveled in more than 15 countries for academics, business, research, and development.

Dr. Kevin Brown was elected the Asbury University Board of Trustees to serve as the University’s 18th president on May 31, 2019.

Prior to his appointment, Brown served as associate dean of Asbury’s Dayton School of Business (DSB), Brown brings a breadth of experience to the presidency. With an academic background spanning business, theology and ethics, Brown served as a bank president before transitioning to higher education as a business and economics professor. Now, with a decade of experience in Christian higher education, Brown brings a compelling vision for Asbury’s continued institutional and spiritual development

Community is at the heart of Asbury’s institutional identity, and as Asburians celebrate the selection of a new president, they are blessed to welcome not just an individual, but a family. Brown’s wife, Maria, is already well-known to campus and alumni as coordinator of Intercultural Affairs, and the Browns have three children – Cambel (14), Ada (11) and Oliver (7).

Before arriving at Asbury University in the fall of 2013, Dr. Kevin Brown spent four years teaching Business at Anderson University in Central Indiana. Prior to that, he worked for nearly a decade at Wells Fargo Bank, spending the last four years there as a market president.

Brown’s formal education includes an undergraduate degree and an MBA from the University of Indianapolis along with two degrees from institutions in Scotland—an MA of Letters from St. Andrews University and a PhD from the University of Glasgow. Brown is married to Maria and they have three children. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with family and friends, as well as reading, exercising and camping with his family.

Roundtable Presenters

Dr. Barry Barnett University of Kentucky

Dr. Barry J. Barnett has been Professor and Chair in the Department of Agricultural Economics at the University of Kentucky since January 2018. Prior to that, he held faculty positions at the University of Georgia and Mississippi State University. During the 2016-17 academic year he served as a visiting scholar at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. Dr. Barnett conducts research and writes extensively about agricultural public policy and insurance both in the United States and in developing country contexts. He regularly conducts analysis for the Risk Management Agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, has testified before the Agriculture Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, and contributed to several World Bank, OECD, and USAID publications.

Dr. Carrie Christensen, Director of Accreditation & Academic Initiatives Midway University

Dr. Carrie Christensen is the Director of Accreditation & Academic Initiatives at Midway University. In this role, she coordinates institutional accreditation, oversees the institution’s Dual Credit and assessment programs, and manages several areas of academic policy. Dr. Christensen holds a master’s in biology from Tennessee Technological University and a PhD in Educational Leadership and Organizational Design with a specialty in Higher Education Administration from the University of Louisville. After more than 15 years of higher education teaching, she now works primarily in administrative roles, but still manages to teach most semesters. She has worked with more than six different programmatic accreditors and SACSCOC regional accreditation since 2014 completing Fifth-Year Interim and Compliance Certification reports at three Kentucky Colleges & Universities. She is a SACSCOC trained evaluator for Institutional Effectiveness Standards and enjoys participating in the peer review process.

Dr. Brandon Combs, Assistant Vice President for Admissions Asbury University

Brandon Combs currently serves as the Assistant Vice President of Admissions for Asbury University in Wilmore, KY. In his AVP role, Mr. Combs provides leadership and direction for all recruitment and admissions functions in traditional-undergraduate, graduate, and international student recruiting. He started his enrollment career thirteen years ago as an Admissions Counselor and has held multiple leadership positions in his tenure at Asbury. Brandon lives in Nicholasville, KY with his wife, Liz, and their two children. Brandon is an alumnus of the ALA program and serves on the boards for Youth Leadership Jessamine County and the Jessamine County Chamber of Commerce.

Gary Cremeans, Director of Community Impact United Way of the Bluegrass

Gary Cremeans is the Director of Programs at United Way of the Bluegrass. Gary is responsible for the oversight of several high impact programs designed to benefit our most vulnerable citizens in the ten county United Way of the Bluegrass service area. Gary has been with United Way of the Bluegrass for seven years and is a proud graduate of The Ohio State University.

Dr. Latonya Irons, Assistant Provost Sullivan University

Dr. Latonya Irons, from Nashville, TN, currently serves as Assistant Provost for Sullivan University Lexington Campus. Dr. Irons has worked in the field of higher education for over 12 years as faculty, department chair, and dean. In each of her professional roles she has been successful in supporting the academic achievement of students, providing support to the staff, and professional development for faculty. Her passion is successfully working with diverse student and faculty populations to promote an inclusive environment. Dr. Irons received her Doctorate of Education in Higher Education Leadership from Union University in Jackson, TN.

Dr. Rachelle Johnson, Director of Government Relations, Kentucky State University

After serving a leading United States Senator, advancing health care causes for a global nonprofit, serving as senior vice president for one of the largest government relations firms in Washington, D.C., director of global government affairs for a leading technology company, and as a higher education executive, Rachelle Johnson has approached challenges from all angles for two decades. Rachelle built up her public policy knowledge in the halls of the United States Senate, NGOs and government agencies of Japan, and higher education bringing that expertise to the table as a governmental relations expert specializing in education, public policy, appropriations, and global affairs issues.

Rachelle began her career in the office of Sen. Thad Cochran, Chairman of the United State Senate Appropriations Committee, where she rose through the ranks to serve as the senator’s senior legislative adviser for foreign policy and education as well as associate staff for appropriations for the Chairman to the Senate Appropriations Committee. There she worked on legislation authorizing spending implemented by the Department of Education, Department of State, Department of Agriculture, and the Millennium Challenge Corporation, among other governmental agencies and multilateral organizations including the United Nations. Currently, she serves on the presidential executive management team and leads the government relations unit for Kentucky State University, a historically black college and university in Frankfort, KY. Rachelle earned her bachelor’s degree in communicative disorders from the University of Mississippi, master’s degree in international affairs from Georgetown University, and has a doctorate in educational leadership and management from Drexel University. She serves on the board of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc., Metropolitan Washington, D.C. chapter, was nominated by the D.C. City Council to serve on the Commission for African American Affairs, a member of the Junior League of Louisville, and serves on the KY Advisory Committee for USGLC. She has traveled globally lecturing and conducting trainings on the nexus between social policy and politics.

Sara Price, Transfer Admissions Director University of Kentucky

Sara Price is the Director of Transfer Admission at the University of Kentucky. She has 11 years in higher education with 7 years of experience working with transfer students. In her current role as Transfer Admissions Director in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, Sara coordinates transfer initiatives for the university, cultivating partnerships throughout the state and serving as an advocate for students as they navigate their way through higher education.

Dr. Richard Schein, Associate Dean of Faculty, College of Arts & Sciences University of Kentucky

Richard Schein is Associate Dean of Faculty (College of Arts and Sciences) and Professor of Geography at the University of Kentucky (USA). He is a former Fulbright Bicentennial Chair of North American Studies at the University of Helsinki and has been named Distinguished Historical Geographer by the Association of American Geographers. His published work explores US settlement practices (questions of land and property), methodology in historical geography (archival practices), and the American landscape – its origins, its form, its meaning, its contestation. Most recently that work is focused upon the place of landscape, as an epistemological framework and as a material thing or set of things, in American social and racial formation. Professor Schein lives in Woodford County Kentucky, home of fast horses and good bourbon, where he also is a planning

Tori Vogelgesang Kentucky Campus Compact

Tori Vogelgesang is a staff member of Kentucky Campus Compact (KyCC), a membership organization of Kentucky college and university presidents committed to the civic purposes of higher education and providing programming that supports college access, college success, and community impact.

Ethan Witt, Asst. Vice President for Government & Community Relations Eastern Kentucky University

Ethan Witt knows firsthand the value of a degree from Eastern Kentucky University. Now, after serving the past 4 ½ years in the field offices of Sixth District Congressman Andy Barr and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the 2011 political science graduate is returning to his alma mater to share that story as its director of government and community relations. He will serve under the direction of Dr. David McFaddin, President, Eastern Kentucky University. Witt, who spent a summer as a U.S. Senate intern while an EKU student, minored in communication studies and graduated summa cum laude. After more than two years as a field representative for Barr, he joined McConnell’s staff as Blue Grass Region field representative, with responsibility for 20 central and eastern Kentucky counties, in February 2016.

2020 ALA Fellows Directory

2020 Academic Leadership Academy

Fellows Directory


Said Abusalem

University of Louisville

Associate Professor, School of Nursing

Office:  502-852-4107

Cell:  203-768-2956



Katherine Andrews

Centre College

Sponsored Research Specialist and Institutional Review Board Chair

Office:  859-238-5212

Cell:  505-470-7188



Elise Borne

Kentucky State University

Paralegal for the Office of General Counsel

Office: 502-597-5825

Cell: 859-699-3881



Debra Bourne

University of Kentucky

Assistant Professor of Surgery

Office:  859-562-2632

Cell:  607-729-6711



John Brent

Eastern Kentucky University

Assistant Professor, Criminal Justice and Police Studies

Office: 859-622-8152



Kim Brockman

Asbury University

Assistant Professor, School of Education

Cell: 859-229-9645


C. Sebastian Bryson

University of Kentucky

Associate Professor & Co-Director, Undergraduate Research Program

Office: 859-257-3247

Cell: 859-533-9551


Susan Cantrell

University of Kentucky

Professor, Curriculum & Instructions

Office: 859-257-6371

Cell: 859-576-4714


Michelle Carter

Bluegrass Community & Technical College

Campus Director

Office: 859-246-6362

Cell:  859-213-2739


Teresa Clark

Murray State University

Assistant Professor, P-20 and

Community Leadership

Office: 270-809-6956

Cell:  615-495-5093


Pernella Deams

Kentucky State University

Dean of Student Leadership, Conduct and Health/Associate Professor

Office:  615-260-9643

Cell: 515-260-9643


Fred DeGraves

Western Kentucky University

Chair, Department of Food Sciences

Office: 270-745-3151

Cell: 614-477-1430


Patricia Derosiers

Western Kentucky University

Department Head, Social Work

Office: 270-745-4557

Cell:  270-315-8404


Wendy Dixie

Kentucky State University

Chief Information Officer

Office: 502-597-5725

Cell:  859-963-8540


Amelia Dodd

Murray State University

Assistant Professor/Interim Assistant Dean of School of Nursing & Health Professions

Office:  270-809-6463

Cell: 270-293-4339

Richard Dressler

Western Kentucky University

Department Chair, Communication Sciences & Disorders

Office: 270-745-6280

Cell:  270-791-6030


Holli Drummond

Western Kentucky University

Professor & Department Head for Sociology & Criminology

Office:  270-745-2259

Cell: 270-792-6442


Kirby Easterling

Eastern Kentucky University

Lecturer/Director, Supply Chain Management, Department of Management, Marketing, and International Business

Office:  859-622-7893         


Julia Finch

Morehead State University

Assistant Professor, Art History Program
Lead for Art & Design

Office:  606-783-2292

Cell:  412-216-0594


Sylvie Garneau-Tsodikova

University of Kentucky

College of Pharmacy

Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Assistant Dean for Research

Office:  859-218-1686

Cell:  617-515-4788


Aaron Gay

Bluegrass Community & Technical College

Dean of Institutional Effectiveness

Office:  859-246-6565

Cell: 606-782-1046


Seana Golder

University of Louisville

Professor & Associate Dean of Academic Affairs Kent School of Social Work

Office:  502-852-3743

Cell:  502-558-2828


Tymon Graham

Kentucky State University

Director of Strategic Initiatives

Office: 502-597-6260

Cell: 502-352-3616


Lauren Graves

Kentucky State University

Director of Institutional Effectiveness

Office: 502-597-6229

Cell: 270-993-5065


Erica Gray

Kentucky State University

Director of First & Second Year Experience

Office: 502-597-5074

Cell:  502-714-9665


Kristie Guffey

Murray State University

Assistant Professor, Agricultural Science, Graduate Coordinator

Office:  270-809-5624

Cell:  270-350-0471


James Harris

Kentucky State University

Internal Auditor

Office: 502-577-6979

Cell: 972-365-1162


Michael Hatton

Northern Kentucky University

Theatre and Dance Program Head

NKU School of the Arts

Office: 859-866-2964

Cell:  859-572-6160

Jaime Henning

Eastern Kentucky University

Professor, Psychology

Office: 859-622-8178


Dana Howell

Eastern Kentucky University

Chair, Department of Occupational Therapy

Office:  859-622-6256

Cell: 859-358-9001


Ashley Ireland

Murray State University

Dean of University Libraries

Office: 270-809-5604

Cell: 502-432-2318


Jeannie Justice

Morehead State University

Professor, Education Technology

Office:  606-783-2339

Cell:  772-341-1394



Daniel Kanyam

University of the Cumberlands

Director, Graduate Business Programs

Office:  606-539-4272


Jennifer Kinsley

Northern Kentucky University

Associate Dean for Professional Development

Professor of Law

Office:  859-572-7998

Cell: 513-708-2595     


Ahmad Kutkut

University of Kentucky

Associate Professor, Director of Predoctoral Implant Program


Cell: 646-552-4667


Hanna Kroskie

Georgetown College

Major Gift Officer

Office:  502-863-7947


Reece Land

University of Louisville

Associate Professor of Trumpet, School of Music

Office: 502-852-7857

Cell:  502-558-0032


Bruce Manley

Bluegrass Community & Technical College

Associate Dean for Regional Campuses

Office:  859-246-6662

Cell: 859-338-6722


Chris Matocha

University of Kentucky

Associate Professor

Office: 859-257-9312

Cell:  859-489-5312


Beth Morgan

Centre College

Cataloging & Special Collections Librarian/Archivist

Office:  859-238-5274

Cell: 859-329-9431


Edward Morphew

Hopkinsville Community College

Instructor, Industrial Maintenance Technology

Office:  270-707-3903

Cell: 270-707-6425


Jaclyn Perrman-Graham

Northern Kentucky University

Assistant Professor of Management

Office: 859-572-6527

Cell:  513-368-2813


Rebekah Radtke

University of Kentucky

Assistant Professor

Office: 859-257-2229

Cell:  859-494-4684



Frank Robinson

Northern Kentucky University

Director, Academic Advising

Office:  859-572-6536

Cell:  513-515-7745



Stephen Richter

Eastern Kentucky University

Professor, Biological Sciences

Director, Division of Natural Areas

Office: 859-622-8688


Ryan Salzman

Northern Kentucky University

Associate Professor

Office:  859-572-5325

Cell: 817-999-4610


Christopher Sass

University of Kentucky

Associate Professor, Director of Undergraduate Studies College of Agriculture

Office: 859-257-3485

Cell: 785-458-9687


Christopher Schroeder

Morehead State University

Department Chair/Professor, Mathematics

Office:  606-783-2938

Cell:  606-207-7352


Kate Senn

West Kentucky Community and

Technical College

Interim Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs, Director of Online Learning,
Professor Computer and Information Technologies


Cell: 270-210-8430


Bo Shi

Morehead State University

Associate Professor of Finance

Office: 606-783-2475

Cell:  859-595-8568


Robert Smith

Hopkinsville Community College

Construction Technology Coordinator/Distance Learning Coordinator

Office:  270-707-3892

Cell: 270-350-7739

Jill Steinbach-Rankins

University of Louisville

Associate Professor, Dept. of Bioengineering

Office:  502-852-5486

Cell:  480-206-1254


Jeffery Summers

Midway University

Director of Institutional Research

Office:  859-846-5358


Erin Teves

Midway University

Director of Financial Aid

Office: 859-846-5494

Cell:  859-533-2542


Kara Thompson

Northern Kentucky University

Assistant Director of Advising,

College of Informatics

Office: 859-572-7726

Cell:  513-532-5162


Jamie Tutt

Kentucky State University

Athletics C.H.A.M.P.S. Life Skills Coordinator

Office:  502-597-6493

Cell:  502-545-5699


Kevin Williams

Western Kentucky University

Professor of Chemistry

Office 270-745-8899

Cell: 615-351-3584



Wendy Williams

Berea College

Professor of Psychology & Women’s Studies

Office: 859-985-3629


Hilary Writt

Sullivan University

Reference Librarian

Office: 859-514-3359

Cell: 859-361-4358



Sherry Youngquist

Southcentral Kentucky Community & Technical College

Associate Professor, Arts & Humanities Division, English

Office: 270-901-1095


Robin Zhang

Murray State University

Professor and Chair, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences

Office:  270-809-6760

Cell:  270-277-8719








2020 ALA Campus Project Abstracts

2020 Academic Leadership Academy

Campus Project Abstracts

Asbury University, WKCTC, and SKCTC Kim Brockman, Kate Senn, and Sherry Youngquist

Increasing Connectedness for Online Students: Our project will involve the collection of data from online students regarding the extent to which they feel connected to the

university/college they are attending. We will gather information, through a survey that we are developing, from online students regarding the extent to which they are connected to the community of the institution as well as the extent to which this is an important factor in their decision to select and complete programs. Additionally, as traditional undergraduate students transitioned to online learning at the end of the 2020 spring semester, they gained the unique perspective of experiencing classes both on campus and in online classes. This perspective, as well as the perspective of students who are enrolled in online programs, will provide valuable data in helping our institutions improve the experience of all online students, resulting in increased retention.

BCTC, Greg Feeney, Campus Liaison Michelle Carter, Aaron Gay, and Bruce Manley

Underrepresented Minorities in a Time of Crisis: Underrepresented Minorities (URM) in a time of crisis. This will include how a lack of access to internet connectivity, childcare, basic resources, and etc. could impact retention, passing grades, and even educational morale of URM students. The project will not only focus on the effect that a crisis like COVID-19 can have on student success, but our group will also brainstorm ways and methods to assist students during a crisis. This type of analysis cannot only be used and implemented immediately, but it can also prepare us and BCTC as a whole for future crises.

Berea College, Scott Steele, Campus Liaison Wendy R. Williams

The Power of Education to Disrupt Scarcity Among Low-income College Students: While education is known to create mobility in pay and job quality, college education also results in greater health and opportunities. Low-income students particularly benefit from education, yet only a small amount attend college, and many college students still struggle to meet their basic needs. The current research focused on how colleges can act as an intervention in low-income students’ experiences of housing, food, and healthcare scarcity.

Centre College: Marcia R. Crowe, Campus Liaison Katherine Andrews and Beth Morgan

Gathering Student Input to Develop Learning Commons: Centre College is launching an integrated “Learning Commons” (CLC), which seeks to maximize the academic success and personal growth of all students through collaborative relationships among the College’s academic programs and support services. Katherine Andrews and Beth Morgan worked to augment the strategic planning of the CLC by gathering our students’ perceptions of need, through development and dissemination of a student survey regarding the spaces and services that students felt were important for their academic growth. Survey results were analyzed and conveyed to the director and design team, in concert with a re-design of the library facilities, to inform planning of programs and resources.

Eastern Kentucky University, Gill Hunter, Campus Liaison
John Brent, James Kirby Easterling, Jaime Henning, Dana Howell, Stephen Richter

Engaging Students in their Major or Discipline Post-COVID: This project sought to better understand how departments and programs across campus plan to engage students in their major or discipline, given the current online and modified on-campus environment. Engagement was defined for this survey as ways to create community and a sense of belonging among students as it relates to membership in student organizations, and ways to recruit and retain students into the organization. Data was gathered using surveys, and resources for engaging students will be distributed to campus stakeholders.

Georgetown University, John Davis, Campus Liaison Hanna Kroskie

Efforts to Improve Philanthropic Engagement with Young Alumni: Currently, Georgetown College struggles to build a philanthropic relationship towards the college within the young alumni community. This community includes graduates from the last decade. Georgetown College’s project explores the barrier of philanthropic giving in young alumni and implements a philanthropy program that begins when students are freshmen and continues through ten years post-graduation. Facilitation of this program will occur through the Development Office and in consultation with the college’s Alumni Board.

Kentucky State University, Sonia Sanders, Campus Liaison

Elise Borne, Pernella Deams, Wendy Dixie, Tymon Graham, Lauren Graves, Erica Gray, James Harris, and Jamie Tutt

First Year Experience:

Kentucky State University’s First Year Experience provides holistic

programming to help first year students solidify their path of success at the University. In a

recent survey by the University College, over 50% of first year students contribute their success at the

institution to the Freshman Seminar course – EDU 118. We are not sure how commuter students are

disaggregated from this percentage, as a result we are planning to survey those students to determine

which educational and social experiences would help them. The goal of our project is to enhance the

first-year commuter student’s experience adjusting to the university either in person or virtually. In an

effort to emerge commuter students into a more intentional educational and social experiences, we

aim to create a learning community to provide experiences that would integrate the commuter

students into the overall university experience. Through creation of a commuter learning community,

we aim to build an avenue for commuter students to make friends, establish study groups, and

support individual needs and challenges surrounding commuter students. Our hope is that

implementing a commuter learning community will help these students overcome barriers related to

their educational and social experiences.

Midway University, Carrie Christensen, Campus Liaison Jeffery Summers and Erin Teves

A Day In The Life: Midway University strategic plan has provided us with a unique opportunity to explore a Day in the Life of managing information and how this effects all departments across campus. We want to do a project on cross training and setting up standard operating procedure documentation within departments. We feel this is important to maintain business processes and continuity especially during a time like COVID.

Morehead State University, Sherif Rashad, Campus Liaison

Julia Finch, Jeanine Justice, Chris Schroeder, Bo Shi

A Better Stronger Community A Collegial Campus: As stated in the title, the proposed project aims at strengthening:

  • ·  Cross-disciplinary cooperation on campus
  • ·  Synergy between academia and the community where the university serves The ultimate goal is to have students and faculty members with different specialties work together and help to resolve current issues in the community that MSU serves. Retrospectively, the community offers the platform where students and faculty members may implement innovative ideas practically. Existing issues in the community are considered every year and the one which is deemed to be most pressing and feasible for a solution will be the theme of an annual or biennial symposium.

    Students across disciplines may team up to propose possible resolutions and compete for the best proposal as voted on by faculty members. A

    fellowship may be designated to finance the implementation of the winning proposal.

    Murray State University, Robin Zhang, Campus Liaison Teresa Clark, Amelia Dodd, Kristie Guffey, Ashley Ireland, Robin Zhang Collaborators: Jennifer Cline, Charley Allen-Dunn, Jeremy McKeel

    Resilient Racers: We will publish a web site dedicated to Murray State University faculty, staff, students, alumni, and groups of individuals, who have exhibited the Racer spirit during the pandemic. The web site will include stories of outstanding and creative service to others that exemplify the values of the three stars on our Murray State shield: hope, endeavor and achievement. The stories will be accompanied by photos and videos. Call for nominations has been distributed and nominations are due Sep 15. We will select nominees, put together the stories and publish them by early November.

    Northern Kentucky University, Ande Durojaiye, Campus Liaison

    Michael Hatton, Jennifer Kinsley, Jaclyn Perrmann-Graham, Frank Robinson, Ryan Salzman, Kara Thompson

    Alumni Engagement: Best Practices: Alumni Engagement is of ever increasing importance in the current higher education environment. While there is a heavy focus on how to engage alumni and retain engagement over longer periods of time, consensus lacks on the most effective best practices. Our project is targeted at identifying alumni engagement practices throughout campus at Northern Kentucky University. We will be providing colleges/departments with a tangible tool that can be utilized to help strengthen and improve alumni practices on a micro and macro level.

A student organization may serve as the liaison communicating

with the community which will be served.

University of the Cumberlands, Daniel Kanyam, Campus Liaison Daniel Kanyam and Sarah Adkins

Proposal for a Master of Science in Finance program: Despite the increasing sophistication of financial products and complex financial choices confronting the world today, financial literacy among Americans has been dropping over the years. According to a study from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Investor Education Foundation (FINRA Foundation), Americans’ financial literacy rate has decreased from 42% to 34% between 2009 and 2018. The study also found that “the key indicators of financial capability are no longer improving in step with the economy.” (FINRA, 2019). In light of the above, the University of the Cumberlands (UC) seeks to initiate a Master of Science in Finance program. The proposed Master of Science program in Finance presents a unique opportunity for the University of the Cumberlands to provide leadership on this critical issue by weaving financial literacy programs into the fabric of their campus communities to facilitate the integration of a new generation of informed citizens into the American economy.

University of Kentucky, Chana Akins, Campus Liaison

Debra A. Bourne, L. Sebastian Bryson, Susan Cantrell, Sylvie Garneau-Tsodikova, Ahmad Kutkut, Chris Matocha, Rebekah Radtke, and Chris Sass

Translating Crisis into Positive Outcomes for the UK Community: This project explores the impacts of the Covid-19 crisis on teaching, research, service, and outreach in higher education and identifies lessons that can inform how universities move forward. Through multiple focus groups with diverse representation across colleges at our university, we examine how faculty adapted to changes in their work amidst an uncertain future. The project identifies multiple and differential impacts of the crisis on various aspects of university work and highlights the ways in

which faculty adapted, innovated, collaborated, and created solutions to meet the challenges brought on by the crisis. We provide a set of recommendations in the context of positive outcomes amidst a global pandemic.

Western Kentucky University, Rob Hale, Campus Liaison

Fred DeGraves, Patricia Desrosiers, Richard Dressler, Holli Drummond, and Kevin Williams

New Administrator Handbook for Western Kentucky University: Our team is assembling a reference handbook for new Department Chairs/Department Heads/Directors at Western Kentucky University that will include basic information about curriculum matters, budgeting, philanthropy and alumni relations, grants and contracts, and other key areas of interest to those who are new to administrative roles. The goal is to create a relatively brief document that outlines key information and provides hyperlinks to official websites with more detailed information available.

2020 Printable Document Links

Higher Education leadership: Issues & Challenges – Dr. John Marsden, President, Midway University

Budgeting 101 – Angie Martin, Vice President for Financial Operations, University of Kentucky & Leah Barth Rice, Vice President of Finance, Midway University

P.E.A.C.E. from Conflict – Dr. LaVena Wilkin, Director of PhD Programs, Sullivan University

October Toddy – Beth Burrows, Mixologist, Jim Beam

Event Survey

Bluegrass Higher Education Consortium Institutions