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Have You Herd? August 2010 People


Carla Banks, secretary for the University Police Department, was installed June 10 as president of the Amarillo Chapter of International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP). The chapter treasurer is Sue Kile, secretary for WTAMU’s Office of Communication and Marketing, and Tracee Post, WTAMU’s executive assistant to the president, is serving as secretary. IAAP vice president is Chris Lyles of the Amarillo Economic Development Corporation. IAAP is a not-for-profit professional association with approximately 40,000 members and affiliates and nearly 600 chapters worldwide. The Amarillo chapter has 31 members who meet the second Thurday of each month.

Dr. Leigh Browning
, associate professor of mass communication, has been named a member of the Dallas Producers Association (DPA). DPA is a professional organization that promotes advocacy, education and networking for its membership. Membership to the association is open to those in North Texas who have managerial, budgetary or creative control for the production of moving visual media. Browning’s one-year membership term began in July.

Greg Crowley, microsystems analyst, was named the 2009-2010 Employee of the Year by the WTAMU Staff Council at a special reception July 26 on campus. Crowley was one of 12 employees recognized during the year as an Employee of the Month and was selected for the Employee of the Year honor by an earlier vote of staff members across campus. In addition to Crowley, the other 11 monthly honorees include Debi Adams, Tiffany Davis, Cheryle Dill, Bryan Glenn, Vicki Horton, Lynette Lough, Trish McCormick, Lana Stevenson, Linda Washington, Carl Welch and Carrah Sparks.

Susan L. Dennis, director of Alternative Certification and certification officer, was appointed to the Texas Education Agency Educator Standards Advisory Committee during the June 18 Texas State Board for Educator Certification meeting. “The Educator Standards Advisory Committee meets periodically to give suggestions and feedback to the Division of Educator Standards on various initiatives. Their integrity and hard work contribute greatly to improving teacher preparation throughout the state.” (Educator Preparation Newsletter, Division of Educator Standards, Texas Education Agency, 1:1, 8/1/2010)

Dr. Emily Hunt, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, has received a Young Investigator Award from the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, a part of the Department of Defense and the U.S. Strategic Command. She received the 2010 award for her project on “Energetic Nano-Materials for Bio-Agent Defeat” and will receive $150,000 a year for two years to continue the project.

Dr. J. Dirk Nelson has joined the WTAMU faculty as the new dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences. His appointment to the position was approved by The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents at its May meeting, and Nelson began his duties July 1. He comes to WTAMU from the University of Central Missouri, where he served as professor and chair of the Department of Kinesiology and the Department of Nutrition.

Dr. Susan Nix, associate professor of education, is the author of an article published in the summer 2010 edition of The Social Studies Texan, a publication of the Texas Council for the Social Studies. Her article is titled “The Panhandle Plains Historical Museum: Canyon.”

Dr. J. Patrick O’Brien, University president, has been elected as the vice chair of the Division II Presidents Council and will replace Beverly Pitts, president of the University of Indianapolis, on Sept. 1. As vice chair, O’Brien’s duties will include filling in for the Presidents Council chair as needed, reporting to the Division II membership at the annual conventions on the financial affairs of the division and serving as a member of the NCAA executive committee. He also will serve as chair of the Division II budget and finance committee and as a member of the NCAA executive committee budget subcommittee. He also was asked to chair the newly formed Division II Long-Range Budget Projections Task Force.

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