DRN Advisory Board

Ignacio Acevedo-Polakovich

Dr. Ignacio Acevedo-Polakovich (University of Kentucky) is currently an Associate Professor of Psychology at Michigan State University and was formerly a Co-Director of the Center for Children, Families and Communities at Central Michigan University. He holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology (emphasis on adolescent and child mental health) from the University of Kentucky. Dr. Acevedo’s work as a program evaluation practitioner is focused on health and human services for youth and families, with emphases on community needs assessment and on the multi-dimensional evaluation of interventions for youth and families in community settings. Dr. Acevedo’s research is focused on refining approaches to promote the use of data in developing, disseminating and/or improving sustainable programs for youth, particularly programs that support young people's efforts to address social issues.

Nwando Achebe

Nwando Achebe (University of California, LA) is an award-winning author, professor of history and Faculty Excellence Advocate (FEA) in the College of Social Science. Her research interests involve the use of oral history in the study of women, gender, and sexuality in Nigeria. Professor Achebe’s second book, The Female King of Colonial Nigeria: Ahebi Ugbabe(Indiana University Press, 2011), winner of three book awards—including The Barbara “Penny” Kanner Book Award, She is the founding editor-in-chief of the new Journal of West African History, published by Michigan State University Press; member of the African Studies Association’s (ASA) Board of Directors, and past co-convenor of ASA’s Women’s Caucus. Nwando Achebe’s Dr. Achebe has received a number of other prestigious grants including awards from Rockefeller Foundation, Woodrow Wilson, Fulbright-Hays, Ford Foundation, the World Health Organization, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. In 1996 and 1998, she served as a Ford Foundation and Fulbright-Hays Scholar-in-Residence at The Institute of African Studies and History Department of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. In the summer of 2014, Dr. Achebe was Visiting Professor at Sichuan University, Chengdu, China.

Pero Dagbovie

Pero Gaglo Dagbovie (Michigan State University) is professor of African American history and Associate Dean in The Graduate School.  His research and teaching interests comprise a range time periods, themes, and topical specialties, including black intellectual history, the history of the black historical enterprise, black women’s history, black life during “the Nadir,” the civil rights-Black Power movement, African American Studies, hip hop culture, and contemporary black history. His books include Black History:  “Old School” Black Historians and the Hip Hop Generation (Bedford Publishers, Inc., 2006), The Early Black History Movement, Carter G. Woodson, and Lorenzo Johnston Greene (University of Illinois Press, 2007), African American History Reconsidered (University of Illinois Press, 2010), Carter G. Woodson in Washington, D.C.:  The Father of Black History (The History Press, 2014), and What is African American History? (Polity Press:  Cambridge, UK,  2015).  He is on the editorial boards of The Journal for the Study of Radicalism and The Journal of Black Studies and is a lifetime member of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History.He has been involved in public history and African American history educational programs.  He served as a scholar consultant for the permanent exhibit, “And Still We Rise:  Our Journey through African American History and Culture,” at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit, Michigan. Under the auspices of the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, National Capital Region, and the Organization of American Historians, from 2008 until 2010, he served as the principal investigator for the Carter G. Woodson Home, NHS and completed the historic resource study for the Woodson Home. He has participated in and lead workshops for secondary school teachers funded by the U.S. Department of Education and the National Endowment for the Humanities.  Dr. Dagbovie has also lectured abroad and throughout the nation.

Kristie Dotson

Kristie Dotson (University of Memphis) is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Michigan State University and a Senior Fellow at the Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies at Columbia Law School. She is part of the coalition #WhyWeCantWait that attempts to challenge the way current visions of racial justice are constructed to outlaw open concern for women and girls of color. In her academic work, she researches at the intersections of epistemology and women of color feminism, particularly Black feminism. Dr. Dotson edited a special issue on women of color feminist philosophy for Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy entitled, Interstices: Inheriting Women of Color Feminist Philosophy (29:1, 2014) and has published in numerous journals including Hypatia, Comparative Philosophy, The Black ScholarTransactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society and Social Epistemology. Dr. Dotson is working currently on a monograph entitled, How to Do Things With Knowledge.

Jessica Garcia

Jessica Garcia is an Assistant Professor  of Sociology at Michigan State University. In addition to teaching, Jessica Garcia serves as an Intercultural Education Specialist in the Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives. In this role, she contributes to the development and implementation of faculty training related to implicit bias and microaggressions as well as sexual assault and relationship violence; represents and supports the Director on matters related to diversity; and conducts workshops on inclusive pedagogy, intersectionality, and facilitating difficult dialogues. Jessica Garcia received her Bachelor’s Degree and Doctorate in Sociology from Michigan State University.

Andrea Louie

Andrea Louie, an Associate Professor of Anthropology, has conducted research exploring how ideas constructed around “Chineseness” as a racial and cultural identity have been reworked as transnational processes bring Chinese from different parts of the world into contact with one another. She is interested in using multi-sited ethnography to examine relationships between globalization and the continued importance of native origins and place for the rooting of identities. Her book “Chineseness Across Borders: Re-negotiating Chinese Identities in China and the U.S. (Duke University Press, 2004)" won the Association for Asian American Studies Social Sciences book award (March 2006). In it, Dr. Louie examines the challenges Chinese adoption presents to families trying to honor their children’s “birth culture.” This ethnographic study analyzes how both white and Asian American adoptive parents engage in changing understandings of and relationships with “Chineseness” as a form of ethnic identity, racial identity, or cultural capital over the life course. Her current research focuses on the “cultural socialization” and racialization of children adopted from China in the U.S. Dr. Louie teaches courses on Transnational Processes and Identities, China, and Asian Americans. She is the director of the Asian Pacific American Studies program at MSU.

Melissa McDaniels

Melissa McDaniels (Michigan State University) is currently Assistant Dean of The Graduate School and Postdoctoral Office at Michigan State University. In addition, she is both Co-Director of the NIH-supported National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN) (www.nrmnet.net) Master Facilitator Initiative and an Affiliate of the Center for the Improvement of Mentored Experiences in Research (www.cimerproject.org). Previously, she served as Director of Michigan State University’s NSF ADVANCE Grant (in the Office of the Provost) where she collaborated with stakeholders to spearhead MSU’s efforts to diversify the faculty in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields.  Prior to working at Michigan State, she held full time faculty and academic staff positions at Northeastern University, Boston College and National Geographic Society. Her areas of research, policy development, and practice include graduate student and faculty development, undergraduate and graduate teaching and learning and organizational change. She enjoys consulting domestically and internationally on topics related to programmatic/learning assessment in higher education, research capacity development, and academic career management.

Beronda Montgomery

Beronda Montgomery (University of California, Davis) MSU Foundation Professor, is professor of biochemistry and molecular biology and microbiology and molecular genetics, and a member of the MSU-DOE Plant Research Laboratory.  Montgomery, who joined MSU in 2004, holds a degree in plant biology and is currently conducting pioneering research to understand the dynamic molecular processes used by photosynthetic organisms to adapt to changes in their photoenvironment.  She has published 75 papers, reviews and book chapters. Among her honors and awards are being named an NSF CAREER Award recipient, a fellow of the Committee on Institutional Cooperation Academic Leadership Program, and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor Competition finalist. She is currently a reviewing editor for Frontiers in Environmental Toxicology and an editorial board member of the Journal of Biological Chemistry. Prior to joining MSU, she was a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Research Fellowship. Dr Montgomery also has developed expertise in mentoring, combined with her innovation in science has earned her a place in the Academic Advancement Network (AAN) as a node leader.

Malea Powell

Malea Powell (University of Miami). Professor and Chair of the Department of Writing, Rhetoric and American Cultures at Michigan State University as well as a faculty member in American Indian and Indigenous Studies. She is lead research for the Digital Publishing Lab at MSU, director of the Cultural Rhetorics Consortium, found & editor-in-chief of Constellations: a cultural rhetorics publishing space, past chair of the CCCC, and editor emerita of SAIL: Studies in American Indian Literatures. A widely published scholar and poet, her current book project, This Is A Story, examines the continuum of indigenous rhetorical production in North America, from beadwork to alphabetic writing. Powell is a mixed-blood of Indiana Miami, Eastern Shawnee, and Euroamerican ancestry. In her spare time, she hangs out with crazy Native women artists & poets, and does beadwork.  She is editor and founder. Constellations: a cultural rhetorics publishing space. Powell is a recent, guest editor (with Bratta, Levy, Riley-Mukavetz),  Enculturation special issue on cultural rhetorics,( forthcoming 2016).  “Introducing the Conversation: engaging with cultural rhetorics,” with Phil Bratta. Enculturation, 2016.  Her paper emphasizes student inclusion,  “Making Native Space for Graduate Students: a story of indigenous rhetorical practice,” with Andrea Riley-Mukavetz In Survivance, Sovereignty, and Story: Teaching Indigenous Rhetorics.

Ann Marie Ryan

Ann Marie Ryan (University of Illinois-Chicago) is a professor of organizational psychology at MSU. Her major research interests involve improving the quality and fairness of employee selection methods, and topics related to diversity and justice in the workplace. In addition to publishing extensively in these areas, she regularly consults with organizations on improving assessment processes.  Along with Nancy Tippins, she recently coauthored the book Designing and Implementing Global Selection Systems (2009).  She is a past president of the Society of Industrial and Organizational Psychology and past editor of the journal Personnel Psychology.

Mark Sullivan

Mark Sullivan (University of Illinois-Champagne-Urbana) is a composer and associate professor and director of the computer music studios at the Michigan State University College of Music. His compositions have been performed widely. Over three decades at MSU, he has taught music composition, computer music, and aesthetic theory, and he has written on the relationship between music, movement, and language. During his career, he has also created integrated media arts programs for youth, most recently, as a part of a faculty team that helped create a new program centered on developing literacy through songwriting and media composition.  Sullivan composes for acoustic instruments, with and without the computer, and for both instruments and computer-generated sounds. He specializes in the analysis and performance of contemporary music and in studies that relate music to the other arts and society. He developed and taught courses on the pedagogy of composition, and helped develop two major initiatives on creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship. He currently splits his efforts between the College of Music, and the Innovation Hub for Teaching and Learning, working on several projects, including one that integrates art and media composition into STEM education, and another that focuses on cultivating digital media literacy across the curriculum.

Murari Suvedi

Murari Suvedi (Michigan State University) is a professor in the department of Community, agriculture, Recreation and Resource Studies at MSU and works in the area of program development and evaluation. Prior to MSU, he worked as lecturer of agricultural extension at the Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science, Nepal for 11 years. He also coordinated the Pilot Extension Program for the Institute to serve the farmers of Nepal. His work has focused on staff development, program planning and evaluation. He focuses his work on evaluation capacity building by offering short courses to agricultural and rural development professionals, and conducting evaluation of extension programs and initiatives. He has conducted evaluations of sustainable agriculture and education programs and leadership development programs, and has conducted educational needs assessments and impact assessments of many extension programs and projects. He works internationally, focusing mainly on food security and agricultural development. He integrates sustainability as a key principle in his scholarly work. He has developed a program evaluation training manual and made it globally available online for use by agricultural extension and advisory services professionals.

Kyle Powys Whyte

Kyle Powys Whyte (Stony Brook University) holds the Timnick Chair in the Humanities at Michigan State University. He is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Community Sustainability, a faculty member of the Environmental Philosophy & Ethics graduate concentration, and a faculty affiliate of the American Indian Studies and Environmental Science & Policy programs. His primary research addresses moral and political issues concerning climate policy and Indigenous peoples and the ethics of cooperative relationships between Indigenous peoples and climate science organizations. He is an enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation. Kyle’s most recent research addresses moral and political issues concerning climate change impacts on Indigenous peoples. His research has been published in journals such as HypatiaClimatic ChangeEcological Processes, Synthese, Human Ecology, and Environmental Justice, and has been funded by the National Science Foundation, Bureau of Indian Affairs, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Northeast Climate Science Center, Great Lakes Integrated Sciences and Assessments Center, Mellon Foundation, Sustainable Michigan Endowed Program and Spencer Foundation. He serves on the U.S. Department of Interior’s Advisory Committee on Climate Change and Natural Resource Science and is involved in the Climate and Traditional Knowledges WorkgroupSustainable Development Institute of the College of Menominee Nation,  and the Consortium for Socially Relevant Philosophy of/in Science. He is a recipient of the 2015 Bunyan Bryan Award for Academic Excellence given by Detroiters Working for Environmental Justice.

Elaine Yakura

Elaine Yakura, PhD, JD (MIT, UC-Berkeley) teaches at the School of Human Resources and Labor Relations at MSU. Her research interests include the study of difference and power in organizations using long-term research methods. With her colleagues from Cal Poly, Louise Soe and Ruth Guthrie, she is currently conducting research on the effect of organizational culture on women and men working in information technology organizations in the U.S. Abstracts for conference papers such as Support Structures for Women in Information Technology Careers and Does Culture Matter? A Study of Cultural Influences on the Success of Women in IT) can be found in the AIS Electronic library. Her fieldwork includes studies of information technology consultants in the U.S. and nuclear power plants in Japan and the U.S. Dr. Daniel Kruger Award from the SLIR Alumni Association at the SLIR 50th Anniversary celebration in 2006, the Excellence in Education Award from the Industrial Relations Research Association (now known as LERA) at their annual meeting in 2002. As an MSU Lilly Teaching Fellow (1998-1999), she developed classroom video teaching techniques to enhance the student learning of so-called "soft" skills For the past several years, she has taught a negotiations course at Seoul National University's Graduate School of Business.