College of Education

Dr. Karyn Allee-Herndon, assistant professor of elementary education, and Dr. Katherine Perrotta, assistant professor of middle grades education, published a book chapter, “Making space for teachers to create social justice brave spaces: Educational leadership that supports social justice work in classrooms,” in Bending the arc towards justice: Equity-focused practices for educational leaders. Dr. Allee-Herndon and Dr. Perrotta, along with Dr. Leah Panther, assistant professor of literacy education, and Dr. Susan Cannon, assistant professor of elementary and middle grades education, will present their research on COVID-19-related educational disruption at the Georgia Association of Teacher Educators Annual Conference Oct. 14 in Jekyll Island. Dr. Allee-Herndon will also present another session at the conference with Dr. Lucy Bush, assistant dean, and Kara Cowdrick, adjunct professor, on the benefits of co-teaching for student outcomes and faculty development in the College of Education.

Dr. Robbie J. Marsh, assistant professor of special education, assumed the role of associate editor for Intervention in School and Clinic, a nationally ranked special education journal.

Dr. Leah Panther, assistant professor of literacy education, will present “Teaching through trauma: Youth testimony as a healing pedagogy” with Dr. Michelle Vaughn, associate professor, and Dr. Vicki Luther, associate professor, as well as “Preparing literacy leaders for linguistic diversity through design” and with doctoral student Latoya Tolefree at the Georgia Association of Teacher Educators Annual Conference in October.

Dr. Katherine Perrotta, assistant professor of middle grades and secondary education, authored “A study on content-specific professional development for pre-K-5th grade social studies instruction,” accepted for publication in Social Studies Research and Practice. The article reports on the findings of a professional development workshop that was funded by an Office of the Provost Humanities Seed Grant. Dr. Perrotta will present these findings at the meetings of the Georgia Association of Teacher Education and Georgia Educational Research Association in October.

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Dr. David A. Davis, professor of English, gave a talk on World War I and African American literature Sept. 23 at the University of Alabama.

Dr. Sarah E. Gardner, professor of history, and Steven M. Stowe of Indiana University co-edited Insiders, Outsiders: Toward a New History of Southern Thought, published by the University of North Carolina Press. She also published “’The Brisk and Brilliant Matron of Chimborazo Hospital’: Phoebe Yates Pember’s Nurse Narrative” in Civil War Witnesses and Their Books: New Perspectives on Iconic Works, edited by Gary W. Gallagher and Stephen Cushman and published by Louisiana State University Press.

Dr. Marc Jolley, senior lecturer of philosophy, presented “Poe in My Philosophy and Literature Class” Sept. 17 in an online event, “Poe in the Classroom,” with the Poe Studies Association.

Dr. Charlotte Thomas, professor of philosophy, was invited by Hanover College President Dr. Lake Lambert to give the college’s 2021 Constitution Day Speech, “A Republic If You Can Keep It: Institutions, Conventions, and our Written Constitution,” on Sept. 20.

Evey Wilson Wetherbee, assistant professor of journalism and journalist in residence in the Center for Collaborative Journalism, directed the 40-minute investigative documentary, “Saving Juliette,” which played at four film festivals and recently won the award for Best Short Documentary of 2021 at the Full Bloom Film Festival in Statesville, North Carolina. “Saving Juliette” also received the Audience Award for Best Documentary at the Macon Film Festival.

College of Nursing

Dr. Kathy Davis, clinical assistant professor, earned certification as a mindfulness life coach in July.

Dr. Justus Randolph, professor of nursing, co-authored “A systematic review and meta-analysis of variance of branches of the superior mesenteric artery: The Achilles heel of right hemicolectomy with complete mesocolic excision” in Colorectal Disease and “Content analysis of dissertations for examination of priority areas of nursing science” in Nursing Outlook.

Dr. Sonique Sailsman, assistant professor, passed the Certified Nurse Educator (CNE) exam on Sept. 11.

College of Pharmacy

Dr. Clinton Canal, assistant professor, was appointed a reviewer for the American Chemical Society Journal Omega on Aug. 31.

Dr. Maria Thurston, clinical associate professor, authored “Well-Being: A Missing Component of Professionalism?” in the American Journal of Pharmaceutical.

Dr. Mohammad Nassir Uddin, assistant professor, co-authored “Challenges of Storage and Stability of mRNA-Based COVID-19 Vaccines” in Vaccines 2021. Dr. Uddin also authored “A review on current COVID-19 vaccines and evaluation of particulate vaccine delivery systems” in Vaccines 2021.

Dr. Villa Zapata, clinical assistant professor, co-authored “Scoping Review of Toxoplasma Postinfectious Sequelae” in Foodborne Pathogens and Disease.

College of Professional Advancement

Dr. Lynn Tankersley, associate professor of criminal justice, presented a session, titled “Lessons Learned from Evaluating One County’s Specialty Court Programs,” at the Southern Criminal Justice Association’s annual conference Sept. 8-11 in Daytona Beach, Florida.

Dr. Marlon Williams, visiting assistant professor, was honored as one of 60 former Georgia Tech student-athletes in celebration of the 60th anniversary of integration at Georgia Tech.

School of Business

Dr. Laura Boman, assistant professor of sports marketing and analytics, co-authored “The effects of political ideology and brand familiarity on conspicuous consumption of fashion products” in the Journal of Global Fashion Marketing. Dr. Boman was also featured in WalletHub’s review of Allstate Insurance.

Dr. Ania Izabela Rynarzewska, assistant professor, collaborated with Larry Giunipero and Denise Denslow on an article, titled “Small business survival and COVID-19 – An exploratory analysis of carriers,” in Research in Transportation Economics.

Dr. Briana Stenard, assistant professor of management and entrepreneurship, participated as an invited judge for the Momental Foundation’s Research Fellowship Match Workshop in September.

School of Engineering

Dr. Kleio Avrithi, assistant professor of civil engineering, was invited by the American Society of Civil Engineers to speak on a panel and discuss “Preparing the Future Civil Engineer.”

Dr. Alireza Sarvestani, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, advised student Darren Pickren, who successfully defended his master’s thesis, titled “Effects of Weathering Cycles on the Mechanical Properties of Thermoplastic Polyurethane.”

School of Law

Michelle Hook Dewey, reference and electronic services librarian, was selected to serve as a board member of the American Association of Law Libraries.

Sarah Gerwig-Moore, professor of law, authored the book What Brings You Here Today? An Introduction to Client Counseling, published by Esquire Legal Publishing. The book is a hands-on client counseling guide and workbook for law students, exploring the core components of interviewing and counseling clients through key literature, relevant rules and personal anecdotes. Each chapter includes questions to prompt class discussion as well as recommendations for exercises and counseling scenarios for student practice.

Cathren Page, associate professor of law and director of the Advanced Legal Writing and Research Certificate Program presented the session, “Unbelievable: How Lawyers Can Help Vulnerable Narrators Overcome Perceived Unreliability,” in July at the Applied Legal Storytelling Conference co-hosted by Mercer Law. Page also served as a panelist for the Southeastern Association of Law Schools 2021 Conference Writing Connections Workshop. Additionally, she organized and moderated the Legal Storytelling Competition in Malaysia and was selected as co-chair for the Legal Writing Institute New Member Committee.

Karen J. Sneddon, interim dean and professor of law, received the 2020 Teresa G. Phelps Scholarship Award for Legal Communication with Professor Susan Chesler of the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University for the article “Clause A to Clause Z: Narrative Transportation and the Transactional Reader” 71 South Carolina Law Review 247 (2019) in July. Sneddon co-authored the second edition of Experiencing Trusts and Estates with Deborah Gordon, Karen Sneddon, Carla Spivak, Alison Tait and Al Brophy, published by West Academic Publishing. Sneddon also authored “Known by these Men Present: Gender and Wills,” in 48 Estate Planning 18 in July. Sneddon also co-presented with Susan Chesler “Narrative Techniques: Not Just for Litigators” on July 15 at the Applied Legal Stortelling Conference. Sneddon participated as a moderator at the following Southeastern Association of Law Schools 2021 Conference sessions: “What’s In a Job Talk” on July 28, “T&E Pedagogy: Pushing Boundaries” on July 30 and “Discipline Building: Scholarship and Status in the Legal Academy” on Aug. 1, and she served as moderator and panelist for “The Evolution of Legal Storytelling” on July 31.

Labrina Solomon, library assistant III, had her son Joshua’s story chosen to represent the state of Georgia in the St. Jude campaign, “The United States of St. Jude.” Solomon and her husband Trent manage local nonprofit Joshua’s Wish to fund national medical research efforts in finding a cure for pediatric brain tumors, to support families of children in Georgia who have cancer and are undergoing treatment and to raise awareness of childhood cancer.

Scott Titshaw, associate professor of law, was co-editor-in-chief for the book The American Immigration Law Association’s (AILA) U.S. Citizenship & Naturalization Law Toolbox. He was also a panelist on the national web seminar “Hot Topics in Marriage-Based Adjustment of Status” hosted by AILA.

School of Medicine

Dr. Mohammed Abdelsaid, assistant professor of pharmacology, had an article, titled “Deferoxamine Treatment Prevents Post-Stroke Vasoregression and Neurovascular Unit Remodeling Leading to Improved Functional Outcomes in Type 2 Male Diabetic Rats: Role of Endothelial Ferroptosis,” accepted for publication in Translational Stroke Research.

Dr. Jennifer L. Barkin, associate professor of community medicine and obstetrics and gynecology, was invited by Mayor Ge’Nell Gary of Albany, California, to serve as an expert panelist for a “Crucial Discussion on Climate Change and its Impact on the Community.” The discussion was hosted by Mayor Gary. Dr. Barkin also served as an expert panelist for a discussion on “Climate Change and Mental Health,” as part of the Global Women’s Leadership Conference at Agnes Scott College. Additionally, Dr. Barkin was featured as a Champion of the Medical Society Consortium on Climate and Health for September.

Dr. Harold Katner, professor and chief of infectious diseases, and Marnie Hill, director of clinical diagnostic services and clinical research, authored “Randomized Community Trial Comparing Telephone versus Clinic-Based Behavioral Health Counseling for People Living with HIV in a Rural Setting” in the Journal of Rural Health.

Dr. Edward C. Klatt, professor, was appointed a reviewer for educational content for the Health Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) 2022 Global Health Conference and Exhibition. The HIMSS organization informs health care policy decisions in multiple countries.

Kim Meeks, director of the Skelton Medical Libraries and director of student wellness and AIMSS, published an article, titled “Mercer Medical Moment: Sun safety is important year-round,” in the Aug. 25 edition of Farmers & Consumers Market Bulletin, 104 (17):9.

Dr. Larry Nichols, professor of pathology, co-authored four recent articles with Mercer medical students: “Where in the Brain do Strokes Occur? A Pilot Study and Call for Data” in Clinical Medicine & Research; “Amniotic fluid embolism: lessons for rapid recognition and intervention” and “Ascariasis, trichuriasis and fatal non-transfusion” in Autopsy Case Reports; and Comparison of clinical characteristics of a patient with Epstein–Barr virus‐associated seizure and patients with COVID‐19‐associated seizure” in the Journal of Medical Virology.

Dr. Eric K. Shaw, professor, co-authored “Utilization of Patient-Controlled Analgesia Reduces Length of Stay of Sickle Cell Crisis Hospitalizations” in HCA Healthcare Journal of Medicine, “Obesity, Race, and COVID-19 Mortality: Results from a Large Cohort Early in the Pandemic” in HCA Healthcare Journal of Medicine, and “Clinical characteristics, appropriateness of empiric antibiotic therapy, and outcome of Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteremia across multiple community hospitals” in the European Journal of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases.

Dr. Robert Visalli, professor of microbiology, co-authored “Varicella-zoster virus early infection but not complete replication is required for the induction of chronic hypersensitivity in rat models of postherpetic neuralgia” in PLoS Pathogens. The study is out of Dr. Paul Kinchington’s laboratory at University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Kinchington is a renowned leader in the field of herpesvirus latency. The novel collaborative study suggests a mechanism for the continued pain observed after reactivation of Varicella-zoster virus (i.e. zoster or shingles). The model reflects events leading to clinical post-herpetic neuralgia (PHN), in which a population of ganglionic neurons become abortively infected with VZV during reactivation and survive, but host signaling becomes altered to transmit ongoing pain.

School of Music

Dr. Christopher Schmitz, professor of music, was named winner of the 2021 J. Samuel Pilafian Composition Contest. The multi-round national competition awards a monetary prize, as well as a commission and premiere performance of a new work for solo tuba. The contest was created to honor the memory of world-renowned tuba virtuoso Sam Pilafian and is administered through the Challey School of Music at North Dakota State University, where Pilafian held a teaching residency.

Kyle is the director of media relations at Mercer. In addition to being the primary media contact for most academic and administrative units of the university, he coordinates hometown and university news releases and serves as editor of the News@Mercer e-newsletter and Reach magazine.​