Academic Affairs Leadership & Staff
Dr. Scott Beard
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|Dr. Scott Beard has over twenty years experience in higher education, both in the field of music and in administration. A full professor in the Department of Music, he was Coordinator of Keyboard Studies from 1998-2011. Dr. Beard was interim Dean of Graduate studies in 2010, becoming Dean in fall 2011, at which time the title of Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs was also added to the position responsibilities. This title was later changed to Associate Provost in summer 2016.
In this previous role his responsibilities included oversight of all graduate programs and oversight of institutional and programmatic accreditation. Responsibilities also included cyclical program reviews, development of new degree program proposals and representing academic affairs on committees such as strategic planning, student success, commencement and diversity and equity. A major accomplishment during this time was the successful implementation of Shepherd’s first doctoral program, the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP).
Recognized for his outstanding teaching abilities, Dr. Beard was named 2006 West Virginia Music Teacher of the Year and was runner-up for West Virginia Professor of the Year in 2009. His students have won prizes in state, regional, national and international competitions, and have gone on to study music at conservatories and major university music schools.
Concerts as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral soloist have taken him throughout the United States and 7 countries. Recital appearances include Weill Recital Hall, the Tenri Cultural Institute (NYC), as well as numerous embassies and universities. His concerts have been praised for their poetry, passion and innovative programming. Dr. Beard is an active member of Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) and is a former national board member, having served as Director of the Eastern Division of MTNA. He is currently Artistic Director for the Washington Opera Society.
Dr. Virginia Hicks
|Title||Assistant Provost for Academic Community Outreach|
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|Dr. Virginia Hicks is the Assistant Provost for Community Outreach. She was previously Dean of Education and Professional Studies at Shepherd University (2006-2016).
Prior to coming to Shepherd, she served as department chair in three states at a variety of levels: high school ( Iowa ), one community college ( New Mexico ) and two universities ( New Mexico and Wisconsin ). Just prior to coming to West Virginia she was a department chair in the College of Education at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater for five years.
She has been active in her professional organizations and has held leadership roles at the local, state and national level. In New Mexico she was the State President for the Association of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. While at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater she served a two year term as the Coordinator of the Global Access Project (GAP) for the partnership between the American Association of State Colleges and universities(AASCU) and the U.S. Department of State. In Iowa she was selected as the State Secondary Physical Education Teacher of the Year.
Dr. Hicks is also a wellness advocate as she has extensive experience with initiating and directing wellness programs. She is currently co-facilitation the new Wellness Strategic Plan for Shepherd University. An avid cyclist she has biked across Iowa many times and once across the country.
|Title||Dean of College of Arts and Humanities|
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Dr. Stacey Kendig
|Title||Acting Co-Dean, College of Education and Professional Studies • Chair, Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Sport Studies|
|Dr. Stacey M. Kendig has been a member of the Shepherd University faculty and community for the past 21 years. She began her teaching career at Hagerstown Community College in 1992 and proceeded on to a career at Shepherd University in 1996. Dr. Kendig earned her Bachelor of Science (1983) and Master of Science (1999) degrees from Frostburg State (College) University in Recreation and Park Administration/Management and then went on to earn her terminal degree from West Virginia University in 2013 with the of Ed.D in Higher Education Administration. She is currently serving as the Chair for the Department of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Sport Studies.|
Dr. Ann Marie Legreid
|Title||Dean of College of Social and Behavioral Sciences|
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|Dr. Legreid received her Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in geography from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and her B.S. in geography from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. Her specialties are cultural, urban, historical, European, and North American geography. She taught for more than twenty years in the Missouri university system and currently is professor of geography and dean of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at Shepherd University. Her research interests lie primarily in migration and population studies, with a focus on the Nordic countries.
Dr. Legreid participated in the American Council on Education (ACE) Internationalization Collaborative, served on the Campus Leadership Team for the development of Shepherd’s “Strategic Plan for Internationalization,” and spearheaded the development of Shepherd’s new interdisciplinary Global Studies B.A. She chairs the Shepherd Internationalization Advisory Council and is the campus coordinator for Phi Beta Delta-Theta Epsilon Chapter, Honor Society for International Scholars, also serving as Vice President for the Southeast Region and a member of the national Board of Directors of the Society. Beyond that, she serves on the Board of Directors and Editorial Board of the Norwegian-American Historical Association, St. Olaf College, MN. She is a life member of Gamma Theta Upsilon, Honor Society for Geography.
Dr. Legreid was a Fulbright Scholar to Norway and the recipient of the Crown Princess Martha Award from the American Scandinavian Foundation, NY. She also completed the Management Development Program at Harvard University and the HERS Women in Higher Education Administration Program at Bryn Mawr College.
Dr. Sharon Mailey
|Title||Acting Co-Dean, College of Education & Professional Studies • Director and Chair, Nursing Education|
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Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.); The University of North Carolina
Masters of Science (M.S.); Joint Program with the School of Nursing and the School of Public Health at The University of North Carolina
Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Program; University of Rochester
Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN); Berea College
Research Interests and Expertise:
Policy and Economics
Dr. Ben Martz
|Title||Dean, College of Business|
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|Dr. Ben Martz is Dean of Shepherd University’s College of Business and holds the Edward L. Snyder Endowed Chair in Business. Ben received his B.B.A in Marketing from the College of William & Mary; his M.S. in Management Information Systems (MIS) and his Ph.D. in Business, with an emphasis in MIS, from the University of Arizona. He was one of the founding members, as well as President and COO, of Ventana Corporation – a technology, spin-off firm from the University of Arizona – incorporated to commercialize the groupware software product GroupSystems. In 1994, GroupSystems won PC Magazine’s Editor’s Choice award for best Electronic Meeting System software. In 1995, Ben was an Ernst & Young nominee for Entrepreneur of the Year in Arizona. Ben’s teaching interests include problem solving and creativity, business analytics, software development, groupware and team-based problem solving. He has published his groupware research in MIS Quarterly, Decision Support Systems, and the Journal of Management Information Systems and his student learning and problem solving research in Journal of Cooperative Education, Journal of Computer Information Systems and the Decision Sciences Journal of Innovative Education.|
Dr. Laura Renninger
|Title||Dean of Teaching, Learning, and Instructional Resources|
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|Dr. Laura Renninger is the Dean of Teaching, Learning and Instructional Resources at Shepherd. Her office oversees several university programs including Academic Support, Academic Advising, Assessment, First-Year Experience and Common Reading, Instructional Technology, TRiO, and the Intensive English Language Program. Dr. Renninger is directly in charge of faculty training and workshops. She is also Professor of Music and teaches courses in Music Psychology, World Music, and Western Music History at Shepherd University. She received her Bachelor’s of Music degree in Performance from Miami University and both her Master’s of Music and Ph.D. degrees in Musicology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Dr. Renninger’s research is concentrated primarily in the area of Music Cognition. Her research is internationally known and has been presented at several conferences throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Australia. She is published in Music, Mind and Science, and the leading music psychology journal, Music Perception.
In addition to her scholarship, Dr. Renninger is an accomplished musician who has had a diverse range of musical experiences and has won several awards including the Toledo Ohio Young Artist Award. She has performed numerous times as a soloist with the Toledo Symphony Orchestra and has worked for several years as a rehearsal accompanist, chamber musician and organist. She currently serves as the accompanist for the Shepherd Three wind trio. She truly enjoys teaching and is very committed to broadening student horizons in the field of music. In her free time she enjoys cooking, swimming, and biking. She resides in Shepherdstown with her husband, son, and two daughters.
Dr. Elvira Sanatullova-Allison
|Title||Acting Co-Dean, College of Education & Professional Studies • Chair, Department of Education|
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|Contact For||Dr. Elvira Sanatullova-Allison received a Bachelor of Arts in French/German and Foreign Language Education from Uzbekistan State University of World Languages in Tashkent and Yaroslavl State Pedagogical University in Russia, a Master of Arts in Modern Languages and Literatures from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Education – Administration, Curriculum, and Instruction from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She previously served in various teaching-administrative positions at Oklahoma State University-Stillwater; St. Lawrence University in NY; Chatham University in PA; State University of New York-Potsdam; and Concordia University-Nebraska. Dr. Sanatullova-Allison’s scholarship is interdisciplinary in approach and qualitative in design and lies mainly in the following four areas: (1) language learning, pedagogy, and education; (2) culturally and linguistically diverse populations; (3) multicultural, international, and comparative education; and (4) gender diversity in education. She has given multiple workshops and conference presentations and authored and co-authored several publications, ranging from articles to books. Dr. Sanatullova-Allison is also a recipient of numerous professional recognition awards, among which are Dan Chávez Beyond the Horizon Award (given in recognition of exemplary teaching and advocacy for English Language Learners and their families), SCOLA Foreign Language Educational and News Programming Network Foreign Language Teacher Recognition Award, Concordia University-Nebraska Outstanding Teaching Award, New York State Association of Foreign Language Teachers Anthony J. Papalia Award (given for an outstanding professional publication in the field of language education), and Association of Teacher Educators Distinguished Research in Teacher Education Award. Dr. Sanatullova-Allison is involved in many environmental protection, animal welfare, and vegetarian lifestyle causes. She is a multilingual world traveler, who enjoys ethnic cuisine, Slavic folklore, poetry of Jacques Prévert, and Lifetime movies.|
Dr. Richard Stevens
|Title||Acting Dean, Graduate Studies & Continuing Education • CSDA Graduate Program Coordinator|
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|Dr. Richard Stevens currently serves as Acting Dean of Graduate Studies and Continuing Education and Associate Professor and Program Coordinator of the College Student Development and Administration (CSDA) program at Shepherd University. His research focuses on sexual orientation identity development and intersections of identity. Dr. Stevens was instrumental in the development of the CSDA program and has taught in the program since 2006. He joined the program as a full-time faculty in 2008. Collaboration with Student Affairs and Academic Affairs has resulted in over 20 assistantships.
He has focused much of his energy on social justice and multicultural issues. He co-founded Shepherd University’s Civility Response Team and serves as Sexual Asssault Victim Advocate. He has been a national presenter on sexual orientation and gender identity topics and has training as a sexual assault victim advocate and sexual harassment prevention trainer.
Dr. Stevens received his Ph.D. from the University of Maryland, his M.S. from Iowa State University and his BA from the College of William and Mary. Dr. Stevens and his husband currently live in Herndon, VA. In his spare time, he enjoys Taekwondo, running, MMOs, and genealogy.
Dr. Robert Warburton
|Title||Acting Dean, College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics • Assistant Dean of Teaching, Learning and Instructional Resources|
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|Dr. Bob Warburton is a graduate of the University of Essex in the UK and Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA. After a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill he came to Shepherd and now teaches Biochemistry and carries out research in Molecular Immunology. He divides his time between working with the folks in the Advising Assistance Center and the students in the sciences. His passion is in making sure that he provides the resources that students need to succeed and are prepared to take the next steps in their chosen career.
This academic year he assumes the leadership role of Acting Dean in the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.
Dr. Jason Best
|Title||Director of Strategic Research Initiatives|
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|Dr. Jason Best is the Director of Strategic Research Initiatives and Professor of Astronomy and Astrophysics at Shepherd University. He earned a baccalaureate degree in astronomy and astrophysics from Indiana University and a doctoral degree in astronomy and astrophysics from The Pennsylvania State University. His research focuses on the study of the large-scale structure of the universe and galactic evolution. Dr. Best has published and presented research in numerous peer-reviewed scientific venues, and has received research grants from the National Science Foundation and the West Virginia Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research. He has supervised student thesis work at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, and has been a member of the National Advisory Committee for the PRAXIS Earth and Space Sciences Examination.
Dr. Best is a member of the American Council on Education Fellows Class of 2015-16 and the Board of Directors of the Shepherd University Foundation, and has recently completed terms as President of the West Virginia Academy of Science and as a member of the Shepherd University Board of Governors. He currently oversees the operations of the Shepherd University Observatory, serves on the Steering Committee of the West Virginia Science Public Outreach Team, and has recently established a Pulsar Search Collaboratory Hub at Shepherd.
Dr. Mark Cantrell
|Title||Honors Program Director • Associate Professor of English|
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|Dr. Mark Cantrell joined the faculty at Shepherd University in 2009, and he currently holds the position of Associate Professor in the Department of English and Modern Languages. Furthermore, he has served as the Director of the Honors Program at Shepherd since 2014. He attended the University of Georgia for his undergraduate studies, earning a B.F.A. in Drama and Theatre (1993) and B.A. in English (1996). He subsequently earned an M.A. in English (1998) and Ph.D. in English with a graduate minor in Philosophy (2005) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where his studies focused on poetry and poetics, literary theory, and twentieth-century American literature. Before coming to Shepherd, he worked from 2005-2009 as an instructor and Visiting Assistant Professor of English at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida.
Dr. Cantrell has published essays that treat the works of John Cage, Joan Retallack, J. L. Austin, and Jacques Derrida. He has also published an essay on teaching heavy metal adaptations of Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick. His main research interests include experimental poetry and poetics; the genre of the lyric; modernism, postmodernism, and the avant-garde; and the relationship of literature to other disciplines and fields, especially philosophy, art, and music. His current research project investigates how John Ashbery, Frank O’Hara, and other poets associated with the “New York School” reimagine the role of the lyric speaker in their poems.
|Title||Director of Martinsburg Center|
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|James W. Klein was named director of Shepherd University’s Martinsburg Center in January 2013. Klein spent a decade with Kaplan University, where he served as the regional director for seven years as well as an admissions advisor and sales director. Prior to working at Kaplan, he served as inside sales representative for Phoenix Mecano, Inc., Frederick, Maryland; general manager of Air-Tech Products, Inc., Hagerstown, Maryland; and program director for the Hagerstown YMCA. Klein earned an associate of arts in general studies from Hagerstown Community College and a bachelor of science in business administration from Kaplan University.|
Dr. Charles Nieman
|Title||Director of International Affairs|
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|r. Charles Nieman is the inaugural Director of International Affairs at Shepherd University. Originally from New Mexico, “international” has become a major part of his life across multiple career paths. He has lived and worked internationally for almost 14 years, and he has held responsible positions in a wide variety of organizations, ranging from military to education, humanitarian, and nonprofit.
He has over 20 years’ experience in International Education that has included teaching, foreign student and scholar services, study abroad, strategic planning, international agreements, and in general advocating for “things international”. Within the profession of International Educators, he has held national, regional, and state-level leadership positions. He has also had the privilege of receiving Fulbright grants to Germany and Japan.
He has both his Bachelor (Anthropology) and Master (Public Administration) degrees from the University of New Mexico; his doctorate in Higher Education Administration is from Kent State University. All three degrees included significant international or comparative concentrations.
|Title||Director of Study Abroad|
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|Yin Star director of study abroad, as well as a clinical faculty member at Shepherd University. Star received a Bachelor of Arts in sociology and psychology from Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, and a Master of Public and International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh. Prior to coming to Shepherd, Yin worked for the American Public University System in Charles Town.|
|Title||Coordinator of RBA Program|
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|Beth Thomas is the Program Coordinator for the Regents Bachelor of Arts degree at Shepherd University. Beth has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Education from Bloomsburg University. After teaching business for seven years in the Loudoun County, VA, school system, Beth has spent most of her career in education working with adult learners in the credit and non–credit areas at several institutions including Hagerstown Business College, Hagerstown Community College, and Blue Ridge Community and Technical College.|
|Title||Director of Institutional Research|
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|Amy graduated cum laude from the University of MD University College in 1996 with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and is as member of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and Alpha Sigma Lambda Tau Chapter National Continuing Education Honor Society. Prior to her position in the Provost’s Office, Amy worked as the Administrative Associate in Shepherd’s Graduate Studies and Continuing Education Office.|