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D&E welcomes six new faculty members

October 8, 2012
The Inter-Mountain

Davis & Elkins College has welcomed six full-time faculty members for the 2012-2013 academic year.

They include Dr. Floyd Wiseman, chemistry; Dr. Jeff Rutter, psychology; Dr. Michelle Mabry, biology; Dr. Bryan Wagoner, religion and philosophy; Dana Baxter, criminology; and Tom Tesar, recreation management and tourism.

Wiseman, assistant professor of chemistry, most recently taught in the department of chemistry and physics at Coastal Carolina University in Conway, S.C., and at the University of Tennessee at Martin. Before that, Wiseman worked as a senior scientist at ENSCO, a private engineering, science and advanced technology research company. He also served in the United States Air Force for 20 years, retiring at the rank of major. While in the service, Wiseman was a member of the chemistry department faculty at both the United States Military Academy and United States Air Force Academy.

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Wiseman earned his doctorate of philosophy in physical chemistry at Louisiana State University and his bachelor's degree in chemistry from the University of Tennessee at Martin. He specializes in physical and atmospheric chemistry.

Rutter comes to D&E as associate professor of psychology from Wesley Institute in Sydney, Australia, where he chaired a department of counseling and served as dean of students. A licensed clinical psychologist, Rutter also taught at Colorado Christian University and served as a psychologist in the U.S. Air Force.

Rutter earned his doctorate in clinical psychology from Wright State University and holds a master's degree in theology from Vanderbilt University and a bachelor's degree in psychology and religious studies from the University of Tennessee. His interests include the study of metaphoric language in psychology and other related disciplines.

Mabry, associate professor of biology and chair of the biology and environmental science department, returns to D&E after four years teaching biology at Lenoir-Rhyne University in Hickory, N.C. During her previous tenure at D&E, Mabry was the recipient of several grants, including Faculty Innovation Grant, WV EPSCoR Innovation Grant and Appalachian College Association International Seminar Grant.

In 2003, she was awarded the Lois Latham Award for Teaching Excellence.

Mabry received her bachelor's degree in biology from the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech), master's degree in biology from The College of William and Mary and doctorate in zoology from Washington State University.

Wagoner, assistant professor philosophy and religion, has joined the faculty in the religion and philosophy department. His previous teaching experience includes positions as adjunct instructor at Emmanuel College in Boston, Mass., lecturer in religion, humanities and languages at Thiel College in Greenville, Pa., and head teaching fellow at Harvard University.

Wagoner earned his doctorate in religion from Harvard University where he was the recipient of a Whiting Fellowship, an honor given to outstanding, advanced dissertation writers in humanities Ph.D. programs. He also received his master's of divinity and master's of sacred theology from Yale University and his bachelor's in philosophy and literature from Gordon College in Mass.

His teaching and research interests include modern religious thought, secularism and religious identity and world religions.

Baxter, a doctoral candidate from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, joins the Department of Criminology at D&E. Baxter was most recently an instructor at IUP where she taught crime and delinquency prevention. She was also the recipient of the IUP African American Cultural Center Certificate of Appreciation for her contribution to minority student education and presented several papers at the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences annual meeting which focused on employee theft and female juvenile offenders.

Baxter received her master's and bachelor's degrees in criminology from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Among her teaching and research interests are employee fraud, retail crimes, women and crime and juvenile offenders.

Tesar has been appointed full-time instructor of recreation management and tourism. Previously, he served as an adjunct instructor of hospitality and tourism and director of the Outdoor Adventure Program at D&E. Before coming to Elkins, he served as director of the Ohio University Outdoor Pursuits program and he also taught in Ohio University's Department of Recreation & Sport Pedagogy.

He is a certified ropes course facilitator, NAUI scuba instructor, Wilderness Education Association certifying instructor and SOLO wilderness first responder.

Tesar earned his master's in physical education from Ohio University and bachelor's in political science from Hillsdale College. He also has instructional experience in many outdoor activities ranging from backpacking to whitewater kayaking.

"We are delighted to have such a talented group of new faculty members join us at Davis and Elkins College," said Michael Mihalyo, chancellor. "Without question, we strive to provide our students with the best possible learning experiences at D&E. We believe that the combination of our new faculty along with our strong veteran faculty will position us well to meet our student learning objectives."

More information about D&E is available at



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