Faculty & Staff
Dr. Gretchen M. Bataille provides advice and guidance to higher education leaders and non-profit organizations in the United States and abroad that are seeking new approaches to leadership, organizational change or assessment. Her long career in higher education has included a variety of positions from department chair to university president and, most recently, as the Senior Vice President for the American Council on Education, the preeminent membership association for over 1800 colleges and universities. In her various roles, she has taught, mentored, managed over $15 M in grants, and has consulted in higher education both in the United States and abroad.
Before becoming president of the University of North Texas, a research university with over 36,000 students, Dr. Bataille served as an administrator at Arizona State University, University of California Santa Barbara, Washington State University and the University of North Carolina system. Her academic experiences include nearly twenty years as a faculty member at Iowa State University, a one-year appointment as interim chancellor at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and ten months of consulting at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City.
Dr. Bataille, whose scholarly specialization is American Indian literature, received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from California Polytechnic State University and her doctorate in English from Drake University. Her publications include reviews, articles, academic papers, and numerous books in her field. She is the co-author with Betsy Brown of the book, Faculty Career Paths: Multiple Routes to Academic Success and Satisfaction and the book written with her ACE colleague Diana Cordova, Managing the Unthinkable: Crisis Preparation and Response for Campus Leaders provides advice on campus crises. Bataille has served as a member of the Board of Trustees of The College Board as well as a Board member for ACE. She is a member of the Board of Directors for SAGE Publications and serves on the Board of Trustees for Drake University. Bataille serves as president of the consulting firm, GMB Consulting Group, LLC and is a strategic partner with ROI Consulting Group.
For President Betz, becoming the University of Central Oklahoma's 20th president in August 2011 is a homecoming of sorts. Having served as Central's Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs from 1999-2005, he developed several initiatives and programs that have helped transform Central into one of the leading metropolitan universities in the nation.
President Betz has enjoyed a distinguished career in higher education that spans more than 40 years, developing a reputation for teaching and encouraging students, leadership development and diplomacy through his international activities, most notably with the United Nations and its affiliated non-government organizations. Further enhancing that reputation, currently he is serving a three-year term on the International Association of University Presidents (IAUP) executive committee and chair of its North American Council. Dr. Betz was selected to attend the 2011 Fulbright-Hays Seminar in Oman and Jordan to explore opportunities for future program development in the region with stakeholders on American college campuses.
Prior to returning to Central, he served as president of Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Okla., a post he held since July 2008. He also served as Chancellor at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls from 2005 until his appointment at NSU and as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Palmer College, Davenport, Iowa, from 1994-1999. In the 23 years prior, he fulfilled various capacities at Northeastern, including the Vice President of University Relations and Professor of Political Science. While at NSU, he also was the Executive Director of the Educational Foundation, Assistant to the President, Dean of Continuing Education and Special Programs, Director of the Sequoyah Institute/Center for Tribal Studies, the founder and advisor of the university's President's Leadership Class and its Model United Nations program.
From 1982 through 2003, President Betz worked for and with the United Nations on Middle East issues. He founded and chaired the International Coordinating Committee on the Question of Palestine (ICCP), a UN-affiliated non-governmental organization (NGO) network pursuing peace in the Middle East based on UN resolutions. His extensive international experience includes service with the University of Pittsburgh's Semester-at-Sea, Chapman College's World Campus Afloat, and journalistic experience in the Middle East.
A frequent writer and speaker, Dr. Betz has addressed international, educational, motivational topics, and has worked with newspapers, radio and television. His lifelong interest in global issues and his passion for promoting cross-cultural understanding has led him to more than 80 countries. His many accomplishments include serving as president of Leadership Oklahoma, a board member for the Educators' Leadership Academy, Great Expectations, the Oklahoma A+ Whole School Reform Program, the Edmond Economic Development Authority, the DaVinci Institute, Life University and the awards selection committee for the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence. Since 2002, Dr. Betz has been a member of the founding implementation committee for AASCU's American Democracy Project. Dr. Betz was the recipient of the 1991 Medal of Excellence in University Teaching from the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence.
While president of Northeastern State University he served as the chair of the Northeast Oklahoma Public Facility Authority, board member for BancFirst in Tahlequah, the Tahlequah Area Chamber of Commerce, Creative Oklahoma, Inc., and chair of the Regional University System of Oklahoma Council of Presidents. He is a member of the Oklahoma Academy, Leadership Oklahoma, Universities and Colleges President's Climate Commitment, International Association of University Presidents and has served as Chairman of AASCU's International Education Committee.
President Betz received his B.A. in Political Science and Philosophy from the University of San Francisco and his M.A. and Ph.D. in International Studies from the Graduate School of International Studies at the University of Denver. He completed Harvard University's Institute for Educational Management.
Imagine what it would feel like to work every day in a positive, drama-free environment where coworkers always communicated honestly and effectively.
It may sound impossible, but that’s why clients in industries ranging from hospitality to oil and gas to education engage Pam Boyd. Join the other proactive leaders who have dramatically improved their culture with Pam’s insights on:
- Communicating with difficult personalities
- Having tough conversations without indigestion
- Leveraging behavior change with co-workers, managers, and employees
- Getting better results from delegation
- Successfully handing emotional pressure and time constraints
- Staying in control with the toughest projects and challenges
Pam Boyd was a difficult, negative employee. The effective strategies she teaches were learned first-hand, working in the real world for twenty years before she became an international consultant and speaker. In 1998, she launched her firm, Dramatic Conclusions, and has now worked with clients in 49 states, as well as internationally in Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, Canada, the Virgin Islands, and Europe.
She has authored three books, The Essential Handbook for First-Time Managers, The Two-Minute Tune-Up, The Miracle I Almost Missed, three screenplays, and numerous articles and webinars.BACK TO TOP
Tom W. Boyd is currently the David Ross Boyd Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at the University of Oklahoma. After teaching philosophy there for 28 years, he retired from full time teaching in 1997. He also retired from the ordained ministry in the Presbyterian Church USA in the summer of 1998.
Tom was talked out of retirement and enlisted for service in the new Religious Studies Program in 2002, now teaching at OU as part of the Retired Professor program and serves as a consultant to the program. In addition, he lectures, preaches and conducts seminars around the country.
Tom holds four degrees, including a Ph.D. in Religion from Vanderbilt University. His academic specialization is in philosophical theology, philosophy of religion and ethics. His current concentration is on the relation among world religions and the relation between religion and culture. He seeks through his studies and teaching to understand and appreciate religion in its contemporary setting and in light of an emerging planetary culture.
Contact Tom directly at (405) 447-4592 or email@example.com.
Author of Working with Problem Faculty: A Six-Step Guide for Department Chairs
R. Kent Crookston’s Ph.D. in plant physiology is from the University of Minnesota. He held post-doctoral positions with Agriculture Canada and Cornell University, then researched and taught at the University of Minnesota for twenty-five years. He was head of the Department of Agronomy and Plant Genetics at Minnesota (1990–1998), and dean of the College of Biology and Agriculture at Brigham Young University (BYU) (1998–2005). Since 2007 he has directed the Academic Administrative Support Program at the BYU Faculty Center. In addition to researching academic administration he researches and teaches effective decision making. He has written numerous professional and popular articles on various subjects, and on four occasions won the Excellence in Agricultural Journalism Award from the American Society of Agronomy.
From 1988 to 2002 Crookston was the founding director of the Minnesota Institute for Sustainable Agriculture (a research and educational partnership of faculty, farmers, politicians, and activist groups). At Minnesota he co-founded a national program on researching and teaching decision cases in agriculture and directed an undergraduate educational reform project with a grant from the McKnight Foundation. At BYU he directed a complete reinvention and restructuring of the college of 100 faculty and 2,500 students.
Crookston served as resident coordinator (1984–1986) of a USAID development project in Morocco (assisting in the establishment of a major agricultural university). From 1999 to 2007 he co-directed a project to improve the health and economy of a rural region in the Middle Atlas Mountains. He has consulted with research and educational institutions in Armenia, Ecuador, England, France, Ghana, Mexico, Morocco, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, the Philippines, Rwanda, and Senegal.
Crookston is a fellow of the Crop Science Society of America and the American Society of Agronomy, and the holder, since 1999, of an honorary professorship at the Institut Agronomique et Vétérinaire Hassan II, in Rabat, Morocco.
Mark Hamlin, Ph.D. (Oklahoma State University, 2001) has been a member of the Department of Psychology at the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO) since 1994. Previous to this, he worked at the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI) for the Federal Aviation Administration (FFA) as a research technician where he assisted in constructing, conducting, and analyzing large institutional surveys on job satisfaction and alternate work schedules.
Dr. Hamlin received his doctorate from OSU in educational psychology with an emphasis in research, evaluation, measurement, and statistics – where his dissertation received an award for research excellence. His undergraduate degree in Psychology with a minor in Business Management (1991) is from Oklahoma Christian University and in 1994, he earned a M.A. degree in Experimental Psychology from UCO. (It is interesting to note that he has been hired to teach at each university that he received a degree from.) His normal course load includes psychological statistics, multivariate statistics, psychological measurement, motivation and emotion, learning, and the history of psychology.
He has served on numerous committees for the department, college, and university since 1994 but the more memorable ones include a dean search committee – with the successful hiring of Dean Machell. He has consistently served and/or chaired tenure/promotion and screening/hiring committees which is often considering that there are 16 full time faculty and 9 adjuncts (e.g., within the last four years the department has hired four new adjuncts, three full time temps, four tenure track positions, and celebrated two retirements). In May 2010, he took over as the chair of the department after the acute illness and unexpected death of his mentor and predecessor, Dr. Mike Knight, who had been the chair of the department since 1985.
Allan Johnson is the Founder and CEO of Johnson Performance Systems and is known world-wide for his powerful presentations. This last year Allan has had the opportunity to present as near as Moore, Oklahoma and as far as London, England, Ontario, Canada and Capetown, South Africa. Allan was selected as the District Teacher of the Year in the Western Heights district where he was once a studentathlete. He is a highly accomplished singer and songwriter with numerous awards from competitions and six albums to his credit. His audiences represent a wide spectrum of people from university professors to principals and teachers, to pastors and church staff, to students and civic groups, to corporate professionals and British salon owners. His gifts and talents give him the ability to engage and motivate large audiences or encourage small, intimate groups. He has presented to over 20,000 adults and students spanning five continents. Allan has been affiliated with Great Expectations for over fourteen years. Allan, his wife Jill, and their three children-Lydia, Zoe, and Nathan reside in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Jeff King, Ed.D., is Executive Director of the Center for Excellence in Transformative Teaching and Learning at the University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond, Oklahoma. His research and application interests have long focused on what college faculty can do to help their students learn, to be motivated toward deep learning strategies, and to persist in their educations. Dr. King works to provide information and tools shown by quality, applicable research to help students succeed, whether via cutting edge approaches or time‑tested strategies. Because evaluating one’s success at helping students learn is important for becoming a better teacher‑scholar, Jeff is also interested in ways faculty can gather feedback about their teaching and use it to fine‑tune their effectiveness. Before moving to UCO’s Transformative Learning‑focused environment, Jeff was the Director of Texas Christian University’s Koehler Center for Teaching Effectiveness. No matter his location, though, his work over the years both as college faculty member and in faculty professional development matches passion to position in helping students learn.
Steve Kreidler serves as the chief financial officer and oversees the departments of budget, finance, facilities and human resources at Metropolitan State University of Denver, Colorado.
A seasoned finance and economic development expert with 30 years of experience, Kreidler served at the University Of Central Oklahoma (UCO), 2001-2013, as vice president of administration and most recently executive vice president. Prior to that, he was the executive director of the Edmond Economic Development Authority for nearly a decade.
A native of Tulsa, OK, Steve and graduated from Oklahoma State University with a degree in Business Administration and has an MBA from Oklahoma Christian University. He completed the Institute of Education Management program through the Harvard Graduate School of Education as well as the prestigious Oxford Roundtable.
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Jim’s professional career began in 1974 teaching primarily 4th grade students at Ridgeview Elementary School in the Oklahoma City Pubic School District where he remained until 1985. In 1985, Jim was encouraged by Father Jack Petuskey of St. Francis of Assisi Parish to pursue the vacant principal position at Rosary School. He served the St. Francis/Rosary Community as principal between 1985 and 1992. In 1992, Jim began his career in higher education, accepting a faculty appointment as an assistant professor in the Department of Educational Leadership at the University of Wyoming. In 1997, Jim accepted a position as a faculty member and program coordinator for a statewide cooperative doctoral program in educational leadership at Central Missouri State University where he served in various capacities, including department chair, until 2005. In 2005, he returned to his home state of Oklahoma accepting the position of dean of the College of Education and Professional Studies at the University of Central Oklahoma, where he continues to serve in that capacity.
Rita is a first generation American (dual citizen of Ireland), Baby Boomer, certified speaking professional (CSP), national energy and sustainability expert, social media producer, executive coach, and private pilot. She has worked in leadership positions at General Electric (GE), Martin Marietta, Lockheed Martin, and The University of Oklahoma.
Rita is CEO of Performance Consulting (PC) an organizational development firm. In addition to national business and commercial clients, her educational and healthcare clients include: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Oklahoma State University, Texas A&M, University of Texas, University of Oklahoma, University of Missouri,
Assisted Living Association of America, Mercy Memorial Healthcare System, St. Joseph's Hospital of Chicago, OU Medical Center, Rehab Services of Washington State and Missouri State, and multiple State Boards of Health, to name a few.
Rita's perspective on the future workforce, educational, aviation, and healthcare challenges and student/faculty/administration issues is provocative and insightful. She is the author/co-author of six books/DVD/courses:
1. Murray, Rita M, (2003), Survive and Thrive in a Multi-Generational World
2. Murray, Rita M., (2004) Talking About Our Generations
3. Murray, Rita M, and Rutledge, Hile D., (2005) Make Time Work For You
4. Murray, Rita M., (2008) Mentoring Matters
5. Murray, Rita M. and Rutledge, Hile D., (2009) Generations: Bridging the Gap With Type
6. Murray, Rita M. and Rutledge, Hile D., (2011) Communication Challenges with Millennials: How to Bridge the Gap with Type
7. Murray, Rita M., (2011) GeoMentoring for the Geosciences
Completing a Ph.D. in Instructional Psychology and Technology at the University of Oklahoma, Rita's research interests include metacognition, self-awareness, higher order thinking, and cooperative engagement.
Rita and her husband, Ron, reside in Norman, Oklahoma. Ron is the President of PCG Worldwide, an energy services company. He is also a 13,000+ hour active pilot and a highly decorated Vietnam War Veteran including the Distinguished Flying Cross. As the volunteer Oklahoma State Director for the Bill Glass Champions for Life Prison Ministry, they also fly worldwide for and with the prison ministry.
Cheryl Price, Educational Consultant and former Director of the Oklahoma Principals' Academy, has been a teacher of children and educators for more than twenty-five years. She has been involved in the Oklahoma Principals' Academy since its inception in 1994. Her insight, courage, and determination to be an instructional leader who inspired and facilitated excellence in her own school was the beginning of a hero's journey which led her to serve as director of the Principals' Academy until her retirement in 2010.
A gifted public speaker who conducts professional development seminars and works with teachers, principals, and superintendents throughout the state of Oklahoma and beyond, Cheryl continues to provide vision, leadership, and inspiration for the Oklahoma Principals' Academy as a consultant/presenter. Cheryl is a native of Oklahoma where she obtained her Bachelor of Science in elementary education from Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. She later received a Master of Education in curriculum and instruction from Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Oklahoma. She also holds certifications as a reading specialist and an elementary principal.
Ruki Ravikumar is an Assistant Dean for the College of Fine Arts and Design, Professor of Design, the Chair of the Department of Design and the Director of graduate programs in Design. Originally from Chennai (Madras), India, she holds a bachelor’s degree in the history of fine art and drawing and painting from the University of Madras, India, and a master's of fine arts in graphic design from Iowa State University.
Ruki has has a long work history as an educator and designer, with clients in India, the United Kingdom and the United States. Ravikumar’s cross-cultural life and design experience has led her to research, present and publish work that investigates the intersections between graphic design and culture and their impact on design education. She is currently the president of the Oklahoma chapter of the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) and a member of AIGA's national board of directors. She also has served as the co-chair of the AIGA Design Educators Community Steering Committee and has held the positions of vice president, treasurer, education chair and communications chair for the Oklahoma chapter.
Cheryl Steele served as Superintendent of the Midwest City-Del City Public Schools 11 years and has held public school and university adjunct positions in Oklahoma City, Edmond, Mustang, the University of Oklahoma, and Southern Nazarene University.
Dr. Steele has held a variety of leadership positions, including the presidencies of the Oklahoma Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, Oklahoma School Public Relations Association, and the Oklahoma Middle Level Education Association as well as serving on the board of Leadership Oklahoma, Great Expectations, the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence, Schools for Healthy Lifestyles, Oklahoma Academy for State Goals, Junior Achievement, and the Oklahoma Commission for Educational Leadership. She has been a frequent speaker and trainer and has authored over 25 articles and documents for statewide and national audiences.
Dr. Steele has been recognized by the University of Oklahoma as one of the initial "75 Who Made a Difference" in Oklahoma education, by the Cooperative Council for School Administrators as Superintendent of the Year for Oklahoma and as Superintendent of the Year by the Oklahoma Music Educators, and the Oklahoma PTA. She received the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence Award for Excellence in School Administration, the Oklahoma School Public Relations Association Partner for Excellence Award and the OASCD Leadership Award, as well as being named Alpha Delta Kappa's Woman of the Year.
Dr. Steele earned her B.A. in Education from Central State University in 1971 and Masters Degree in Education from Central State University in 1974. She received her Doctorate in 1984 from the University of Oklahoma.
Shanna R. Teel is the Founder and CEO of Dr. Shanna Teel & Company, Inc., a performance consulting and coaching firm. In Dr. Teel's career, she has been a partner and executive for two organizational and leadership development consulting firms. She holds a dual Ph.D. in organizational psychology and clinical psychology, coupled with more than 12 years as a consultant, executive coach, and facilitator of adult learning.
She specializes in the areas of executive and leadership development, executive and management coaching, career development, strategic planning, conflict management, diversity training, team building, group dynamics, communication skill development, negotiation, mediation, and business development.
She has provided organization development consulting, team development, and individual coaching for executives and managers in the following organizations: Citigroup; Kodak; Nokia; Fugihunt, USA; Deloitte & Touche; TA Instruments; Eiasi Pharmaceuticals; McDonald's; St. Luke's Health Network; Interwoven; ARM; Victoria's Secret; Barclays Global Investors; Devon Energy; Vitas Hospice; The Braille Institute; University of Oklahoma; Oklahoma Heart Hospital; University of California San Diego Hospital.
Tom has been an educator for 36 years. He spent 18 years in the classroom as a teacher and coach, six years as an assistant principal and six years as the principal at Sapulpa High School. He now serves as Assistant Superintendent of Finance at Sapulpa Public Schools. Tom earned an associate degree from Northern Oklahoma College, a bachelor's degree from Central State University and a master's from Northeastern State University. Tom currently serves as the president of the Principals' Academy Alumni Association.
Tom is currently the past president of the Oklahoma Association of Secondary School Principals, and he serves on the Board of Control for the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association.
Dr. K. J. Tullis is originally from eastern Oregon and grew up in Los Angeles. Before joining the University of Central Oklahoma in 1995, he held a variety of manufacturing and marketing management positions within the Blackmer Division of Dover Corporation, most recently the position of worldwide marketing manager for liquefied and compressed gas equipment. Coming to UCO in 1995, he is currently Associate Dean for the College of Business. He has previously served the college as Professor of Management, Chair of the Department of Management, Assistant Dean and twice as a program director. He holds a PhD. Degree in Management from the University of Arkansas and an MBA degree from the University of Houston. He primarily teaches in the area of Strategic Management, Organization Theory, and occasionally, Human Resource Management. His dissertation research focused on the adoption of innovative compensation practices.
His current research interests include employee selection and issues related to campus security. Dr. Tullis has consulted for numerous clients, including the United States Postal Service, Oklahoma Federal Executive Board, Oklahoma County Health Department, and the Oklahoma Veterinary Medical Association.
Dr. Verschelden is the Executive Director of Institutional Assessment at the University of Central Oklahoma. From 2009-2012, she served as Vice President for Academic Affairs at Highland Community College, after a year as a Visiting Scholar at the Higher Learning Commission in Chicago where she worked with the Assessment Academy and Assessment workshops. Before the HLC post, Cia had been on the faculty at Kansas State University since 1989, teaching for 11 years in the Social Work Program, and on the interdisciplinary faculties in Women’s Studies and American Ethnic Studies, becoming Director of Women’s Studies in 2003. She taught courses in social welfare history and policy, women’s studies, and in nonviolence studies. She was involved with assessment of student learning as a faculty leader at K-State from 2001 and was appointed in 2005 as the Director of the Office of Assessment. She has been working with the Higher Learning Commission for several years, as a team mentor for Assessment Workshops, the Assessment Academy and as a Systems Appraiser for AQIP and a Consultant-Evaluator.
B.S. in psychology from K-State, M.S.W. from The University of Connecticut, Ed.D. from Harvard University.
Dr. Christy Vincent is an Assistant Professor in the Mass Communication Department at the University of Central Oklahoma where she teaches interpersonal, organizational and corporate communication courses. Her research interests include conflict management, mediation, change management, and training and development. Her interest in conflict management led her to the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at the Pepperdine University School of Law where she earned a Certificate in Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR).
Her doctoral research focused on public school teachers' experiences of conflict. Her dissertation, "Understanding Teachers' Accounts of Conflicts in Public School Settings: An Ethnographically-based, Ethnomethodological Investigation," received the University of Oklahoma Dissertation Prize in the Social Sciences and Humanities. In addition to the university award, the OU Department of Communication also awarded the Ragan-Kramer-Wieder Qualitative Dissertation Award to Christy.
Besides her college teaching, she has taught continuing education courses for public school teachers in Oklahoma through the Great Expectations Institute.
Christy's professional experience is in management, sales and product development in private industry. She most recently served as an internal organizational effectiveness consultant for INTEGRIS Health, where her projects included management and staff training, leadership development, 360-degree assessment, employee opinion surveys, strategic planning, HR metrics and New Employee Orientation. One of the teaching tools used in training programs, a learning map titled Serving Our Community, won the Oklahoma Chapter of the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) Award of Excellence in the category of Experiential Learning.
She also works as a consultant to help groups and organizations with strategic planning, conflict management, communication needs assessment, problem-solving and leadership development. Her favorite group problem-solving method is Appreciative Inquiry.
She holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree from the University of Oklahoma, a Master of Arts degree from the University of Houston, both in communication, and a Bachelor of Science degree in mass communication from Oklahoma Christian University.
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