Advisory Board

DaVida Anderson

DaVida Anderson

DaVida L. Anderson received her Ph.D. in educational policy and leadership studies from the University of Iowa in 2019. She is the Director of Student Care and Integrity at Carroll Community College in Maryland. She oversees the Behavioral Intervention Team, the wellness committee and is responsible for the student conduct system, policy, program assessment, data collection, campus outreach, and student crisis response and management. Dr. Anderson is also the Founder and Executive Director of Strong Sister, Silly Sister, Inc., a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization committed to empowering college women to embrace ethical choices and become their best selves. Through her LLC, she also is a motivational speaker who engages her audiences to embrace and maximize their full potential. Dr. Anderson also serves on the Carroll Community College's COVID Leadership Response Team, the Board of Directors for The Mid-Atlantic Gigabit Innovation Collaboratory (MAGIC), and other external committees.

Kelly Andringa

Kelly Andringa

Kelly Andringa is the Research Manager in the Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation at the University of Iowa. She, along with her Research Services team, manage a significant number of federal and industry sponsored research grants and contracts. She also has financial oversite of the core service centers, within the department. She has recently returned to her alma mater (GO Hawks) after 15 years at the University of Alabama at Birmingham where she managed a number of federally funded research projects and centers throughout her time there. She was the UAB chair for the Council of Center Administrators and participated in numerous graduate college and postdoctoral office professional development programs. She obtained her PhD from the University of Iowa and an MBA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She refers to herself as a recovering bench scientist who fell face first into a career in Research Administration.

Eli Asikin-Garmager

Eli Asikin-Garmager

Eli Asikin-Garmager received his PhD in Linguistics from the University of Iowa in 2017. He currently works on the Wikimedia Foundation’s Language Team. He supports their goal of helping people access and contribute knowledge to an open-source, multilingual encyclopedia by conducting research to better understand the cultural and language-specific needs of Wikipedia communities worldwide. Prior to this role, he started a product-focused design research practice at an online tax software company, led an international research team as a Fulbright scholar, taught Linguistics and English at the University of Iowa, and designed English programs.

Elaine Hamarstrom

Elaine Hamarstrom

Elaine Hamarstrom received her PhD in Immunology from the University of Iowa in 2008. Her career has focused on medical communication and education with specialization in oncology treatments. She currently is the Associate Director of Scientific Communications for Global Medical and Scientific Affairs at Karyopharm Therapeutics. In this role, she applies expertise in adult education methods to communication of clinical trial findings and implications. Elaine has mentored undergraduate and graduate students and is passionate about ensuring students are aware of alternatives to academic career paths.

Thomas Jakobsen

Thomas Jakobsen

Thomas has served as Senior Partner at ClientFirst Consulting Group since 2007. A veteran IT professional with over 25 years of interdisciplinary industry experience, Thomas has managed hundreds of IT consulting projects for dozens of public and private agencies. His industry experience includes municipalities, counties, school districts, medical institutions, manufacturing facilities, financial institutions, and non‐profit organizations. He is a speaker at information technology and municipal management conferences around the country. Thomas is an alum of the University of Iowa and longtime supporter of UI graduate education.

Ranelle Knight-Lueth

Ranelle Knight-Lueth

Ranelle Knight-Lueth received her Ph.D. in art history from the University of Iowa in 2015 with emphases in American art, nineteenth century European art, and Japanese art from the Edo period. Although she has numerous interests, including environmental and landscape art, women artists, and international propaganda art, she purposefully selected her dissertation topic on the combat art of World War I due to her fascination with Harvey Dunn and other early twentieth-century American illustrators. While working on her dissertation, she received national fellowships from the Center of Military History and the Norman Rockwell Center for American Visual Studies. Since then, she has researched and lectured on other arts created during the Great War. She currently serves as an Assistant Professor of Art History at Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Ye Lao

Ye Lao

Ye earned her PhD degree from Department of Biochemistry in The University of Iowa in 2000 and Executive MBA degree from Olin Business School in Washington University at St Louis. Currently, she works in Kemin Industries as Worldwide Vice President of Research and Development. Ye has over 15 years of experience in research management and marketing strategies. Her broad working experience in both US and China gave her unique insights of organizing research projects across different cultures. Her areas of expertise include managing research pipeline to maximize commercial value and aligning allocation of research resources with company strategies. Ye used to teach Corporate Innovation in the MBA program in Nanjing University, China.

Kate Lechtenberg

Kate Lechtenberg

Kate Lechtenberg earned her PhD in Teaching and Learning from the UI’s Language, Literacy, and Culture program in 2020 and her MA in Library and Information Science from the UI's School of Library and Information Science in 2011. She currently works as an instructional coach at North High School in the Des Moines Public Schools, where she also serves on her local union's antiracist curriculum task force. Kate is passionate about bridging gaps between university research and the research that informs K-12 schools, and her research interests center on critical literacy and anti-oppressive education and curriculum development, critical examinations of teacher identities, children’s and young adult literature, intellectual freedom, and curating texts for classrooms and libraries. She was awarded the Frances Henne Award in 2016 and an AASL Research Grant in 2020 by the American Association of School LIbrarians, and the Iowa Academy of Education's Dissertation Award in 2020.

Barb McFadden

Barbara McFadden

Barbara McFadden (formerly Barbara McFadden Allen) is a principal at McFadden, Rocklin and Associates. She specializes in providing strategic advice and decision support to senior university leaders. From 1999-2017, she served as Executive Director of the Big Ten Academic Alliance where she was responsible for leading and directing collaborative academic programs across the member universities of the Big Ten Athletic Conference.

Kate Nesbit

Kate Nesbit

Kate is an Assistant Professor of English at Central College, where she teaches courses in British literature, world literature, and writing. Kate received her PhD in English from the University of Iowa in 2019. In her research, she studies the politics of sound and listening, and she is currently working on a book project on listening to reading aloud and the nineteenth-century novel. In addition to her work in literary studies, Kate is also invested in interdisciplinary writing programs and pedagogy. At Central, Kate teaches courses on writing for non-profits and writing for STEM and health careers. At the University of Iowa, she tutored at the Frank Business Communication Center, helped develop the Writing Initiative for Neuroscience, and co-founded (with Dr. Anna Williams) the “Managing the Market Job Docs Series” now offered by the Graduate College.

Eugene Parker

Gene Parker

Eugene (Gene) T. Parker III is an associate professor of higher education administration in the department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at the University of Kansas. He is interested in matters of diversity, equity and inclusion as it relates to college students and organizations. His research has focused on the impact of collegiate experiences on academic and psychosocial student outcomes, such as academic and cognitive outcomes, leadership and moral development. This area of research has centered on the association between diversity experiences, student-faculty interactions and other collegiate experiences and college outcomes. Recently, his research has examined the relationship between these experiences and students’ perceptions of the campus climate for diversity. Dr. Parker teaches courses in organization and governance, college finance and leadership in higher education. Dr. Parker received his B.A. from the University of Iowa, his MBA from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and his Ph.D. in Higher Education from the UI.

Heather Ries

Heather Ries

Heather Ries graduated from Mount Mercy University with her Bachelors in Science in Nursing in 2002. She obtained her Masters of Science in Nursing from Clarke University in 2005. In 2019, Heather completed her Doctorate in Nursing from the University of Iowa. Heather has served as the chief nursing officer at the Regional Medical Center since 2014. Serving the residents of Delaware County and the surrounding communities, the center's ultimate goal is to provide patients with the highest quality of patient care, close to their home. The staff values the patient and family as integral members of the healthcare team to provide the best experience possible within their system.

Stefan Schöberlein

Stefan Schöberlein

Stefan Schöberlein is an assistant professor of English and the Digital Humanities at Marshall University. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Iowa in 2018, for which he was awarded the 2019 D.C. Spriestersbach Dissertation Prize in the Humanities and Fine Arts. Stefan specializes in the intersections of science, literature, and technology in the nineteenth century. Another focus of Stefan’s work lies digital editing using Extensible Markup Language (xml) and authorship assessment using R. His research has been published in journals like American Literature, American Literary Realism, and Digital Scholarship in the Humanities. Stefan also holds a M.Ed. in Special Education from TU Dortmund University (Germany). He is in an advisory position with the Whitman Archive and one of the co-creators of the Movable project, a platform for people in Appalachia and beyond to share, highlight, and document stories of recovery from substance-use disorder.

JD Whitman

JD Whitman

JD Whitman is an installation artist, educator, and ocean advocate conducting research in the United States and Ireland. She investigates how art, science, and technology can be combined to circumvent ecophobia in environmental education, facilitate effective science communication, and increase global ecoliteracy rates. She builds interactive installations that bring the ocean to viewers, translate complex scientific research, ease eco-anxiety and climate-anxiety, and spark positive conversations surrounding environmental concerns. JD is currently the Director of the Global Youth Mentor Program at Plastic Tides, a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring and catalyzing action towards a plastic-free future through adventure, education, and youth empowerment. She holds an MFA in Photography, an MFA in Sculpture, and an MA in Studio Arts from the from the University of Iowa (2019); a Post-Baccalaureate in Fine Art from the National University of Ireland, Galway / Burren College of Art (2014); and a BA from the University of Chicago (2013).