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  Issue Number 19 • Tuesday, June 29, 2021  


Campus Champion

Lisa Kahle is always ready to take on any challenge. She connects with faculty and students and works with her staff in Campus Technology Services, which she has led for 18 years, to support the university’s changing technology needs. This includes the recent successful virtual Commencements. As interim associate provost of Information Resources, Lisa works with the team that helped SUNY Cortland manage the shift to distance and hybrid learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. Often bouncing between the various IR offices on campus, she meets with staff to map out how to best serve campus in the semesters ahead.

Nominate a Campus Champion

Wednesday, June 30

Orientation for Transfer Students: Session 3, online via Webex, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Thursday, July 1

Orientation for First-Year Students: Session 2, online via Webex, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Tuesday, July 6

Orientation for First-Year Students: Session 3 Online via Webex, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Wednesday, July 7

Orientation for Transfer Students: Session 4, online via Webex, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Thursday, July 8

Orientation for First-Year Students: Session 4, online via Webex, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Friday, July 9

Orientation for First-Year Students: Session 5, online via Webex, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Monday, July 12

Virtual Reunion 2021 International Programs Office Update + Social: Online via Webex, noon.

Orientation for First-Year Students: Session 6, online via Webex, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Virtual Reunion 2021 Distinguished Educator Award Ceremony: Online via Webex, 5 p.m.

Virtual Reunion 2021 Distinguished Alumni Award Ceremony: Online via Webex, 7 p.m. 

Tuesday, July 13

Orientation for First-Year Students: Session 7, online via Webex, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Virtual Reunion 2021 Outstanding Volunteer Award Ceremony: Online via Webex, 5 p.m.

Virtual Reunion 2021 Distinguished Young Alumni Award Ceremony: Online via Webex, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, July 14

Virtual Reunion 2021 SUNY Cortland Update with President Erik J. Bitterbaum: Online via Webex, noon.

Virtual Reunion 2021 Career Services for a Redefined World of Work: Online via Webex, 7 p.m.

Orientation for Transfer Students: Session 5, online via Webex, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Thursday, July 15

Virtual Reunion 2021 College Archives: Online via Webex, 7 p.m.

Orientation for Transfer Students: Session 8, online via Webex, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Virtual Reunion 2021 Virtual Campus Tour: Online via Facebook Live, noon

Friday, July 16

Virtual Reunion 2021 OA Reunion: Online via Webex, 11 a.m.

Virtual Reunion 2021 Multicultural Life and Diversity Office Update + Social: Online via Webex, noon

Diversity initiative honored by SUNY


The SUNY Council for University Advancement recently honored SUNY Cortland for an ongoing poster project that aims to foster diversity, equity and inclusion in the campus community.

The university, in competition with its 63 sister campuses, was awarded a 2021 SUNYCUAD Best in Category Award for Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion for the Beloved Community Narratives Project, which features 25 campus community members posing for images to appear on posters that tell their unique stories.

The university’s achievement was announced on June 10 during the association’s two-day, virtual SUNYCUAD Unconference.

It’s the first year SUNYCUAD has judged institutions on initiatives designed to embrace the differences of race, ethnicity, religion or spirituality, sexuality or gender identity, or lived experience of a disability found on the campuses.

The university contracted with visiting artist Adam Mastoon of Adam Mastoon Transmedia to come to campus, meet and photograph the volunteer poster subjects, and help them develop their personal narratives.
Mastoon arranged for Morcos Key to develop the Beloved Community website where all 25 of the project posters with their personal testimonials are displayed.

An employee with Sellco Industries Inc., of Cortland installs the narrative poster for Flossie Bell Lomax '86, M '90, C.A.S. '96. in Moffett Center.

The news comes just as a rich tapestry of new posters displaying SUNY Cortland’s commitment to diversity and inclusion are going up in Moffett Center Lobby, with several initial panels being installed starting Thursday, June 24, by Sellco Industries Inc., of Cortland.

Since visitors still aren’t allowed in campus buildings in light of health precautions put in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Mastoon instead arranged to meet by video with university staff who are going to videotape the sample installation for him. Two individuals have worked with Mastoon on a smooth passage for this phase of the installation, Zachariah Newswanger, associate vice president, Facilities Management; and Joe Westbrook, lead campus architect in Facilities Planning, Design and Construction.

Moffett Center is not open to the public this summer, but students and employees should be able to get a look at these diverse essential stories told by current students, faculty, staff and alumni. The facility walls will display 25 narratives.

Embracing diversity

In fall 2019, as SUNY Cortland’s increasing diversity hit 26% of the student body identifying as ethnically or racially diverse, leaders looked to create a poster project that encapsulated the university’s ongoing effort to become as welcoming a community as possible.

The initiative’s volunteer committee met Mastoon in a Spring 2019 digital interview, and the following spring recruited 25 volunteer students, faculty, staff and alumni willing to share their innermost selves with the world in a series of posters. Administration supported the lofty undertaking even as the COVID-19 pandemic turned university operations upside down. Six months later, Mastoon completed the posters.

The Beloved Community Narratives Project campaign was originally conceived as posters, website and social media content.

However, as the pandemic limited people’s access to the Student Life Center and Moffett Center — the two buildings where the portraits were to be put on display — the university became more creative in pushing their stories out. For example, a changing display of the posters appears whenever a campus community member logs on to certain sites such as the launch page of their secure university page.

Division of Institutional Advancement staff worked with members of a project committee to write, edit and post online a series of feature articles to promote the project named from a quote by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. that reflects the spirit of the initiative: “Our goal is to create a beloved community, and this will require a qualitative change in our souls as well as a quantitative change in our lives.”

Communications and Marketing offices staff were involved in writing, editing and posting related content on the web and social media, and Alumni Engagement organized and promoted electronically three virtual talks to introduce some of the project participants to the rest of the campus community.

Publicity included articles, web content and virtual panel presentations as follows:

  • In Fall 2019, the committee undertook a search for volunteers to sit for the portraits.
  • In October 2020, the university’s Bulletin shared the news that campus buildings were beginning to display for passersby “an emotional glimpse into the heart and soul of members of the SUNY Cortland community” in “Diversity posters come to campus.”
  • In early 2021, the committee organized three virtual panel presentations by some of the story tellers and Communications Office staff helped promote it in web articles, campus bulletin stories and on campus message screens.

“It was the Beloved Community Narratives Project (BCNP) that cemented my belief that the university’s community of students, faculty and staff were truly committed to inclusion,” said Lorraine Lopez-Janove, who became Cortland’s chief diversity and inclusion officer last fall.

“As the new chair of the BCNP, I quickly recognized the committee’s dedication to diversity, equity and inclusion,” Lopez-Janove said. “They made sure that the stories of diverse community members would be shared with everyone on campus.”

The three virtual panel presentations attracted almost 200 campus community members to listen to how the identities of students, faculty, staff and alumni shaped their experiences at SUNY Cortland, she noted.

“There were tears, laughter and joy as themes such as race and immigration, gender and sexuality, and mental health and disability were discussed,” Lopez-Janove said.

“As someone who served on the committee from start to finish, not only did I see the transformation on the participants, but also on our community as a whole,” said Lauren Scagnelli ’12 M ’14, both a graduate and SUNY Cortland health educator.

“Those community members that attended, myself included, felt such an appreciation and acceptance. When individuals tell their stories, it makes a difference for everyone.”

Sophia’s Garden makes philosophers of children


Children are natural philosophers, although frustrated adults tend to squash their inclination to question the world by the time they start school, according to Mecke Nagel, a SUNY Cortland philosophy and Africana studies professor.

That’s why, seven years ago, Nagel created Sophia’s Garden, a program that cultivates and nurtures children’s fearless curiosity. The project — derived from the Greek “Sophia” (wisdom) — isn’t about teaching Nietzsche and Socrates to babes. It is about taking a simple approach to helping young children and teens discuss and grasp the big ideas in their lives as well as to deal calmly with conflict and highly emotional situations.

Operated within the university’s the Center for Ethics, Peace, and Social Justice (CEPS) by the Philosophy Department, Sophia’s Garden has been used successfully with toddlers at SUNY Cortland Childcare Center, at-risk girls in the Cortland YWCA’s GEMS project for at-risk girls (Girls: Empowered Motivated Successful), the pre-school children at Lime Hollow’s outdoor program and among elementary students at select schools in Cortland.

“What I got out of this program is that children are very smart, and they are smarter than they make themselves out to be, and they are very aware of their surroundings,” said Naamu Harvey ’19 of Syracuse, N.Y., a former philosophy major with an art minor who currently teaches at the preschool Childtime Learning Center of Syracuse while she prepares to enter a law school.

“They know how it corelates to them and their lives,” said Harvey, who as an undergraduate managed assignments of other Sophia’s Garden teaching assistants and volunteers.

She recalled how one boy at Barry Elementary School in Cortland opened right up to his classmates about moving in from outside the area and being the only Black child in his classes after having a book about children being different read to him.

“I didn’t think we would hear that out of a child’s mouth,” Harvey said. “I’m still working in that age group and they amaze me every day.”

Harvey is among an expanding cohort of teaching assistants, student volunteers and SUNY Cortland graduates in the workplace who are incorporating Sophia’s Garden into their classroom methodology.

“Many parents tell me they will shut down the children’s ‘why’ questions,” said Nagel, a faculty member in both the Philosophy and Africana Studies departments.

“You have brilliant philosophers up to, say, age 6, and by then kids learn to smother themselves.”

In Europe, children by high school age have left learning by rote behind, said Nagel, speaking from her own experience.

“The world is a wondrous place and we don’t have any answers,” said Nagel, expressing the philosophical shorthand used by herself, her teaching assistants and her class volunteers when they till the fertile minds of children and youth in Sophia’s Garden.

Sophia’s Garden teaching assistants received training at Memorial Library in February 2020. Standing on the right is T.A. Kayla Cordero ’20, who will pursue a law degree this fall.

Nagel gives students in all her classes the option to switch one component, say public speaking, with signing up for Sophia’s Garden.

“Education majors can do a very unstructured class observation,” Nagel said, explaining why many volunteers for this hands-on learning opportunity also are enrolled in the School of Education. “It’s a free-for-all. Many of them do a picture book with the children.”

A multidisciplinary effort involving a large town-gown board, Sophia’s Garden was co-founded by Nagel and Chea Snyder, a former Communications Disorders and Sciences Department faculty member and speech therapist at Randall Elementary School when she reached out to Nagel.

“Now I call it an institute of these committed board members from across the university and the community,” Nagel said. “It becomes a clearing house for all things. Philosophy meets physical education, speech pathology and communication disorders. I can now approach (Physical Education Professor) Tim Davis and say, can we work with your children,” with sensory disabilities coming through Davis’ Sensory Integration Motor Sensory (SIMS) Lab located in Park Center.

Other faculty who frequently teach with children’s books have visited to offer tips to the college students. Word is getting out about the program on a wider scale as well.

  • Nagel is finalizing a blog about the endeavor for the American Philosophical Association titled “Sophia’s Garden — Teaching Children and Teenagers Philosophy and Social Justice.”
  • Sophia’s Garden now has a Facebook page. Szilvia Kadas, an assistant professor in the Art and Art History Department, supported this very visual program by designing a brochure to promote it.
  • The project also enlists advice on effective digital promotion from Michelle LoGerfo, assistant director of online marketing and herself a children’s book author.
  • Harvey and Vanessa Vegder ’19, M ’20 of Dansville, N.Y., a dual philosophy and political science major who graduated in 2019, teamed up to write a 2020 article titled “Sophia’s Garden: Learning by Giving,” which appeared in the Questions: Philosophy for Young People online journal of the Philosophy Documentation Center.
  • Cortland’s Institute for Civic Engagement profiled Nagel’s program in its November 2020 newsletter.

Harvey and co-teaching assistants Vegder, N’Kele Amaru Brooks Gilkes ’20 and Jerome Goodridge ’21 were motivated by Nagel to apply for and win a $400 Undergraduate Research Grant to buy children’s books for the Philosophy Department Library, supplementing resources Sophia’s Garden volunteers might find at Memorial Library.

Some of Nagel’s proteges have since become teaching assistants.

SUNY Cortland student volunteers interact with children in a preschool classroom as part of the university's Sophia's Garden project to introduce philosophical and problem-solving knowledge to tots.

Katelyn McDonald, an inclusive childhood education major from Whitney Point, N.Y., enrolled in Nagel’s Black Feminism Philosophy class in Spring 2020 and volunteered to work with children in the 2- and 3-year old room in the SUNY Cortland Child Care Center. The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic which ended in-person interactions halfway through didn’t stop her.

“I knew they had it in them,” said McDonald, who will complete her student teaching and graduate in December. “All it really would take was kind of throwing the idea out there and giving them the opportunity to take it where they wanted.”

McDonald and five other teaching assistants met weekly with Nagel to plan how to prepare the daycare educators for the next week’s class. Where other students gave PowerPoint presentations, McDonald experimented with an online source called Nearpod, which let her share videos and songs with the tots, along with the usual pictures and story read-aloud.

“I think it was groundbreaking for everybody: the kids, the Cortland students who participated as well as Professor Mecke, especially with my having worked with daycare kids before,” McDonald said.

“It was amazing how you could take such a simple concept as ‘Why do penguins waddle, deer walk on four legs, and humans two?’ The kids would say, ‘I wouldn’t be able to play baseball, I wouldn’t be able to run a race!’ They connected to things they’ve seen and kind of made it their own. It was amazing how they interact with the world and it’s so much easier for the really younger kids to think outside the box.”

“It makes you think critically about the choices you make in life,” Harvey said. “You need to think before you choose to do something. Your choice affects others and others’ choices affect yours.” 

Capture the Moment


Six sheep from Highland Solar Grazing in Tompkins County arrived on campus on Friday, June 18 and for the next few months, the rams will graze on the grass around the solar panels on Stratton Drive. By using sheep instead of lawnmowers, approximately one metric ton of carbon per acre is saved from entering the atmosphere. It’s a win-win for SUNY Cortland’s sustainability efforts and the animals alike.

In Other News

Adapted physical activity expert promoted to SUNY’s highest academic rank

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John Foley, a member of the Physical Education Department, has been named a Distinguished Professor by the SUNY Board of Trustees. This title is awarded to individuals who have achieved national or international prominence within their chosen field and serve as role models for students and faculty.

This distinction is attained through significant contributions to the research literature or through artistic performance or achievement in the case of the arts. Distinguished professorships are conferred upon individuals who have elevated the standards of scholarship of colleagues both within and beyond their academic fields.

One of the leading experts on adapted physical activity in the nation, Foley, who currently serves as the director of Cortland’s Activity and Movement Pedagogy Laboratory, has authored an average of five publications per year since 2008. His work has been published in Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly, the most prestigious journal in the field, as well as the Journal of Intellectual and Developmental Disability; the Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance; Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport and Research in Developmental Disabilities.

John Foley award
Left to right: President Erik J. Bitterbaum, Foley, Provost Mark Prus

His publication record has international reach within and beyond his discipline, sharing his significant contributions to the knowledge base of physical activity both within the United States and around the world. Foley has presented at more than 90 academic conferences, including the International Symposium of Adapted Physical Activity at Gävle, Sweden, the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology Conference and the International Forum on Subject Planning and Development for Sport Science in Beijing, China.

“Prof. Foley is, unequivocally, one of the leaders in North America and extremely well known internationally as a scholar in adapted physical activity who has made significant, original contributions to his field,” said Jeffrey Martin, professor of kinesiology at Wayne State University.

Foley has been a principal or co-principal investigator on external grants totaling more than $900,000. His ensuing research has led him to collaborate with colleagues and organizations including Special Olympics Canada, Cornell University’s Institute for Labor Relations, the Virginia State Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Education.

In 2010, he was elected president of the North American Federation of Adapted Physical Activity, the highest office of the primary research organization in his field. Foley was named a fellow of the research consortium of the American Association of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance in 2011 for his significant and sustained contributions to the scholarship of the society. U.S. Games presented Foley with an OPEN award in 2017 for the standards-based physical education curriculum he helped develop that has been used by more than 80,000 teachers.

He has been invited to review manuscripts for many journals and sits on the editorial boards of American Journal of Health Promotion and Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly.

The Board of Trustees expects distinguished faculty to function as leaders and devote appropriate service to University-wide activities, both ceremonial and professional, such as offering lectures and seminars, informing curricular reform, improving the overall academic experience of students, mentoring junior faculty, and leading inquiry into issues of importance to SUNY and society.

Foley earned his B.S. in physical education from California State University, Hayward, in 1992, his M.S. in kinesiology from Hayward in 1998 and his Ph.D. in exercise and sport science from Oregon State University in 2005. He joined SUNY Cortland in 2005, was promoted to associate professor in 2008 and professor in 2012.

Foley is the 10th SUNY Cortland faculty member to achieve the Distinguished Professor rank.

Two professors raised to distinguished faculty

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Two SUNY Cortland faculty members were appointed to the rank of Distinguished Faculty by the SUNY Board of Trustees.

Andrew Fitz-Gibbon, a member of the Philosophy Department, has been named a Distinguished Service Professor. This title is conferred upon individuals who have given sustained outstanding service to the campus, SUNY, the community, the state of New York or the nation.

Randi Storch, a member of the History Department, has been named a Distinguished Teaching Professor. This title is given to those who have demonstrated consistent superior mastery of teaching, service to students and commitment to ongoing intellectual growth and scholarship.

The appointment of a Distinguished, Service or Teaching Professor represents a rank promotion over that of professor.


Andy Fitz-Gibbon

Fitz-Gibbon’s academic area of focus includes ethics, peace and social justice with an overarching emphasis on the philosophy of loving non-violence. His expertise in the classroom and his commitment to these ideals outside of it have set him apart from his peers.

The author of 15 books and numerous articles, chapters and reviews, Fitz-Gibbon, who has chaired the Philosophy Department since 2012, is recognized widely for his scholarly expertise. He has served as president of the Association of Concerned Philosophers for Peace, the leading professional organization in North America dedicated to the causes of war and prospects for peace. He is a fellow of both the American Philosophical Practitioners Association and the Royal Society of Arts of Great Britain.

“Fitz-Gibbon’s books and essays have had a very significant impact on the field,” said Andrew Fiala, professor of philosophy and director of the Ethics Center at California State University, Fresno. “His scholarly work appears in excellent presses (Rodopi, Brill, Palgrave) and important venues. He has worked tirelessly as an editor for books in this area. And his expertise is well known and respected among scholars. He is a frequent contributor to scholarly conferences and serves as an informal advisor to scholars such as myself.”

In addition to his academic work, Fitz-Gibbon is the co-founder, along with his wife, Jane Hall Fitz-Gibbon, of the Lindisfarne Community in Ithaca, N.Y. He has applied his commitment to service by caring for more than 100 foster children. Fitz-Gibbon has taught workshops on foster parenting for Cortland County caseworkers and has worked with agencies at the state and local level to better train foster parents and adopters.

Fitz-Gibbon has been a leader on the SUNY Cortland campus since he arrived in 2004. He served on the Institutional Review Board from 2005 to 2001, designed and led the Summer Ethics Institute from 2006 to 2018 and has directed the Center for Ethics, Peace and Social Justice since 2007. Fitz-Gibbon has served on more than 20 department and university committees and has chaired the Faculty Senate Academic Faculty Affairs Committee and served as representative to the Cortland Faculty Senate Steering Committee since 2010.

His personal commitment to health and wellness has helped many of his peers. Fitz-Gibbon, a certified advanced senior Tai Chi instructor, has taught regular Tai Chi classes for faculty members. He has led many book talks for the Faculty Development Committee as well.

Fitz-Gibbon earned his B.A. in business studies at the University of Central Lancashire, England, in 1981. He has an M.Litt. in history, an M.A. in applied theology and a Ph.D. in social ethics from Newcastle University.

Fitz-Gibbon is the 10th SUNY Cortland faculty member to achieve the Distinguished Service Professor rank.


Randi Storch

A remarkable historian, scholar and researcher, Storch, chair of the History Department since 2010, truly excels as an educator and instructor. She has taught more than 16 different courses, taking students into the field and helping bring history to life through innovative methods of engagement, including debates, role play and mock trials.

Storch has taught on topics including an introductory Raquette Lake field experience class, American labor and working class history, issues in women’s history as well as a digital history course on the history of SUNY Cortland. She has taught large lecture courses as well as writing-intensive seminars for both undergraduates and graduate students. Storch worked to create and lead four National Endowment for the Humanities summer institutes that used locations including Raquette Lake, New York City and Cortland and were aimed at helping K-12 teachers better serve their students. The summer institute grants totaled more than $700,000 and will aid teachers of history for years to come.

In addition to teaching, Storch works closely with the History Club, attending meetings and events and has established History in Progress sessions, in which faculty share research with students. Her dedication to students is reflected in their evaluations of Storch’s teaching. One student said, “Professor Storch never failed to have my full attention beginning to end of class. It was like a performance every time and she completely sucked me in with every topic. She is by far the most intriguing professor I have had at SUNY Cortland.”

Storch is committed to integrating technology and digital history into the classroom. She has taught digital mapping, served on a Digital Humanities group and created and taught a course on SUNY Cortland’s history as part of the university’s sesquicentennial.

One observer of the course noted, “This class was innovative and clearly had engaged the students not only in the work of historians but in the conceptualizing of what historians do. I was very impressed both with the concept of the course and with the depth of the students’ thinking as they discussed the project. Storch’s teaching during this session was remarkable.”

Storch has developed a writing guide for history students, which has served many students. Her emphasis on writing effectively and working with students to help them organize their thoughts and make arguments has benefited students both during class and long after their time at Cortland.

Her efforts to connect with students during office hours have led to a supportive environment for students, especially those who may be hesitant about history. The encouragement provided to students by Storch, while maintaining a commitment of excellent student performance, has led to students discovering and unlocking their own passions and skills.

Said one student, “Your love and passion for history made me love and appreciate it more than I ever had in my entire life. I came in dreading the fact I was being ‘forced’ to take a history course and the first day of learning it was clear this was going to be one of my favorite courses and has proven to be. It has been a pleasure.” 

The author of Working Hard for the American Dream: Workers and their Unions, World War I to Present (2013) and Red Chicago: American Communism at its Grassroots 1928 to 1935 (2007), Storch is an accomplished scholar who has drawn praise from other historians. She has also authored numerous journal articles, book chapters, book reviews and encyclopedia entries.

She received the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2006, Cortland’s Outstanding Achievement in Research Award in 2013 and the award for Excellence in Research, Scholarship and Outreach at SUNY Cortland in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2017.

Storch earned her B.A. in history with honors from the University of Florida in 1991 and her M.A. and Ph.D. in history in 1992 and 1998, respectively, from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Storch is the 22nd SUNY Cortland faculty member to achieve the Distinguished Teaching Professor rank.

Faculty receive Chancellor’s Awards

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Two SUNY Cortland faculty members received Chancellor’s Awards for Excellence in recognition of consistently superior professional achievement.

The honorees are:

Timothy Davis, associate professor in the Physical Education Department, will receive the Chancellor’s Award for Faculty Service. Davis is a leading scholar and practitioner in the field of adaptive physical education and has provided valuable outreach to children in the local community.

Nance Wilson, professor in the Literacy Department, will receive the Chancellor’s Award for Scholarship and Creative Activities. Wilson is a prolific scholar whose research has had a substantial impact on the field of literacy education.

The Chancellor’s Awards provide system-wide recognition for consistently superior professional achievement and encourage the pursuit of excellence at all 64 SUNY campuses. Each campus president submits nominations, which are reviewed by the SUNY Committee on Awards.

This year’s winners are profiled below:

Timothy Davis

Timothy Davis

Davis has served his academic discipline, SUNY Cortland students and members of the local community in numerous innovative ways. He is the director of SUNY Cortland’s Sensory Integration/Motor Sensory (SIMS) Movement Center and the CHAMP (Cortland-Homer Afterschool Mentorship Program)/I Can Do It afterschool peer mentorship initiative and is the creator of Project DREAM, a service-learning program established to address the needs of transition-age students with disabilities preparing for adulthood.

The long-standing faculty advisor to Project LEAPE (Leadership and Exercise in Adapted Physical Education), Davis helps current SUNY Cortland students plan diverse programming for children and adults with disabilities.

Davis is president of the Adapted Physical Education Section of the New York State Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance and is national chair of the Adapted Physical Education National Standards (APENS) program. He manages the national standards and certification process in adapted physical education sponsored by the National Consortium on Physical Education and Recreation for Individuals with Disabilities (NCPERID).

He is a widely respected authority in the field of adaptive physical education, having made many presentations at professional conferences and authored important published research, including “Sensory Motor Activities Training of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders” in Palaestra in 2017. Davis has secured several grant projects that allowed students to offer adaptive physical and outdoor education experiences to children and adults with physical disabilities.

Davis “has respect from colleagues nationally and internationally and is referred to as one of the best in his field and is sought after for mentoring programs and staff,” one collaborator mentioned.

Dedicated to the success of SUNY Cortland students, Davis has given his time to serve as chair or member of many master theses and honors project committees. He has also provided students with summer research and professional development opportunities.

In addition, he also serves as faculty advisor to SUNY Cortland’s varsity baseball team, the club baseball team, and is a member of the College Affirmative Action Committee, the NCAA Financial Aid Review Committee and the President’s Council on Inclusive Excellence.

Davis is board president and co-founder of Access for Independence of Cortland County, a non-profit that assists people with disabilities to lead independent lives. He has also been involved with Little League and offering soccer clinics for children with disabilities.

He has received the Professional of the Year Service Award from the New York Parent Network and the Franziska Racker Center, the SUNY Cortland Civic Engagement Leadership Award for Outstanding Service to the Community and University and the Outstanding Community Service Award from the Inclusion Network of Cortland County.

Davis earned his B.A. in physical education and his M.A. in adapted physical education and early intervention from the California State University, Chico. He was awarded a Ph.D. in adapted physical education and early childhood special education from the University of Virginia.

Davis is the 17th SUNY Cortland faculty member to earn this recognition.

Nance Wilson

Nance Wilson

Wilson is a leader in the field of literacy education, having published 15 peer-reviewed articles, seven peer-reviewed chapters and co-authoring a book, Literacy Assessment and Instructional Strategies: Connecting to the Common Core, since arriving at Cortland in 2014. Her vast research has demonstrated her expertise in literacy pedagogy, assessment and teaching reading in the middle grades.

Her research focuses largely on teaching and learning literacy. Central to her scholarship is preparing teachers to develop metacognitive readers, digital literacy and critical text analysis of young adult literature. She has also made considerable research contributions in related literacy education areas, including recent work on investigating online teaching platforms and tools.

“She has achieved the rare accomplishment — contributing to her field in a way that significantly benefits both practitioners and scholars,” said associate professor Kimberly Rombach of the Childhood/Early Childhood Education Department. 

As chair of the Literacy Department from 2016 to 2020, Wilson secured the program’s Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) accreditation review and expanded in-person and online course offerings. She created an annual Literacy Conference at SUNY Cortland that entered its fifth year in 2021. The conference draws keynote speakers and attendees from around the nation to share research and best practices in inclusive literacy education.

She organized a conference in 2020, “Beyond the App: Student Focused Literacy Instruction Online,” which was geared to connect U.S. and Egyptian teachers of children in grades 3 through 9 and was held jointly online with the Graduate School of Education at American University in Cairo.

Wilson has served as editor to the journal Reading in the Middle and other disciplinary journals and is an editorial review board member for Reading and Writing Quarterly. In 2015, she received the Brenda S. Townsend Service Award from the American Reading Forum, one of the nation’s foremost organizations for literacy scholars through which Wilson has served as vice chair, chair and past chair.

She earned a B.Sc. in elementary education and secondary education social studies from New York University and her M.Ed. degree in reading from the University of Central Florida. She earned her Ph.D. in reading, writing and literacy from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Wilson is the 18th SUNY Cortland faculty member to earn this recognition.

SUNY honors Cortland staff members

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Three SUNY Cortland staff members were honored with 2020-21 Chancellor’s Awards for Excellence in recognition of consistently superior achievement in professional and classified service.

The honorees are:

  • Mark DePaull, SUNY Cortland’s chief of University Police, received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. He has carried out his responsibilities with service and care that far exceeds what is considered part of his basic obligations.
  • Michelle LoGerfo, assistant director of web and digital marketing, received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. Her work for 14 years has excelled both within and far beyond her position in the university’s Marketing Office.
  • Edith Pennell, an administrative assistant 2 in the Division of Finance and Management, received the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Classified Service. Pennell offers capable, dedicated and kind professionalism that positively impacts the campus community well beyond her specific job title, office and division.

Mark DePaull

DePaull’s colleagues describe him as a true professional who seeks to understand. He is a good listener, strong leader, operations expert and is responsive to any concerns or discussions, said his supervisor, Greg Sharer, vice president for student affairs.

Mark DePaull

Many people may not know the level of skill and experience it takes to successfully serve and protect the campus because DePaull accomplishes the extremely important functions smoothly and seamlessly, his colleagues noted.

DePaull, who joined Cortland’s University Police Department in 1990 as a police officer and rose to the position of chief in 2017, models his ideal for law enforcement professionals as “guardians of the community,” involving effective prevention of harm and appropriate and adequate response.

He excels in emergency preparedness and has developed policies and training protocols to address possibilities from campus violence to mental health critical incidents to responding to a global pandemic.

Within his department, he has developed a comprehensive department succession plan, a mental health crisis response program, and officer wellness initiatives. Across campus, he serves on committees dedicated to promoting diversity and inclusion and ensuring safety, including the Workplace Violence Committee, Bias-Related Incident Response Committee, Title IX Committee, and the Teacher Education Candidate Review Committee.

DePaull twice successfully led the UPD through the rigorous New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) Accreditation Program, writing 115 new policies to meet the state’s 110 accreditation standards. Now he presents to his SUNY counterparts on how to do likewise.

“The more I got to know DePaull, the more I appreciated his insight and professionalism,” said Frank Lawrence, former interim New York State University Police commissioner, noting DePaull coached SUNY Cobleskill through its accreditation process.

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, DePaull ran his department while he took the lead in managing quarantine and isolation housing and co-chaired the Incident Management Team. He also served students in temporary quarantine and isolation directly.

DePaull has worked to bring a training program to all 29 SUNY University Police Departments on areas including ethics, use of force, legal updates, de-escalation and community policing.

He was presented with the Division of Criminal Justice Services John Kimball O’Neil Accreditation Achievement Award in 2011 and 2016, in recognition of his outstanding work with the UPD accreditation process. He also has been honored with the University Police Department Excellence in Professional Police Service Award.

He earned an A.A.S. in applied police science from Erie Community College and completed the School of Police Staff and Command Certificate from Northwestern University’s Center for Public Safety.

DePaull is the 32nd employee honored by SUNY for excellence in professional service.     

Michelle LoGerfo

LoGerfo has played a leadership role on the campus Marketing Committee, which in 2019 oversaw the creation and adoption of new graphic logos and marks.

Michelle LoGerfo

“Her artistic vision and knowledge of cutting-edge digital and web-based technology ensures that SUNY Cortland’s website is accessible and useful to a wide range of audiences, including prospective and current students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members,” said SUNY Cortland President Erik J. Bitterbaum. 

A skilled illustrator, LoGerfo refined the new dragon illustrations to make them more appealing. To showcase them and the university’s other new graphics, she built the Marketing/Communications Toolkit, which provided useful resources for the campus community while strengthening the SUNY Cortland brand identity.

As chair of the Digital Advertising Subcommittee, she takes a lead role in creating and deploying Google display ads that quickly retarget visitors to various academic program websites. LoGerfo led the creation of Cortland’s tremendously successful Spotify ads, which reached 66,948 people.

She was one of the early promoters and created a SUNY-wide model of equitable and inclusive websites. Her article on web accessibility appeared in Social Advocacy and Systems Change Journal

Through the COVID-19 pandemic, her quickly constructed websites, channels and guides have evolved into longer standing resources. LoGerfo additionally joined an ad hoc Student Engagement group that developed outreach messaging and programming to keep students motivated and engaged as they dealt with the stresses of the pandemic.

She swiftly designed a new anti-racism resource page for students, faculty and staff in response to the concurrent nationwide protests for racial justice.

LoGerfo also took a lead role in supporting the May 2020 virtual commencement celebration by creating animations and a GIPHY channel for use in social media exchanges that received more than 268,000 views.

Earlier this year, she joined the Anti-Racism Taskforce and took the lead in developing a brand-new, campus-wide 21-day Anti-Racism Challenge and Facebook page. LoGerfo contributed to the Beloved Community Narratives Project that has highlighted stories of diversity at SUNY Cortland. She is a key participant in the Sophia’s Garden initiative, which connects college students with school-age children to explore the relationships among philosophical issues and literacy.

LoGerfo’s excellence in web development has been recognized with both SUNY Council for University Advancement 2015 Best of Category and 2011 Judge’s Citation awards.

She earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Alfred University in 1996 and her Master of Science in Information Design and Technology from SUNY Polytechnic Institute in 2014.

She is the 33rd employee to be honored by SUNY for excellence in professional service.

Edith Pennell

Pennell, who joined Cortland in 2006, “counters chaos with organization, delay with timeliness, carelessness with professionalism and confusion with wisdom,” summarized Jeffrey Denmon, director of student and college financial services.

Edith Pennell

Jody Maroney, director of budget and business operations, described Pennell as “extremely professional and absolutely reliable.”

Pennell consistently goes above and beyond in her responsibilities, Maroney noted.

“She makes sound decisions and handles sensitive information confidentially,” Maroney said. “When issues arise, she listens to understand what the needs are and then helps find solutions. She thrives on planning events and perfecting every detail to make it enjoyable for all.”

Pennell, who holds a Bachelor of Science in Nutritional Sciences from Cornell University, currently serves as the administrative assistant to the vice president for finance and management while the role is being handled on an interim basis by Mark Prus, provost and vice president for academic affairs.

Pennell helped Prus shift smoothly between his current dual academic and administrative roles and is the consummate professional: organized, knowledgeable and detail oriented.

“Edie makes sure that I am where I’m supposed to be, have the materials I need, and know what I am supposed to know at all times,” Prus said.

“She is always pleasant and upbeat, even when things don’t go well,” Prus said. “I have witnessed firsthand the respect that everyone in her division has for her.”

Carol Van Der Karr, associate provost for academic affairs, praised Pennell’s verbal and written communication skills.

“She understands that not everyone is familiar with the vernacular and jargon of finance and management and makes sure that those outside of the division have a clear understanding of the purpose of meetings, meaning of memos, etc.”

On Dec. 14, SUNY Cortland presented Pennell with the 2020 President’s Award for Excellence in Classified Service, created in 2002 to annually recognize one SUNY Cortland full-time classified service employee nominated by colleagues.

Pennell is the 12th recipient of the SUNY honor for classified service.

New way of promoting student achievements launched

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On June 18, SUNY Cortland’s Communications Office kicked off a new initiative intended to highlight our students’ accomplishments in their social media circles, hometown media outlets, high schools and with their relevant elected officials.

Using the Merit Pages platform, on that day personalized news releases were created for all 802 students who earned a place on the President’s Honor Roll for the fall 2020 semester.

The easily shared stories were emailed directly to them, to 379 high school guidance offices, to 536 news outlets across 16 states stretching from Vermont to Hawaii, and to 268 elected officials representing the students’ hometowns.

The students proceeded to share the personalized achievement through social media, resulting in 838 posts. Several posted it on their LinkedIn accounts as part of their professional profile.

Given the launch’s success, the office will begin to promoter other achievements, with the next one scheduled for later this week. Faculty and staff with ideas for sharing student stories through Merit Pages should contact the Communications Office.

Unless students ask to be excluded, they are automatically enrolled. To be excluded, please send an email message to Communications Director Frederic Pierce at 

In addition to personalized achievement promotion, the university this fall will give every participating student a profile on SUNY Cortland’s website that will be automatically updated to reflect accomplishments publicized through Merit. Students will be able to personalize these profiles and add additional information and accomplishments. By the end of their Cortland careers, these profiles will serve as solid foundations for professional profiles on LinkedIn, Handshake or other career platforms.  

Examples of how Merit works at other institutions are available below: 

Alum muralist finishes project in Cortland

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Nico Cathcart painting

On Thursday, June 24, Nico Cathcart ’08 finished painting a mural, “Bounty,” on the Main Street façade of a warehouse for three Cortland businesses, Catalpa Flower Farms, Food & Ferments and Main Street Farms.

Cathcart, a Homer, N.Y. native, currently resides in Richmond, Va. and has painted murals around the nation, exploring topics including intersectional feminism and climate change.

She was recognized as an “Agent of Change” by the Virginia Museum of History and Culture in 2020 and her work is on display there, the Hermitage Museum in Norfolk, MASS MOCA and in many public places across the U.S.

“Bounty” pays tribute to local sustainable agriculture, pollinators and wildlife.

Learn more about Cathcart from her March interview with Red Dragon Tales. View more of her murals and artwork on Instagram at @nicocathcart.

Bounty mural

Virtual Reunion 2021 coming in July

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SUNY Cortland alumni are invited to join Virtual Reunion 2021, an online celebration of our graduates, their achievements and all things Cortland, which runs from July 12 to 16.

Alumni may register online. A full list of events and activities is available on All events are free and open to all. Those interested in attending any virtual events are asked to register by Monday, July 5 to ensure that all can be accommodated.

Virtual Reunion 2021 events include:

Thursday, July 8

  • Honorary Alumni Award Ceremony, Webex, 5 p.m. Nabila Khazzaka, former Alumni Engagement secretary, will receive the Alumni Association’s Honorary Alumni award.

Monday, July 12

  • International Programs Office Update and Social, Webex, noon. Mary Schlarb, director of the International Programs Office, will share updates on the university’s study abroad and international student programs, international partnerships and campus internationalization. The event will include time for questions and answers and for study abroad and international alumni to share their experiences.
  • Distinguished Educator Award Ceremony, Webex, 5 p.m. Perry Berkowitz ’65, Micah Kurtz ’03, John Perricone ’81 and John Scott ’70 will receive the Alumni Association’s Distinguished Educator award.
  • Distinguished Alumni Award Ceremony, Webex, 7 p.m. Scott Gordon ’88, Sidney Jamieson ’64, Karen Joskow Mendelsohn ’76, Joseph McInerney ’70 and Patti Anne Vassia ’65 will receive the Alumni Association’s Distinguished Alumni award.

Tuesday, July 13

  • Create a Legacy at SUNY Cortland, Webex, noon. Rich Coyne ’07, associate vice president of Institutional Advancement, will be joined by Lofty Elm Society members Sandy Morley ’77 and David Turybury ’90 to talk about how alumni can establish a legacy through a planned gift to SUNY Cortland. Participants will be able to ask questions and get answers from the panelists.
  • Outstanding Volunteer Award Ceremony, Webex, 5 p.m. Timothy Bennett ’07, Joseph Eppolito ’74, M ’76 and Stephen Penn ’86 will receive the Alumni Association’s Outstanding Volunteer award.
  • Distinguished Young Alumni Award Ceremony, Webex, 7 p.m. Khalia Brown Banks ’13, Evelyn Botwe ’12, Ashley Crossway ’13, Therno Diallo ’16, Rachael Forester ’12, M ’14, Ed.D and Christina Papaleo ’14 will receive the Alumni Association’s Distinguished Young Alumni award.

Wednesday, July 14

  • A SUNY Cortland Update with President Erik J. Bitterbaum, Webex, noon. President Bitterbaum will share the latest SUNY Cortland news and will answer questions from alumni posted in the chat.
  • Career Services for a Redefined World of Work, Webex, 7 p.m. Michele Baran ’01, M ’03, associate director of Career Services, will provide a brief overview of Career Services at SUNY Cortland and discuss the pandemic’s impact on jobs and the workplace.

Thursday, July 15

  • Virtual Campus Tour, Facebook Live, noon. Taylor Lynch ’17, assistant director of Alumni Engagement, and a former campus tour guide, will take alumni on a walkthrough of campus to share what it looks like today.
  • College Archives, Webex, 7 p.m. College Archivist and Instructional Services Librarian Jeremy Pekarek and Director of Libraries Jennifer Kronenbitter will host a presentation on SUNY Cortland’s collection of yearbooks, photographs, newspapers, recordings and more. Participants will be able to ask questions and learn more about ways to assist with online collections.

Friday, July 16

  • Orientation Assistant Reunion, Webex, 11 a.m. Orientation Assistants of the past will get a chance to connect with today’s Orientation team, play games and share their favorite stories.
  • Multicultural Life and Diversity Office Update and Social, Webex, noon. AnnaMaria Cirrincione, director of Multicultural Life and Diversity, will share updates from her office’s work. Participants also will have an opportunity to reconnect and socialize.

In addition to the virtual events, the Red Dragon Run Virtual 5k for Alumni Engagement starts on Thursday, July 1 and concludes on Thursday, July 15. Alumni are encouraged to join current students, faculty, staff and friends in the third edition of the Red Dragon Run series. All money raised will benefit the SUNY Cortland Alumni Association. Learn more and register online.

A photo contest opens on Monday, July 12 and will continue through Thursday, July 15. A vote to pick the winning submission will be held on Friday, July 16. Alumni and friends may post photos to social media by tagging SUNY Cortland alumni accounts and using the hashtag #CortlandReunion. Full rules are posted online. Follow the Alumni Association on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to share your posts and learn more.

More information about the Alumni Association’s award winners from 2020 and 2021 are also available on Congratulations to the deserving recipients!

Alumni Reunion will return to the SUNY Cortland campus in 2022 from July 14 to 17. Learn more and preregister for next year’s events on

Questions? Contact Alumni Engagement at 607-753-2516.

Red Dragon student-athletes earn 268 academic honors

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SUNY Cortland’s student-athletes turned in a program-best year in the classroom. 

The State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) recently recognized 262 SUNY Cortland student-athletes for a total of 268 awards on its 2020-21 Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll.

The university led the conference both in its total number of awards and number of student-athletes recognized.

Athletes earn a spot on the list by recording at least a 3.3 cumulative grade point average. The 2020-21 school year is the fifth for the honor roll and Cortland’s 268 awards are its highest annual total thus far. The Red Dragons earned 253 honors in 2019-20, 210 in 2018-19, 174 in 2017-18 and 166 in 2016-17.

The 268 Cortland selections are broken down by sport as follows:

Women’s Cross Country/Track and Field - 29
Women's Soccer - 21
Football - 19
Men’s Cross Country/Track and Field - 18
Women’s Swimming and Diving - 17
Women’s Volleyball - 15
Women’s Basketball - 14
Men's Ice Hockey - 14
Baseball - 13
Softball - 13
Women’s Ice Hockey - 12
Men's Lacrosse - 12
Women’s Lacrosse - 12
Field Hockey - 10
Men’s Swimming and Diving - 9
Women’s Gymnastics - 8
Men’s Soccer - 8
Men’s Basketball - 7
Wrestling - 7
Women’s Golf - 5
Women’s Tennis - 5

Six student-athletes earned awards in multiple sports (not including cross country/track and field, which are combined for the purpose of this list). All of Cortland’s sports are honored, even if they are not sports sponsored by the SUNYAC.

Complete List of Cortlands 2020-21 Recipients (PDF)

Archive of SUNYAC academic winners from 1995-2021

President explains revised COVID-19 guidelines for employees

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Dear faculty and staff,

Recently, we received guidance from the state allowing us to lift many COVID-19 restrictions for employees who have been fully vaccinated. Employees who have not provided proof of vaccination will need to continue following many of the safety guidelines in place during the 2020-21 academic year. 

This approach is designed to protect the health of all people on campus. Earlier today, all employees received an email message from Human Resources asking them to review and affirm the new protocols by July 9. 

All employees who do not submit proof of vaccination are pledging that they will continue to:

  • Wear face coverings  
  • Stay six feet away from other people 
  • Complete a daily online health screening  
  • Participate in weekly pool testing 

Employees who submit the required vaccination documentation, however, may choose not to wear masks or stay socially distant. They will not be required to participate in regular screening or pool testing. They may, of course, continue to follow face covering and distancing protocols if they wish.

Please read the message from Human Resources carefully. It provides a lot of information you need to know. 

I applaud those employees who have helped the battle against COVID-19 by getting vaccinated. And I urge those who are able to receive a vaccination but have not yet done so to take that important step. The more of us who are vaccinated, the sooner we can move beyond the pandemic. 

All the best, 

Erik J. Bitterbaum

Miller Building offices relocate due to construction

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SUNY Cortland will begin a renovation of the university’s main administrative building this summer that takes place through 2022.

The project will transform Miller Building’s second and third floors, which house several offices serving both students and employees. The work will provide the first complete upgrade to those two floors since Miller Building opened in 1967. When the project is completed, office locations will more closely align based on their services.

Many offices in the building also will relocate as a result of the construction.

Work on the second and third floors is expected to begin in July and the entire project should wrap up by the Fall 2022 semester.

The building’s fourth-floor offices including the President’s Office will move temporarily during the project’s demolition phase, which is scheduled to take place through November. The Admissions Office will remain open on the first floor.

The full list of relocated offices is included below. For questions related to relocation, contact Facilities Planning Design and Construction at 607-753-2214.

  • Associate Provost’s Office *
    New location: Old Main, Room 226
  • Business Office
    New location: Broadway House (29 Broadway Ave.)
  • Extended Learning Office
    New location: Cornish Hall, Room D116
  • Financial Aid Office
    New location: Old Main, Room 137
  • Human Resources Office
    New location: Cornish/Van Hoesen halls, mobile office building
  • Institutional Equity and Inclusion Office *
    New location: Moffett Center, Room 207E
  • Institutional Research and Analysis Office *
    New location: Old Main, Room 226
  • Payroll Office
    New location: Van Hoesen Hall, Room C13
  • President’s Office *
    New location: Memorial Library, Room B304
  • Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Office *
    New location: Old Main, Room 217
  • Research and Sponsored Programs Office
    New location: Van Hoesen Hall, Room C101
  • Special Events for the President
    New location: Van Hoesen Hall, Room C101
  • Student Registration and Record Services
    New location: Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge
  • Student Accounts Office
    New location: Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge
  • Title IX Office *
    New location: Moffett Center, Room 207D
  • Vice President for Finance and Management Office *
    New location: Whitaker Hall, Room 213

* Scheduled to return to Miller Building for Spring 2022 semester.

Note: The Admissions Office remains open on the first floor of the Miller Building.

SUNY Cortland Brings Home Three SUNYCUAD Awards

The Division of Institutional Advancement received three awards at the SUNY Council for University Advancement (SUNYCUAD) Awards for Excellence, presented during the virtual conference held June 10 to 11.

•  A Best of Category award in the Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion/Diversity Initiatives grouping for the Beloved Community Narratives Project. The Beloved Community Narratives Project is a photo exhibit of 24 large-scale portraits of students, faculty, staff and alumni who share their essential life stories with campus and community.

•  A Judges’ Citation award in the Excellence in Events/Development and Fundraising category for the Cortland College Foundation’s 2021 Cortland Challenge campaign. The “All In: Building on Success” campaign aims to raise funds to support five key institutional goals that will enhance student access to a transformational education, cultivate opportunities for our faculty and elevate the SUNY Cortland’s national profile.

•  A Judges’ Citation for Excellence in Photography/Individual Photograph taken by Will Montgomery, Communications Office. The photo was taken at the Pan African Student Association Fashion Show on March 7, 2020 and shows a student runway model wearing an outfit designed and produced by students to promote African cultural heritage and diversity.

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Faculty/Staff Activities

Brittany Adams and Annemarie Kaczmarczyk

Brittany Adams, Literacy Department, and Annemarie Kaczmarczyk, Childhood/Early Childhood Education Department, had an article, “Initiating Courageous Conversations about Race and Racism with Read-Alouds,” published in The Language and Literacy Spectrum, volume 31, issue 1.  

Caroline Kaltefleiter

Caroline Kaltefleiter, Communication and Media Studies Department, moderated a discussion with film director James Dean Le Sueur, who directed The Art of Dissent, one of the feature films screened at the BlackBird Film Festival held June 17 to 20. The Art of Dissent documents the power of artistic engagement and inspired resistance in Czechoslovakia before and after the 1968 Soviet-led invasion. In addition, Kaltefleiter was a producer for the film “Fill the Need,” which features original music written and performed by Colleen Kattau, Modern Languages Department, and also was screened at the festival.

Christina Knopf

Christina Knopf, Communication and Media Studies Department, had her book chapter, “Superman, a Super Freak: Returning the Man of Steel to the Circus in DC Bombshells,” published in Adapting Superman: Essays on the Transmedia Man of Steel, McFarland & Co., 2021.

Lin Lin

Lin Lin, Childhood and Early Childhood Education Department, presented at the SUNY Conference on Instruction and Technology on Thursday, May 27 on the topic of “My Love Affair with Nearpod.” She shared her experiences of using engaging online tools to promote historical reasoning skills and media literacy in her synchronous courses in the last three semesters.  

Rhiannon Maton

Rhiannon Maton, Foundations and Social Advocacy Department, recently had two interviews published in Spectre Journal. The first examines teacher organizing in Philadelphia during Covid-19, and the second interviews two educators in Vancouver, Canada about their recent union organizing efforts. 

Will Montgomery

Will Montgomery, Communications Office, received the SUNY Council for University Advancement (SUNYCUAD) Judges’ Citation for Excellence in Photography/Individual Photograph for the Pan African Student Association Fashion Show. The photo, taken March 7, 2020 in Corey Union, is a runway shot of one of the many fashions designed and produced by students striving to raise awareness about African cultural heritage around the world. Montgomery covers campus events for the Communications Office’s social media accounts and university news services.

Winning photo taken by Will Montgomery

Mechthild Nagel

Mechthild Nagel, Philosophy and Africana Studies departments and director of the Center for Ethics, Peace, and Social Justice, had her book chapter titled “Transitional Justice in Rwanda and South Africa” published this spring in The Routledge International Handbook on Penal Abolition.

Robert Spitzer

Robert Spitzer, Political Science Department, is interviewed in a new feature-length documentary, “The Price of Freedom.” Produced by Flatbush Pictures and Tribeca Films, it takes a fresh look at America’s gun history and the contemporary gun controversy from multiple perspectives, including a deep dive into the pivotal role of the NRA. The film had its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City at Hudson Yards on June 16. Spitzer, who also served as a consultant, attended the premiere. The film is expected to have a July theatrical release.

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