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Media Contacts

Emily Vincent
Director, University Media Relations

Bob Burford
Marketing/External Relations Coordinator

Today's Kent State Experts

Kent State University is home to world-renowned researchers and scholars in their fields of study and academic programs that have received national and worldwide attention. To request an interview with one or more of the following university experts, please contact Emily Vincent ( or 330-672-8595) or Bob Burford ( or 330-672-8516) of the university’s media relations team.


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C. Owen Lovejoy

Kent State University Professor of Anthropology C. Owen Lovejoy is an internationally recognized biological anthropologist who specializes in the study of human origins. He was one of the researchers who introduced the world to “Ardi” (Ardipithecus ramidus), a hominid species that lived 4.4 million years ago. This discovery changes the way we think of human evolution and was named the 2009 Science Breakthrough of the Year. In addition to “Ardi,” Lovejoy is well-known for the reconstruction of the skeleton of “Lucy,” a fossil of a human ancestor that walked upright more than three million years ago.


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Isaac Richmond Nettey

I. Richmond Nettey is the associate dean of the College of Technology. Nettey is a past president of the University Aviation Association and the 2004 recipient of the McNair Award for a lifetime of contribution to aeronautics. Nettey serves as a consultant for the Department of Homeland Security, as well as an airport management consultant for the Houston Airport System. Nettey works on the editorial board of the Journal of Air Transport and on the review panel of Collegiate Aviation Review, which are the two leading journals in collegiate aviation.


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Doug Steidl

Doug Steidl serves as dean of Kent State’s College of Architecture and Environmental Design, the only architectural program in Northeast Ohio. The college provides students with a comprehensive education for practice in the field and also serves as a major center for research. The university’s Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative in Cleveland combines the outreach efforts of the Urban Design Center of Northeast Ohio with the college’s graduate studies program in urban design.

Biopreparedness & Infectious Diseases

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Christopher Woolverton

Christopher Woolverton is professor of environmental health sciences in the university’s new College of Public Health and director of Kent State’s Center for Public Health Preparedness. He developed and patented a device that rapidly identifies disease-causing agents, including bioterror agents, in real time using liquid crystals. Woolverton oversees Kent State’s BSL-3 Designated Training Facility, one of only two in the United States, for the National Biosafety and Biocontainment Training Program of the National Institutes of Health.

Emerging Technology

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Oleg Lavrentovich

Kent State is known for the Liquid Crystal Institute where researchers discovered the innovation that fueled the flat panel display industry. Oleg Lavrentovich is director of the Liquid Crystal Institute. The institute is a center for basic and applied liquid crystal research, and its achievements include the discovery and characterization of new liquid crystalline phases and the invention of new types of liquid crystal devices. Active research collaborations with scientific centers and industrial partners in the United States and abroad provide exciting opportunities for applying today's cutting-edge research to tomorrow’s technologies.


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J.R. Campbell

J.R. Campbell is director of the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising at the university. He is an expert in digital textile technology. Kent State’s fashion design program is ranked among the top schools of fashion in the United States. Students study design in studios in New York City and Florence, Italy.

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Jean Druesedow

As director of the Kent State University Museum, Jean Druesedow oversees one of the world’s finest collections of high fashion garments. The museum, which celebrated its 25 anniversary last year, possesses 40,000 objects. The Kent State University Museum currently hosts the world premiere of a new exhibit featuring performance items owned by Katharine Hepburn.

Journalism and Mass Communication

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Jeff Fruit

Jeff Fruit is director of Kent State’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication, which is one of the nation’s top 20 journalism programs and has established a national reputation for producing well-prepared, professional graduates. Kent State’s student media operate with a converged newsroom with the student newspaper, website, television station, radio station and magazine working together to cover the news and get hands-on experience before entering the workforce.


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Laura Dzurec

Kent State’s College of Nursing is the largest residential nursing school in the country in terms of enrollment, and Laura Dzurec serves as its dean. The college provides comprehensive programs of study on the Kent State’s eight campuses, including entry-level associate and baccalaureate nursing degree programs, licensed practical nurse and registered nurse completion programs, a Master of Science in Nursing, post-graduate certificate programs, and a doctorate in nursing program.

Pan-African Studies

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Fran Dorsey

Francis E. Dorsey is an associate professor in the Department of Pan-African Studies. Dorsey is also the former director of the Center of Pan-African Culture (1987-1999) and co-founder and artistic director of the African Community Theatre at Kent State. The African Community Theatre encourages area residents and students to participate in or attend African-American theatrical productions, enhances the communication skills of the actors and increases awareness and provides an appreciation of the African heritage through theatre.


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Angela Neal-Barnett

Angela Neal-Barnett is an associate professor of psychology and an avid researcher of anxiety and panic disorders among African-Americans. Neal-Barnett’s current research focuses on sister circles as an anxiety intervention for professional African-American women. Neal-Barnett’s research has been featured on CNN, NPR, BET and in the New York Times. In addition, Neal-Barnett also examines the role racial identity plays in the development of anxiety in African-American adolescents.

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Katherine Rawson

Katherine Rawson is an assistant professor in Kent State’s Department of Psychology. In 2010, she was one of 100 beginning researchers honored by President Barack Obama at the White House, receiving the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers. It is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on young professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Nominated by the U.S. Department of Education, Rawson’s research seeks to identify effective study strategies and study schedules for students to learn classroom material in a durable and efficient manner.

Public Health

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Mark James

Mark Jones is the assistant dean of Kent State’s new College of Public Health, Ohio’s second college of public health. The new college was established to help meet the demonstrated state and national need for public health professionals. In Ohio alone, the projected shortage of educated and trained public health professionals is estimated to be in excess of 10,000 workers by 2020.


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Hedi Nasheri

Hedi Nasheri is a professor of sociology at Kent State University and a visiting professor at the University of Turku Law School in Finland. Nasheri has been appointed as a senior research fellow at New York University School of Law's Center for Research in Crime and Justice. She is a visiting fellow at Columbia University's National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse and a fellow at the University of London's Institute of Advanced Legal Studies. Nasheri has served as an advisor for a number of years on complex litigation matters, including cases involving product liability. Nasheri was the past president of the American Association for Paralegal Education (AAfPE) and is currently the chair of the International Board of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences.

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