Jason Yaeger is an anthropological archaeologist who studies Mesoamerican and Andean civilizations, particularly the Maya and Inka. He received his A.B. in Anthropology at the University of Michigan in 1991 and his Ph.D. in Anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania in 2000. His research interests include the organization of ancient households and communities, urbanism, landscapes and environments, the relationship between climate change and culture change, material culture and identity, ethnohistory, the politics of archaeological research, and Maya epigraphy and iconography. Much of his research has sought to understand the organization of Classic Maya rural communities and the practices, institutions, and constructs that linked rural householders into extra-community socio-political entities. His current research project focuses on documenting the changing relationships between Xunantunich and the rival center of Buenavista and understanding how competition between these two polities impacted the people who lived in the intervening countryside.
Dr. Yaeger began his academic career at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he taught for 10 years before coming to UTSA as Associate Professor of Anthropology in 2010. In 2016, he was named UTSA President’s Endowed Professor of Anthropology. He has served as department chair since 2014.
Mr. Gregory Elliott begins his position as Chair of the Art Department at UTSA effective August 18, 2008. Mr. Elliott earned his MFA degree from Southern Methodist University in 1988, where he also received his MA degree in 1980. In 2003 Mr. Elliott, began serving as the Chairman for the Department of Art at the University of Texas at El Paso. During his tenure, the number of art majors grew by approximately 50% and he was instrumental in developing and implementing UTEP's Quality Enhancement Plan. Professor Elliott also served as head of the sculpture area and graduate coordinator at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana from 1998 to 2002.
Professor Elliott comes to UTSA as a widely acknowledged leader of the arts in the El Paso region, and is credited with being instrumental in accomplishing the opening of the Stanlee and Gerald Rubin Center for the Visual Arts Center, the cornerstone of cultural activities at UTEP. As a tenured professor, he has shown a dedication to making education a priority and is committed to improving teaching and learning in the visual arts. Mr. Elliott also has a long list of artistic and scholarly awards and exhibitions and has received numerous grants and fellowships.
Dr. Paul LeBlanc began his position as Chair of the Department of Communication on September 1, 2010. He previously served as the Graduate Advisor of Record for the MA Program in Communication for three years. He received his MA in Communication in 1992 from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge and his PhD in Communication in 2000 from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. He has been a faculty member at UTSA since 2001. His research focuses on health communication, family communication and communication education. He is currently conducting research on marital communication. His primary research question is "How do relational partners communicate inclusion?" Dr. LeBlanc has received a faculty research award and served as a faculty mentor for the Lancy Scholarship program. In addition to research, Dr. LeBlanc teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in social interaction and interpersonal communication He also teaches in the communication core with a particular interest in research methods. He is an active supporter of graduate and undergraduate student research, and has supervised 14 student papers presented at conferences, three of which received honors. He has also supervised three student projects that were subsequently published. He has directed and reviewed both graduate and undergraduate theses.
Dr. Mark Bayer began his tenure as department chair in 2013. His research focuses on the reception of early modern drama--both the local conditions of dramatic performance in sixteenth and seventeenth century London, and the reception of Shakespeare’s plays in contexts ranging from the modern Middle East to nineteenth century America. In his first book, Theatre, Community, and Civic Engagement in Jacobean London (University of Iowa Press, 2011), he claimed that playgoing enhanced social capital and contributed to community formation in early modern London—especially in the neighborhoods where specific playhouses were located. His current project looks at the emergence of Shakespeare studies as an institutionalized academic discipline in the United States during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
Eugene Dowdy is a professor and director of orchestral studies and instrumental conducting at the University of Texas at San Antonio, a position he has held for twenty years. He conducts the UTSA Orchestra and the Lyric Theatre Orchestra and is the founding director of the UTSA String Project, a nationally recognized teacher-training program. Dowdy is the Conductor and Artistic Director of the Symphony of the Hills, Kerrville, Texas. That position followed his four-year appointment as Assistant Conductor with the Mid-Texas Symphony. For six years he served as the music department chair at UTSA, and is currently the Interim Chair. Professor Dowdy has led the UTSA Orchestra in diverse venues and genres including collaborations and appearances with the Brubecks, internationally-acclaimed Baroque violinist Rachel Podger, the progressive rock band KANSAS, Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlan, and in world premieres of numerous orchestral and operatic works. The UTSA Orchestra performed as the featured university orchestra at the 2017 TMEA Convention, and has performed by invitation and on tour in Texas, Mexico, and Italy.
Dowdy received the doctoral degree in orchestral conducting with James Dixon at the University of Iowa, a master’s degree in music education from UTSA with Donald Hodges, and the bachelor’s degree from UT Austin, where he was awarded a Performance Certificate in Violin and taught in the University of Texas String Project under the direction of Phyllis Young. He taught award winning public school orchestras for nine years in San Antonio’s NEISD, conducted orchestras for nine summers at the Interlochen Arts Camp, and continues to serves as an honorary Resident Conductor of the Youth Orchestras of San Antonio. Dowdy is past president of both the Texas Orchestra Directors Association and the Texas Chapter of the American String Teachers Association, and former executive director of the National String Project Consortium. He is an active guest conductor, having appeared with orchestras and festivals around the United States (Texas, Alaska, Wyoming, Georgia, Missouri, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, California, and Iowa), and in Mexico, Austria, France, and Italy. He has been invited to conduct one of the Florida All-State Orchestras in 2019. He is a member of numerous professional and honorary societies including the American Federation of Musicians (Local 23), Pi Kappa Lambda, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, Sigma Alpha Iota (Friend of the Arts), and Mu Omicron. Gene and his wife Stacy have two daughters, Jessica and Rachel (a UTSA alumna).
Eve Browning joins UTSA as chair of the Department of Philosophy and Classics. She grew up in Florida, graduated from the University of Florida, and holds a Ph.D. from the University of California San Diego. Most recently she was Professor and Chair of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Minnesota Duluth. Her research centers on ancient Greek and Roman philosophy and culture. In her spare time she enjoys trail riding with her horse Gentle John.
James H. Bray, Ph.D. will join the University of Texas San Antonio as Chairman of the Psychology Department in August 2017. Dr. Bray will establish the UTSA Family Psychology Health Laboratory to continue his research on the impact of family transitions and relationship factors on children, adolescents and adults. He will also pursue continued work on psychosocial and family factors associated with adolescent substance use and abuse.
Dr. Bray is currently an Associate Professor of Family and Community Medicine and Psychiatry at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. Dr. Bray serves on the Council of Representatives of the American Psychological Association for the Division on Addictions. He was the 2015 President of the Texas Psychological Association and the 2009 President of the American Psychological Association. His presidential themes were the Future of Psychology Practice and Science and Psychology’s Contribution to Ending Homelessness. He is also president of the Division of Professional Practice of the International Association of Applied Psychology. Dr. Bray’s NIH funded research focuses on adolescent substance use, divorce, remarriage and stepfamilies. He has published over 200 articles in major journal and books. He was the director of a federal HRSA faculty development program for physicians and was the director of the SAMSHA funded project on screening, brief intervention and referral to treatment (SBIRT) project. He is a pioneer in collaborative healthcare and primary care psychology. He has presented his work in 20 countries. He also maintains an active clinical practice focusing on families and health psychology.
Dr. Xu received his Master’s degree in sociology from Michigan State University and his PhD from the University of Michigan. His research examines how social change, race and ethnicity, and religion affect family lives in the United States. Over the past few years, Dr. Xu has developed a well-recognized expertise in the area of comparative family studies. His research explores the changing trends in marriage and family relationships in the People’s Republic of China, Taiwan and the United States. His current projects examine 1) religion and the timing of remarriage among American Women, 2) correlates and public health consequences of intimate partner violence in urban Thailand, and 3) family violence in African societies. He has served as an editorial board member for American Sociological Review, and is currently serving as an editorial board member for Journal of Marriage and Family and Sociological Inquiry. Dr. Xu’s research has appeared in such journals as American Journal of Preventive Medicine, American Journal of Public Health, Journal of Adolescent Health, Journal of Comparative Family Studies, Journal of Family Issues, Journal of Family Violence, Journal for Scientific Study of Religion, Journal of Marriage and Family, Population Research and Policy Review, Review of Religious Research, Social Indicators Research, Social Science Research, Sociological Quarterly, and Youth & Society. He is presently working on a service project to establish a secured laboratory in the Department of Sociology.
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