Faculty Spotlight

Faculty Spotlight, Spring 2020

Rebecca Chamberlain

Since her last submission, Rebecca Chamberlain has published essays, given presentations, and participated in institutes that feature storytelling, indigenous languages and diversity, astronomy research within interdisciplinary communities of practice, creative writing, writing and sustainability, and contemplative practices in higher education. Her publications include: “‘Lifting the Sky:’ A Salish Star Story told by Vi Hilbert” in Supporting Diversity and Inclusion with Story: Authentic Folktales and Discussion Guides; “Is Binary Star WDS 21200+5259 really a Binary Star?” in Journal of Double Star Observations; and “Student Scientific Research within Communities-of-Practice” published by The Society for Astronomical Sciences. During the spring of 2020, Chamberlain’s “Writing and Walking: Pilgrimage and Practice,” from the Curriculum For the Bioregion (2012), is being adapted and used by Wendy Call and other English professors as part of a curriculum in writing and sustainability in response to COVID-19.

She offered a guest lecture on “Salish Star Stories,” and “Supporting Diversity with Story,” with Lois Landgrebe (Tulalip) and St. Martin’s University in April 2020. She organized a Story Slam with Story Oly, the South Sound Storytelling Guild in February 2020. She participated the Creative Writing Institute at St. Martin’s University in 2019. She led a summer star hunt for the Lacey Timberland Library in August 2019, and she presented on “Binary Star Research: Communities of Practice in STEM Education,” at the Olympia Timberland Library’s Science Café in August 2019. She participated at the Lushootseed Research Language Conference in 2018 and 2019. She participated in “Finding Our Voice In a Many-Layered World: Incarnation and Contemplative Practice” at a retreat with the Lorian Foundation in June 2019. She has also attended events at Evergreen’s Indigenous Arts Campus and Art of Giving. She recently composed a piece of electronic music inspired by Bach and meets monthly with a group of local fiction writers.  

Sean Williams

Sean Williams completed the second edition of her Irish music textbook, Focus: Irish Traditional Music (Routledge 2020). It appears ten years after the publication of the first edition, and features new sections on equity and inclusion; Irish music and white nationalism; and Irish punk, hip hop, and country. In July of 2019 her book, English Grammar: 100 Tragically Common Mistakes (and How to Correct Them) was published by Zephyros Press.                        

Sara Huntington

Sara Huntington recently published “Goya's Boy: Flying in the Face of a Diagnosis” in The American Journal of Psychology. This nonfiction essay is not typical of the articles published in AJP. However, it is informative because it provides a very powerful and moving personal description of dealing with mental illness in a family member. The essay serves as a reminder to scientifically oriented psychologists that although there is much value in our research and theories of human cognition and behavior being objective, functioning in everyday life consists of emotional as well as behavioral interactions with other people that are specific to each person’s want, needs, and expectations.                      

Nancy Koppelman

Nancy Koppelman's art essay “A Contradictory Silence” will be published later this year in a photobook about the labor organization Woodmen of the World; the author/artist is John Howard and the book is Felling and Pining (Valencia, Spain: University of Valencia Press). Her memoir “Learning to Look Inside” was published in the August/September 2019 issue of Threads Magazine. Nancy was a Summer Fellow at the Schusterman Center for Israel Studies at Brandeis University in Waltham, MA and in Israel during the summer of 2019.  She will hold the title of Visiting Research Scholar at the Schusterman Center through the summer of 2022.   

Jeff Antonelis-Lapp

Emeritus Faculty Jeff Antonelis-Lapp’s Tahoma and Its People, a Natural History of Mount Rainier National Park, was released by Washington State University Press in March. As noted in its press release, Tahoma “moves well beyond traditional guides to offer the only comprehensive, up-to-date natural and environmental history of Mount Rainier National Park, its watersheds, and its present and past human communities.” Over his ten years of fieldwork, Antonelis-Lapp helped geologists measure the Nisqually Glacier, sifted soils at archaeological sites in search of stone tool artifacts, and surveyed for the federally protected northern spotted owl. These and other firsthand experiences with park scientists, supplemented by an extensive bibliography, helped Antonelis-Lapp bring forward new information about the presence of Native Americans at Mount Rainier dating back over 9,000 years, and the cascading effects of climate change that extend far beyond the mountain’s receding glaciers. The Evergreen State College is prominent in the text, including a section on the Sustainability in Prisons Project native plant and butterflying-rearing programs, and eight pen and ink drawings by Evergreen Emeritus Faculty Lucia Harrison. On-campus and Olympia-area presentations are scheduled for this spring.                      

Shawn Hazboun

Shawn Hazboun was first author of two journal articles. The first, which was co-authored and appeared in the November 2019 issue of Energy Research & Social Science, was called "Keep quiet on climate: Assessing public response to seven renewable energy frames in the Western United States." The second was about citizen perspectives on fossil fuels export and shipping in the Pacific Northwest, and appeared in the November 2019 issue of Extractive Industries & Society, titled "A left coast ‘thin green line’? Determinants of public attitudes toward fossil fuel export in the Northwestern United States."   

Alison Styring

Alison Styring is the author of three recent publications: “Biotic interactions help explain variation in  elevational range limits of birds among Bornean mountains” in Journal of Biogeography; “Occupancy patterns and upper range limits of lowland Bornean birds along an elevational gradient” In Journal of Biogeography; and a species factsheet in BirdLife International. Alison was selected as one of 20 participants among a US-nationwide pool of applicants to attend the National Science Foundation event, "Biodiversity and Conservation Research: Workshop to enhance collaboration between US and Indonesia." Many connections between Evergreen and Indonesian Universities were made and we are now beginning some initial planning for conservation-related bird ecology projects. Additionally, three Evergreen students worked on a collaborative conservation project in Sarawak Malaysia with Alison Styring and Sarawak Forestry. Our goal was to document avian biodiversity in a newly designated national park.  The new national park gained its status, in part, from avian surveys that were conduct by Alison and a team of US and Malaysian conservationists in 2006. The area has changed dramatically since that time, but the protection status is exciting and the Evergreen students gained valuable experience in survey methods, international collaboration, and professional presentation.    

Erik Thuesen

Erik Thuesen attended the Ocean Sciences meeting in San Diego, California in February. He was co-author on three presentations: "Moving beyond medusa: integrating siphonophores into marine foodwebs," "The next phase of ctenophore diversity, taxonomy and phylogenetic", and "Effects of hydrostatic pressure on the metabolic enzymes of ctenophores from different habitat depths." Erik is coauthor with former visiting resource faculty Esteban Paolucci on a paper "Effects of osmotic and thermal shock on the invasive aquatic mudsnail Potamopyrgus antipodarum: mortality and physiology under stressful conditions.” And he is also coauthor on a paper "Combing Transcriptomes for Secrets of Deep-Sea Survival: Environmental Diversity Drives Patterns of Protein Evolution," published in Integrative and Comparative Biology.                    

Carri LeRoy

Carri LeRoy published a paper in the journal Plant and Soil examining how tree genetics interact in cottonwood forests to affect leaf litter decomposition. The research was started in 2012 and tracked leaf decomposition in an experimental roest site on the lower Colorado River, in Arizona. Leaves from individual cottonwood tree genotypes in the southwest were placed under trees that were either the same, or a different genotype. The research showed that the genotypes interacted resulting in different outcomes for different combinations of genotypes. This research demonstrates why genetic diversity in trees is so important, because unique combinations of tree genetics result in unique outcomes for how ecosystems function.                      

Dylan Fischer

Dylan Fischer published a paper (“Do genetically-specific tree canopy environments feed back to affect genetically specific leaf decomposition rates?”) in Plant and Soil examining how tree genetics interact in cottonwood forests to affect leaf litter decomposition. The research was started in 2012 and tracked leaf decomposition in an experimental roest site on the lower Colorado River, in Arizona. Leaves from individual cottonwood tree genotypes in the southwest were placed under trees that were either the same, or a different genotype. The research showed that the genotypes interacted resulting in different outcomes for different combinations of genotypes. This research demonstrates why genetic diversity in trees is so important, because unique combinations of tree genetics result in unique outcomes for how ecosystems function.   

Another one of Dylan’s papers ("Self-similarity, leaf litter traits, and neighborhood predicting fine root dynamics in a common-garden forest") presents a spatial genetics approach to examining the potential impacts of neighbor trees on individual tree root growth.  Using a spatial model of trees growing in a common garden experimental forest, we looked at potential feedbacks from neighbor trees on individual tree root growth. We compared models that considered only individual trees, quantity of neighbor leaf inputs to soils, quality of neighbor leaf inputs to soils, and how genetically different neighbor trees were. We found that root growth was sensitive to neighbors, but some other root dynamics processes were still most closely predicted by genetics of the individual. The models demonstrate how to incorporate a spatial perspective when considering genetic-based plant-soil feedbacks.                          

Douglas Schuler

Doug has been fairly busy since he retired in 2017, including writing several articles related to technology, democracy, and civic intelligence. His article "Can technology support democracy?" in the first edition of Digital Government: Research and Practice, reminded people, especially computer scientists, that democracy is not as easily "improved" with technology as they might presume. In "History and the social responsibility of computing professionals" he described early protests by computer professionals, mostly in relation to the Vietnam war, and the responsibility of computer professionals to speak out in relation to today's crises which are often exacerbated with computer technology. His editorial "We are Destroying the One Thing that Could Save Us" presents the importance of civic intelligence, evidence of its degradation, and ideas for cultivating it. Finally, "The Green New Deal is the Real Deal" shows how linking environmental and social goals can be addressed via patterns and pattern languages, concepts used in urban design.                        

John Kirkpatrick

Two recent articles have been published including John Kirkpatrick as author or co-author. In June, "Methane-oxidizing seawater microbial communities from an Arctic shelf" was published in Biogeosciences, examining the relationship between sea ice and methane consuming bacteria. In September, "Dark N2 fixation: nifH expression in the redoxcline of the Black Sea" came out in Aquatic Microbial Ecology.           

Eirik Steinhoff

Eirik Steinhoff discussed his new book, A Fiery Flying Roule: to all the inhabitants of the earth; specially to the rich ones, published in 2018 by Station Hill Press, at an Art Lecture in Week 2 of Spring Quarter. He read twice from his work in Seattle in the spring and in the summer: once as part of the monthlong “Red May” series and once with Roy Scranton at Elliott Bay Book Company; he also presented at Evergreen’s Art Lecture Series. He sponsored a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship focused on critical literacy and liberation education, and participated in the two-day “Pop-Ed Lab” hosted by Anthony Zaragoza at Evergreen’s Tacoma campus. He has joined the Education Advisory Board of the Freedom Education Project Puget Sound, and along with several students currently enrolled in the Gateways program he participated in October in the daylong Criminal Justice Summit hosted by the Black Prisoners Caucus at Stafford Creek Corrections Center outside Aberdeen. For Return to Evergreen this past Fall, he and Carri LeRoy co-facilitated a fieldtrip for a busload of Evergreen alum to Mount St Helens, where fieldwork was indulged in, haiku were written, and good times were had by all.   

Vuslat Katsanis

Vuslat D. Katsanis has two literary translations published and forthcoming. Her translation of “The Night” (“Gece”), written in Turkish by Öznur Kutkan was published in the ninth issue of The Bosphorus Review of Books in May 2018. Her translation of “Yearning” (“Özlem”) by the same author is forthcoming in the 2019 print anthology, Unchartable, of Portland Review. She was one of four authors invited to the Unchartable release reading at Powell's Books in Portland on April 12th. 

Michael Vavrus

Michael Vavrus co-edited the 2018 book Intersectionality of Race, Ethnicity, Class, and Gender in Teaching and Teacher Education: Movement Toward Equity in Education. He also authored the chapter “Movement Toward a ‘Third Reconstruction’ and Educational Equity” that served as the “Afterword” to the book. The book grew out of Michael’s work with the professional organization “Critical Examination of Race, Ethnicity, Class, and Gender,” a special interest group of the American Educational Research Association.                        

John Withey

 John Withey been collaborating with a Science for Nature and People Program (SNAPP)-funded working group on "Better Land-Use Decisions," focused on sage grouse habitat. The group has a paper out in PLoS ONE that considers the extent to which the sage grouse serves as an 'umbrella species' by providing protections for other species from localized and landscape-scale threats.     

Marla Elliott

Marla Beth Elliott performed at the annual conference of the Society of American Law Teachers (SALT) with her band, The Righteous Mothers, at Loyola University in New Orleans on January 4, 2019. The Righteous Mothers’ bass player, Professor Lisa Brodoff, was receiving the SALT Great Teacher award for her work incorporating music and play into her teaching at Seattle University School of Law. The Righteous Mothers performed as part of her acceptance speech as well as at the reception following the award ceremony.        

Zoltan Grossman

Zoltán Grossman is publishing “Native/Non-Native Alliances: Challenging Fossil Fuel Industry Shipping at Pacific Northwest Ports,” in the forthcoming University of Calgary Press anthology Environmental Activism on the Ground: Small Green and Indigenous Organizing. His University of Washington Press book Unlikely Alliances: Native Nations and White Communities Join to Defend Rural Lands was reviewed in Yes!, Race & Class, Antipode, Transmotion, and H-Net, and he gave a book reading at Elliott Bay Book Co. in Seattle. He has also compared U.S. and Hungarian demonizations of refugees and Jews, and compared “Fascism Denial” to climate change denial, in Counterpunch. 

Zoltán had a Spring 2019 sabbatical as a Visiting Scholar in the University of New Mexico Department of Geography. He visited two flood-prone Indigenous communities in New Zealand, and presented on Maori disaster resilience to the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association conference in Hamilton. He published “Populist alliances of ‘cowboys and Indians’ are protecting rural lands,” in The Conversation, reprinted by wire services and newspapers. His University of Washington Press book Unlikely Alliances: Native Nations and White Communities Join to Defend Rural Lands was awarded Finalist Status for the Malott Prize for Recording Community Activism by the Langum Charitable Trust. His book was reviewed in Native American & Indigenous Studies and Oregon Historical Quarterly, he was interviewed by Public News Service and Left Ungagged, and did book talks at Lord Mansion and the U.W. Salish Sea Equity & Justice Symposium. He coordinated the Oceania Rising: Peace Pivot to the Pacific tour of women opposing military bases in Okinawa, Guam, and Hawai’i. During the conflict with Iran, he published “A War on Iran Would be Different From Iraq, and Far, Far Worse” on Counterpunch, and during the pandemic he published “Washing Our Hands of Trump and Powerlessness” on CommonDreams. 

Steve Davis

Steve Davis is a semi-finalist for the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition, for "Appearing As Regular Men." The image shows prison inmates appearing in civilian clothing. 

Sarah Eltantawi presented on her book Shari'ah on Trial: Northern NIgeria's Islamic Revolution at Georgetown University and Swarthmore College in the Spring. In the summer, Sarah travelled to Lusaka, Zambia, to attend an event on her book between herself and members of the African Association for the Study of Religions. Also in the summer Sarah presented on her new work on political Islam in Egypt at the World Conference for Middle Eastern Studies in Seville, Spain. Sarah also conducted research in Cairo, Egypt, and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. In the fall, Sarah presented in a European-Union sponsored workshop on "uses of the past in Islamic law" at the University of Exeter in the UK. She also participated in an event at Simon Fraiser University in Vancouver with Rumee Ahmed, author of the new book, "Shari'ah Compliant." Earlier in the year she published her commentary on Rumee Ahmed's book on the Immanent Frame.

Dharshi Bopegedera

Dharshi Bopegedera published an article in the October 2018 issue of the Journal of Chemical Education, the most read chemistry education journal, and published by the American Chemical Society. The article, titled “A Second Look at the Kinetics of the Iron–Oxygen Reaction: Determination of the Total Order Using a Greener Approach," highlights an experiment Dr. Bopegedera has conducted multiple times in the chemistry laboratory with her students at The Evergreen State College to help them understand the reaction rate of the rusting of iron. The rusting of iron (the reaction between iron and oxygen) has a high impact on the world’s economy since an estimated 20% of iron and steel produced annually is used to replace rusted metal. The published experiment falls under the category of “green chemistry.”  The American Chemical Society highlights the “Twelve Principles of Green Chemistry” to encourage chemists and chemical engineers to find creative and innovative ways to benefit the economy while also protecting people, animals, plants and the planet. 

Dr. Bopegedera also presented a paper at the 26th Annual Conference of the Washington College Chemistry Teachers Association (WCCTA) in October 2018. This oral presentation was titled “Using Tie-dye as an effective and engaging tool to introduce polymer concepts to beginning chemistry students.” The presentation highlighted an article Dr. Bopegedera published on this same topic in the November 2017 issue of the Journal of Chemical Education. Dr. Bopegedera has conducted the tie-dye laboratory experiment to introduce polymer chemistry concepts to science and non-science students in multiple programs at The Evergreen State College. https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acs.jchemed.6b00796. At this conference, Dr. Bopegedera also served as a liaison for the Puget Sound Section of the American Chemical Society where she serves as a Councilor.