Stetson University in the News, July 16-22, 2021

Person in Front of Laptop next to Stetson University Mug.

Top Stories:

Rajni Shankar-Brown, PhD
Chris Ferguson, PhD

Rajni Shankar-Brown, PhD, professor and Jessie Ball duPont Endowed Chair of Social Justice Education, and Chris Ferguson, PhD, professor of Psychology, were interviewed for the July 15 article, “Why all the talk about critical race theory and why now,” on Shankar-Brown said, “We have to pause and ask ourselves, why is there so much controversy over this theory, particularly when it is a framework that calls on us to create a more inclusive, more loving, and more just world.” Ferguson said, “Some of these bills, particularly the ones that target universities, have free speech issues. … In theory, level heads could compromise on differences and come to workable guidelines for what could or should be included in education.”

• President Christopher F. Roellke, PhD; Krista Bofill, MEd, new vice president of Development and Alumni Engagement; and Jeff Ulmer, retired vice president of Development and Alumni Engagement, were cited in the July 15 article, “Stetson selects vice president for development,” in the Hometown News.

• Stuart Michelson, PhD, Roland and Sarah George Professor of Finance and chair of Finance, was quoted in the July 20 article, “6 Best Vanguard Funds to Buy and Hold,” on Yahoo! Finance, and WTOP-FM Online.

Melissa Gibbs
Melissa Gibbs, PhD

• Melissa Ann Gibbs, PhD, professor of Biology and director of the Aquatic & Marine Biology Program, was interviewed by the Save the Manatee Club about the effects of armored catfish on Florida’s manatees. Gibbs also was cited in a news roundup July 16 in the Arkansas Democrat Gazette about a manatee mother and her calf.

• Kirsten Work, PhD, professor of Biology, was interviewed for the “Magic Waters” episode of the WUFT (PBS) program, “Fellowship of the Springs.”

* Rajni Shankar-Brown, professor and Jessie Ball duPont Endowed Chair of Social Justice Education, was interviewed for the July 19 story, “New online tool helps better serve environmental justice,” on the news website of the College of William & Mary.

Ciara Torres-Spelliscy

• Law Professor Ciara Torres-Spelliscy was quoted in the July 19 article, “Branding the U.S. left: AOC makes a push into political merchandise,” on,, and more than 30 other media outlets, and in “AOC RESPONDS: Ocasio-Cortez Defends $58 Sweatshirts Because ‘Transactions Aren’t Capitalism’ ” on and Clarion News.

• Chris Ferguson, professor of Psychology, was interviewed July 20 for the segment, “Free speech, psychology, and madness,” on the So to Speak podcast.

Other Stories

• Stetson University was in the news for the July 16 story, “Happy anniversary Central Florida Hillel,” in Heritage Florida Jewish News.

• Lua Hancock, EdD, who recently left her position as vice president for Campus Life and Student Success, was quoted in the July 17 article, “Stetson University announces senior leadership transitions,” in the West Volusia Beacon. “My time at Stetson has been the highlight of my career,” Hancock said. The article also quoted President Christopher F. Roellke, PhD, and noted that Larry Correll-Hughes, PhD, assistant vice president for Campus Life and Student Success and executive director of Residential Living and Learning; and Lynn Schoenberg, EdS, dean of Students, have been appointed as co-interim vice presidents for Campus Life and Student Success.

Person in Front of Laptop next to Stetson University Mug.
Stetson University in the News is a weekly roundup of media coverage that mentions Stetson, its faculty, students, staff and alumni.

• “DeLand mayor first served the nation,” a July 13 story in the West Volusia Beacon, mentioned that the family of current Mayor Robert Apgar moved to DeLand in 1959, when the Army assigned his father to Stetson University as the professor of military science.

• Stetson University was in the news for the July 21 story, “Florida’s most charming small towns and villages, ranked,” on

• Stetson was cited in the July 22 story, “Property taxes likely to increase as growing pains, wage increase fuel DeLand spending,” in the West Volusia Beacon.

Alumni News

• New York Mets pitcher and alumnus Jacob deGrom has been selected to the ASUN Conference Hall of Fame, as reported July 20 by the West Volusia Beacon.

• Alumnus Cory Rhoads was profiled as a speaker in the upcoming webinar, “Artificial Intelligence in Food Manufacturing: Making the Most of Your Data,” on

• Alumnus and Tampa City Councilman Luis Viera wrote, “Commentary: Making the case for enhancing public safety,” on July 20 on

• Alumna Alisa M. Heedy was cited in the Business People section of the July 19 Sarasota Herald-Tribune.

• Alumna Rachael Gallagher was profiled July 21 in “John Knox Village Hires Staff to Enhance Enrichment Team” on the website of South Florida Business & Wealth magazine.

• Alumnus Forrest J. Bass was cited in “Farr attorney appointed chair of Florida Bar committee” in the July 22 Punta Gorda-Port Charlotte Florida Weekly and on