Dr. Linda McElroy has been a member of the USAO faculty since 1995. She is an associate professor of education and teaches Reading I: Foundations of Literacy, Reading II: Strategies and Materials for Literacy Instruction, Reading III: Assessment and instruction of Literacy, Senior Seminar and College Reading and Study Skills.
McElroy’s publications include: Instant Messaging, Literacies, and Social Identities; Sense and Sendability: Children’s Problem-Solving Strategies for Construction Meaning from Pen Pal Letters and At-Risk Readers: Part I—Identifying The Cycle.
During her time at USAO, McElroy has been a member of the Admission to Teacher Education Committee, recording secretary for the Division of Education and Speech Pathology, a member of the Board of Directors and lifetime member of the Alumni Association, as well as serving on many other committees including the Faculty Search, Financial Aid Appeals, Tenure and Promotion, Superior Faculty Awards, University Curriculum, Faculty-Student Grievance, Assessment and Accountability and Physical Resources. In addition, she is the faculty advisor for the USAO Baptist Collegiate Ministries, faculty coordinator for the America Reads Program and recipient of the USAO Gladys Anderson Emerson Faculty Research Stipend. She received the USAO Regents Superior Teaching Award in 2009.
She also is a member of the International Reading Association, National Reading Conference, Oklahoma Higher Education Reading Council, Oklahoma State Department of Education Reading Consortium, Oklahoma Reading Association, Grady County Reading Association and Oklahoma Association of Teacher Educators.
Before coming to USAO, McElroy was an instructor and graduate assistant at the University of Oklahoma, reading specialist at Lexington Public Schools, teacher at Wanette Elementary School, teaching assistant at Purcell Elementary School and director and teacher for the Mother’s Day Out weekday early education program at the First Baptist Church in Purcell.
Before coming to USAO in 2008, Dr. Gower was the director of federal programs of the Unified School District No. 480 in Liberal, Kans. At the same time, she was an instructor at Kansas Newman University in Wichita and at Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kans.
At Kansas Newman and Fort Hays, Gower taught courses for off-campus credit, worked collaboratively with Fort Hays administrators in implementing summer courses to improve science instruction for middle and high school teachers supported with grant funding and administered endorsement classes.
While with the United School District No. 480, Gower administrated various state and federal programs that included Title I, the largest federal aid program that deals with migratory or at risk children; Title III, which is designed for agencies to develop high quality English as a second language programs and the Carl Perkins Grant, which promotes the preparation for nontraditional training and employment. She also served as the director of preschool, assistant principal at Liberal High School and other positions within the district.
In addition to her teaching duties, Gower serves as the director of the Child Development Center at USAO. The center is open from 9-11:45 a.m. Monday through Friday during the fall and spring trimesters. The center focuses on the achievement of the following goals: enhancement of self-concept, language development, sensory acuity, motor development, concept formation and living skills.
A member of the USAO faculty since 1999, Dr. Long is an economic historian whose primary areas of interest include colonial American economics, the 19th century American Industrial Revolution, women’s labor history, and Institutional Economics. Before coming to USAO, she taught at the University of Tennessee as a graduate instructor, and at Keene State College in New Hampshire. She has published or presented on a wide variety of topics, including the history of New Deal job creation in Tennessee, feminist participatory research methods, NAFTA-related job loss in the South, and the dangers of right-to-work laws.
In conjunction with her role as Director of the Interdisciplinary Studies Core Curriculum (IDS), Dr. Long teaches several IDS courses, including Rhetoric adn Critical Thinking, The Individual in Contemporary Society, American Civ I, American Civ II, World Thought II, and World Thought III.
She is a member of the Association for Evolutionary Economics and the International Association for Feminist Economics and also serves on the board of the Women’s Service and Family Resource Center in Chickasha.
"They don’t call economics The Dismal Science because it’s fair.... They call it that after Sir Eustace Dismal, the 18th century English economist who proposed making smokestacks out of children. It was a very interesting proposal but ultimately flawed. I mean, if you make the smokestacks out of children who will you force to clean them? It’s referred to as 'Dismal’s Paradox.'" John Hodgeman
Robert Newbrough has been a member of the USAO faculty since 2002. He teaches all accounting courses as well as Principles of Finance, and occasionally dabs in Microeconomics and Macroeconomics.
In addition to his classroom responsibilities, Newbrough is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and a retired Captain of the Chickasha Fire Department. He is a governmental accounting expert witness, and the treasurer for the USAO Alumni Association. He prepares income tax forms for business and individuals and does compensation plans design, costing, and consulting for various labor organizations within Oklahoma.
Dr. Chris Walker has been a member of the faculty at USAO since 2004. He commonly teaches Elementary Psychology, Research Methods in Psychology, Learning and Motivation, Advanced Research Methods, History of Psychology and Social Psychology.
Dr. Walker’s research has traditionally examined social/cognitive factors that influence academic motivation and achievement including perceptions of belonging, the adoption of achievement goals, and hope. His publications have been featured in the Middle Grades Research Journal, Learning and Individual Differences, Social Psychology of Education, Educational Psychology, and the Journal of Educational Research.
Dr. Walker is a member of the American Educational Research Association (AERA), American Psychological Association (APA), and the Oklahoma Psychological Society (OPS). He was awarded the USAO Regent's Award for Superior Teaching in 2006 & 2011 and the Regent's Award for Scholarly Research in 2010. He is also a faculty co-sponsor of the Psychology Club and Psi Chi and serves as the chair of the USAO Symposia and University Assessment Committees.
Before coming to USAO, he was a graduate research and teaching assistant at the University of Oklahoma.
Dr. Vicki Ferguson serves several roles as professor, director of teacher education and chair of the Division of Education and Speech-Language Pathology at USAO. She has been a full-time member of the USAO faculty since 1988. She also was an instructor in the mathematics department at USAO from 1975-1980 and an adjunct faculty member in the Division of Mathematics and Division of Education from 1987-1988.
Ferguson was an instructor in the Applied Problem Solving Institute and Summer Math Academy at Oklahoma City Community College. Before coming to USAO, Ferguson taught math at Chickasha High School and Anderson High School in Austin, Texas.
She is on the advisory board of A+ Oklahoma Schools and is the president-elect of the Oklahoma Association of Colleges of Teacher Education. Ferguson was the conference chair of the OACTE/OCTP/OATE Fall Conference in 2009. She served as an OACTE representative during the Day on the Hill in Washington, D.C. in 2009 and 2010 and during the Oklahoma Legislative Day on the Hill the last two years.
She is a member of the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and the National Science Teachers Association.
Ferguson has attended AACTE National Meetings in Atlanta, Chicago, New Orleans, New York, and San Diego. She was a team member of the Oklahoma State Accreditation Team of the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education in 2008.
She has presented to the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Regional Conference seven times, the Oklahoma Council of Teachers of Mathematics twice and the Oklahoma Education Association District Meeting twice.
Outside the classroom, Ferguson enjoys organizing and leading one of the interactive learning stations at various Earth Day/Resource Day events sponsored by the Grady County Conservation District. She also served as a Girl Scout leader for 10 years.
Danny Bice is the educational interpreter at USAO. He has been a member of the staff since 1998.
Bice interprets for classes at USAO, as well as special events. He works in the Division of Education and Speech Language Pathology at the college. The division includes the early childhood, education of the deaf, elementary education and speech-language pathology fields of study.
Dr. Hector has been a full-time faculty member at USAO since 1998. Before joining the USAO faculty full-time, she worked as an adjunct faculty member for the college. She also has served as a teacher, director of school and director of preschool at Epworth Christian School in Chickasha and as a teacher at Alex Public Schools and Rush Springs Public Schools.
She is a member of the National Association for the Education of Young Children, Oklahoma Association for the Early Childhood Teacher Educators, American Association of University Women, Reading Teacher International, Grady County Reading Council and the Higher Education Alumni Council of Oklahoma.
In 2009, Hector released a children's book title Juniper, a story about an inauspicious elf, eager to find his niche in life. The 103-page book is published by Tate Publishing and Enterprises and is available at their website -- www.tatepublishing.com and at the USAO Bookstore.
She is a member of the Superior Teaching Award Committee, Teacher Education Committee, Curriculum Committee, Faculty Association Tenure Committee and Library Committee at USAO.
Hector has two children and lots of nieces and nephews who have given her inspiration for her stories. She lives in Chickasha with her husband, dog, and two cats.
Wendi Ferrell joined the USAO faculty in 2008. Before USAO, she was the leadership and recruitment coordinator/program supervisor for Caddo Kiowa Technology Center in Fort Cobb. She coordinated the Washita Valley Leadership Program, was the trainer for the Points of Light Youth Leadership Institute and served as the self employment training coordinator. She also served as a program supervisor for the culinary arts, school nurse, hotel and restaurant management and criminal justice programs.
Her previous work experience includes working as an adjunct instructor at Western Oklahoma State College and full-time faculty member in the business department at Southwest Technology Center in Altus and Caddo Kiowa Technology Center.
Ferrell was named the 2007 Outstanding Educator of the Year -- Oklahoma Association for Career and Technology Education, Customized Business and Industry Training Services. She also was named the Mt. Plains Region Teacher of the Year for 1998-99 and the Oklahoma Business Education Association Teacher of the Year 1998-98.
She has been a member of the Association of Career and Technology Education (ACTE); Oklahoma ACTE; Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education, CBITS Division; ACTE/CBITS, and the Administration Division of the Oklahoma ACTE.
Dr. Lee Hester has been a member of the USAO faculty since 2000. He teaches Tribal Government and Law, History of Federal Indian Law, Justice and Federal Indian Law, Theories of Sovereignty, Contemporary American Indian Issues, American Indian Identity, Native American Philosophy, Pan-Indianism, American Indian Art, American Indians in Film, American Indian Economics, Casino Management, Plains Indian Warfare, Removal, Native American Contemporary and Traditional Literature, Wichita Clemente, Chickasaw Clemente, Kiowa Tribal Government and American Indian Education.
Hester is the director of American Indian Studies and director of the Meredith Indigenous Humanities Center. He is the advisor to all American Indian Studies majors and is a faculty advisor to American Indian student organization on campus.
Hester has been published in numerous American Indian journals, newspapers and newsletters that include American Indian Wars on the Solver Screen, On Philosophical Discourse andCeremonial Worldsand Environmental Sanity. He also has published a book entitled Political Principles and Indian Sovereignty.
He was awarded the Presidential Award of Excellence for Environmental Protection Services in 1973 by President Richard Nixon.
In addition to his classroom activities, Hester is the Cultural Committee chair for the Oklahoma Choctaw Tribal Alliance Inc., is a founding board member for the Oklahoma Association for Healthcare Ethics and is a member of Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers, the American Philosophical Association and the American Indian Philosophical Association.
Before coming to USAO, Hester taught at Oklahoma City University, Lakehead University and the University of Oklahoma.