International Studies & Programs

Faculty Directory

The Center for Gender in Global Context currently has more than 275 affiliated faculty members from throughout MSU's campus, across 17 colleges and more than 65 departments and offices.

The GenCen Faculty Directory can be sorted by Name, College, Department, and GenCen Affiliation. Affiliates can be Core, Consulting, GJEC, or GDG Faculty (some members may be both GJEC/GDG and Core or Consulting). Click here to jump to a short description of our Faculty Affiliations.

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Morgan Shipley
College: Arts and Letters
Department: Religious Studies
Affiliation: Core
Program:
Email: shiple18(at)msu.edu

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Biography:

Morgan Shipley is Visiting Assistant Professor and Academic Advisor in the Department of Religious Studies. Morgan is co-editor of The Silence of Fallout: Nuclear Criticism in a Post-Cold War World (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2013), and author of Psychedelic Mysticism: Transforming Consciousness, Religious Experiences, and Voluntary Peasants in Postwar America (Lexington Books, 2015). He has published widely in peer-reviewed journals, edited anthologies, and encyclopedias on various topics, from doomsday cults to debates in comparative mysticism to the mad and sacred art of the Beat Generation and Jean-Michel Basquiat. Concerned with historical and contemporary mechanisms of marginalization, oppression, and empowerment, his research operates at the intersection of religion, identity, and politics, with a particular focus on how religious values and perspectives in America have operated to delineate gendered, racial, and economic disenfranchisement, while also offering alternative routes to pursue and advance social justice causes. Much of his research highlights how popular culture functions as an educational heuristic, often providing American audiences with their first introduction to non-Christian religious traditions and practices, transnational flows of religious culture, new religious movements based in global spiritual perspectives/appropriation, and non-normative identity structures found within varied global religions (e.g., third gender, and specifically the implications, contexts, and results of third gender gods and people being ascribed spiritual powers by many indigenous cultures). In addition to a fully-drafted article that looks at the comic Ms. Marvel in order to unpack Islamic representations and corresponding gendered symbols, as well as a fully-outlined manuscript length project—Mystics and Misogynists: Recovering the Lost Voices of Women Visionaries and Prophets in America—that critically interrogates how both American religious history and the field of religious studies has relegated women mystics to the role of secondary (or non-existent) actors, Morgan recently completed eight original entries for the Encyclopedia of Women in World Religions: Faith and Culture Across History (ABC-CLIO, Forthcoming 2018) that explore how the fields of history and religious studies remember the space and place of women religious actors, specifically in relation to moments predicated on blaming or demonizing (e.g., “Women and The Fall,” “Women’s Divination,” or “Women and Kabbalah”), idealizing and sexualizing (e.g., “Eleusinian Mysteries” or “Gaea”), or relegating and disenfranchising (e.g., “Women’s Native American Activism,” “Native American Medicine Women,” and “Women in Hasidism”).

Sitara Thobani
College: Residential College in the Arts and Humanities
Department: Residential College in the Arts and Humanities
Affiliation: Core
Program:
Email: thobanis(at)msu.edu

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Biography:

Sitara Thobani’s research focuses on the performance arts in colonial and postcolonial South Asia and its diasporas. More specifically she is interested in how artistic practices, as well as representations of these practices, help construct particular formations of gender, sexuality, religion and nation. Sitara draws on postcolonial feminist and critical race studies in her scholarship, as well as her experiences as a trained Indian classical dance performer. In both her academic work and artistic practice, she questions essentialisng discourses by unpacking the complex histories and underlying relations of power that produce them.  Based on her ethnographic fieldwork in the UK and India, Sitara’s research has demonstrated how performances of Indian classical dance serve as a critical site for the mutual constitution of deeply entangled Indian, diasporic and British national identities. This research is presented in her book, Indian Classical Dance and the Making of Postcolonial National Identities: Dancing on Empire’s Stage (Routledge 2017). Sitara has also published journal articles in MUSICultures and Anthropology in Action, as well as a book chapter in Religion and Migration in Europe: Comparative Perspectives on South Asian Experiences (edited by E. Gallo).  Sitara has a PhD in Social and Cultural Anthropology from the University of Oxford, an MA in Sociology and Equity Studies from the University of Toronto, and a BA in Anthropology and Asian Studies from the University of British Columbia. An Assistant Professor in RCAH, she is also affiliated with the Asian Studies Program and the Muslim Studies Program at Michigan State University.  

Chezare Warren
College: Education
Department: Teacher Education
Affiliation: Core
Program:
Email: chezare(at)msu.edu

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Dr. Chezare A. Warren is assistant professor in the Department of Teacher Education and native Chicagoan. He presently holds faculty appointments in African American and African Studies, Mathematics Education, and the Center for Gender in Global Context. Dr. Warren’s research examines factors that support the high academic success of young Black men and boys attending urban schools. He is immediate past president of the Critical Race Studies in Education Association, and his scholarship has been published in several peer-reviewed journals including Urban Education, Journal of Teacher Education, Teachers College Record. He is co-editor of White Women’s Work: Examining the Intersectionality of Teaching, Identity, and Race published by Information Age. More recently, Dr. Warren’s book, Urban Preparation: Young Black Men Moving from Chicago’s South Side to Success in Higher Education was published as the first text to appear on Harvard Education Press’ new “Race and Education” series. For more information, visit www.chezarewarren.com. 

Veronica Thronson
College: Law
Department: Law
Affiliation: Core
Program:
Email: veronica.thronson(at)law.msu.edu

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Biography:

Veronica Tobar Thronson is a Clinical Professor of Law and Director of the MSU Law Clinic and Immigration Law Clinic at the Michigan State University College of Law. The Immigration Law Clinic provides opportunities for students to experience the practice of law through direct client representation in a well supervised and academically rigorous program with a broad and diverse docket of cases before administrative agencies, Immigration Court, state courts, and appellate courts. Clients include unaccompanied minors in removal proceedings, victims of domestic violence, family based immigration petitioners, asylum seekers, and naturalization applicants. Students engage in policy research, resource development, community outreach and systemic advocacy on issues related to immigration. Thronson routinely conducts trainings for attorneys and judges, and was appointed to the faculty of The National Judicial College in 2012. In 2015 she became expert faculty with the National Immigrant Women's Advocacy Project at American University Washington College of Law, Family Law Attorneys Community of Practice.  From 2002 to 2010, Thronson was the Directing Attorney of the Domestic Violence Project at the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada where she practiced in the areas of family and immigration law. She also taught Community Property as an adjunct professor at the William S. Boyd School of Law at UNLV. Previously, Thronson served as the Director of Training and Legal Services at the New York Immigration Coalition, a non-profit umbrella advocacy organization for over 200 groups in New York that work with immigrants, refugees, and asylees. Thronson has served on numerous boards and task forces. Currently, she is a core faculty member of the Michigan State University Research Consortium on Gender-Based Violence, a board member of the Michigan Committee for Refugee Resettlement, serves on the State Bar of Michigan’s Access to Justice Initiative and co-chaired the Domestic Violence Committee of the State Bar of Michigan for several years. In addition, she is a Domestic Violence Screening Mediation Trainer approved by the Office of Dispute Resolution at the Michigan State Court Administrative Office.  In 2006, the Southern Nevada Domestic Violence Task Force honored Thronson with its S.T.A.R. award, created to honor an individual for stellar work on behalf of victims. In 2009, Thronson received the Louis Wiener Service Award, given to an advocate who has made substantial contributions in representing victims. In 2014, Thronson received the Michigan State University Service-Learning and Civic Engagement Award and in 2015, the Immigration Law Clinic received the Michigan State University Excellence in Diversity Award. Thronson is a graduate of the City University of New York School of Law and is admitted to the practice of law in the states of New Jersey, New York, Nevada and Michigan.  In addition to teaching in the Immigration Law Clinic, Professor Thronson teaches Immigration and Nationality Law and Domestic Violence.

Kristin Mahoney
College: Arts and Letters
Department: English
Affiliation: Core
Program:
Email: mahone95(at)msu.edu

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Biography:

Kristin Mahoney, Associate Professor, Department of English, comes to MSU from Western Washington University where she was an Associate Professor in the Department of English. Her research interests include Victorian studies, modernism, queer studies, Decadence, and aestheticism. She has published articles in Victorian Studies, Criticism, Victorian Review, Victorian Periodicals Review, English Literature Transition, Nineteenth-Century Prose, and Literature Compass. Her book, Literature and the Politics of Post-Victorian Decadence, published by Cambridge University Press in 2015, focuses on figures associated with the fin de siècle who survived into the twentieth century and defiantly foregrounded their connections to the previous century in order to signal their dissatisfaction with the escalating militarism and aggression of the period. She is currently working on a project entitled Queer Kinship after Wilde: Transnational Aestheticism and the Family. Mahoney received both her Ph.D. and M.A. in English from the University of Notre Dame.

Gretchen Neisler
College: Agriculture and Natural Resources
Department: Center for Global Connections in Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources
Affiliation:
Program: GJEC
Email: gneisler(at)msu.edu

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Biography:

Dr. Gretchen Neisler is the Director of the Center for Global Connections in Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources (CGC), a boundary-spanning global organization located in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at Michigan State University with over 45 years of international development experience. In Dr. Neisler’s capacity as Director, she oversees a highly skilled team that is focused on reducing transaction costs for faculty and students to engage in global research and outreach opportunities.
Dr. Neisler brings both depth and breadth in international development and higher education capacity building to CGC. Neisler has extensive experience in working with institutes of higher education in Michigan and abroad. Prior to her appointment at CGC, Dr. Neisler served as the Associate Provost for Strategic Planning at Albion College, where she facilitated and coordinated the development and implementation of a new college strategic plan. Her international portfolio includes work across the Middle East, East Africa, West Africa, and Southeast Asia building sustainable partnerships within and for academic institutions. She has led workshops with faculties from institutes of higher education and other public sector professionals on curriculum development, capacity building, leadership development, gender inclusiveness in the workplace and learning from our development failures.
With the understanding that faculty at MSU must continue the tradition of being global problem solvers, Dr. Neisler co-founded the Academy for Global Engagement, a fellowship trainng program for early to mid-career faculty who are willing to both regularly participate in global activities and view their scholarship through a global lens.
Engagement with international organizations and funding agencies is central to Dr. Neisler’s work. She currently serves as the past chair of the International Agriculture Section of the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities (APLU).
Dr. Neisler holds B.S. in Animal Science, an M.S. in Agriculture Extension Education and a PhD from MSU in Higher Education Administration.

Michael O'Rourke
College: Social Science
Department: Philosophy and AgBioResearch
Affiliation:
Program: GJEC
Email: orourk51(at)msu.edu

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Biography:

Michael O'Rourke is Professor of Philosophy and faculty in AgBioResearch at Michigan State University. His research interests include environmental philosophy, the nature of epistemic integration and communication in collaborative, cross-disciplinary research, and the nature of linguistic communication between intelligent agents. He is Director of the Toolbox Project, an NSF-sponsored research initiative that investigates philosophical approaches to facilitating interdisciplinary research (http://toolbox-project.org/). He has published extensively on the topics of communication, interdisciplinary theory and practice, and robotic agent design. He has been a co-principal investigator or collaborator on funded projects involving environmental science education, facilitating cross-disciplinary communication, biodiversity conservation, sustainable agriculture, resilience in environmental systems, and autonomous underwater vehicles. He co-founded and served as co-director of the Inland Northwest Philosophy Conference, an interdisciplinary conference on philosophical themes, and as co-editor of the Topics in Contemporary Philosophy series published by MIT Press

Tim Retzloff
College: Social Science
Department: History
Affiliation: Core
Program:
Email: retzloff(at)msu.edu

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Biography:

Tim Retzloff joined the GenCen faculty in Fall 2017.


What do our Faculty Affiliations Mean?

Core Faculty have a strong continuing professional focus on issues of women and gender in domestic, international, or global contexts, as demonstrated through research and teaching or other achievements. The Core Faculty supports the activities of GenCen and assists in developing and implementing its programs and activities, and are also eligible to serve on the GenCen Advisory Committee.

Consulting Faculty, while having a professional interest in issues of women and gender in domestic, international, or global contexts and activities of the GenCen, usually do not have these interests as the main focus of their research. 

GDG (Gender, Development and Globalization) Faculty will also be either Core or Consulting Faculty and have specific expertise and interest in gender and international development.

GJEC (Gender, Justice and Environmental Change) Faculty may also be either Core or Consulting Faculty, though that is not a requirement. GJEC Faculty are dedicated to teaching and scholarship related to intersections of gender, environmental change, and social and environmental justice; examining these issues from both local and global perspectives.

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